Skip to comments.End of the manual transmission?
Posted on 06/01/2012 7:23:21 AM PDT by US Navy Vet
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 ...
2000 Xterra with 5 speed on the floor.
I could barely stay in the seat, nevermind find a gear.
No seat belt? They are not just for crashes.. when off roading in a lumber wagon they are there to keep you seated so you can shift the gears :)
In LA it just doesn't make sense. Too much stop and go traffic takes the fun out of it.
I’ve never owned an automatic, and I don’t think I ever will, unless some health issue or the government dictates. If I had to commute into some God-forsaken city, I would have an auto, but that will never happen.
Drive a 6-speed now, 49 speeds lifetime.
I drove a ‘63 International Harvester “rowbinder” pickup truck with three on the tree all the way through law school. Damn thing had so much torque that I had to go buy three bags of pea gravel to throw in the bed so I could get it out of the driveway after it snowed 14 inches in San Antonio.
I learned to drive (at 14) on a Pontiac Valiant with a 3-speed on the column. A friend of mine taught me and let me borrow the car sometimes, even though I didn’t have a license.
I remember that eventually the 2nd gear broke so you had to get up to a pretty good speed in 1st and then shift to 3rd, with a kind of double-shifting, double-clutching 2-step maneuver. Talk about hard to drive in traffic!
Nowadays, a vehicle with a manual transmission is almost theft proof. Most of the thugs stealing cars and trucks never learned to drive a standard.
A related question is: How many of you drive a stick and can talk on telephone or text?
Back to the government angle, even if no difference in mileage, one would think the government would ignore that and still mandate a stick.
For many years as a Field Service Tech I had to scarf down a hamburger for lunch, talk on the cell phone AND drive a stick shift.
While I learned to drive on a manual transmission, I had to teach my 24 year old son to drive a stick when he got his Mazda. We only had auto transmissions when he learned to drive so it was an experience to teach him as an adult. I have vowed never to try to teach his sister to drive a stick and have warned her husband not to attempt it either. Some people like my daughter just aren't mechanically minded enough to get the whole changing gears thing.
My first car was an MGA. Boy, did I have fun with that!
Add to that several dirt bikes and a 4 wheeler.
You may be on to something.
One of the unique things about the 72 passenger school bus was the “spring” in the body and frame when it was empty. At 55 mph, the back duals would bounce steadily off the blacktop.
A patrolman saw me doing this and strongly recommended keeping it under 50.
In 1970 the first American Z's arrived, with the 2.4L engine. I had serial #2189, built in May of that year. At that time, they were all 4-speeds. Soon we discovered through the competition preppers that there was an excellent 5-speed available on the Japan Fairladys based on a ZF design; for one thing, it had Porsche-style synchros. It could be retrofitted into the early Z's with some effort, involving custom propeller shafts and rear end mounts. Never personally knew any Z owner who did it though.
Did the 5-speed become standard on the Z some time before the 260 or 280?
I can. Have not done so for years, but expect I could pick it right up again.
——dont worry.. they will outlaw eating in the car soon enough.-—
Yeah. I told my teenage daughter to tell her driving instructor that I tried to teach her how to steer with her knees. She was not amused. I’ve learned that girls are different from guys.
I can but a torn MCL in my left knee says I better not. I have an auto-manual in my Cherokee and it is pretty handy.
I taught my wife to drive a car with a manual transmission. Don’t I get some sort of award for that?
Have one, taught daughter to drive it last summer. I always find it curious these “green” drivers don’t opt for a stick, better gas mileage.
Fixed it for you. :)
I’m forced to drive automatic because of a leg injury. What I need is a NON-ELECTRIC 6 speed automatic for my 57 Bel Air and 67 Camaro. Have to go for the 700R4 instead.
I can drive a stick, and have owned several. But I have better things to do, whether focusing on the road, or stroking my passenger’s thigh.
When I was in my 20s, driving was about self-expression of my masculinity, and a stick was perfect way to demonstrate my mastery (at least to myself). Decades later, I’m over all that, and am fine letting a German 6-speed do the work, and have no urge to “stir my own coffee.”
Now, if I had a low little second car like a Lotus or Porsche and took it to the track occasionally, it would be a different story.
Once at a light on Sunrise Highway in my Coronet I was getting ready to race off the red with some guy who pulled up next to me. The car had three on the column and I had been driving nothing but four on the floor cars. When the light changed I tore out....full speed....backwards.
In effect, the engine becomes a complex liquid-air hybrid frictional braking mechanism, rejecting waste heat through its exhaust and its radiator.
It was my first also. Bought it for $150 in 1973 with a siezed engine. I took it apart, replaced the rings, and learned to work on cars which I still do from time to time. Very fun car, except in the winter in Mass. where I lived at the time.
As a side benefit, manual transmissions thwart carjackings!
My dad had an old Thermodyne. The gears were cut so straight that you'd grind em all the time if you didn't double clutch an feel your way in.
