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Old 01-10-2014, 08:28 AM   #1
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Manual or Automatic?

So I've been looking at jeeps to buy and I've come across 2 that are pretty much identical. they are white 4.0 saraha editions. one is a 98 manual with a 4" suspension lift for 12K

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and the other is a 01 stock height with automatic transmission for 10500.

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now of course I know how to drive stick, but it's pretty hard to decide which one i want to purchase. i don't know if driving the stick with get old after a month or so. I live right outside New Orleans, Louisiana in more of a suburban area. I don't go to the city that often so I wouldn't really have to deal with the traffic. I'm just torn because I don't want to purchase the manual an then regret getting the manual. so what im asking is if you had the choice on your jeep would you have a manual or an automatic?!

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Old 01-10-2014, 08:38 AM   #2
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That 98 Sahara is way overpriced so regardless of the transmission I would suggest not making the purchase. The 01 Sahara is still overpriced but would be a decent vehicle at around 9k.

If you plan to offroad the vehicle frequently then go for an auto. If this is mainly a street driven rig then either works fine.

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Old 01-10-2014, 08:47 AM   #3
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I recently bought an '06 LJ with an Auto. I also drove a few with manual transmissions, like you I'm comfortable with either one. I'm glad I bought the auto... maybe it's my age (48) but not having to continually shift is pretty nice. My last Jeep was a 95 YJ, with a stick and I liked it a lot. I like this one at this time of my life better... I don't think you'd regret an Auto.
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Old 01-10-2014, 08:52 AM   #4
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That 98 Sahara is way overpriced so regardless of the transmission I would suggest not making the purchase. The 01 Sahara is still overpriced but would be a decent vehicle at around 9k. If you plan to offroad the vehicle frequently then go for an auto. If this is mainly a street driven rig then either works fine.
yes I now the 98 is over priced but that's just asking price and I will most likely be going off road. I was leaning more towards the auto
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Old 01-10-2014, 08:59 AM   #5
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x2 on both being overpriced.

These people think just because they do all this work they are worth a ton of money, I would rather find a stock Jeep and build it myself knowing all my mods were done right, and not cut corners. Don't buy an overpriced Jeep that has been already off roading and possibly beat to crap.

However, seems like you are looking for a white sahara so you might have to settle on what you find if your mind is made up on model and color.

I would get a manual. You will enjoy it more. I am 30, and I have had three wranglers, my '89 was an automatic, my '97, and my current '04 both manual. My opinion not as fun to drive, and definitely feel like you have more control over the Jeep.

Good Luck!
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:06 AM   #6
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:08 AM   #7
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I recently bought an '06 LJ with an Auto. I also drove a few with manual transmissions, like you I'm comfortable with either one. I'm glad I bought the auto... maybe it's my age (48) but not having to continually shift is pretty nice. My last Jeep was a 95 YJ, with a stick and I liked it a lot. I like this one at this time of my life better... I don't think you'd regret an Auto.
i would probably get bored with the manual after awhile an want to switch go an auto. I'm 21
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:12 AM   #8
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Years ago when looking for Jeeps I was also face with the same decision.
Lifted manual or stock auto where the two in my radar.
I had manuals on my two previous Yota 4x4s.
I chose the stock auto and I am so happy I did. After learning what I know now about lifting TJs, the lifted one I was looking at was all sorts of messed up.
I wanted to be the one to mess up my own Jeep. Lol.
The auto is so much nicer off road as well.

Good luck with your decision.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:15 AM   #9
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x2 on both being overpriced. These people think just because they do all this work they are worth a ton of money, I would rather find a stock Jeep and build it myself knowing all my mods were done right, and not cut corners. Don't buy an overpriced Jeep that has been already off roading and possibly beat to crap. However, seems like you are looking for a white sahara so you might have to settle on what you find if your mind is made up on model and color. I would get a manual. You will enjoy it more. I am 30, and I have had three wranglers, my '89 was an automatic, my '97, and my current '04 both manual. My opinion not as fun to drive, and definitely feel like you have more control over the Jeep. Good Luck!
yes they are but no im not set on that setup they are just the only 2 in decent condition around me. all the other ones are beaten to crap. it is only asking price, you always ask more than what you really want. the guy with the 98 is pretty firm at 12K. I offered 11k cash to see what he would say an he said he would consider it. but besides the lift an 33" tires the 98 is stock and the 01 is stock besides radio and speakers. it's just a hard decision between the 2 but it will be an easy one if the 98 says he's not budging at all
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:22 AM   #10
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I have a 97 manual and I can drive to work and drink coffee just fine.

