Maybe buying an Auto A Class. Change in driving style?

Callum Wade

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Your Mercedes
A200
Looking at buying an A200 auto but got some questions about it, mainly what I’d need to readjust about my driving. The daily commute includes a few hills ranging between about 45-50 degrees, traffic is stop start or moving at only a couple of miles an hour. I have only ever driven a manual and have no problems using the clutch/brake/throttle to creep up the hills.
I want to know what the difference in driving technique would be and how the features on an A200 would assist with creeping and not rolling?
 

LostKiwi

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2006
Messages
31,363
Reaction score
21,631
Location
Midlands / Charente-Maritime
Your Mercedes
'93 500SL-32, '01 W210 Estate E240 (RIP), 02 R230 SL500, 04 Smart Roadster Coupe, 11 R350CDi
The daily commute includes a few hills ranging between about 45-50 degrees

Where do you live? The Himalayas?

No car will climb a 50 degree slope - that's 4x4 with low range gearbox territory.
 

Ron240

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2020
Messages
2,587
Reaction score
2,709
Location
Fife
Your Mercedes
Sold - 2021 CLA 35 Premium.
Yes I think the OP is getting a little bit confused.....especially when you consider the steepest road in the UK is only 22 degrees. :D

Regarding the question, an auto will be easier and more relaxing to drive on the type of roads you describe. There really is nothing to it. :)
 
OP
C

Callum Wade

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Your Mercedes
A200
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #4
Where do you live? The Himalayas?

No car will climb a 50 degree slope - that's 4x4 with low range gearbox territory.

Aha fair enough maybe not quite that.
Put that down to ignorance on my part. (It is Scotland though, stuff does get quite hilly up here). The hill is dead steep though.
 
OP
C

Callum Wade

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Your Mercedes
A200
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #5
Yes I think the OP is getting a little bit confused.....especially when you consider the steepest road in the UK is only 22 degrees. :D

Regarding the question, an auto will be easier and more relaxing to drive on the type of roads you describe. There really is nothing to it. :)

So I take it the hold feature is pretty simple to use? Just trying to figure out what the transition from a manual to an automatic would be like on the trickier bits. Thinking about getting one of these because I spend that much time in the car I just want something enjoyable to be in that makes motorway and city driving as easy as possible
 

Ron240

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2020
Messages
2,587
Reaction score
2,709
Location
Fife
Your Mercedes
Sold - 2021 CLA 35 Premium.
Honestly the biggest transition from manual to auto is remembering that your left foot is redundant, everything else is simplicity itself.
The car doesnt roll back.
 
Last edited:

rorywquin

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 28, 2016
Messages
9,488
Reaction score
6,385
Location
North Yorkshire
Your Mercedes
An old B-Class.
So I take it the hold feature is pretty simple to use? Just trying to figure out what the transition from a manual to an automatic would be like on the trickier bits. Thinking about getting one of these because I spend that much time in the car I just want something enjoyable to be in that makes motorway and city driving as easy as possible

The hold (is like a handbrake) feature just needs you to give an extra push on the brake pedal (when you stop) and push (touch) again or accelerate to release it. I & my wife have had it in our cars for years (10?) and rarely use it. With an auto,in slow moving traffic, you keep your foot on the brake until you move off again and it will not roll back even on hills.

Apparently when stopped (in traffic or at traffic lights ), you should use the parking brake so that your brake lights do not dazzle those behind you - :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:.


There is nothing to driving an automatic and if you get one with lane keeping and distronic, your drive will be even more comfortable. The only issue you might face (when you first start driving an auto) is stamping on the brake with your left foot because your muscle memory wants to push the clutch - tuck your left foot under your right leg for the first few trips.
 
Last edited:

daibevan

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2015
Messages
1,499
Reaction score
1,128
Location
Alltwen, Pontardawe
Your Mercedes
W203 C200 Kompressor Elegance SE 2006 Tanzanite Blue with cream interior
And accidentally trying to change down manually when of course you don't need to do anything. Still happens to me occasionally even after almost 5 years. (Like changing gear with the window winder when driving a LHD). I'd never considered an automatic as I enjoyed changing gear, but the smoothness of the Merc changes makes life a doddle. Once mine is warm I have to listen very carefully to even detect a gear change most of the time.
 
OP
C

Callum Wade

New Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2020
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Your Mercedes
A200
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #9
And accidentally trying to change down manually when of course you don't need to do anything. Still happens to me occasionally even after almost 5 years. (Like changing gear with the window winder when driving a LHD). I'd never considered an automatic as I enjoyed changing gear, but the smoothness of the Merc changes makes life a doddle. Once mine is warm I have to listen very carefully to even detect a gear change most of the time.
I’d agree, I enjoy changing gears if I’m driving through the country on B Roads, as soon as it gets to city driving it gets a bit tedious though.

what are folks thoughts on the gen 3 a class? They’re about my price range at the moment, or is it worth hanging on a couple of years till the gen 4 models have dropped in price a bit?
 

