PDA

View Full Version : BMW and Honda manual trannys


Matthew330Ci
09-07-2003, 06:57 PM
car magazines seem to compare other car's manual transmissions to bmw and honda transmissions as a benchmark to measure against.

the quotes will go something like 'while it's not as smooth as a honda or a bmw manual transmission, it is still a competent transmission'

now having owned both hondas and a bmw, in my opinion the bmw transmission is vague and not as crisp and satisfying to shift as honda manuals. when i first got my 330ci, i didn't like how the tranny shifted but have gotten used to it by now.

basically, i'm saying honda trannys feel better than bmw's (getrag and ZF) transmissions. but apparently car mags like bmw shifters just as much.

opinions?

pdz
09-07-2003, 07:23 PM
car magazines seem to compare other car's manual transmissions to bmw and honda transmissions as a benchmark to measure against.

the quotes will go something like 'while it's not as smooth as a honda or a bmw manual transmission, it is still a competent transmission'

now having owned both hondas and a bmw, in my opinion the bmw transmission is vague and not as crisp and satisfying to shift as honda manuals. when i first got my 330ci, i didn't like how the tranny shifted but have gotten used to it by now.

basically, i'm saying honda trannys feel better than bmw's (getrag and ZF) transmissions. but apparently car mags like bmw shifters just as much.

opinions?

have never owned a honda personally, but learned to drive on a 1990 honda civic 4 speed. excellent mechanism. however, the best shifting mechanism i've ever driven is a bone stock 1991 miata.

BMW's have that initial notchy/grabby feeling when first sliding into gear that isn't necessarily there in a honda transmission. but the entire mechanism slides in just as positively, but the throws are often long. not ropey. just a fair bit longer.

bmw325
09-07-2003, 07:29 PM
Actually- I've noticed that car magazines generally acknowledge that Hondas have the best shifters (followed by BMW). I haven't driven a Miata-- but apparently, their shifter should be probably be ahead of any BMW's.

nate
09-07-2003, 07:31 PM
Never driven a Honda...

pdz
09-07-2003, 07:39 PM
Never driven a Honda...


you should drive an S2000.

will change your mind about how a car should shift.

e46supra
09-07-2003, 08:07 PM
you should drive an S2000.

will change your mind about how a car should shift.

The S2000 has an insanely great shift feel.

The NSX, 94-01 Integra GS-R/Type R and Miata all have great shifters as well.

PhilH
09-07-2003, 08:23 PM
Pre-NSX, BMW and Honda shifters were very similar. My '91 Integra and my dad's '93 525i were comparable. However, the NSX, and 3rd generation Integra was when Honda took a huge leap to the head of the field.

The Miata has very short throws, but I prefered the feel of the Acuras.

bluer1
09-07-2003, 08:33 PM
I drove a friend's new Honda Civic (NOS, '02 EX model) today and was very pleasantly surprised by how nice the shifter felt.

Very mechanical feeling without being the least bit notchy, and very positive engagement in all gates.

:thumbup: :eeps:

What's that saying? "It's a shame what we find pleasing to the touch and pleasing to the eye are seldom the same."

tgravo2
09-07-2003, 08:42 PM
Never driven a Honda...

ed325i
09-07-2003, 11:53 PM
I have to say that higher end Hondas and Acuras have better feeling shifters than BMWs.

Ed

bmw325
09-08-2003, 12:04 AM
I have to say that higher end Hondas and Acuras have better feeling shifters than BMWs.

Ed

Its impressive, considering that most Hondas and Acuras are FWD--which means that the shift linkage is much less direct than in a RWD car. If Honda ever makes a RWD sport sedan-- I think BMW would be in big trouble.

richard
09-08-2003, 04:48 AM
I must be odd man out. I have owned 2 Preludes and now a BMW. I like the BMW gearbox alot better. Granted the throws are longer, but I found the Honda more rubbery feeling and less postive than my 325i. Now the clutch is a different story. I took me awhile to get used to the high engagement point on the Bimmer. Also, in the Honda I could keep my heel on the floor and just release the clutch with my toe...not so with the BMW.

