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Old 08-24-2014
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: niagara falls
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Manual or Automatic Ranger

Basically I've never driven a manual truck and I am looking at buying a 2003 Ford Ranger Edge 5 speed.

I am set on buying a Ranger, I'm just not sure if I should get a manual or automatic.

I live in Canada, and the winters suck here, so I am wondering how driving manual on a truck is during the winter.

Also any pros and cons to driving a manual truck as opposed to an automatic would be very helpful!
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Old 08-24-2014
Taylor's Avatar
Ive been old volk
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I had never touched a manual transmission before buying my ranger.

I signed the papers, and learned to drive it in the parking lot of the dealership lol.

I never looked back.
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Old 08-24-2014
Taylor's Avatar
Ive been old volk
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Ok so another post to actually answer your question.

Manual can get annoying in heavy traffic. YOU control the transmission with a manual instead of a computer. Manual is fun. You can apply your skill of driving a manual tranny towards other vehicles including motorcycles, cars, etc.

Automatic is easier.....just push the gas lol. Less headache in traffic. Less pedals to accidentally hit with your big fat feet.
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Old 08-24-2014
06FordFX4's Avatar
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As for manual vs auto in general, I love both. And I don't hate either one. I also own both.

My ranger is an automatic. And my focus is a manual.

Both are great, for different reasons.
I never knew how to drive stick before test driving the focus, and only stalled it once. Their easy to drive.

Now, for winters, if you have good clutch control manual will be fine in winter. If you're one of those people who just hammers the gas and let's then clutch out it could get interesting. (Yes, those people exist)
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Old 08-24-2014
red_rider's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Port Byron, IL
Posts: 346
I'd say go manual. Like Taylor said, I had never driven one before I bought my truck, I had my dad do the test drive and then I gave it a learn driving on the way home.

Way more fun to drive for me, even in traffic. I'd even say in slow crawling traffic it's fun because you can just let it lurch in 1st most of the time.

To answer your question about winter driving, I'd say a manual may even be advantageous in that situation. You can rock the truck back and forth easier, and a couple times I've gotten stuck, I had to lug the engine a little to keep traction and get going (not recommending you do it but..)

Then there's the reliability aspect..
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Old 08-24-2014
pearlkid9988's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Newnan Georgia
Posts: 828
Manual transmission if maintained and driven correctly will far outlast your auto. They are more fun to drive among other things. Also i did a manual trans swap on my ranger it came from the factory as an auto so i had the rare opportunity to see the auto vs. manual in the same truck with exact same parts so i can give a pretty good comparison. The auto was good for towing i tow from time to time and the stick just seems to loose its umph on the interstate where the auto did fine cruising at 65 puling a 14 foot flatbed trailer behind it when we moved. However my truck is mostly a daily driver with the occasional dump run here and there so manual makes more sense because it will hold up better to high miles as well as a decent bump in gas mileage (20 miles per tank better or more depending on driving habits than auto got). Each one serves its purpose also the gear ratios in the manuals in these trucks seem to do better with these v6's no hunting for gears which my auto did constantly because the power just wasn't there. So really the choice should be based on what the truck will be used for most. If you tow a lot then auto would be best if its a daily id go for the manual.
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Old 08-26-2014
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: FL
Posts: 140
It is just a matter of personal preference. I chose manual because it is more fun to drive and cheaper to maintain/repair.
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Old 08-26-2014
IN2 FX4's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Costa Mesa, CA
Posts: 855
I have always preferred a stick because I like to have more control of what the transmission is doing. I tow a lot and have no problem. I just try to not stop then have to start up again facing uphill. I think the key to towing is not using 5th gear on the highways. I tow all over the country at 70 to 75 mph and it takes a pretty steep incline to require a downshift.

Clutch jobs are usually needed if you keep the truck long enough but that is cheaper than getting an automatic rebuilt or replaced.

There is nothing wrong with automatics, most people prefer them especially off-road. My 69 Fairlane Cobra has an automatic and I like it. I have driven a Cobra with a stick and they are a beast to drive. Modern sticks are much easier to drive.
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