Manual cars have been the preferred choice in Britain since the very first motor vehicles appeared on our roads at the end of the 19th century. Although automatic gearboxes weren’t too far behind – with the first automatic transmission arriving in 1921 – they have never enjoyed the same popularity that they do in countries like the USA.

For those who haven’t tried an automatic car before, there may be some confusion over what the difference between the two is and how this manifests itself in the driving experience. While there is no definitive answer to the question: “Should I buy an automatic car?”, there are certainly pros and cons to doing so.

Pros and cons of an automatic car

Whether or not you choose an automatic car for your next purchase will depend upon your own personal preferences. However, understanding the advantages and drawbacks of an automatic gearbox can help you to make an informed decision. Here’s a quick rundown of the pros and cons:


  • Ease and convenience – With an automatic gearbox, it’s not necessary to concentrate on which gear you need to be in. Simply select “D” to drive, then use the accelerator or brake to adjust your speed. You’ll only need to use the gearbox again when parking or reversing.
  • Smoother drive – Since the gearbox automatically knows when to change gears, you’ll never have to suffer jerky transitions again. Stalling also becomes a thing of the past as long as the automatic gearbox is in a good condition.
  • Good for traffic jams – If you live in a busy town or city, you might find yourself contending with rush-hour traffic on a regular basis. Constantly having to use the clutch pedal can become tiring on your leg with a manual car – but in an automatic, you’re free to devote your energy and attention to navigating your route safely.


  • Less control – Having a manual car allows you to drop gears when you need to accelerate sharply, such as when you need to overtake another vehicle, for example. With an automatic car, that kind of freedom is not available.
  • More boring – For some drivers, switching gears is actually the most entertaining and interesting part of the experience. Removing that can make driving a more tedious task.
  • More expensive – Because they are generally less popular in the UK, automatic cars are often more expensive than their manual counterparts. That applies to both new and second-hand vehicles.

Should I buy an automatic car?

Ultimately, the answer to this question will depend upon your individual preferences when it comes to getting behind the wheel. If you prioritise comfort and convenience, an automatic may be the way to go. On the other hand, if you prefer to retain maximum control, or if you’re on a budget, you might prefer a manual car.

Whichever type of vehicle you settle on, My Car Credit has an extensive array of options online for you to browse, including both manual and automatic models. We can even help you to find the appropriate car finance to fund your purchase! If you’d like to learn more, feel free to drop us an email at and we can take things from there.

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Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 12.4%, annual interest rate (fixed) 12.36%, 47 monthly payments of £196.44 followed by 1 payment of £206.44 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £1,939.12, total amount payable is £9,439.12.

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