For You Gearheads - Miss the Manual Transmission and Sound?

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#1
Let me introduce myself. I'm a car enthusiast. I love speed. I love the connection between the driver and car. I love rowing my own gears. I love the sweet sound of the engine and exhaust in perfect harmony with the acceleration and deceleration of the car.

For those who consider themselves driving enthusiasts and have come from driving entertaining, manual transmission cars to a Tesla, what are your thoughts? Do you miss the visceral experience hearing the roar of the engine as you shift yourself going down a winding road? Do you feel the driver-car connection is in any way diminished?

My next vehicle involves some odd cross-shopping. I've narrowed it down to a Tesla Model 3, a 2018 Mustang GT, or a newer Camaro SS.

I've owned a Neon SRT-4 and a Caliber SRT4. Both were fun cars, but definitely not true drivers cars. Front wheel drive and a lot of horsepower do not mix well. Enertertaining, yes. Total driving experience, not so much. I've always wanted to own a sweet sounding V8 manual before gas prices go crazy and while we are, arguably, in the Golden Age of the muscle car/sports car. On the other hand, I have an opportunity to join the electric car revolution at the dawn of impressive range and performance in a relatively affordable package.

I have little interest in autonomous driving, although I do welcome safety features. I like what Tesla is doing with its cars for the most part. I just don't know if the Model 3 is for me at this point.
 

Michael Russo

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#2
Let me introduce myself. I'm a car enthusiast. I love speed. I love the connection between the driver and car. I love rowing my own gears. I love the sweet sound of the engine and exhaust in perfect harmony with the acceleration and deceleration of the car.

For those who consider themselves driving enthusiasts and have come from driving entertaining, manual transmission cars to a Tesla, what are your thoughts? Do you miss the visceral experience hearing the roar of the engine as you shift yourself going down a winding road? Do you feel the driver-car connection is in any way diminished?

My next vehicle involves some odd cross-shopping. I've narrowed it down to a Tesla Model 3, a 2018 Mustang GT, or a newer Camaro SS.

I've owned a Neon SRT-4 and a Caliber SRT4. Both were fun cars, but definitely not true drivers cars. Front wheel drive and a lot of horsepower do not mix well. Enertertaining, yes. Total driving experience, not so much. I've always wanted to own a sweet sounding V8 manual before gas prices go crazy and while we are, arguably, in the Golden Age of the muscle car/sports car. On the other hand, I have an opportunity to join the electric car revolution at the dawn of impressive range and performance in a relatively affordable package.

I have little interest in autonomous driving, although I do welcome safety features. I like what Tesla is doing with its cars for the most part. I just don't know if the Model 3 is for me at this point.
Hello South Dakotan! (Spent one year in Rapid City during the Bicentennial year... as a foreign exchange student... Loved it!!)
Anyways, suggest you go test drive a Model S if not already done... Don't even choose top of line P models, just the base 75 kWh... That will give you your answer. And please don't be disappointed you don't hear the V8 roar... :D
 

sandange

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#3
I always preferred driving a stick in the past, Switched to electric in 2012 and over 100,000 miles (170,000 km) ago,

Driving electric is kind of driving a sleeper in stealth mode as for the performance and look.

Between the instant torque and the variable regeneration ( this can simulate down shifting) you get a very hands on feeling of driving.
The battery weight down on the floor really gives you a stable cornering platform.

What you don't get is the shaking and vibration or the sound
about which I have previously posted...
I wish they had a simulated exhaust noise that could vary from a high performance V8 to an 18 wheeler and my preferred
the sound of a horse drawn carriage,( clip clop of a horses going down the street
 

JBsC6

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#4
I'm on my third new corvette manual...I've owned either z06s or z51 models..some had heads, cam, headers, 3.73 gears etc...

Having test driven the model S the reality is...the one speed transmission with tons of torque from the electric motor makes all the manual gear box shifting and noise of 450 hp corvettes irrelevant.

