We woke up to this this morning. My work vehicle doesn’t have winter tires. Getting to moving is a problem in the winter, to say nothing of stopping (I’m expecting some complaints from the public on Monday). But you know what helps the little Sonic? The manumatic.

Like this.

Now, hear me out. It’s not a sports car. All I do is hit a little button on the shifter to go up or down a gear (and only if the car thinks that’s a good idea). It’s not going to make me Speed Racer. But you know what I can do? Get my car to accelerate from a standstill in third gear. You know how nice it is to not have to deal with wheelspin when trying to move? A gentle application of the gas pedal in third is worlds different from the same move when just in drive. I spent most of my day solely in third gear today, and it was pretty great.

And less helpfully, but engine braking is nice and reassuring, rather than constantly slamming on the brakes. It probably doesn’t do much, but it makes me feel more confident, which helps.

Is it perfect? Hell no. While it would stay in third sometimes, occasionally it would just flip back into first, which led to wheelspin and looking like an asshole. So, some kinks can be worked out. But overall, I’m pretty happy I have it. I’m all for manumatics now.