I hate how the discussion about build systems gets framed as a binary choice between using hand-rolled Makefiles and using autotools. There are other build systems in the world, like CMake! And they even have portability to Windows, which autotools does not.
The so-called portability of autotools is a mirage, anyway. autotools requires you to write portable shell scripts in order to be portable. Since most developers couldn't do this to save their lives, it is effectively Linux-only.