That is a good question. I have the clutchless automatic in mine...so I cannot say much about SMG. Although, I will say I enjoy picking my way through the gears sometimes and other times letting the auto transmission do it.
Having had manual tranny cars beofre I cannot say I miss much except maybe the locomotion of using my left foot when I change gears.
I think the whole argument is similiar to the single malt vs. blended scotch argument. Everyone jsut assumes that single malts are the best without trying any blends.
2003 330Ci Midnight Sapphire Black