spontaneous implies lack of prompting and connotes naturalness.
a spontaneous burst of applause
impulsive implies acting under stress of emotion or spirit of the moment.
impulsive acts of violence
instinctive stresses action involving neither judgment nor will.
blinking is an instinctive reaction
automatic implies action engaging neither the mind nor the emotions and connotes a predictable response.
his denial was automatic
mechanical stresses the lifeless, often perfunctory character of the response.
a mechanical teaching method
Without thinking, he gave an automatic reply.
She always has an automatic smile for everyone. Noun
Will your next car be a manual or an automatic?
Recent Examples on the Web
Based on the new Toyota Land Cruiser, which is no longer offered in North America, the LX600 is powered by a 409-hp twin-turbo V-6 with a 10-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive.
Austin Irwin, Car and Driver, 22 Nov. 2022 The white coupe is powered by a 3.8-liter turbocharged V6, which was based on the one featured in the legendary 1987 Buick GNX muscle car, and equipped with a four-speed automatic transmission.
Gary Gastelu, Fox News, 21 Nov. 2022 The Mercury’s standout features included a unique turning lower unit—the head unit doesn’t move—a two-speed automatic transmission and dual contra-rotating props.
Howard Walker, Robb Report, 19 Nov. 2022 In addition to standard all-wheel drive, a twin-turbo V6 gasoline engine and 10-speed automatic transmission, the Transit Trail comes in two wheelbases — 235.5 inches and 263.9 inches long — and three roof heights.
Mark Phelan, Detroit Free Press, 5 Nov. 2022 But unlike settlement colonies, the high security prisons have far stricter rules and are circled by guards in towers with automatic weapons, much like the Stalin-era gulags.
Juliet Butler, Peoplemag, 11 Nov. 2022 The attacks prompted New Zealand to quickly pass new laws which banned the deadliest types of semi-automatic weapons.
Nick Perry, ajc, 8 Nov. 2022 The prison system has been on high alert since September 2021 prison clashes involving automatic weapons and even grenades.
Stefano Pozzebon, CNN, 3 Nov. 2022 This included the use of automatic weapons and assault rifles, as well as the operation of hand grenades and suicide belts.
Justin Klawans, The Week, 2 Nov. 2022
Otherwise, the long pedal travel, the engine's linear response, and the eight-speed automatic's demure shifts combine to make this a polished powertrain.
Joe Lorio, Car and Driver, 11 Nov. 2022 Drivers have a choice of a six-speed manual transmission or a nine-speed automatic.
Morgan Korn, ABC News, 6 Nov. 2022 Prodigious torque is to be expected, and the 370-hp 6.7-liter turbodiesel inline-six doesn't disappoint, twisting out 850 pound-feet at only 1700 rpm, routed through a six-speed automatic.
Derek Powell, Car and Driver, 24 Oct. 2022 Working with a nine-speed automatic, the Titan can tow up to 9320 pounds.
Nick Kurczewski, Car and Driver, 23 Sep. 2022 Details are limited, but a twin-turbo inline-six with around 450 horses drives the rear wheels via either an eight-speed automatic or a six-speed manual.
Mike Sutton, Car and Driver, 29 Sep. 2022 The Frontier offers the most power in the segment thanks to its 310-hp V-6, which pairs with a nine-speed automatic.
Austin Irwin, Car and Driver, 28 July 2022 However, the RS 6 also aimed for everyday drivability by ditching its manual transmission, opting instead for a smooth-shifting automatic.
Basem Wasef, Robb Report, 29 July 2022 Though an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic is standard, a seven-speed manual is a no-cost option.
David Beard, Car and Driver, 13 July 2022 See More
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'automatic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Adjective and Noun
Greek automatos self-acting, from aut- + -matos (akin to Latin ment-, mens mind) — more at mind