Skip to comments.End of the manual transmission?
Posted on 05/02/2012 1:50:24 PM PDT by Sopater
Go to any given dealership with 100 new cars.
On average, just four of the 2012 models will have manual gearboxes.
The trend of the vanishing third pedal is nothing new, notes The Detroit News.
Even a decade ago, just 8.5 percent of 2002 models were manuals. The papers own automotive reporter even confesses she never learned to drive a stick shift until it essentially became a job requirement.
Its more than a little contradictory to automotive reviews (including many youll read here) extolling the pleasure of enthusiastic driving with a true manual gearbox. Likewise, purists gravitate to manuals for tackling their favorite twisting road or occasional track day. Its the original form of in-car connectivity.
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
I’ve owned 21 cars. 9 were manuals, 11 automatics. Some were old jalopies, a few were V-8 muscle cars (one Camaro, one Mustang, both stick), one was a 4-cylinder economy car (stick shift) and some were just sensible transportation. I learned to drive on a ‘stick shift’ and still like the control of a manual transmission but unless I’m driving a performance car it isn’t all that important. Today I drive a well-equipped late model Honda Civic with a 5-speed automatic. Smooth, efficient and very practical for that particular car. The old ‘slush boxes’ are ancient history. Modern automatics are infinitely superior to the automatics of even 20 years ago. However, if a buyer prefers a manual transmission they should be available and probably will remain so, specifically in ‘economy’ and ‘performance’ vehicles. To each his own.
” The last car I owned with an automatic transmission was a 1971 Pontiac Firebird “
The only car I personally owned and drove with an automatic was a 1969 Pontiac Firebird . Before that I had a 67 SS Camaro , and a 73 Z-28 which was a lemon so I dumped it after less than a year . After that owned 2 Toyota Celicas with 5 speeds and an MGB with a 4 . My wife does all the driving here in Japan and we have owned Hondas with autos for years now .
“Glad to see another MGB owner here!”
I’ve never owned an MGB, but I did drive my uncle’s ‘67 MGB-GT a couple times. I already had my Miata by then, but it was still pretty fun.
Part of why I own a Miata is because I wanted an MGB back in my college years.
My father has joked that driving a stick shift has saved his car from being stolen more than once - none of the young thugs could figure it out.
I haven’t owned a stick shift car in 19 years, but I still have a craving for another. I miss shifting on turns and off the line. I guess I better get one soon.
“The thing with stick shifts is that its difficult to drink and drive.”
Not when you’ve had enough practice! Back in my pizza delivery days, I could handle a cheeseburger and a 5-speed while cradling a Super Big Gulp between my legs. And this was in a Chevrolet Sprint; to keep that thing moving with anything resembling authority you practically had to row it with the shifter.
“Exactly, my C5 Corvette with a 6 speed manual transmission routinely gets 32 to 34 MPG at 70 mph on my commute from the SF Bay Area down to Monterey.”
Interesting... you’re not “commuting” to Laguna Seca by any chance, are you? :)
and roll a J at the same time?
I’ve owned about 6 or 7 MT cars and about the same AT cars. I’ve had to rebuild 4 of the AT’s, Never had any trouble with the MT’s except for the occasional clutch job, which is to be expected.
The 5 speed manual trans in my class 1 car cost 25 grand.
Nah, I draw the line at smoking dope while driving. :D
I learned to drive a stick on the three on the tree. What a frigging adventure. Now that takes skill and it is a lost art unless you are over 40.
When I tell kids today about that they think I was making it up.
And when I tell them I had a 1967 Chevy Bel Air with a two speed automatic and floor vents, and the 327 engine mounts where cables, they are gobsmacked.
Driving twisty roads with the window down so I can hear that high-revving V8 wind as I blip up & down through the gears is one of life's greatest pleasures!
Give me an automatic with cruise control any day. My last manual transmission was a 1969 MGB. (I’ve got some motorcycles that are still standard shift, but all but one of the scooters are auto)
That was what we had as a Driver's Ed. car (likely with just a 6 cyl).
It was a trip to get it to merge smoothly onto the Long Island Expressway loaded with kids and the teacher (only those who already had had a license for a while were allowed to drive on the freeway).
What he said. ↑
Motor trend has this list for 2011
They are available!
Manuals have been disappearing for a long time ... anyone remember “three on the tree”? That was my personal favorite.
I’ve driven a 3 on a tree. Never saw a four. I love my 5-speed. Drives my wife nuts when she has to drive it.
I’ve driven lots of big trucks and buses. Double clutching is pretty tough. One of the buses I drive has an 8-speed. Pretty cool to spin a school but up to 80 mph.
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