Cars. Automatic cars. ?

I want to buy an automatic car, unfortunately some of the cars I'm interested in, aren't just straight automatic, they're semi automatic and automatic. Do semi autos tend to suffer more problems than a plain automatic? 


I'm here in the UK. They're automatics but they also have the semi-automatic feature 

Update 2:

I'm talking about automatic cars where they have (+) (-) You can shift without the clutch, which would make it semi-automatic I guess. Just a feature you don't need if you are gonna have it in straight automatic all the time 

9 Answers

  • 1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

    There are different kinds of semi-automatic transmissions.  Most have a fully-automatic mode, so you can just set that and ignore the gearshift.  But they also have a lever, or 'flappy paddles' behind the steering wheel, so you can choose which gear you want.

    Some of these transmissions have a lot of problems, especially the dual-clutch models.  But you have a whole different range of cars available there, so I don't know them all.

    The thing to do is to choose a model you like and then look it up on the Internet.  Google "[car name and model] problems"  or "[car] transmission problems"

  • F
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    What you are referring to is what Jeremy Clarkson and others call “flappy paddle “


    They have no clutch as far as the driver is concerned but you can change gear up and down using levers attached to the steering wheel. Some even blip the throttle to make you sound like a pro.

    They generally have a fully automatic mode for when you want to take it easy.

    They are more complicated that conventional autos but then again they are getting far more complex with 7 or 9 speeds, a far cry from the old 3 speeds if the 60s and 70s.

  • 1 month ago

    What you are referring to is still an automatic but it has an extra feature called paddle shifting which gives one a more hands on feel.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    You are bring in a NEW TERM "never used by any car mechanic living or dead (since mechanics were needed for the First cars.)

    Therefore your terminology does NOT EXIST.  Not even in the U.K.

      No car has a  (+) or (-) (cuz that is MATH and many mechanics hate math.

    All automatics can be shifted (if you want a faster start off) or can be left in highest gear and it does the low shifting itself with a slower take off time. 

    "EXPERIMENT with it".   If you got an automatic you will see D, L2, L1.   After you start it slap it into L1 and step hard on the gas. You can do to about 20 or 30 and then just push the stick to L2 and you will speed up to 60 and then just push the stick into D and it is INFINITE & BEYOND. (you use more gas that way too, as the Low gears are meant for towing heavy trailers up into mountains...or for slowing the car down naturally when driving down into a valley and the heavy load behind you is pushing you to go faster.  Running in L2 slows it down because the engine is now engaged and an idling engine does not allow you to go fast.  This saves on the brakes.

    .  Or you can do it the old man way(old ladies are included and those whose hands are filled with drink) and just put it into D and start from 0mph to will shift up automatically though not as snappy as you doing it.   [Your butt and head stuffed into the headrest feels the difference in pickup speed + tire squealing.]

    .  Hell, as part of the "Experiment" while rolling forward, "just try to slip it into R"      That horrible noise you are hearing is gear teeth grinding off other gear teeth tearing the fluck out of your transmission. "Grind me a pound of useless metal"   Ergo...NEVER GO THERE WHILE MOVING FORWARD.  Also never go into D while rolling in reverse. Same grinding noise. Cost of a transmission is a New car.      

    If it could make sparks, it would but it is submersed in oil. Super damaging.  

    .  You will notice that L1,L2,D,N are all in a row so you could slap the stick to L1 the to L2 then to D then to N and never have to worry about hitting R.(because it is by itself)  I am using the auto stick on the floor. But a column shifter is exactly the same way.

    . It has been that way since the first automatic transmissions. 

    . Don't ask me when that was invented because I drive manual shift so (do not care.) Google it if you want to know.

    Manual shift transmissions are ALWAYS AVAILABLE as they were the first transmissions and are the cheapest ones to build, repair & maintain.

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    I used to think I knew a little about cars. I was wrong.

    No idea what semi automatic is. Do they have clutches? Do you shift?

    I guess you can shift with any automatic if you wat. I never wanted.

  • 1 month ago

    The last "semi-automatic" I saw was an old VW Beetle that had a standard transmission with a shift lever that had electrical contacts in it to activate a vacuum operated clutch. Are you referring to regular automatics and automatics with paddle shifters or the (+) and (-) positions for the shift lever that allow you to manually shift the automatic transmission gears? The one thing that I'd recommend doing is finding out which cars have the automatic CVT transmissions that have a high failure rate. The only imported brand and model that I know of without a CVT transmission is the Toyota RAV4.

  • Barry
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    I drive a semi auto in the UK. I use auto all of the time. Maybe in snow or ice I might choose the paddles but we don't get much of that weather. No problems with the car. 

  • Rick B
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    I have never heard of a semi-automatic car.  It is very hard to find manual transmissions these days.  No idea where you are looking.

  • Mark
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Manual cars are easy to operate.

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