I wonder what ever happened to that thing
Unequivocally. You get the official DUDE ManCave award for 2012.
Now, I have to admit my wife taught ME to drive a manual transmission shortly after we were married.
Yes, I will admit, my balls shrunk incrementally, each hour of the male ego-diminsihing process.
My grandfather had a Buick with the manual transmission shift in the steering column. As a kid I was fascinated how he worked it.
With two exceptions over the past 45 years we’ve only had two vehicles with auto transmissions. Last car the dealer had to go out of state to get a model with a standard. Wanted manual windows but had to compromise on that.
Damn shame. People are too lazy and stupid to use stick shift. I like them on Jeep CJ’s, Wranglers, etc.
I've never driven anything else in my 50+ years of driving, starting with my VW beetle back in the days when you'd automatically (and enthusiastically) wave to anyone driving another bug. Heck, one of the main reasons I've hung on to my '83 Colt is so I won't have to relinquish my tiny bit of control to an automatic.
With just two exceptions over the past 45 years we’ve only had manual transmissions. Last car the dealer had to go out of state to get a model with a standard. Wanted manual windows but had to compromise on that.
Winter? Phooey! Heater? Who needs it!
I have fond memories of brushing the show off the tonneau cover so I could drive it!
My first car was a ‘64 Ford Fairlane with 3 on the tree. Cars were great back then; you could (and often had to) fix them yourself. Water pump, generator brushes, even shift linkage to the manual transmission. I’ve never been a big car guy, but fixed everything on that old car.
I wouldn’t dare even change the oil on cars these days.
Also had a late 60s Beetle. Fixed it once with a shirt hanger.
Arrrgh! Snow, not show!
Learned to drive in a ‘53 Ford with “three on the tree.” I’ve owned a lot of cars since then, and less than half of them had autos.
Autos: ‘68 Charger R/T, ‘78 Cutlass 4-4-2, ‘84 Volvo 760 GLE Turbo Diesel, ‘89 Jeep Cherokee, ‘91 Jeep Grand Cherokee, ‘06 Ford Fusion
Manuals: ‘53 Ford, ‘66 Mustang, ‘66 MGB, ‘69 VW Squareback, ‘71 Fiat 124 Coupe (1st 5-speed), ‘66 Volvo 122S, ‘63 Galaxie 500 Convertible (3-on-the-tree), ‘72 Mazda RX-2, ‘74 Audi Fox, ‘78 Mustang II V-6, ‘79 Fiat Brava, ‘73 Volvo 164, ‘80 F-150, ‘82 Volvo (240) Turbo, ‘84 Volvo 245 Wagon, ‘83 Honda Accord, ‘87 Jeep Cherokee, ‘88 Jeep Cherokee, ‘91 Taurus SHO, ‘94 Ford Ranger, ‘95 Ford Contour V6, ‘94 Nissan D-21 pickup, ‘97 Nissan D-21 pickup
One reason I chose a Ranger over an F-150 a few years back was the larger truck is no longer available with a manual trans. The Ranger had 4.0 V6 with 5-speed manual. When towing a trailer in the Ozarks, where I used to live, really appreciated having the manual.
My ‘06 Fusion has the auto, but when/if I ever trade it in, I’ll get a Mustang with stick shift.
I have 2 cars with a manual, Volvo S60 and Corolla. Both of my kids (late teens and early 20’s) learned to drive them. We considered it a life skill like swimming which they had to learn.
Recently bought a 2012 Ford Focus with the manual transmission. Oldest kid purchased a 92 Jetta GTI and learned manual on it. I’ve decided all kids will have a manual as a first car - lessens distractions like eating, drinking, texting.
1: Better mileage
2: More fun
3: Had to replace the clutch on the first car at around 150,000 miles and my current car has 180,000 with no problem with the transmission. It seems people who owned automatics the transmission breaks leading to a very expensive repair.
4: Better control in snow.
-—No seat belt?——
I should have mentioned that was with a seatbelt. Seriously, I was having a hard time staying in. I may have been driving too fast for existing conditions. 8-)
I was a stupid 20-something with a few friends but, surprisingly, no alcohol was involved.
Sure, if the driver of the manual is an idiot.
I can, but learned late in life (20’s). Don’t have one now, but have had a couple over the years. I personally think driving tests should have to be on manual transmission vehicles, just so people do know how to drive them.
I learned how to drive with a manual transmission. I would probably still have my manual Honda CRX if some punk hadn’t totaled the car.
Just checked, because I couldn't remember... mine has 160MPH on the original speedo. I've only seen 140, with new tires, on a road closed for a rocket launch, somewhere near White Sands, many years ago. ;)
It also has the big throat carbs, gets about 8-12 mpg, but gets it fast. My original owner's manual (I do still have that) doesn't show a 5 speed manual transmission for the Model S30.
4: Better control in snow.
Never claimed that. Never had a car with that safety feature. :)
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