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      12-29-2006, 11:38 AM   #1
BevoRules
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Still undecided on type of tranny...

I've reviewed all the great information stemming from this site regarding the SMG and it is been very helpful. But I must admit I'm still stuck right in the middle between deciding on going with SMG or traditional manual (obviously this assumes BMW will offer both during initial year of production). I guess part of my problem is that I've never test driven anything with SMG. What other BMW vehicles currently offer SMG tranny (in the US that is)? I'm thinking that I'll go to the dealer that I'm on the list on for the M3 and ask them if I can test drive some other SMG vehicle. But if BMW doesn't offer many other models with SMG then the dealer might not have access to one of these to let me test drive.

Has anyone else tried to do this?
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      12-29-2006, 12:56 PM   #2
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I am in the same boat as you are...I don't know if the new tranny will shift as fast as I want to...I don't know if you get the same control feeling on the car as with the SMG....Were in Texas are you?

I'm going more with the manual...the SMG has to convince me a lot in order for me to get it...will see.
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      12-29-2006, 02:12 PM   #3
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I'm in the dilemma as you guys, choosin between SMG and a 6 Speed, but here's my problem, I have to drive an SMG and don't know if it will offer some sort of AUTO feature, I live in LA so shifting back and forth is a real pain.
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      12-29-2006, 04:08 PM   #4
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There is that thread SMG vs. Manual here on the forums and its a great debate. But SMG is the winner by far...unrivaled shift speeds (by any HUMAN, PERIOD. Its good for lazy around town traffic or at the track (more concentrating on driving and not heel-toe-ing....no worry about grinding gears when your trying to show off...flawless rev-matching...the list goes on and on.

However if this is a weekend car or driven only once a week or something then get stick and knock yourself out. (not literally, )
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      12-29-2006, 04:39 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by replicat View Post
There is that thread SMG vs. Manual here on the forums and its a great debate. But SMG is the winner by far...unrivaled shift speeds (by any HUMAN, PERIOD. Its good for lazy around town traffic or at the track (more concentrating on driving and not heel-toe-ing....no worry about grinding gears when your trying to show off...flawless rev-matching...the list goes on and on.

However if this is a weekend car or driven only once a week or something then get stick and knock yourself out. (not literally, )
You're right about the merits of SMG. However, what the manual gives u that the SMG cannot is more control and driver involvement (enjoyment?) during the driving experience. But as was said, the "manual experience" comes at a cost. It all comes down to personal preference.
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      12-29-2006, 05:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by replicat View Post
There is that thread SMG vs. Manual here on the forums and its a great debate. But SMG is the winner by far...unrivaled shift speeds (by any HUMAN, PERIOD. Its good for lazy around town traffic or at the track (more concentrating on driving and not heel-toe-ing....no worry about grinding gears when your trying to show off...flawless rev-matching...the list goes on and on.

However if this is a weekend car or driven only once a week or something then get stick and knock yourself out. (not literally, )

SMG has its countless merits, but I probably won't be ordering it. I have not sampled SMG III, however I've been told by some users that they feel it's either too sharp and neck snapping (which is great much of the time) or too sloppy when not in the sportiest shift mode.

Maybe, I'm wrong but if it's anything like the second generation, I would not like it. Besides, I'm not tracking my car nor drag racing at the strip, so 1/100th of a second does not matter to me.

I think it feels too sterile and less involved. If any users of SMG III have extensive use and feedback, please post. I'd like to hear.

I have also heard of many M5 owners having repeated problems with the system. Maybe the bugs are worked out, maybe not. I think BMW does many things right and makes some of the best engines in the world, but I think they need a little R&D in the clutchless tranny dept. Maybe, a dual clutch type, ala Porsche designed-Audi used, or Ferrari's F1.
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      12-29-2006, 06:13 PM   #7
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Do me a favor... Don't read SMG VS. 6speed threads...
they are worthless and they just talk crap to eachother....

I had an E46 M3 SMG and i did my share if 6 speed driving...
The M5 and M6 had their share of SMG problems but my friend got the second year M6... and I LOVE THE SMG mroe than anything... go to ur bmw dealer and test drive a used E46 SMG and play with it, you can do almost anything a manual can do, and now my friends M6 has SMG III I don't even see the difference.

BUT.........

I think i am going to get the new M3 in 6 speed manual. It is just funner "sometimes" if you do not care about traffic etc. because you are in more control of the car.

But I love SMG I hope I kinda helped...
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      12-29-2006, 11:21 PM   #8
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I've owned them both. It's hard to get a real impression of how SMG is with a short test drive. My advice, go with your gut, don't look back.

