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      02-19-2008, 11:00 AM   #72
Second Lieutenant
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Drives: 2014 X5 35i
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Florence,South Carolina

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Impressions Part 2

There was a question about the 6 speed transmission in the new car. this is all we had to drive in Germany as the DCt was not available. I have always preferred the standard 6 speed because I am used to it and like to heel and toe. The pedals are perfect for me in this car as they were in really all the other BMW's I have had. I drove an SMG E46 on the track and this is really where it shines. It is way cool to just have to nail the brakes and downshift with F1 throttle blips. In the real world, however, I found the SMG to be somewhat clunky and I prefer to do the shifting myself. I would never need the "automatic" mode so that was not an issue. Recently drove a friends Aston Martin Vantage and while gorgeous, the shifting was awful!

I had no complaints about the new cars 6 speed. I am not sure what "rubbery" means but I found the transmission to be fine on the track. Shifts seemed to be shorter than the E46 and it was easy to drive smooth. The E46 was always a little jerky shifting from 1st to 2nd unless the revs were just right, I did not notice it in this car though I was almost always accelerating pretty hard!

Botom line. This is purely personal preference.Sounds like the DCT will be much better than SMG. For those that want the auto option and a Nick Heidfeld experience do with DCT. For those old school guys the 6 speed is just fine. I hope to drive a DCT car if they get one at the performance center, and if I do I will give my thoughts.