I do think considering the off road performance of each is important if you wanna offroad. However I know exactly nothing about that. Can anyone elaborate on that?
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:22 AM   #11
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Years ago when looking for Jeeps I was also face with the same decision. Lifted manual or stock auto where the two in my radar. I had manuals on my two previous Yota 4x4s. I chose the stock auto and I am so happy I did. After learning what I know now about lifting TJs, the lifted one I was looking at was all sorts of messed up. I wanted to be the one to mess up my own Jeep. Lol. The auto is so much nicer off road as well. Good luck with your decision.
this lifted one isn't bad not a spot of rust under the jeep or the carpet. lift was put on a year ago by a local mechanic in the area. im kinda leaning towards the automatic as well just cuz it's stock and I can do what I want with it and it'll be mine
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:24 AM   #12
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I have a 97 manual and I can drive to work and drink coffee just fine. I do think considering the off road performance of each is important if you wanna offroad. However I know exactly nothing about that. Can anyone elaborate on that?
see my buddy has a 2000 Sierra 4x4 manual and he says his is better for mud ridin cuz it is a manual but im not sure about that. I mean you can control your rpms and all but like I said I'm not sure about it
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:33 AM   #13
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I've been driving manual transmissions since the sixties and got pretty good at it. That said, I bought my first Wrangler & 5 years later, converted it from its OE 5-speed to an automatic primarily for the automatic's offroad benefits... but the auto's pretty nice on the streets too, especially in traffic. Then that TJ was stolen & I bought another TJ to replace it and made sure it was an automatic. For a sports car, a manual is fine but for a Jeep, especially if you want to do harder more technical wheeling, an automatic's where it's at.

Not to mention an automatic can generate 2-3X more low-end torque than a manual-equipped vehicle can. Yes, that is true... due to the magical qualities of the automatic's torque converter.

However, there's an active thread on this subject going on right now here at manual v.s auto wheeling that is pretty much the same subject but it has been going on longer. Click on that one too for a little more of the above.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:42 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
I've been driving manual transmissions since the sixties and got pretty good at it. That said, I bought my first Wrangler & 5 years later, converted it from its OE 5-speed to an automatic primarily for the automatic's offroad benefits... but the auto's pretty nice on the streets too, especially in traffic. Then that TJ was stolen & I bought another TJ to replace it and made sure it was an automatic. For a sports car, a manual is fine but for a Jeep, especially if you want to do harder more technical wheeling, an automatic's where it's at.

Not to mention an automatic can generate 2-3X more low-end torque than a manual-equipped vehicle can. Yes, that is true... due to the magical qualities of the automatic's torque converter.

However, there's an active thread on this subject going on right now here at manual v.s auto wheeling that is pretty much the same subject but it has been going on longer. Click on that one too for a little more of the above.
Awesome thanks!
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:53 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
I've been driving manual transmissions since the sixties and got pretty good at it. That said, I bought my first Wrangler & 5 years later, converted it from its OE 5-speed to an automatic primarily for the automatic's offroad benefits... but the auto's pretty nice on the streets too, especially in traffic. Then that TJ was stolen & I bought another TJ to replace it and made sure it was an automatic. For a sports car, a manual is fine but for a Jeep, especially if you want to do harder more technical wheeling, an automatic's where it's at. Not to mention an automatic can generate 2-3X more low-end torque than a manual-equipped vehicle can. Yes, that is true... due to the magical qualities of the automatic's torque converter. However, there's an active thread on this subject going on right now here at manual v.s auto wheeling that is pretty much the same subject but it has been going on longer. Click on that one too for a little more of the above.

thanks for your input on this man, I think it'll really help me decide. think it might be the auto for me for better off road performance
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:02 AM   #16
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if off-road is your primary use then get the auto. for street duty the manual is so much better with the 4.0L engine.

but I would never make my decision for any TJ based ONLY on the transmission.

