The question has become more and more frequently asked: ‘Manual or flappy paddle(DSG) transmission?’
Well let’s first dive into how they both work and differ. The conventional manual transmission is comprised of a clutch pedal and a gear selector knob. The driver “manually” engages the clutch, select the gear which they want to enter the release the clutch. This is a more ‘intmate’ way of driving as it requires more attention and effort. This transmission is seen as rather ancient.
The ‘new’ generation of transmissions is the flappy paddle (DSG) transmission. This is comprised of a gear selector knob which select the basic gears just as in a automatic, (Drive, Neutral, Park and Reverse), it also has a pair of paddles situated behind the steering wheel which change gears either up or down depending on which is pulled. This transmission is comprised of two clutch plates and when a paddle is pulled instead of selecting a gear like in a manual, the next clutch plate is used, this is is because each clutch plate holds a set of Gear ratios, one holding the odd numbers and the other holding the even. This is a much faster way of changing gears.
Well now that we know how they work let’s try break down which is best. The Manual transmission is much more fun as it has you more active in the vehicle it also allows the turbo charged cars to release pressure in the turbo allowing for an amazing sound. Unfortunately manual is slower to accelerate as the driver is one to figure out the clutch release time etc. The Manual transmission is however much cheaper to maintain when things go wrong. The Flappy paddle transmision is much more faster and because the clutch is released and handle by a separate ECU for the transmission you can have the accelerator all the way down from the start. This transmission also releases a amazing noise from the exhaust system this due to the fact that you have the accelerator down when the gear change is taking place so there is a somewhat overflow of fuel in the engine that is flushed out through the pipes combusting just before exiting due to the heat in the exhaust system. This transmission is much way more expensive to maintain as it has twice the mechanical components as the manual and requires a seperate service.
So which do I think is best you ask…? Well I would rather have the Manual transmission any day of the week. It’s just sad that this transmission is being flushed out by car manufacturers. But petrol heads will always find a way to make them work.
“Life is too short to drive slow,
too short to drive boring
And too short to drive the ordinary.”
-Koketso Washington Mahlangu