Photo of a gearbox by Hidde van Esch

What are the differences between manual and automatic cars?

Below are the considerations you should make when choosing to learn in car that has a manual or automatic transmission.


  • Tuition is typically cheaper, although that standard is changing as automatics gain more popularity
  • Manual cars are typically cheaper compared to automatic variants
  • One you pass your test, you can legally drive both manual and automatic cars
  • Manuals give greater control of the vehicle, allowing for higher precision


  • Without needing to learn gear changes and clutch control, it's quicker to learn in an automatic
  • Since there's no clutch to worry about, that means you won't stall the car
  • Electric cars are currently all automatic, though gaining popularity, are still more expensive to buy
  • Once you pass, your licence is automatic-only. If you want to drive a manual, that will require passing an additional test.