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My last car was a Toyota Auris hybrid which was an automatic. It uses a CVT transmission which is very smooth to drive. It was my first automatic after driving manuals for 10 years and I was very happy with it.

Last week I bought an automatic Cactus and while I love the car I have found the automatic gearbox leaves a lot to be desired when compared to the Auris. The main thing is that the car likes to jerk when it switches gears and sometimes when pulling out at a junction or roundabout I press the pedal and it can take a couple of seconds to actually respond. The other issue I have is that when driving slowly or trying to edge forward in slow traffic or parking or whatever, it likes to jerk a lot then too.

In the Auris during hill stops/starts I was able to hold the accelerator down slightly and the car would hold in place very nicely and apart from really steep hills, the car would pretty much never roll back. The Cactus however feels more like a manual when on hills, although I appreciate that the auto gearbox is effectively a manual which the car changes itself which is probably why,

I have adapted my driving when accelerating so that the jerking when changing gears is happening a lot less than it was initially but I still find the other issues a bit annoying.

How have other auto Cactus drivers found this? Are these things that I'll eventually get used to? Or am I going to be annoyed for as long as I have the car?
 

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I'm test driving the new shape Cactus automatic on Thursday. When I rang to ask the sales guy about it I asked is it an automated manual box? The chap said no, the original Cactus had an automated manual, which he admitted to me 'was pretty rubbish and very jerky'. But the new car has a proper DSG auto box. Not much comfort for you I know but it sounds like Citroen were aware of how bad the old 'auto' box was and have now changed it.
 

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biffynoop said:
...although I appreciate that the auto gearbox is effectively a manual which the car changes itself which is probably why,
This is exactly why, combined with the hill holder function not being entirely reliable - the ECG has limitations due to basically being an automated clutch in a manual box. In cars with an electronic handbrake it works well but in cars with a manual handbrake that rely on the driver to balance something they can't actually feel it's a weakness.
 

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CactusBob said:
But the new car has a proper DSG auto box.
That's an oxymoron as a 'DSG' gearbox is not a proper Auto, it works on the principle of clutches (two to be accurate) rather than a torque converter so is also an automated manual, all be it one that's more complex than the ETG/ EGS that PSA use.

It's also not accurate if that's what the salesman told you, as the EAT6 and EAT8 gearboxes are proper automatics, they are not twin clutch 'DSG' boxes.

I think ETG comes in for a lot of unfair criticism - okay it's not perfect but it offers an automatic option on smaller engines because it doesn't sap torque, power or economy like a traditional auto so works on engines such as the 82bhp 1.2 in a way a proper Auto never would.

Of course technology moves on which is why the EAT6 is being phased in as it too no longer saps power and economy but like a traditional auto it's not cheap - see how much extra it costs over the manual compared to the ETG, quite a significant mark-up especially in smaller cars.
 

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In all fairness, the WHAT CAR? article https://www.whatcar.com/news/which-type-of-automatic-gearbox-should-i-buy/ classes the EAT wrongly (What do they know, Jon Snow?). However, in terms of the utility of the ETG on lower powered cars, I think FrankBullitt is right: I drove an 82ETG and found it fine if gently driven.

However, what annoys me is that some recent reviewers of the Series 2 Cactus, when mentioning the autobox option, have at times referred to the characteristics that biffynoop describes. I suspect that they have not actually driven the latest automatic car. I have a late Series 1 2017 ex-demo 110EAT6 which should have more in common with the new car. It is more than adequately quick: there is no hesitation off the line and the box is only very occasionally slightly jerky at slow speeds. It can be a real two pedal go-cart round town and I have to use cruise control on an empty motorway to prevent accidentally going faster than I intend.

Mentioning other Cactus trending topics: I do not miss a rev counter - there is more than enough power and torque and the kickdown is so rapid, if required, that the car unfailingly responds in every circumstance, although obviously within its expected envelope. The only time I have used the manual override is to stop it hunting between 5th and 6th on a long fast upgrade.

On a trip up to Manchester 140kg (total) of driver and front seat passenger plus 40kg of suitcases in the boot gave perceptible additional stability over just me in the car. A sort of reverse Hillman Imp.

Finally, and leaving myself open to interesting comment, I find the C4 Cactus 110EAT6 an intriguing cross between a 2CV6 (I had three between 1985 and 1994) and a C6 2.7 HDi (one from 2009 to 2016). If only it had CarPlay and heated seats...

This is my first post, so I apologise if the signature is not as intended.
 

