In Reply to: 540i auto vs. manual -long- posted by Norm on January 28, 2000 at 23:26:28:
I own a 99 540s6. It did take me some time to get used to the clutch. The clutch is very light and I felt slipping when shifting quick. But after reading some posts I removed the "delay valve". It's night and day. The clutch is easier to modulate. The primary reason for this valve in my opinion is because of luxury thinking. It's there to smooth out the shifts. But I seem to lanch and shift the car much smoother now.
Having driven various BMW manuals and autos I feel that the way the 540 is softened up plus no limited slip an auto would not be a major compromise. My reasons for driven a manual is so I can hold the car back with the gears and keep the engine power where I want and need it. I have driven my parents 740i (not a steptronic) often and enjoy driving the car. I let the auto shift itself and I just use the shifter to select the gears in sport mode.
I agree with a previous post regarging sports car w/manuals and luxury cars w/autos. Firm up the suspension and put in a limited slip and the 6-speed becomes a must.
It all comes down to your driven style and what you want out of the car.