View Full Version : Never driven a standard...

11-17-2002, 11:23 PM
I've been drooling over the 2003 releases and quite quickly decided it would be a diesel or nothing! ;D<br><br>After reading through many of the debates here on the SO with auto VS the HO with 6 spd I have to say I'm undecided.. <br><br>I've never driven a standard in my life (yes, I feel the shame..) My current ride is a 95 Jeep Cherokee bought nice &amp; new..and now at 360,000 KM (and not ONE engine problem - other than a minor oil leak that just recently poped up.. WOW!)<br><br>Right now my towing requirements are around 7000 lbs (boat) but future 5th is in the plans. No mountains in my area. I understand the pro/cons I've read on the auto vs 6spd...<br><br>I have to say some of what I've read scares me a bit! Never having driven a standard, to get behind the wheel of a fairly large truck and try out a standard for the first time - and people have gone on about RPMS not dropping fast &amp; a sudden take off when going thru the gears :o...Man I dont want to drive a $50K (Cdn) truck through the Geo in front of me all because I'm not used to a standard! I also do a fair amount of city driving...and stop &amp; wait, stuck in traffic, curse &amp; swear type of stuff.<br><br>SO, not to re-energize the Auto VS Standard argument since we all know the pro's and con's - Does anyone have any comments for my particular situation - and does anyone have any constructive comments for someone who's never driven a standard who might be considering a HO 6 spd as their first? [eyecrazy]<br><br>Did I mention the 2500 I'm looking at is THREE INCHES too long to fit in my garage? Height &amp; width fine..But length...Well..I guess its time to re-model the **** garage! Luckily I CAN do that with the way the attached garage is laid out!<br>

11-17-2002, 11:41 PM
Jeep NO!<br><br>IMHO, you should go with an auto. I wanted one, but got the 6 shooter. It is perfect for me, but, I have noticed, that, after being used to an auto, I feel intimidated a bit in city and freeway traffic (which I don't drive in much)<br><br>If you have always driven an auto, and only plan on towing small loads. Go for it!<br><br>But, if you are thinking of updating to a bigger RV etc. Better go with the HO 6 shooter.<br><br>Your choice, check the threads on this forum, lots of good info.<br><br>Welcome aboard, enjoy!<br><br>Hunter

11-18-2002, 10:54 AM
jeepnomore, towing only 7000# get what you want as stantard should be reliable. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. living in a state (3) which does not have a high output engine available in 2003 I had to settle for 460 lb-ft version, 20,000# GCWR and 13,450# GTWR (tow rating). Since I am towing a 29 ft 5er which weigh just under 11,000# when ready for the road. I not loaded to the max.<br><br>In October on first trip this combination towed up 6-7% grades never dropping below 4th gear (high gear 1:1 Ratio). Averaged towing 12.2 mpg and engine is far from being broken in. Towing on grades less than 4% I was able to stay in overdrive (5th gear).<br><br>I don't have a problem with &quot;RPMS not dropping fast &amp; a sudden take off when going thru the gears&quot;. As for driving &quot;a $50K (Cdn) truck through the Geo&quot;, with the most responsive and largest twin caliper brakes on the market you have excellent control.<br><br>Keep in mind that automatics used in towing must have proper maintenance. I have towed with an automatic. You must install a tranny temperature gauge with sending unit installed in line going to the tranny cooler. Transmission fluid must be changed every 12,000 miles as towing causes fluid to lose its lubricating properties rapidly. You may want to use synthetic tranny fluid as it doesn't break down rapidly and runs cooler when towing. (Synthetics cost about $7.00/qt, standard fluid about $2.50/qt.) If tranny fluid over heats and gets up to danger zone, pull over stop shift into neutral and run at fast idle until temperature drops back to 200 degrees.<br><br>If you give an auto tranny the extra care it needs it will provide good service.

11-19-2002, 09:09 PM
I guess I'd recommend the automatic. A full size truck with a diesel isn't the easiest thing to learn how to shift a manual tranny on. I find the 6 spd a little tricky as compared to a 5 spd on a smaller vehicle (like my Jeep Wrangler).

11-19-2002, 09:15 PM
Welcome ;D ;D
Go with the Auto. ;)
If you're not planning to join the &quot;Never Enough Horsepower&quot; Club, and you're not towin' real heavy, Dodge designed the CTD/auto combo to go many, many miles.


11-22-2002, 09:43 AM
Maybe ask one of your friends or something to teach you how to drive a stick. At first I wanted nothing to do with a manual tranny. After my grandpa tought me I will never again own an auto. just love drive my 5 spd. It's just a thought you might hate it or really really enjoy like myself. -Anthony

11-24-2002, 09:09 AM
I guess the biggest factor is age to me! At 20 I swore auto off forever, at 30 an auto wasn't a bad idea in traffic, at 40 plus now and really do like my automatic, but need to buy the 6 cogger for the longevity of the truck. I do all my own maintainence and fully expect to rebuild my automatic soon after 120K miles,but so far its holding up well!

