Autofill without changing format

Is there a way to Autofill a series
of cells without changing the
formatting of those cells?
Specifically, I want to Autofill
without changing the background colors
of the cells. In Excel, you right drag
the handle for the cells you want to
fill, and when you release the click,
you are given the option of filling
without formatting. That doesn’t work
in Calc.

This question was already posted on [Solved] Autofill Without Changing Format (View topic) • Apache OpenOffice Community Forum with the following answer:

Here’s one way: Say we want to fill A1
into A2 though A17. Highlight A1
through A17, then Edit, Copy to save
the formatting. Select A1 and drag the
fill handle to A17. The formatting is
lost but you can use Edit, Paste
Special, uncheck all Selection options
except Formats, OK and it will be
restored. Hopefully someone has a more
elegant way to do this.

The answer is from 2010 which works for me but is a bit annoying since it involves several steps. My question is, if there is a better, more elegant solution in 2018.

SheetFill CellsSeries... is one way.

Thanks, but this doesn’t seem to answer my question because 1. it influences the format of cells and 2. inserts only a series of numbers and is not equivalent to a “fill cell” operation (which for example inteligently fills formulas etc.)