I'm a driver, love my corvettes but since you asked the question...after an hour test drive of the P85d ..there is something so simple so efficient so quick that the tesla matches my corvette in under 4 second acceleration to sixty...

Even in everyday driving situations...the tesla is better...

Years of autox , drag racing and some road course experience...of course I'll keep my corvette but the tesla is simply the better four door sports sedan ...quick and no noise or build up of torque...it's all there all the time immediately...

Buy with confidence
 

JBsC6

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#5
The Camaro ss and mustang got are cool cars too...

I think if you are yong and single..either of the ponys are the better choice...

The discounts on the GM and Ford offerings should be as much as 20 percent...

The tesla will optioned with awd and performance mode will be in the 50 s ...

For that kind of coin you can get a gt350 or Camaro ZL1 I'd suggest those vehicles for a single or non parent over the tesla model 3.....as far as 4 doors...the tesla model 3 gets the nod
 

Mark C

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#6
Nothing like my 72 Mustang Convertible with a 351 Cleveland, 4 speed and 3.90 posi rear axle. What {at the time} felt like a rocket ship on takeoff, banging gears, oh yea.....

Drove a Model S 70, RWD and when I smashed the accelerator pedal, for a brief moment I was disappointed. The front end didn't jump up like anything else I'd ever driven would have. Then I realized how far back in the seat I was and looked down at the dash. WOW, this baby was moving and seriously composed at the same time. Happy Days are here again, all the performance you could ever want without the "alert the police" sounds to go with them.

I do think it would be cool to have a programmable noisemaker (I believe it is/will be mandatory when we get our 3s) so that I could get mine to sound like the "car" George Jetson zoomed around in. :p
 

Steve C

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#7
Let me introduce myself. I'm a car enthusiast. I love speed. I love the connection between the driver and car. I love rowing my own gears. I love the sweet sound of the engine and exhaust in perfect harmony with the acceleration and deceleration of the car.

For those who consider themselves driving enthusiasts and have come from driving entertaining, manual transmission cars to a Tesla, what are your thoughts? Do you miss the visceral experience hearing the roar of the engine as you shift yourself going down a winding road? Do you feel the driver-car connection is in any way diminished?

My next vehicle involves some odd cross-shopping. I've narrowed it down to a Tesla Model 3, a 2018 Mustang GT, or a newer Camaro SS.

I've owned a Neon SRT-4 and a Caliber SRT4. Both were fun cars, but definitely not true drivers cars. Front wheel drive and a lot of horsepower do not mix well. Enertertaining, yes. Total driving experience, not so much. I've always wanted to own a sweet sounding V8 manual before gas prices go crazy and while we are, arguably, in the Golden Age of the muscle car/sports car. On the other hand, I have an opportunity to join the electric car revolution at the dawn of impressive range and performance in a relatively affordable package.

I have little interest in autonomous driving, although I do welcome safety features. I like what Tesla is doing with its cars for the most part. I just don't know if the Model 3 is for me at this point.
Welcome! I am very much like you when it comes to cars. I've had all kinds of tire smoking vehicles from when I was 16. I even have an old souped up '68 Riviera that will be going this year. After driving a P85+ a few years ago I was sold.

My advice is this. At this point, every other car sold today is already out of date except Tesla. You mentioned that you don't care for Autopilot but re-sale value of all cars without it are going to tank in the very near future. IMHO
 
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#8
Thanks for the responses. I am not single or younger (approaching 40). I have a couple kids too. One is big enough to ride up front, the other is almost out of the booster. I know practicality wise, the Model 3 is the obvious choice. However, my kids are almost the perfect age to ride in the back of a 2 door coupe for a few years. Our other vehicle is a Ford Flex, so the way I look at it is we already have the practical vehicle. Do we really need 2? :) When I ask my kids they usually say they rather have the noisy car. I'm actually surprised my daughter says that. She could care less about cars.
 

