I know that the subject has been raised before but I am not sure if having a low-ratio gear facility makes this less of an issue.
I shall be purchasing a diesel powered Landrover Discovery in the Spring, as my only car. I will have a 200 mile round trip to the boat and intend to leave it on a trailer at a suitable location. The boat (2006 Season) will be an 8.5 metre Scorpion, with the biggest outboard I can find. Most likely a single Mercury Verado. It will also have a large fuel tank, so the whole rig will be pretty heavy.
I know that there are quite a few advocates of automatic transmission but this will obviously have an impact on performance (if that is an appropriate term for a "Disco") and fuel consumption. Would the facility of a low ratio gearbox be a factor in the choice of manual or auto?
If my wife lets me (might as well be honest) buy the new model, it will weigh over two and a half tonnes. There are no fuel consumption figures yet published but there is little doubt that it will be "thirsty".
Given all of this info, please let me have your thoughts on whether or not the automatic transmission would make for the best launch vehicle (bearing in mind the low-ratio facility) or if the better performance and likely improvement in fuel consumption (say 1 mpg) of a manual box will outweigh the need/cost to replace the clutch in a manual gearbox at regular intervals. Any idea about the cost of this exercise and how often it might be necessary?
Thanks for your thoughts!