Jeff_DML
09-08-2003, 11:04 AM
car magazines seem to compare other car's manual transmissions to bmw and honda transmissions as a benchmark to measure against.

the quotes will go something like 'while it's not as smooth as a honda or a bmw manual transmission, it is still a competent transmission'

now having owned both hondas and a bmw, in my opinion the bmw transmission is vague and not as crisp and satisfying to shift as honda manuals. when i first got my 330ci, i didn't like how the tranny shifted but have gotten used to it by now.

basically, i'm saying honda trannys feel better than bmw's (getrag and ZF) transmissions. but apparently car mags like bmw shifters just as much.

opinions?

Yeah, I agree. Our BMW MT is not bad but I dont know what all the fuss about. I even like some aspects of my audi better then our bmw and vice versa.

I wouldnt say all honda MT are good, just High end high end ones, i.e Acura and S200. I was not impressed with the civic MT that I drove. My friends GSR had a very nice MT, one of the best I have driven. :thumbup:

xspeedy
09-08-2003, 11:15 AM
Has anyone ever fantasized about being able to build your own car, but with various parts from other cars?

What I mean, is a BMW chassis and body, with component engineering help from Toyota and Honda, with a Porche engine, with a Honda transmission and electrical system, with seats from a...

I could just image what could be developed if you took the very strengths from each of the top manufacturers and put them together into one product. Imagine a four door Ferrari with Honda reliability.

hockeynut
09-08-2003, 11:22 AM
Had a 90 Integra GS and the shifter was wonderful. Our 93 Subaru shifter was one of the worst I've ever driven. Our 94 Corolla was the easiest to drive, but the least satisfying.

But my '04 330cic so far takes the prize...just perfect, as far as I am concerned.

bls
09-08-2003, 11:26 AM
I think it partly depends on what you're used to and what you expect.

My last car was a 1989 Accord five-speed. I really liked the shifting -- it felt like the shift gate was steel lined with a little bit of rubber, with the entry to each gear being a little pinched so that the gear lever would *pop* into and out of each gear.

I test drove a manual Jetta at the same time, and my roommate had a mid-80s manual Scirocco. I didn't like the way those VWs felt at all, very clanky and mechanical, and it felt like you were pushing around more metal in some gears than others (the shifting effort was the same for four gears on the Honda). I think that some people like that mechanical feel, though.

The BMW shifter has a little bit of that clanky feel on the 2-3 shift.

Alex Baumann
09-08-2003, 11:29 AM
What do you guys/gals mean by 'better feeling shifter' ?

Jeff_DML
09-08-2003, 11:30 AM
Has anyone ever fantasized about being able to build your own car, but with various parts from other cars?

What I mean, is a BMW chassis and body, with component engineering help from Toyota and Honda, with a Porche engine, with a Honda transmission and electrical system, with seats from a...

I could just image what could be developed if you took the very strengths from each of the top manufacturers and put them together into one product. Imagine a four door Ferrari with Honda reliability.

Yep, same here :D

Wish honda would build a RWD sedan or coupe :rolleyes:

xspeedy
09-08-2003, 11:41 AM
What do you guys/gals mean by 'better feeling shifter' ?

Drive an S2000 and you'll know what better means. It is one of those things that can't be accurately described.

Parrain
09-09-2003, 01:43 AM
Yeah, to me the Honda mechanism is the best that I've tried...it's just so smooth and "natural" feeling that it makes the task of shifting easier. I disagree though that it is only the high end Hondas that are good.
I learned on a Civic that was old, but still silky smooth. To each his own though...

Quote:
Originally Posted by xspeedy
"Has anyone ever fantasized about being able to build your own car, but with various parts from other cars?

What I mean, is a BMW chassis and body, with component engineering help from Toyota and Honda, with a Porche engine, with a Honda transmission and electrical system, with seats from a..."

Xspeedy, I was with you until the Porsche engine...but that's another thread I guess.

pdz
09-09-2003, 06:19 AM
Yeah, to me the Honda mechanism is the best that I've tried...it's just so smooth and "natural" feeling that it makes the task of shifting easier. I disagree though that it is only the high end Hondas that are good.
I learned on a Civic that was old, but still silky smooth. To each his own though...

Quote:
Originally Posted by xspeedy
"Has anyone ever fantasized about being able to build your own car, but with various parts from other cars?

What I mean, is a BMW chassis and body, with component engineering help from Toyota and Honda, with a Porche engine, with a Honda transmission and electrical system, with seats from a..."

Xspeedy, I was with you until the Porsche engine...but that's another thread I guess.