-Adam
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      12-30-2006, 06:18 PM   #9
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Here's the trick.

1. Get a coin
2. Mark one side(SMG) and other side(6speed)
3. Toss a coin
4. See the result



But seriously, none of us can help. You should wait until both tranny are available on E92 M3 if you can't decide which one to buy.
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      12-31-2006, 12:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carnuts3 View Post
You're right about the merits of SMG. However, what the manual gives u that the SMG cannot is more control and driver involvement (enjoyment?) during the driving experience. But as was said, the "manual experience" comes at a cost. It all comes down to personal preference.
That is true but if you get stuck in 0-20 mph traffic for 2 hours a day the driving experience of a SMG will be far better. The current SMG shifts faster than human but people have complains on getting it to drive smoothly. This problem should be resolved by the new SMG. Only thing I am worried about is the added complexity of the system will contribute to probability of breaking down.
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      12-31-2006, 05:39 PM   #11
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SMG vs Manual decision tree:

Reasons to buy SMG:
* Auto mode when you are stuck in traffic.
* Frees up left foot for brakes.
* Keeps both hands on the wheel.
* better performance
* Less risk of damage to the car during aggressive driving. (I've seen a few money shifts in my day)

Reasons to buy a manual:
* Your car friends won't make fun of you
* You get a lever and pedal to play with while you drive.
* Small advantage off the line at a drag strip with a pro driver.
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      01-04-2007, 12:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enigma View Post
SMG vs Manual decision tree:

Reasons to buy SMG:
* Auto mode when you are stuck in traffic.
* Frees up left foot for brakes.
* Keeps both hands on the wheel.
* better performance
* Less risk of damage to the car during aggressive driving. (I've seen a few money shifts in my day)

Reasons to buy a manual:
* Your car friends won't make fun of you
* You get a lever and pedal to play with while you drive.
* Small advantage off the line at a drag strip with a pro driver.

Excellent, Excellent, Excellent!!!
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      01-04-2007, 02:36 PM   #13
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I drove an SMG-equipped 650i once, and did not like the SMG. My time in it was very brief however. The impression I came away with was "if I'm going to jerk my passengers heads around like that, I might as well be shifting myself."

However, I really want to get SMG on the M3. What I REALLY want to know from current SMG owners is this: Can you develop a technique for smoothing out the shifts with SMG? i.e. lift off the throttle a bit before the shift? I know I can shift a manual myself perfectly smooth, without any jerking. It's just a matter of speed with my hand and correct timing with the pedals. At least it's possible.

Is it possible to get a perfectly smooth, seamless, almost "automatic-like" shift with SMG? And what does that require?

Thank you.
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      01-04-2007, 03:00 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans Delbruck View Post
I drove an SMG-equipped 650i once, and did not like the SMG. My time in it was very brief however. The impression I came away with was "if I'm going to jerk my passengers heads around like that, I might as well be shifting myself."

However, I really want to get SMG on the M3. What I REALLY want to know from current SMG owners is this: Can you develop a technique for smoothing out the shifts with SMG? i.e. lift off the throttle a bit before the shift? I know I can shift a manual myself perfectly smooth, without any jerking. It's just a matter of speed with my hand and correct timing with the pedals. At least it's possible.

Is it possible to get a perfectly smooth, seamless, almost "automatic-like" shift with SMG? And what does that require?

Thank you.
Yes, you can. Pretty easy. It takes about a cpl of weeks to get a handle on it. One trick is to slightly lift after shifting.

I also have the bigger brake pedal (GSP pedal) and it allows for easier left foot braking. This also helps the jerking..
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      01-04-2007, 03:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zivagolee View Post
Yes, you can. Pretty easy. It takes about a cpl of weeks to get a handle on it. One trick is to slightly lift after shifting.

I also have the bigger brake pedal (GSP pedal) and it allows for easier left foot braking. This also helps the jerking..
Agreed. It is easy to shift smoothly with SMG in manual mode by simply letting off slightly at each shift. It takes more time to learn to do this in auto mode because you must learn to anticipate when the gearbox will shift.

By the way, I have read that the SMG trannys in the non-M cars are made by an outside supplier (ZF, I think), whereas the SMG units in M cars were developed in-house. There is a huge difference in overall usability between the M SMG box and the 'box used in non-M cars.
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      01-04-2007, 04:02 PM   #16
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non-M cars uses the first gen SMG found on the E36, which was slow and jerky

i'm sticking with SMG, i have other cars that are still 6MT
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