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Discussion Starter #1
Alright, I'm new to the MB world so I'm looking for some insight from long-term MB observers.<p>By what marketing calculation does the pedestrian C240 get a manual tranny, but the C320 and the C32 AMG get an automatic (however trick/slick it is) only?<p>
 

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Discussion Starter #2
MB's manual tranny cannot handle the power....

Besides the tranny MB offers really sucks.<br>They have the best slush box around though.<p>Vince
 

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Re: MB's manual tranny cannot handle the power....

Yea? Isn't an automatic more complex than a manual by definition though? It's like saying they do calculus well but suck at trig. <p>Ahh well, I'm still set on a C32, and probably will be happy with an auto when I'm stuck in traffic, but would have liked the choice...and I'll hang on to my 330i for those mornings when I decide I feel like shifting my own gears. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
True it is more complex but ...

try out an MB manual and see how bad it is. AMG's reasoning is that their new "Speedshift" is actually a lot better than any manual.
 

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Re: M6 gearbox

"try out an MB manual and see how bad it is."<p>I have driven a C 240 with M6 and the gearbox is just fine, thank you very much, at least equal to a BMW E46 with M5 'box that I have driven, and many other modern cars. The shift throws are short, the engagement is clean and the clutch is nicely weighted. No complaints here.<p>You are probably right about the M6 being at the upper end of its design range, although it's in the SLK 320, a car that's not that much lighter than the C.<p>If you still don't like shifting the M6, wait for the Sequentronic version to be introduced in N. America: no clutch pedal and sequential shifting just like in DTM or BTCC. The basis of the sequentronic is the regular M6 'box. The shifts, done by a servo, are said to be twice as fast as a good driver could do with a regular manual. Just the ticket for the guy who insists on stoplight racing in his C 240 ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
: Alright, I'm new to the MB world so I'm looking for some insight from long-term MB observers.<p>By what marketing calculation does the pedestrian C240 get a manual tranny, but the C320 and the C32 AMG get an automatic (however trick/slick it is) only?<p><p>The reason is, that in America, the request for an auto vs manual tranny is 10:1, ie. bottom line = sales = profits. <p>
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Re: M6 gearbox

will this sequentronic only be offered on the 240?<p>So if i understand correct it is a 6 speed stick minus the clutch? not an auto that also lets you shift?
 

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Re: M6 gearbox

Sofar the seqetronic is just offered in the T-model and the Coupe. (In Sweden anyway). Guess it will be optional for the sedans later on. In that case it should be offered on the 240. <p>The sequetronic is in fact an auto. You can put it in auto-mode and it will do all the work for you. What I have read and heard is, that it doesn't shift as smooth as the regular auto though... <p><br>: will this sequentronic only be offered on the 240?<p>So if i understand correct it is a 6 speed stick minus the clutch? not an auto that also lets you shift?<p>
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Re: M6 gearbox

The Sequentronic gearbox is definitely not an automatic gearbox in the conventional sense. It is an M6, has no torque converter and only one clutch. Servos actuate the clutch automatically and shift the manual gears for you. So in this sense it is very different than BMW's Steptronic, which is in fact a regular automatic with a unique type of gear selection control.<p>The Sequentronic may be either shifted manually by the sequential gear lever, or an "auto-shift" program may be employed in which all gears are selected automatically. There's no way this "automatic" mode could be as smooth as an automatic gearbox with a torque converter, but for the lazydriver it might be a useful mode from time to time.<p>Sequentronic is available in the C 240 wagon in Europe, so it should be made available in the C 240 sedan soon too. Whether Mercedes-Benz intends to certify this gearbox for the North American C 240 is unknown, but I hope they do as it would be an interesting alternative to the less efficient conventional automatic.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Still, if they want to go toe to toe with BMW in the entry-level luxury/sport sedan market (and isn't that what they're trying to do with the new C class?), competing with the 330i or the M3 if it ever comes in sedan form, they need to offer a manual tranny, or else they are turning away alot of folks who'll never purchase an automatic.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Do people say ";MB manuals suck"; just b/c its the ";thing"; to say?

because I just don't understand it AT ALL.<br>The 6 speed in my C240 is just as good, or better, than any of the manual transmissions in the numerous BMWs and Porsches I have owned in the last 20 years.<p>What is the supposed "complaint"? Exactly WHY does the MB manual transmission suck? I really am curious. Because mine shift very smoothly, quietly and perfectly. As an owner, I can't see how it could be improved in any way, or how it is any worse than a BMW, etc. manual transmission.<p>If you (as a NON-owner of an MB manual transmission) can explain to me why my transmission (that I drive every day) "sucks" I'd sure appreciate it.<p><p><br>: Besides the tranny MB offers really sucks.<br>They have the best slush box around though.<p>Vince<p>
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Umm, no.