YEAH. i was thinking more along the lines of ferrari engines or mclaren engines.

i'm not really impressed with the specific output of any of the porkchop engines excepting, of course, the 996 GT3.

Alex: i think one thing that will come right away is to shift an M coupe (nice short throws) and then shift an e46m3. the throws are different. but even then, there is still some BMW notchiness. the honda motion is short and snickety in the s2000.

Artslinger
09-09-2003, 06:25 AM
BMW transmissions (shifter) are fine... its the BMW clutch that sucks.

LmtdSlip
09-09-2003, 09:28 AM
BMW transmissions (shifter) are fine... its the BMW clutch that sucks.


Honda shift action is the best I have used. From the Civic Si I owned to the NSX (1) and Accords (2) I have driven.

Worst was Lamborghini Diablo....The clutch was the worst part. So heavy that you really had to focus your thoughts on it and time your hand movement. Of course with all that power and torque a lot of shifting wasnt necessary.

pdz
09-09-2003, 09:31 AM
BMW transmissions (shifter) are fine... its the BMW clutch that sucks.

never said that the transmission were "bad", just not as intuitive during track time as the "other" company's transmissions.

and the new clutches that are used on "modern" bmw's leave a lot to be desired. first, they use a dual mass flywheel. yuck. second, they often have those annoying CDV's. third, they more likely tuned for transmission "smoothness" than for positive engagement. as to the longish clutch pedal travel, i have no idea why that is, but it seems silly to me.

car_for_mom
09-09-2003, 04:24 PM
When I was car shopping, I test drove the Acura CL Type-S 6 speed, and I didn't like the way it shifted at all...I couldn't tell what gear I was shifting into, it felt 'notchy'...arrgh! :thumbdwn:

To me, the Bimmer felt buttery smooth, and I notice the difference between Karl Bimmer and the Camry. Also, we have a venerable Honda Civic (1990), and everytime I attempt to drive that car, I feel like I'm riding a burro - rough, rough, rough! (Of course, to be fair, I doubt that I'd work as good if I had almost 200,000 miles on me! :p)

The G35's (sedan and coupe) with the real transmission weren't bad; the Lexus IS300 has a decent shifter. Not too bad is the Cadillac CTS, Volvo S60 T5 and the Audi A4's (1.8 and 3.0)

Anyway (warning: shameless begging about to occur :D ) - if any of you folks attend Bimmerfest 2004, or are in or near The Land Of Bovine Living (aka Chino Hills), and you have a short shift, clutch stop and the like - I'd like to try your car, because I've never driven such, and I'd like to compare...

Jeff_DML
09-09-2003, 04:41 PM
When I was car shopping, I test drove the Acura CL Type-S 6 speed, and I didn't like the way it shifted at all...I couldn't tell what gear I was shifting into, it felt 'notchy'...arrgh! :thumbdwn:

To me, the Bimmer felt buttery smooth, and I notice the difference between Karl Bimmer and the Camry. Also, we have a venerable Honda Civic (1990), and everytime I attempt to drive that car, I feel like I'm riding a burro - rough, rough, rough! (Of course, to be fair, I doubt that I'd work as good if I had almost 200,000 miles on me! :p)

The G35's (sedan and coupe) with the real transmission weren't bad; the Lexus IS300 has a decent shifter. Not too bad is the Cadillac CTS, Volvo S60 T5 and the Audi A4's (1.8 and 3.0)

Anyway (warning: shameless begging about to occur :D ) - if any of you folks attend Bimmerfest 2004, or are in or near The Land Of Bovine Living (aka Chino Hills), and you have a short shift, clutch stop and the like - I'd like to try your car, because I've never driven such, and I'd like to compare...

sounds like you are describing the clutch not stick shift linkage. :dunno:

Artslinger
09-09-2003, 08:31 PM
Honda shift action is the best I have used. From the Civic Si I owned to the NSX (1) and Accords (2) I have driven.

Worst was Lamborghini Diablo....The clutch was the worst part. So heavy that you really had to focus your thoughts on it and time your hand movement. Of course with all that power and torque a lot of shifting wasnt necessary.


The shifter feel is subjective, some people like a butter smooth shifter others like a crisp precise shifter.

As far as a clutch goes... I'm in the minority I like a heaver clutch, probably not as heavy as a Lambo clutch, but I've never driven one so I couldn't say for sure.

And I'm not saying that BMW has the best trany in the business, just that it doesn't really bother me.