Over the years, the manual transmission — or stick shift, as it’s also widely known — has declined in popularity, as computer-controlled automatic shifting transmissions has taken precedence over new vehicle models. Gone are the days when almost every vehicle was available in automatic or manual, especially in a day and age of higher fuel efficiency ratings and quicker shifting without the need of a clutch pedal. The gearbox is also more responsive. It’s one of the reasons why a vehicle fitted with a manual transmission in place of the PDK dual-clutch automatic is slower reaching 60 mph. When it comes to convenience, there’s an argument for the automatic transmission.
Nevertheless, there is still a market for the stick shift, albeit it is becoming more difficult to find. Handling the shift lever, or using hand brakes or launch control instead of shifting yourself, has an analog and tactile feeling that cannot be matched by modern-day vehicles without the manual control. It is both human and machine that are responsible for the vehicle’s operation. A manual transmission vehicle emphasizes the human aspects of driving, rather than taking away from the importance of the driver. This is particularly important, as manufacturers strive towards self-driving vehicles.
Still, there’s a number of vehicles still available in the almost non-existent manual offerings out there. If you still prefer it, we have compiled a list of some of our favorites available for purchase.
2021 Aston Martin Vantage Coupe
The limited-edition Aston Martin Vantage AMR has its seven-speed manual gearbox transplanted into the base Vantage for 2021. Similar to the stick shift’s automated cousin, the 503-hp twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 engine has a twin-turbocharger with 503 horsepower. Torque decreases from 505 lb-ft to 460 lb-ft in manual-equipped Vantages. If you have the skills, you can record some impressive times on the quarter-mile.
2021 BMW 2 Series
With its optional six-speed manual gearbox, the two-door BMW 2 Series maintains the brand’s essence. For the 248-hp 230i coupe and 335-hp M240i coupe/convertible, the gearbox comes with no additional cost. For the 405-hp M2 Competition Coupe, it’s just another day in the office. That’s some power in such a small vehicle.
2021 BMW M3 and M4
If you’re looking for a quick car with a legendary lineage, 2021 BMW M3 sedan and M4 coupe buyers will be pleased to know both models are equipped with a six-speed manual transmission resting beneath the hood where the 473-hp twin-turbocharged six-cylinder engine sits. Unfortunately, the Competition versions only come with a 553-hp automatic.
2021 Chevrolet Camaro
Chevy offers the manual gearbox as an option for all of the muscle car’s available engines beginning with the 2021 Camaro. To avoid customer confusion, the system of rowing your own gears is implemented in a way that accommodates all the powertrain choices, whether they use a 275-hp four-cylinder, the 335-hp V-6, the 455-hp V-8, or 650-hp supercharged V-8. Which model would you choose?
2021 Dodge Challenger
Dodge has made it their business to offer the stick shift. Even though many of their Challenger models are available with a six-speed manual transmission, Dodge’s Challenger is a comfortable place for the transmission. Models available include the 370-hp R/T, 485-hp R/T Scat Pack, and 717-hp SRT Hellcat. We’re keen on the Hellcat model.
2021 Ford Bronco
Back for 2021 is the iconic and legendary Ford Bronco. A true off-road vehicle, it comes in two-door and four-door models with two engine options: a 2.3-liter four-cylinder or twin-turbo 2.7-liter V-6 turbo. Additionally, both come with a 10-speed automatic transmission. However, customers have the option to change their own gears thanks to a 7-speed manual transmission or a six-speed transmission for day-to-day driving. For rougher terrain, a very low granny gear is a seventh ratio.
For many people, the manual transmission is intimidating. One should never drive a stick shift on public roads if they are not comfortable, as it could result in a traffic collision. Car accidents should be taken seriously, and if you are involved in one, contact a lawyer in your city to help advise you on what to do. In New York, you will reach out to an accident lawyer nyc. Or, in California, or Delaware, speaking to a lawyer specific to the area will give you your best chance.