When you were a kid, you probably had to learn to drive a stick before your parents would let you have your own car. You also had to learn to tell time on a proper clock before they'd buy you a cool Casio digital watch will all the buttons, didn't you? Well, welcome to the future, parents. No one in America drives a stick anymore. In fact, fewer than 10 percent of all cars sold in the last few years have had a manual transmission. Yes, they're a tad cheaper -- often about a thousand bucks less than the automatic version. But check the fuel economy. You'll see that the manuals don't deliver the gas savings they used to when compared to the newer automatic transmissions. Make it easy on yourself and just go automatic with the first car you choose for your kid. It only adds complexity for someone who still has to think about which pedal is the brake.