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Like the title says. I'm considering all factors while I shop for a Cayman.. What are the pros/cons of the reliability and general maintenance of these two transmissions?

Thanks!

Jeff
 

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Like the title says. I'm considering all factors while I shop for a Cayman.. What are the pros/cons of the reliability and general maintenance of these two transmissions?

Thanks!

Jeff
I'm curious, assume a 10 year, 100,000 mile time frame, if one gearbox statistically proves to be more reliable than the other (and the latest iteration of the PDK is way too new to have a reliable quality history) you would use this data to make a decision? The significant difference between living with each system over those 3,650 days of driving would strike me as a much more important selection criteria. Just saying. What kind of driving would you be doing?
 

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The manual clutch will have to be replaced for sure, while the PDK clutches may not. An expensive "accident" with the manual transmission is possible (or outright abuses), while the PDK isolates itself and the engine from harm. The PDK will probably use less fuel. If the PDK fails, however, ....

I agree that the most expensive potential problem is that you may find yourself wishing you had the other transmission.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm curious, assume a 10 year, 100,000 mile time frame, if one gearbox statistically proves to be more reliable than the other (and the latest iteration of the PDK is way too new to have a reliable quality history) you would use this data to make a decision? The significant difference between living with each system over those 3,650 days of driving would strike me as a much more important selection criteria. Just saying. What kind of driving would you be doing?
Thats why I said that I'm considering all of the factors :)
 

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It's probably easier to wreck a manual clutch or transmission.
At any rate, the driving experience is so different I can't imagine any other factor dominating. I suggest just buying what you prefer driving.
 

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My previous 2006 Cayman S manual needed a clutch and flywheel replaced ~45k miles. If I remember correctly, the total bill for parts and labor was in the ballpark of $4k. Most accounts I've read say the manual clutch will last 40-60k miles.

Porsche claims a PDK will last the life of the car. That's probably a bit ambitious but I'm assuming my current 2010 Cayman S PDK will last a lot longer than the 45k miles my 2006 manual did.

As others have pointed out, PDK gets you a number of benefits. No potentially catastrophic miss-shifts. Better fuel efficiency, no engine over-revs. But, you lose the tactile nature of a manual and if the PDK does go, expect to pay 3x the cost to replace it.

By all accounts PDK is as reliable as transmissions come. Keep in mind the PDK system in a Cayman is the exact same one you'll find in the Porsche range. Meaning, the system is/was designed to handle duty in a 911 Turbo reliably. If Porsche is confident in it shifting a 911 Turbo, I'm confident it can reliably handle my little Cayman S

FWIW, I actually enjoy driving my PDK more than my old manual. I love the F1/video game feel of driving it. Not to mention the moment you get stuck in traffic, your left leg will be thanking you.
 

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You raise a good point on the PDK running across various models. I recently read (here?) the percentage of Cayman parts also used in the 911, was it like 80%+?...I forget. It was a lot.
 

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Porsche claims the PDK is "lifetime", and it's probably true for all practical purposes -- unless you plan on driving the car for 600,000 miles as a taxi.

PDK has less room for user-error such as mis-shifts, etc. The manual transmission would be prone to other problems, such as bad driver killing the differential or something.

So for practical purposes, PDK is more durable. But reliability? I would give manual the vote. Either case, it's not something to worry about. Just pick whichever transmission you prefer.

I'm just super old schooled. PDK is a great transmission, and can out-shift me no matter what; its rev-matches are perfect every time. Yet, I'll prefer to keep my left foot at work when I drive.
 

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Anyone had the 60k PDK service done, and how much were you charged?
 

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Anyone had the 60k PDK service done, and how much were you charged?
It's just a fluid change for the clutch half of the system, but not a simple one - the service computer is required. I think the fluid was about $100, plus - I forget - a half-hour of labor I think.
 

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It's just a fluid change for the clutch half of the system, but not a simple one - the service computer is required. I think the fluid was about $100, plus - I forget - a half-hour of labor I think.
Thanks. Was afraid it would be much more.
 

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One of the fears I have with the PDK transmissions is that there will be some calibration required that will be beyond the ability of a DIY mechanic so that you are forced to seek out a shop with the appropriate diagnostics to perform the maintenance on it. When I was researching buying a Ferrari and the maintenance involved, the F1 semi-automatic transmissions needed to be re-calibrated when the clutch was replaced, which required very expensive software to complete. Though the pricing on this doesn't seem to be near as bad as on the Ferrari... it's still something that you could probably do yourself.

With a manual transmission, a clutch is a clutch, and I'm sure there's enough information available that would allow me the option to change the clutch myself.
 

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The real problem isn't the PDK, or the clutch, or the synchros. It's traffic!
 

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One of the fears I have with the PDK transmissions is that there will be some calibration required that will be beyond the ability of a DIY mechanic so that you are forced to seek out a shop with the appropriate diagnostics to perform the maintenance on it. ....

With a manual transmission, a clutch is a clutch, and I'm sure there's enough information available that would allow me the option to change the clutch myself.
Well, I guess it's worse than you can imagine, since even Porsche shops are not supposed to put a wrench to a PDK, apparently - they're sent back to Germany. That might be only because the Porsche engineers want to see them. But I've read of only a single instance, for a new car. I seem to have one of the fleet leaders, at 80,000 miles - I'll let you all know if I have any trouble. I should go out and do 50 launch control starts in a row and see what happens. ;)
 

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Well, I guess it's worse than you can imagine, since even Porsche shops are not supposed to put a wrench to a PDK, apparently - they're sent back to Germany.
No longer true. Here is a PDK where an oil pan cover was replaced (which means they did something to it). However, there is some thought that PDK is NOT the same across all car lines and, in fact, this PDK is derived from Audi DL501 "Then we have developed a dual-clutch gearbox; a derivation of the DL501-Audi-gear, with completely new software ..."
 
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