You can use it as a normal auto shifter, or if you want the ratchet change, pull the lever up, pull the lever all the way back and then you can tap it down to change thru your gears. The Star shifter and Hammer are pretty popular. Not really any disadvantages with it, as it has reverse lockout, and yes it does look good.
They will prolly set you back bout $330-$400 depending who you see. Maybe secondhand might be the go, but new is always better.
Nothing beats the sound of a V8