Michael Russo

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#10
Thanks for the responses. I am not single or younger (approaching 40). I have a couple kids too. One is big enough to ride up front, the other is almost out of the booster. I know practicality wise, the Model 3 is the obvious choice. However, my kids are almost the perfect age to ride in the back of a 2 door coupe for a few years. Our other vehicle is a Ford Flex, so the way I look at it is we already have the practical vehicle. Do we really need 2? :) When I ask my kids they usually say they rather have the noisy car. I'm actually surprised my daughter says that. She could care less about cars.
@saxman , though it may turn out to be that too, 'practical' is not the first adjective that comes to my mind when I think of Model ≡... 'sexy' starts to go in the right direction... :D
 
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#11
I'm sure that 100 years ago there were those who missed the clip clop of horse hooves , the smell of the dung and the heft of the saddle, get over it. IMNSHO of course.
That is very true. It's funny how perspective changes over time and how argumentive people are at the time of great change. In the end, what matters most is progress is made for the betterment of everyone. If electric cars are the norm for my grandkids, they will probably have no desire to own a "classic" or any ICE for that matter. It's human nature to resist change.

I'm by no means a huge "greenie", but at some point we need to realize that "non-renewable" resources are just that - non renewable. I'm all for advancing and normalizing renewable sources of energy. That's the argument that pushes me toward the Model 3. I am playing a small role in moving away from the non-renewable resources and being responsible for bettering future generations.
 

Mad Hungarian

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#12
I've been in love with the sound of all kinds of IC engines since I had my first Beetle cabriolet pedal car and made my own vroom-vroom noises some five decades ago. Twelve of the fourteen cars and every motorcycle I've owned have had aftermarket exhausts, some went through multiple systems 'till I got the exact note I wanted. I also so despised automatics that I converted not one but TWO of those cars that were born automatic to manual.
Now having spent time in a number of Teslas and currently driving a Volt I can say with a pretty good degree of authority that it is indeed possible to go EV and not miss the sound or the gear lever.
In fact to my mind the experiences are equally attractive. I have always loved pulling off a perfect downshift and hearing the orchestrated fury of all those explosions being barely contained to hurtle one's self down the road. But the first time you experience an Insane or Ludicrous launch what strikes you as so incredible - once your eyeballs realign in their sockets - is how it's possible to move so fast in near complete and effortless silence. It's like a magic trick. Or being in a sci-fi film. It never gets old. Couple that with the fact that there's zero lag regardless of your speed and power is infinitely adjustable with near surgical precision and it becomes hugely addictive. The one-pedal aspect with regen instead of conventional braking makes it even more seamless, just lift it to tuck the nose while steering into a corner and then toe down again to effortlessly power out. It becomes the purest form of driving you can experience, like what sailing is to watersports or gliding to aviation.
Well engineered performance ICE and fast EVs are to me two opposite but equally wonderful ends of the automotive spectrum. The only thing I can't stand is the bland, soulless compromises that live in the middle.
The closer for me is that only one is really sustainable long term. I will be forever grateful that a certain company that ignored the wave of BS decreeing you couldn't build a fast, practical or desirable EV and instead just went out and did it.
 