that 2001 Sahara looks like a decent TJ based on the ad you posted, $9,000 is about right for that one if it is rust-free.
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:43 AM   #17
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if off-road is your primary use then get the auto. for street duty the manual is so much better with the 4.0L engine. but I would never make my decision for any TJ based ONLY on the transmission. that 2001 Sahara looks like a decent TJ based on the ad you posted, $9,000 is about right for that one if it is rust-free.
by any means it's not my sole decision maker. you know rust, condition, body, how it drives an rides under carriage condition and all that. asking if other jeep drivers would change their transmission is just one of my factors. here is more pics of the 01 the seller just sent me

undercarriage
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this guys wife drove it 95% of the time. going look at it tomorrow
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Old 01-10-2014, 02:01 PM   #18
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I prefer auto so I can install an alarm with remote start.
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Old 01-10-2014, 02:13 PM   #19
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I prefer auto so I can install an alarm with remote start.
that would also be a plus
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Old 01-13-2014, 08:27 PM   #20
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well pretty sure I'll be buying the automatic this week after checking it out yesterday, guy with the manual just wants way to much
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:06 PM   #21
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A lot of auto love here. I agree auto is much easier offroad and there are a lot of pros to those trannies however I love my 5 speed and think it's a blast to drive on and offroad but that's just me
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:49 PM   #22
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A lot of auto love here. I agree auto is much easier offroad and there are a lot of pros to those trannies however I love my 5 speed and think it's a blast to drive on and offroad but that's just me
I loved my friends 5 speed but personally I believe for me an auto would be best
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:09 PM   #23
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The auto will be the way to go especially because it is the 3 speed and not the 4 speed tranny.
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Old 01-14-2014, 12:34 AM   #24
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honestly.. what ive learned from various, car, jeep&offroad enthusiasts.. itd always better to get your vehicle stock&build from there, cus then you know whats been done to it&its how you want it etc, etc. i didnt buy my tj completely stock, but mine has minor work done to it compared to a 4" lift.. i went with mine cus its manual.. at the time i bought my jeep, i also didnt know that manual is better for rock crawling then automatic&my offroad group prefers manual for rockcrawling. although it could just be a preference, if youll be offroading if your jeep(which i hope is the case) id say buy what your more comfortable with offroad..although youll be on road most often, offroad is where it really counts lol. ive had my jeep for 7mths, but i wouldnt go back&trade it for an auto. this is my first vehicle ive owned manual&am still notntired of it.
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Old 01-14-2014, 03:58 AM   #25
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Manual! You will have far more fun with it! After 3 years in mine I still enjoy to shift! All my buddies want to drive it every now and then, just for the fact it's a manual! Very fun good luck
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:33 AM   #26
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I was looking for an older model (97) and I chose manual because a clutch is less expensive to fix than an auto. Since it was older I just did not know how well the PO took care of it.
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Old 01-14-2014, 05:12 AM   #27
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i would probably get bored with the manual after awhile an want to switch go an auto. I'm 21
I'm 45, and have not had an automatic car in the driveway / garage in 20 years.
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Old 01-14-2014, 10:27 AM   #28
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I'm 45. I've had a whole lot of different types of wheelers, all manuals. My Rubicon is an auto, and I'll never go back to manuals. Wheeling is so much easier to deal with now. Everything around here is hilly and rocky and muddy. It's so easy to crawl up and onto stuff with the left foot perched above the brake to catch me. When it's time to head on up the steep hill I'm stopped on, I just let go of the brake with the left and add gas with the right. Totally dig it.
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Old 01-14-2014, 11:49 AM   #29
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I was looking for an older model (97) and I chose manual because a clutch is less expensive to fix than an auto. Since it was older I just did not know how well the PO took care of it.
Yup. That was my reasoning for my 97 as well.
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Old 01-14-2014, 02:59 PM   #30
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honestly.. what ive learned from various, car, jeep&offroad enthusiasts.. it's always better to get your vehicle stock&build from there, cus then you know whats been done to it&its how you want it etc, etc. i didnt buy my tj completely stock, but mine has minor work done to it compared to a 4" lift.. i went with mine cus its manual.. at the time i bought my jeep, i also didnt know that manual is better for rock crawling then automatic&my offroad group prefers manual for rockcrawling. although it could just be a preference, if youll be offroading if your jeep(which i hope is the case) id say buy what your more comfortable with offroad..although youll be on road most often, offroad is where it really counts lol. ive had my jeep for 7mths, but i wouldnt go back&trade it for an auto. this is my first vehicle ive owned manual&am still notntired of it.
that it what I am doing, the auto is bone stock except a new radio and speaks the owner put in a few months ago. of course I will be going off road but not on rocks, mostly mud an back roads so I believe the auto would be better for me. I've read that auto is best in the mud and back roads, that may have been some ones opinion I'm not sure, but since that's mostly what I'll be doing I think auto is the one for me, plus it's stock which is awesome. built not bought! I mean I've know how to drive standard since I was 12 it's what I was taught driving on but I just feel I'd enjoy the auto more.

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