11-27-2002, 03:40 PM
I ordered my truck with the auto and then found this website. Being a diesel virgin, I have found it very helpful. I am in the same situation as you, except there are some mountains around, and after gathering all the the info I am very happy with the decision I made. I should mention that I haven't actually received the truck yet. The powertrain warranty is very good from what I can tell which is reassuring should there be trouble.

11-28-2002, 10:37 AM
Hey Jeepnomore, it's not so hard to drive a stick. Heck, a monkey went into space. ::) Anyway, my wife and I just had to make that same decision. We ordered the 6spd, but that's because we both like to drive, and shifting is part of the control equation. We've also driven a manual transmission for the past twenty years. And when we drove that HO 6sp, we thought ;D ;D <br><br>But even though we love driving, we seriously considered the SO auto. We don't tow a very big trailer, so the auto would have easily satisfied our needs. And we thought about the traffic thing. And the trailer backing thing. And the getting out of our tight driveway thing. But the deciding factor was the fun level. We're just getting ready to embark on our fifties (with two boys 12 and 14), so at our age, ya gotta have some fun. (come to think of it, that's always been my motto)<br><br>Friends who have never driven a stick, and some who have, tell me I'm crazy. Maybe I am [eyecrazy] But I know one thing, if the manual transmission was significantly inferior mechanically to the automatic, I'd give up the fun factor in a hearbeat. I'm no expert, but I don't think the auto is that inferior. My father-in-law has put a lot of miles on his 94 towing a 5thwheeler. If you don't feel comfortable driving your new truck, well, that doesn't sound like too much fun.<br><br>But for me (who likes to drive practically with his head out the window), I'll shift in the afterlife. So why, then, you ask, didn't I buy an SO 5 speed, since I don't have too big a trailer? Well, I was willin' to spend the money for an SO auto, and the HO's practically the same price. And it's got one more GEAR ;D

11-30-2002, 08:06 PM
Im not sure what your talking about by sudden takeoff or RPM's dropping off. As near as I can tell it drives like any other stick. Most sticks have a place where they like to shift. By that I mean with most drivetrain combos they have a point where they shift smoother, the stick snicks right in, no jerkiness. This tends to be more pronounced on HD rigs. You dont need to worry about learning it. The truck will teach you. With these trucks you can start out in reverse, first, and second just by slowly letting out the clutch without giving it any gas. Cant get much easier to move from a standing start than that. The fact is you can drive the stick. The real question is do you want to? Some folks just dont like to drive a stick and owning the six speed means you will be shifting alot. If you could spend a little qualily time with one that would give you your answer.

11-30-2002, 09:07 PM
I think the &quot;RPMS not dropping off&quot; was from a different thread and has caused him concern. Some people have posted that the RPMs don't drop off between gears, as if you didn't let off the &quot;gas&quot; pedal all the way. I have the HO and 6-spd and I haven't noticed this. I'm not sure what the &quot;sudden takeoff&quot; is about. Maybe that was from the same thread and is related to the RPM thing.

12-01-2002, 05:28 PM
Jeepnomore, get that manuaL!!<br>far more longevic, will save you lots of $$$ over the years. driving it will become second nature in no time. Like someone said, they put a monkey in spaqce right?? ::)<br><br>anyway,<br>the high torque of the diesel makes them almost impossible to stall off the line, the gears in a truck transmission are much further apart than small cars so they are easier to find. It's easy, you will learn to love it.<br><br>Just because you have a 6 spd. doesn't mean you have to do that much extra shifting. You'll always start out in second anyway empty, and you can always skip a gear or two if you do it right.<br><br>Go for it! You'll love it.

12-02-2002, 10:31 AM
Jeepnomore are you there? Have not heard much out of you? -Anthony

12-03-2002, 01:35 PM
I'll put in my vote for a stick. I think that there is less of a chance that you will regret the additional power from the HO in the long run... Manuals are also very easy to drive once you've spent an hour or two behind the wheel...

Lary Ellis (Top)
12-03-2002, 03:32 PM
Jeepnomore, Go with the auto and just take good care of it. mine has 105,000 miles on it and I have towed a lot in the mountains. I do have a little shudder in the TC at lockup now but I had no idea about these tranny problems for most of those miles. I drove it without the benefit of a temperature gauge and also did not change the fluid and filter as often as I should have.<br> I am not sorry I got the auto, in fact I have a 5 speed in my wifes truck and everytime I drive it, I am glad to get back to my auto. At 52 years of age I really don't feel the need to slam through the gears near as often as I used too.<br> Just drive it like you care about it and everything should be fine. And definately get the gauge!

12-12-2002, 09:01 AM
Get the stick!! It is not that hard and its a lot more fun than a auto. Go get one from the dealer and test drive it in a empty lot. Give yourself about 20 min of shifting in the lot and than hit the road. Take a friend with who has driven a clutch before. <br>DENNY