Have you driven the new automatics that you put into the manual shift mode and just tap the shifter to up or down shift? I imagine the 350 will outshift my 2001 Eclispe Spyder GT and it is excellent plus it takes it to the rev limiter if you don't upshift timely. It acts like the converter is locked up in all gears for almost immediate positive shifts. When driving out of Baker, CA toward Barstow you start up a hill, with the shifter in manual mode there is direct acceleration/decelleration as needed for the traffic. Have you ever driven the 405 in LA in the stop and go traffic? What about the hills in San Francisco? It is torture on a clutch and left leg. I have several 5 speed Z/ZXs for fun and also a '95 SHO automatic for cross country driving. Yes, you can throw a faster speed shift with a manual for dragging plus lesss weight if actual racing is your goal but you are shocking the drivetrain with every shift and eventually something will give. But I do not intend to race the car. I think the auto will be a better investment. I just wish the shifter was via paddles like F1 cars for the manual mode. I just wish I could learn to left foot brake.