While automatic cars outnumber manual cars on the road, stick shifts are still not extinct. The few people who still drive manuals in North America are generally passionate defenders of this type of transmission. While manual transmission options should not be overlooked, it should be noted that its benefits can sometimes be overstated. Here are common advantages of manual vehicles and how they stack up against automated vehicles:
Manual Cars Get Better Fuel Economy
When the automatic transmission first appeared, it was less fuel-efficient than manual transmission vehicles. However, with advances in technology, this is no longer always the case. Many examples on the market of automatic transmission vehicles are as or even more fuel-efficient than their manual counterparts.
Manual Cars Cost Less
Most of the time, the manual version of the vehicle will cost less, but not in every case. The cost of the BMWs Manual transmission is the same as the automatic. In addition, it may be difficult to find a manual version of the car you want. Only 9% of cars for sale in Canada today have a manual transmission – down from 35% in 1980.
Best Sports Cars Only Come With Manual Transmissions Technology
Depending on your definition of cool, this isn’t true all the time. There are many Porsches, Jaguars, Maseratis, Lamborghinis, and Ferraris that are made only with automatic transmissions. Yet, many people are stuck in the mindset that a manual transmission is the only way to be fastest. But, there is a reason why these flagship high-performance cars are no longer offered with manual transmissions.
Automatic is Always an Option Anyway
Some cars, mostly sporty, only come with manual transmission models. Some examples are the Fiat 500 Abarth, Audi TT RS, Volkswagen Golf R, and Mazdaspeed 3.
Teen Wants to Learn Driving
Many drivers who are just learning to drive have little or no contact with the stick, so they have little interest in learning to operate it. Most new drivers are satisfied with their automatic transmission cars and don’t want to be burdened with learning something new.
Manuals Deter Theft
Because fewer people know how to operate a stick shift, it is less likely to be stolen. However, there is little concrete data to support that claim. Thieves have varying degrees of intelligence and skill, so it is difficult to determine the exact factors that make one car more likely to be stolen than another. Newer models also have more sophisticated security systems that are also more difficult to bypass. At the end of the day, finding someone who drives a manual is more comfortable than going through a complicated anti-theft system.
Most people agree that driving a manual is more fun than an automatic one. Driving stick is also a skill that can come in handy if you are a passenger in a manual-transmission car and the driver is incapacitated in some way. It is also convenient when you are approaching a location where only manual vehicles are available.