Manual vs Automatic Driving Licenses:
If you take your driving test in a car with a manual gearbox, you're also qualified to drive an automatic. However, if you take your driving test in an automatic car, you can't legally drive a manual. You'll have to take your test again in a manual car. Find out more on the DVLA site here..
The four types of automatic gearbox:
Did you know there are four different types of automatic gearbox?
Every automatic gearbox will fall into one of these four basic categories, but some manufacturers have their own names for the systems they use, so it's worth asking the seller exactly what is under the bonnet.
Here's a summary of each one and how they can affect your drive:
1. Traditional automatic
Smooth gear changes and reliable, but better suited to larger cars. Often found in more expensive models like Jaguars and BMWs.
2. Continuously variable transmission (CVT)
A totally different kind of gearbox with no fixed gears, so there are no gear changes. Very smooth and reliable, but can be noisy.
3. Clutchless manual gearbox
A normal manual gearbox that uses electric motors to change gear automatically. Cheaper than other types of automatic, but can give a jerky ride. More common in cheaper and smaller automatic cars.
4. Twin-clutch automatic gearbox
The smoothest option, but can have reliability issues. Often found in high performance cars like Porsches and Mercedes.
Manual vs automatic - pros and cons:
We know that a car with an automatic gearbox may, in theory, be simpler to drive, but let's take a look at how else manuals and automatics can differ.