I own an MB manual, please explain to me why it is so bad. Because I find it to be perfect, and have not complaints. Its just as good as the BMW manual transmissions I have owned in the past 20 years, and far better than Porsche manual transmissions. See my post above.<p>"Speedshift" is not better than any manual. "Speedshift" is nothing more than a standard slushbox automatic with a gimmicky way of shifting, no different that the BMW Steptronic, Lexus, etc.<p>Transmission choice is all about parts availability and marketing. MB could develop a strong enough manual transmission if they felt their market demanded it. It doesn't. People that want a SPORTS sedan that will see occasional track use, hard street driving, etc. buy a manual transmission M3. People that just want to "look sporty" on their way to work or dinner buy the C32 slushbox.<p>: try out an MB manual and see how bad it is. AMG's reasoning is that their new "Speedshift" is actually a lot better than any manual.<p>
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I say this based on my experience...more

I also have had my share of BMWs and MBs, my last one being an M3 and I currently still have my 300CE.<p>Now the manual trannys on those cars were crisp and smooth.<p>I'm still waiting for my new c class to arrive but I also own a 5 spd SLK 230. The shifting points are too short, too abrupt. I wish I could be able to adjust it a little bit. I've heard from owners of the 6spd that it is better than the 5spd tranny and gets better with age. <p>I should've been specific and mentioned the 98-up 5spd MT. I haven't tried the 6spd yet but if it's as good as they say it is then great but I've come to the conclusion that MB's MT is really bad.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
trick/slick it is) only?<p><p>The reason is, that in America, the request for an auto vs manual tranny is 10:1, ie. bottom line = sales = profits. <p><p>You are wrong. C240 gets manual tranny just<br>because they have to cut the price on<br>something. And 2.4 V6 versus 3.2 V6 with<br>only different head is not the best thing to<br>cut the price on. Talking about 10:1 ratio,<br>i can only tell you that it was not intended<br>for american market. In europe, where over<br>50% of cars still are bulit with manual trannies,<br>2.4 is manual, 3.2 is auto. Surprised?<br>Remember that: MB no longer *builds* cars for<br>US. They *export* them to US. <br>
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Re: M6 gearbox

Ok now i am really confused, that just sounds like the autostick thing in the c32? dosent the c32 have an autostick or is it just the plain ass automatic?<br>
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Marketing

Not that strange. These are German cars. In Germany, manuals are for entry level cars: everyone drives a manual. Only expensive cars have automatic transmission. <br>
 

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Discussion Starter #17
No, here's the deal...

The C 32 has a plain automatic transmission with torque converter, 5 speed. Mercedes may make a version of this automatic 5 speed autobox available with steering wheel mounted shift buttons (a la BMW Steptronic).<p>But don't confuse that with the Sequentronic 6 speed sequential manual.<p>The 6 speed Sequentronic (sequential manual transmission) is only available on the C 230K Coupe, C 240 and lesser-engined cars. Not on the C 320 and certainly not on the C 32. Because the Sequentronic is basically the regular 6 speed manual, it cannot handle the torque of the C 32.<p>Did that help?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Re: No, here's the deal...

(sequential manual transmission) is only available on the C 230K Coupe, C 240 and lesser-engined cars. <p>So you're saying the sequentronic is no better than the standard auto?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Comparison

<p>So you're saying the sequentronic is no better than the standard auto?<p>No, I am just trying to explain the difference between the Sequentronic MANUAL-based 6 speed gearbox (without a power-sapping torque converter) and the AUTOMATIC 5 speed gearbox (with a power-sapping torque converter) that is fitted to the C 320 and C 32.<p>Because the Sequentronic is in effect a manual gearbox, the acceleration and fuel economy should be better than an equivalent car with the 5 speed automatic. In fact, in performance, a Sequentronic car should be faster than a regular 6 speed manual, as its computer-controlled clutch and shifts are way faster than a human driver could do (according to M-B).<p>I've no idea whether Sequentronic is a more pleasant gearbox to use, or how smooth or rough it may be if you let the Sequentronic ECU do all the gear shifting for you ("automatic" mode). It seems to me that in "automatic" mode (where the driver does not touch the sequential shift lever), the 6 speed Sequentronic gearshifts should be more coarse and unrefined than the 5 speed automatic, as there's no torque converter to soften the shifts. The Sequentronic may also shift more coarsely tha a well-driven manual gearbox. I don't know, I live in Canada and I've not been able to test drive a Sequentronic car yet.<p>I am not judging one gearbox over the others, simply trying to point out the differences between them.
 
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