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Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

Viitasaari, Finland
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Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

Hi all,

I know there's been discussion over same topic before, but I want to hear opinions again.

I'm moving to Rhone-Alpes for next winter. For that I'm planning to buy a car - from here in Finland. I found a Volkswagen TDI with automatic transmission, which I'd like to buy. I'm just concerned, that is the automatic transmission wise/safe decision for mountains? Can the automatic gearbox handle the "motor braking" (sry guys, dunno what's the term in English, we call it motor braking here)? The car has lower gears as manual from 1-3, is that enough? Is there something else which I might not have thought of?

So, what are your thoughts: is automatic transmission a bad choice or does it even matter?

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

I doubt a modern automatic transmission would have any problems. Modern disc brakes are more efficient and safer than the drum brakes of old also.

Is buying in Finland the best idea? One always hears how expensive the northern countries are... I'd be checking prices in France too before committing.

Ottawa, Canada
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2. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

I doubt a modern automatic transmission would have any problems. Modern disc brakes are more efficient and safer than the drum brakes of old also.

Is buying in Finland the best idea? One always hears how expensive the northern countries are... I'd be checking prices in France too before committing.

Viitasaari, Finland
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3. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

Thank you @parisamsterdam2007 for your reply. I hear what you say about bying from Finland. Yes indeed the taxing in Finland raises the car prices here quite a bit, but I've been thinking of many options. The reasons why I want to buy the car here is:

1. I want to drive the way from up here to down to France with my brother. Once in a lifetime experience.

2. The car price is less than 3000€ so the saving wouldn't be that much after. If I'd consider more expensive then definitely wouldn't make any sense to buy from here

3. Registration. I'm at first heading to Spain. If I'd buy a car from there I would probably first need to register it to Spain with permanent address. Then when I'm moving to France I would need to register it to France after six months. And all this costs. As a citizen of EU nation I can just take my car to Spain, drive it there 6 months, leave the country and drive another six months at France before registering it there.

But technically you are right. Finland is probably the worst country to buy a car in EU. South Germany would be cheapest, that's what I've heard.

Edited: 15 July 2014, 09:27
Bucks, UK
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4. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

Auto transmission will be fine - many of the cars travelling around the Alps use it and all boxes have the ability to "lock out" the higher gears.

Ottawa, Canada
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5. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

I see your point. At the price you've found a car for the difference in priced wouldn't be that much. Have a great drive when you head south!

Viitasaari, Finland
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6. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

Thank you guys!

7. Re: Owning a car with automatic transmission at the Alps

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