Originally Posted by Deal Breaker
buy breaks, its way cheaper than a $6k transmission...
If you're implying prioritizing using service brakes over engine braking, that is the wrong answer if on steep downgrades.
Service brakes should be kept cool by minimizing their use during downhill driving. This will improve panic-stop capabilities. Life is priority over monetary savings.
But I have had no transmission issues despite my very-frequent engine braking. But then, I do have the proven-reliable 5-speed manual, and I know how to actually use one (honestly, most American drivers don't know how to use one properly).