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Lucky me, I cut my teeth driving a C4 Picasso Hdi with the same type of 6 speed auto change/manual gear box. I quickly learnt how to use the up shift paddle, to down shift I always let the car decide. i had many years and 250,000 miles of happy motoring and am delighted to say my Cactus shares the same configuration and works equally as well. I don't know what all the fuss is about. It's was a simple case of my getting to understand and learni how to use the machinery properly.
Regards to all from my all black hdi Cactus
 

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Call me old school, but I much prefer the old torque converter auto boxes, they did the job pretty well. Years ago I had a Renault 11 auto with only 3 gears but never gave any trouble and was a nice smooth drive. The other automatic I owned was an ex- London taxi called a Fairway with a Nissan engine and a very smooth torque converter auto box. Like all London cabs it had done a huge mileage but was very smooth to drive. Only test driving the automatic Cactus because autos are much easier to drive and thinking my next car will probably be an auto. I believe some new cars still have torque converter autos.
 
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I have a DS4 Crossback EAT6 as well. It is a proper torque converter box. It so so much smoother than the ETG on my Cactus.
 

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Just obtained a brochure for the new Cactus while existing Cactus (manual, petrol) being serviced, as I could be interested in an automatic.
In the old ETG model (petrol) fuel consumption was equal, or marginally exceeded, that of the manual version. In a retrograde step, fuel consumption using the EAT6 automatic is nearly 10% higher than the equivalent manual. Torque Convertors are just not as fuel efficient as clutches, manual or automatic!
 

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glad to have found this forum, I bought a 2015 Citroen Cactus automatic 1.2 a month ago and find it jerky and when I hit approx 27kph, 55 kph and 70kph, the car slows for a second before ramping up again. Annoying as hell when trying to pull away from traffic lights or gain speed coming off a slip road onto a busy motorway. Dangerous in fact and I drive my 2 year old son around in it. Very jerky also when simply moving forward in D mode without touching the accelerator. I wondered why an automatic car would have paddels to change gear, isnt he point of an automatic car that you dont need to worry about manually changing gear?
 

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All automatics 'creep' forward when in 'D'rive position. The EAT6 gearbox has a (semi) manual mode, which is what the paddles are for - some people like to choose gear but not have to bother with a clutch, hence the paddles.

I'm not sure why you should have a power lag when changing gear, but that suggests that the gearbox may need attention...
 

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thanks for the reply. Yes I understand all automatics creep, I learned to drive in an automatic BMW. I have just been reading the EAT6 was discontinued in 2016, some users mentioning the same issues I am having with the short infuriating pause before ramping up again. This is good so I know it's not only the car I purchased 2nd hand doing this. The car recently came back from the official Citroen garage here in Holland as I wanted to check the safety of it as I bought it from quite a questionable character - They said it was good but they found an issue with the starter belt so changed that. I will test the paddles when I drive later.
 

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"Customers who were determined to have a self-shifter were lumbered with Citroen’s robotised manual ‘box, called ETG6, which was discontinued by 2016. Like many units of its type it was extremely jerky, with an infuriating pause between gearchanges hampering progress. Its simple three-button layout freed up a bit of storage space in the cabin, but Citroen used that to bring in a fiddly aircraft-style handbrake."
 

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"Customers who were determined to have a self-shifter were lumbered with Citroen’s robotised manual ‘box, called ETG6, which was discontinued by 2016. Like many units of its type it was extremely jerky, with an infuriating pause between gearchanges hampering progress. Its simple three-button layout freed up a bit of storage space in the cabin, but Citroen used that to bring in a fiddly aircraft-style handbrake."
The OP has the EAT6, which is fully automatic, I believe.
 

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Original poster?
 

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Our automatic is mostly ok.

Around town on the flat it's great. No need to change gear, just point in the right direction! Around the outskirts of town, up to 40mph, it can stay in 3rd and 4th too long. Between 40mph and 60 to 65mph it's a bit hit and miss, generally staying one gear below that which I'd choose.

In these circumstances, I tend to drive in automatic up to 30 then switch to manual as soon as I think that the gears ought to be changing.

The interesting part is that when in manual the display suggests when to change up. There's one roundabout in particular that goes slightly up hill then much steeper. In automatic, the engine stays in 3rd when driving up hill, even when gently accelerating up to the 40mph limit. In manual, same speeds, the display tells me to change to 4th on the roundabout and into 5th by the time I reach the other side.

If only the manual part of the computer was wired up to the automatic, it might save fuel. This probably explains the consumption figures.

The only problem I have had is when I forgot it was in manual and drove off in automatic fashion. At this point I also forgot that there was no clutch pedal...
 
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