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Old 11-21-2013, 06:16 PM   #1
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your opinion on 5 speed auto

hi, new around here. planning to buy a 2014 and finding the hardest decision is between auto and manual. i have had many cars and about half have been auto, and I'm comfortable with both and familiar with pros and cons.
wondering how those with the 5 speed auto like the tranny in off road conditions.
I can test drive around the streets but the dealers are a bit funny about going muddin and crawlin (though they seem to want to) so it's difficult to put it to the test.
So hoping you can share opinion on the auto's performance.
cheers

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Old 11-21-2013, 06:45 PM   #2
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O.K., mine is a 2013 Rubicon 2 door, with automatic, and 4:10 ratio.
I used it several times this summer, back in the woods, on some pretty steep grade roads, of loose dirt and rocks. Some of these grades would have been very difficult to walk up, and were of a long duration. I also used it a couple of times doing some moderate rock crawling, with diffs locked in.
I was also on a run in one of our sandy river bottoms, but no water, or mu-ding.

Keep in mind, that I have the Rubicon with the Rock-Trac 4:1 low gear ration, with 4:10 diff ratio.
I can honestly tell you, that the 5 speed automatic performed flawlessly in all of the applications that I mentioned.

SO WITH ALL OF THAT BEING SAID, I WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND THE AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION...........:

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Old 11-21-2013, 07:16 PM   #3
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I have the auto, I think it's great. And I have had primarily stick shift cars for the past 20 years. But some folks really don't like the auto stick behavior. It's really such a personal preference thing.

One issue that was important to me is warranty. Both the auto and manual trans themselves have the same 100k warranty, but the warranty on clutch and related parts is pretty crappy (12k miles maybe?). And it sounds like you want to beat on your rig some. So, if I were you, I'd go auto.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:35 PM   #4
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The 5 speed auto is very robust. Was designed by Mercedes for a V8. There have been several threads by people not happy with the manual. Those factors helped me decide to go with the auto.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JungleJim View Post
hi, new around here. planning to buy a 2014 and finding the hardest decision is between auto and manual. i have had many cars and about half have been auto, and I'm comfortable with both and familiar with pros and cons. wondering how those with the 5 speed auto like the tranny in off road conditions. I can test drive around the streets but the dealers are a bit funny about going muddin and crawlin (though they seem to want to) so it's difficult to put it to the test. So hoping you can share opinion on the auto's performance. cheers
i drove a manual before I bought and it was enough for me. I bought a 5speed auto. I talked to a guy wheeling his 2013 auto and he said he was not having any issues at all. He had a huge grin.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin10 View Post
The 5 speed auto is very robust. Was designed by Mercedes for a V8. There have been several threads by people not happy with the manual. Those factors helped me decide to go with the auto.
Maybe the W5A540 was designed for V8s, IDK. But, Mercedes uses it in their V12s!

Read all about it here: Mercedes-Benz 5G-Tronic transmission - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

It's a great match with the Pentastar, IMO....


Quote:
Originally Posted by JungleJim View Post
...
wondering how those with the 5 speed auto like the tranny in off road conditions.
... going muddin and crawlin ....
Ya' really don't want to get mud in your clutch! And, it's pretty easy to do in a manual....

I think you'd find that most (not all, but most) really serious/professional crawlers choose an auto....
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:52 PM   #7
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All of my previous Jeeps were manual . The new auto is the first one that Jeep has ever used that I have felt would last. With the auto stick you have the best of both worlds. It is leaps better on the trail my .2 I test drove both and bought the auto. The new manual with the drive by wire throttle sucks.
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:11 PM   #8
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I had a manual in my 08 Rubicon. Was never real good at using the clutch in sticky situations. I tended to stall before reaching the crest of a hill climb. Or was in wrong gear, and couldn't shift cause I'd have to back down and start over.

Got a 14 JKU Rubicon - love the auto! Does great on the climbs and descents.
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:52 PM   #9
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I like my auto...not a fan of the auto-stick programming on the +2013's. I loved the programming of the 2012 auto.
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:57 PM   #10
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Just a side note, the five speed is the same one used for the 5.7 liter Hemi. I have the Rubicon and you can manually shift through all five gears if needed.
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:38 PM   #11
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I have a 2013 with the auto. Great for off roading. Smooth power delivery when you are creeping in low range. I have the 4.10 diffs and the Rock Trac 4:1 transfer case, but the automatic even lets you get more mechanical advantage by slipping the torque converter. This comes from a guy who drives a sports sendan every day with a 6 speed manual.
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Old 11-22-2013, 05:17 AM   #12
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I traded my 2012 6m for a 2013 with the auto. The stick itself worked fine, it was the clutch I hated. No feel.
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Old 11-22-2013, 05:30 AM   #13
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Drove both manual and auto and brought the auto, great offroad
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:04 AM   #14
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The auto is great--got 8000 miles on mine and no regrets. I have owned both and I like the auto way better then the manual. Auto's have come a long way in the last 10 years--and for crawling around off road it has been flawless.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin10 View Post
The 5 speed auto is very robust. Was designed by Mercedes for a V8. There have been several threads by people not happy with the manual. Those factors helped me decide to go with the auto.
Hated the POS manual in my '12, so much that it was a major factor in ordering my auto '13.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:58 AM   #16
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I was afraid I wouldn't like it at first since my car is a Z4M Roadster and Lord knows I love rowing through those gears, But... I have been very pleasently surprised by the auto on my JK, got it cause the wifey can't do manual, but it really works well. Have dome some light trails and haven't had an issue. I will have some fun next year when I go to Raush Creek
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:29 AM   #17
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I have an auto in my '13 but that being said, if they offered a better clutch and throttle response I would have certainly chosen a stick. I am in Moab frequently and after three jeeps with sticks I much prefer them when rock crawling. If you don't have it geared low enough, example a non-rubicon transfer case, the stick can be miserable. There is nothing like being geared low enough and having the engine braking available with a stick to lower you off obstacles without the thought of touching the brake.

When you are coming down a significant rock face in Moab you have to modulate the brake as best you can to crawl off the edge. The brake allows the wheels to turn at different speeds depending on their traction at the moment. With a stick and all locked up, all of the wheels travel at the same speed and in many cases you don't even need to touch the brake coming down off the edge, all four tires turn at the same slow speed and there is no torque converter letting you coast faster.

For all other applications especially around town, I like the auto.
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:55 AM   #18
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Before I ordered my Wrangler, I rented an automatic Rubicon and wheeled it around Buena Vista, Colorado for a weekend. I'd never wheeled an automatic and wanted to give it a try before going manual again.

For me, after a couple days of great trail riding, I chose the manual.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:13 PM   #19
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you know, I am really impressed with the response and opinions received to my question. thank you to each one who took the time. made the decision to go with the auto. my last 4x4 was a late model Range Rover with the auto and it was very impressive and performed flawlessly on and off road. from the feedback to my post here, it seems most peeps feel the same way about the new jeep.
order is in and should deliver around mid jan. can't wait.

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