This paper presents a quantitative analysis on the need for automotive calibration methods for digital tachographs. Digital tachographs are mandatory for vehicles used in people and goods transport and they are an important aspect for road safety and inspection. Digital tachographs need to be calibrated for workshops in order for the digital tachograph to display and record speed and odometer values correctly. Calibration of digital tachographs can be performed either manual or automatic. It is shown in this paper that manual calibration of digital tachographs is prone to errors and there can be differences between manual and automatic calibration parameters. Therefore automatic calibration methods are imperative for digital tachograph calibration. The presented experimental results and error analysis clearly support the claims of the paper by evaluating and statistically comparing manual and automatic calibration methods.