LostKiwi

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2006
Messages
31,363
Reaction score
21,631
Location
Midlands / Charente-Maritime
Your Mercedes
'93 500SL-32, '01 W210 Estate E240 (RIP), 02 R230 SL500, 04 Smart Roadster Coupe, 11 R350CDi
Once you hill started an automatic you'll wonder how you ever did it in a manual.
Even without brake hold feature just come to a stop. Hold it on the brake and when ready transfer to accelerator. If it's really steep hold on brake with left foot and treat it like the clutch.
Or just use the parking brake.
 

John Laidlaw

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2013
Messages
26,373
Reaction score
9,163
Location
Wirral
Your Mercedes
Land Rover Discovery 4
Callum you won't look back (pun intended), Auto is the only thing to have. The auto hold is a marvellous function which I miss greatly in my i8 (have it in the XC90)....
 

A.J.

Senior Member
Joined
May 31, 2015
Messages
21,258
Reaction score
9,581
Location
Norwich. UK
Your Mercedes
UnMerc - 2020 VW Polo 2.0t GTi Plus, DSG. Flash Red, Traditional VW GTi Tartan seat trim.
Hi Callum, welcome to the forum :) Manual ?? what's that, didn't know there was such a thing :D:D
 

EmilysDad

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
12,200
Reaction score
5,777
Location
Bury Lancs
Your Mercedes
ML350
Callum you won't look back (pun intended), Auto is the only thing to have. The auto hold is a marvellous function which I miss greatly in my i8 (have it in the XC90)....

I only really use HOLD when waiting at the lights .... hill starts are done using 2 feet .... ;)

A pedal for each foot! :rolleyes:
 

EmilysDad

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
12,200
Reaction score
5,777
Location
Bury Lancs
Your Mercedes
ML350
Once you hill started an automatic you'll wonder how you ever did it in a manual. ....

I drove Emily's manual last week .... unfortunately there were road works which diverted me up a 1 in 4 hill! :shock: :shock:
Lets just say there were a lot more revs used than needed! :D
 

Ron240

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2020
Messages
2,587
Reaction score
2,709
Location
Fife
Your Mercedes
Sold - 2021 CLA 35 Premium.
I only really use HOLD when waiting at the lights .... hill starts are done using 2 feet .... ;)

A pedal for each foot! :rolleyes:
Let's not teach the OP bad habits now. ;)

Seriously though do you find there is any need to do this? From my own experience even if the Hold feature isnt activated then simply moving from brake to accelerator quickly will not see the car running backwards at all.
I remember when I got my first modern auto 2 years ago(actual first was back in 1987) I experimented on a local steep hill.....took my foot off the brake in Drive and the car held itself steady......no brake or hold function, then pressed the accelerator and car moved forward up the hill.
I wouldnt recommend doing this regularly though because it will put unnecessary strain on components.
 

flowrider

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
3,650
Reaction score
1,612
Your Mercedes
SL500 (R230)
Auto's roll back for me on steep gradients! Never had an auto that doesn't, I just have to be quick on the pedals or use the hold function.
 

EmilysDad

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
12,200
Reaction score
5,777
Location
Bury Lancs
Your Mercedes
ML350
..

Seriously though do you find there is any need to do this? ....

no ... but it's a force of habit now ;) ... I blame my Dad :D. I agree that on most hills, an auto won't roll backwards anyway, it needs to be very steep to do so, but I can't see that it puts anymore strain on the box than sitting there with the brakes on
 

EmilysDad

Senior Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
12,200
Reaction score
5,777
Location
Bury Lancs
Your Mercedes
ML350
Auto's roll back for me on steep gradients! Never had an auto that doesn't, I just have to be quick on the pedals or use the hold function.

My Smarts & the R Class I had just had 'hill assist' ie they just hold the brakes for a short time to give you time to swap your foot from the brake to the throttle
 

Ron240

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2020
Messages
2,587
Reaction score
2,709
Location
Fife
Your Mercedes
Sold - 2021 CLA 35 Premium.
I can't see that it puts anymore strain on the box than sitting there with the brakes on
With my previous auto(Audi S3) I noticed that when sitting in Drive and footbrake applied with anything other than very light pressure the drive was disengaged, so I assume Mercedes auto boxes will operate in the same way. Of course when on a hill you are pressing a little harder and as you say the hill assist function takes over when releasing the brake.
What I was meaning earlier when I conducted my experiment on a hill, it seemed to be simply the torque of the gearbox that was holding the car steady, and I was honestly surprised considering the gradient(probably around 1 in 10). I would compare this with balancing a manual car on the clutch, but whether that's right or wrong my mechanical sympathy would tell me it is wrong to do so.
 

AIB understand your special Mercedes deserves a special insurance policy. We have a refreshing attitude to insuring high performance, modified, imported or classic and vintage cars and deal with the UK’s leading insurers. We offer discounts for length of ownership, where the vehicle is kept overnight and limiting the mileage and can also cater for those clients who need higher mileage and business use. To obtain a quotation please call the team on 02380 268351 or visit us atAIB Insurance
Top Bottom