Automatic For The People?

Wed 4th Dec 2019

A major new survey has found that the popularity of automatic gearboxes is on the rise, with searches for auto transmissions doubling in the last five years.

An AA Populus survey questioned 20,000 drivers found that though 57 per cent of drivers feel that automatics are easier to drive, there are still plenty of traditionalists, with 32 per cent believing that driving is not as enjoyable without a manual gearbox. Interestingly, one in five drivers feel that driving an automatic is just as enjoyable as driving a manual.

While the increase in electric vehicles may account for some of the rise in interest, according to James Fairclough from the AA, automatics are becoming more readily available rather than being a limited option.
He said: “Automatic vehicles are being manufactured in greater numbers, but it is pleasing to see that drivers are responding positively to this added supply with even more of them actively searching for these cars.

“The increasing interest in electric cars is partly behind these figures, as the vast majority on sale are automatic and they are growing in popularity in the used car market.

“It is also no surprise to see that congested London is one of the best-stocked areas for automatic cars as they require much less effort to drive when someone is stuck in stop-start traffic.

“Every driver has different preferences for what they want from their car, so we would always urge people to take a car for a test drive before committing to a purchase. 

“This can be an important step in determining if the car is in good condition, but will also help drivers decide if an automatic or manual is best for them.”