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#13
I've been in love with the sound of all kinds of IC engines since I had my first Beetle cabriolet pedal car and made my own vroom-vroom noises some five decades ago. Twelve of the fourteen cars and every motorcycle I've owned have had aftermarket exhausts, some went through multiple systems 'till I got the exact note I wanted. I also so despised automatics that I converted not one but TWO of those cars that were born automatic to manual.
Now having spent time in a number of Teslas and currently driving a Volt I can say with a pretty good degree of authority that it is indeed possible to go EV and not miss the sound or the gear lever.
In fact to my mind the experiences are equally attractive. I have always loved pulling off a perfect downshift and hearing the orchestrated fury of all those explosions being barely contained to hurtle one's self down the road. But the first time you experience an Insane or Ludicrous launch what strikes you as so incredible - once your eyeballs realign in their sockets - is how it's possible to move so fast in near complete and effortless silence. It's like a magic trick. Or being in a sci-fi film. It never gets old. Couple that with the fact that there's zero lag regardless of your speed and power is infinitely adjustable with near surgical precision and it becomes hugely addictive. The one-pedal aspect with regen instead of conventional braking makes it even more seamless, just lift it to tuck the nose while steering into a corner and then toe down again to effortlessly power out. It becomes the purest form of driving you can experience, like what sailing is to watersports or gliding to aviation.
Well engineered performance ICE and fast EVs are to me two opposite but equally wonderful ends of the automotive spectrum. The only thing I can't stand is the bland, soulless compromises that live in the middle.
The closer for me is that only one is really sustainable long term. I will be forever grateful that a certain company that ignored the wave of BS decreeing you couldn't build a fast, practical or desirable EV and instead just went out and did it.
This is one of the best posts I've read regarding EVs vs ICEs (performance oriented). I think you summed it up quite well when you said each is on an opposite end of the automotive spectrum but equally wonderful. Neither is bad. They accomplish their goals just as good as their counterpart, just going about different ways to get there. It reminds me of forced induction turbo 4's vs NA V8's. Both can be fast and fun to drive but have a different way of doing it.
 

Dash

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#15
Here's a different perspective.
Try living in a metropolitan area with so much noise that you don't even want to open your window without earplugs.
I imagine a future in ~10 years where only a few ICEs are left and cars are gliding effortlessly over the streets. People will turn their heads in anger at the loud and smelling vehicles that occasionally pass by, like today they only do with superbikers that can't behave.

I like an engine roaring and I even like the smell of gasoline (will miss that), but the urban overall sum has to get a lot quieter.
 

garsh

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#16
I like an engine roaring and I even like the smell of gasoline (will miss that), but the urban overall sum has to get a lot quieter.
As long as we fight all of the efforts of government to add "low-speed noise makers" to electric cars.
 

MelindaV

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#17
People really like the smell of gas?!
I can say if I smell a car running rich, I think of my 67 mustang and smile, but that's for the reminder of my car, not the fuel itself. Then I have to pass the smelly car before I start to feel nauseous.
 

TrevP

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#18
I've owned a lot of cars over the years and I have to admit that the roar of right proper ICE is rather thrilling however when you boil it down it's not really the sound of the car but the G forces we experience that are the indications of performance. The scariest car I've ever driven was a Model S P90D with Ludicrous. I've never experienced anything like that before. It was just so scary and addictive at the same time.

Also, it's not like EVs don't make any sound, they do, it's just that it's much quieter and different in nature. The epitome of a "sleeper" car
 
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#19
Certainly, driving a manual ICE over mountain roads and using the gears to best effect is a lot of fun, but crawling through peak traffic in the same car when you're on and off the clutch endlessly, is not. That's why the last car we bought, a Subaru Forester turbo, was automatic. You can still play with the gears if you like, but usually it's left in auto, where it's happy to get 0-60mph in about 7 seconds. Exhaust sound? To me, it is just noise that I - and the surrounding neighbourhood - could do without. We test-drove a Model X a couple of weeks ago, and the silent, brutal acceleration more than made up for any excitement from a blaring exhaust. As noted above, let's hope we get our orders delivered before regulations are enforced demanding artificial noise at low speeds. The smoothness, and near-silence, especially at low speeds, are two of the lovely aspects of these vehicles.
 

Randy

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#20
Driving electric is kind of driving a sleeper in stealth mode as for the performance and look.
I have to agree with that one. An electric car ,especially a "P" version can be the Ultimate sleeper. To get my enthusiast fix (rowing gears , exhaust noise etc. etc.) I get that from riding my Honda Interceptor. You should know I took out a P100 for a test drive and that car smokes my bike in every form of acceleration. Its was hard for me to believe, take out a tesla for a drive if able ,you will be converted.
Randy