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Shifter-which is "better" and why?

Discussion in 'Engine, Drivetrain, and Exhaust Discussion' started by 4wheelpilot, Apr 16, 2018 at 11:49 AM.

  1. 4wheelpilot

    4wheelpilot United States Member

    The GT2 has the drive by wire shifter that does not have a manual shift mode.
    All the other models have the "mechanical" shifter that does give you the ability to put it into manual mode, and keep it there until you put it back into auto mode (unlike the paddle shifters which revert back to auto mode).

    Which do you think is "better"?
    Pros and cons of each?
    To you, was/is the drive by wire shifter a deal breaker because it doesn't have a manual shift mode?

    I'm leaning towards the GT1 for this reason.
  2. Weareblondi

    Weareblondi United States Active Member Staff Member Moderator

    are you certain about the drive by wire not having a shiftable option?
  3. Berzerker

    Berzerker United States Active Member

    There's no "permanent" manual shift like the mechanical shifter.

    Using the paddles puts you into "manual" mode, but going below 4MPH will put you back into auto shifting mode and there's no way to disable it.

    The mechanical shifter has a "manual" position that will keep you in manual shifting mode since it's physically moved into that mode.
  4. robz32

    robz32 United States Active Member Staff Member Moderator

    The shift by wire does have a manual shift mode. All you need to do is press the minus (-) paddle and voila!
    To put it back into auto mode, you just need to press and hold the plus (+) paddle for 1 sec and that's it.
    • Informative Informative x 2
  5. 4wheelpilot

    4wheelpilot United States Member

    The mechanical shifter has a separate "gate" to the left that puts you in manual mode, and stays there until you push it back to the right for auto mode (in addition to the paddles).
    So the drive by wire has a way to go into manual mode for as long as you keep it there, or just the paddles?
  6. Grayt 8

    Grayt 8 United States Member

    The drive by wire will revert back to automatic mode when you stop, even if you are in Sport mode. As you are stopped, you can pull it back into manual with the paddle, and it will stay in manual from that point forward, even if you stay stopped. But you have to remember to do it each time you stop.
  7. With the drive by wire shifter, I find it easier to just pull back on the shifter (D) to put it back into auto mode... no button press required BTW...
    • Agree Agree x 4
  8. eflyguy

    eflyguy United States Active Member Staff Member Moderator

    My daughter's challenger behaves like this if you *don't* put it into "manual", but I've never found it annoying to select 1st (left paddle) before moving off again. I can use it when I want by simply pressing the paddles, as opposed to having to mess with the (mechanical) shift level.

    Not saying it's good or bad, just saying it's not uncommon..
  9. I got the GT instead of the GT1 in part because of the shifter. From a design standpoint, the ham fist Audi thing in the GT2 is just fugly. From a usability perspective, I prefer to have an actual "park" shift, not a weird button setting park mode. The shifter in the GT looks better, and is superior from a functional perspective. As a bonus, it also has a dedicated "manual" mode, so if you prefer that to the paddles, you've got both options. I don't know if anyone has tested it, but I think on Saabs, the stick changes were input by the car faster than the paddles. It would be interesting if that were case in the GT. Other benefits the GT has are a mechanical steering adjustment. It's just the standard lever to unlock, you move the wheel where you want, and flip the lever back to lock. Sometimes I'll make a steering wheel adjustment at a red light, and I want that to be instant. With the upper trims, the steering wheel is adjusted by buttons and motors, so that's one more electromechanical thing to break, as well as being slow and cumbersome. I wish it had a real ebrake, which you could use during driving, but none of the stingers do.

    Perhaps the biggest benefit to the GT is that it doesn't have that huge sheet of glass above your head, so you get lower cabin noise and a more rigid frame. You also don't have to deal with the glass exploding, as some forum members have experienced in their GT1/2's. The shifter was big for me, but the quieter cabin was the main reason I chose the GT over the GT1. My previous car, a Saab 9-3, had a sunroof I used all of three times. I would have happily traded that functionality for the reduced road noise of a real roof.

    My disappointment with the GT would be in its stereo. I think it's rather poor, so will probably be upgrading that. I find it fatiguing, and fiddling with the tone controls didn't help. Switching amps and routing it through a dedicated equalizer should sort it, as I think the speakers should be fine.

    There wasn't really anything in the GT2 that interested me except the LSD (Limited Slip Differential), but that is under $1,000 to add at a shop. I also liked the HUD, but you can buy GPS speedometer HUD's on Amazon starting at $30, so neither of those were worth an extra $10,000 to me. Then you're stuck with the glass roof on the GT1/2 and that ham shifter. I liked the larger LCD between the tachometer and speedometer, and might put the GT2 version in my car at some point, but that's pretty minor. I didn't test the sound system in the GT1/2, and reviews say it's decent, so that could be a plus.

    I will say, if you're getting a GT, be sure to get the driver safety package. I didn't think I'd have any use for it, but the blind spot warning lights in the side mirrors are actually quite useful given how limited the rear visibility is. Obviously lane assist and adaptive cruise control and all that stuff is nonsense, but you can turn all that off by pressing a couple buttons to the left of the steering wheel. It also gives you auto wipers, which are actually good (and there is a sensitivity rocker switch you can use to adjust it).

    That's a bit long, but, yes, I certainly prefer the "T" style shiftier to the ham fist one.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2018 at 7:16 AM
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  10. Eugene Onegin

    Eugene Onegin United States Member

    ...and adaptive cruise control and all that stuff is nonsense ?
  11. I wouldn’t change my GT Ltd for any other trim. This car is fully equipped
  12. For those that don't use cruise control, yes. For those that do, no. He asked for opinions, that's mine.
  13. Berzerker

    Berzerker United States Active Member

    While it may not be the best looking shifter, it is the most comfortable thing I've ever rested my hand on. It's basically hand-shaped and amazing to rest on.
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