Car pictures of the week

It’s a simple, but loaded question: manual or automatic? We look at the highlights from Henry Catchpole’s answer in issue 285

The option of a three pedal setup has been slowly disappearing from performance cars, with even the most focused of sports cars like the Alpine A110 and Toyota Supra equipped with self-shifting transmissions as the only option. But, does an automatic gearbox make for a less enjoyable driving experience in reality? In this week’s car pictures we look at the highlights from Henry Catchpole’s exploration of the topic featured in issue 285. To read the story in full, pick up your copy in store or online now via Mags Direct.

Many of you might already have a predetermined opinion on the question, but it’s not so simple. In today’s age of superb dual-clutch transmissions and increasingly potent power plants, the inclusion of a manual gearbox just doesn’t suit the package.

> BMW M2 CS 2020 review – there's plenty to worry a Porsche Cayman GT4

For our test we gathered two sports cars that still offer both automatic and manual transmissions, a rarity in the marketplace, and brought them to our home at the Bedford Autodrome and surrounding roads to establish which option appeals most to drivers. The cars themselves were BMW’s M2 CS and the Porsche 911 Carrera S, each in close-to-matching specification, save for one of the Porsche’s extra driven wheels. 

The job was to look beyond the obvious benefits of an automatic transmission’s advantages in shift speed and the extra efficiency derived from the extra ratios, and really dig into whether either package was better or worse with one pedal less. 

The benefits of a third pedal and satisfying shift action are obvious, with most manuals offering an extra layer of driver-machine interaction than their automatic counterparts. But with the latest crop of dual-clutch ‘boxes better than ever, are their advantages in tactility now outweighed by the benefits?

To read Henry Catchpole’s feature in full, pick up your copy of issue 285, available now in store or online at Mags Direct. To make sure you don’t miss the next issue subscribe to have it delivered straight to your door.

Car pictures of the week: archive

Below are some of our favourite images from previous editions of evo car pictures of the week. Click on the pictures for the full galleries.

Gallery 1

Click below to see all the images of our first car pictures of the week gallery, here featuring the indomitable Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, mk1 Volkswagen Golf GTIFord Shelby Mustang GT350 and the stunning Porsche 911 re-imagined by Singer.

Gallery 2

Here we dig further back into the evo archives where we pull out some iconic images of the Ford GT slightly out of context in the European Alps, a TVR Sagaris in central London, the Audi RS2 as well as one of our most iconic twin tests between the Ferrari 599 GTO and Lexus LF-A.

Gallery 3

The previous-generation Bentley Continental GT seemed to get better with age, a notion mirrored by the Jaguar E-type when in modern ‘lightweight’ form. Both of these British icons, as well as the Aston Martin Vantage GT12 feature in gallery three.

Gallery 4

Fans might have cried fowl when Ferrari decided to turbocharge the Ferrari 488, but it’s not like Ferrari don’t have a history with turbocharged V8 engines. Here the 488 co-stars alongside the stunning F40, while elsewhere in this gallery we take a Porsche Cayman GTS to Japan for a stunning mountain blast.

Gallery 5

Italian twelve-cylinder supercars seem to be the main agenda in the fourth evo car pictures of the week gallery, here featuring four V12 Lambos and the stunning 599 SA Aperta limited edition alongside its 550 Barchetta predecessor.

Gallery 6

GT3s and GT-Rs are just the beginning for gallery number six, with the Noble M600Aston Martin One-77 and a couple of McLaren flagships filling out our most amazing gallery yet.

Gallery 7

A gallery of new and old, here the McLaren 720S cemented its place as a truly great supercar alongside a daring night shoot with an Audi R8 LMX, pitch a Nissan GT-R and Audi Quattro against each other on Welsh mountain roads and drive the original 'Hakosuka' GT-R. 

Gallery 8

Ford's RS200 in a moody dark garage is just one of many amazing shoots in our 8th gallery, click on the image for the full gallery

Gallery 9

Click on the image below for our ninth car pictures of the week gallery, including this hardcore lot!

Gallery 10

Our tenth gallery turned it up another notch, including the wettest shoot in history (apparently).

Gallery 11

The best hardcore Ferrari supercars and more feature in our 11th car pictures of the week gallery.

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