Manual transmissions getting rarer in the US - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum
Off Topic Anything but SLK talk. Please Note that religious and political discussions are not allowed....

 4Likes
  • 1 Post By Berliner Heckflosse
  • 2 Post By foranor
  • 1 Post By Sneaky Pete
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
#1 Old 09-15-2014
Administrator/Founding Member

 
jbanks15's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Tampa, Florida
Vehicle: 2009 SLK 55 AMG Kleemann Supercharger, ECU tune, Headers and LSD, CF Diffuser
Posts: 92,365
Country:
Chats: 38
Mentioned: 477 Post(s)
Tagged: 5 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6608 Post(s)
Thanks: 3,255
Thanked 11,158 Times in 8,505 Posts
(Thread Starter)
Manual transmissions getting rarer in the US



When Marlo Dewing went shopping for a car last year, she only had one requirement: a manual transmission.

"Any car that was only available as an automatic was a deal breaker," said Dewing, 44. "I love to drive. I want to know that I am actually driving, that I am in control of the machine."

That made her shopping list a very short one. Only around 10 percent of vehicles made in North America now have manual transmissions, down from 35 percent in 1980. And that number is expected to keep shrinking, according to the consulting firm IHS Automotive.

Improvements in the function and fuel economy of automatic transmissions have essentially killed the manual in the U.S., says Jack Nerad, the senior editor of Kelley Blue Book. Some of the country's best-selling sedans — the Toyota Camry, Nissan Altima and Ford Fusion — don't even offer manual transmissions because so few buyers want them. Even some sporty cars, like the Jaguar F Type, come only with automatics.

Two years ago, Chrysler was burned when it assumed there would be higher demand for manual transmissions in its Dodge Dart compact car. The car sold slowly. This year, when Fiat Chrysler's Alfa Romeo 4C sports car arrives in the U.S., it won't offer a manual transmission.

When a manual enthusiast questioned that decision at a company event in May, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said U.S. demand for manuals is simply too limited.

"It's going to be you and four guys. That's my assessment of our market demand," he said. "I'll buy one too, but then it's only going to be six."

Manual transmissions — which allow the driver to select the gear — were the rule until 1939, when General Motors Co. debuted the automatic transmission in its Oldsmobile brand. Initially, automatics were much more expensive and got poorer fuel economy, so drivers looking to economize tended to stick to manuals.

But in recent years, those gaps have closed, Nerad says.

"The manual transmission has become kind of a dodo bird," he says.

Manuals no longer have a fuel economy advantage. The five-speed manual transmission on the 2014 Honda Civic sedan gets 31 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving, for example, while a Civic with Honda's continuously variable automatic transmission — which moves automatically to the gear most appropriate for the car's situation — gets 33 mpg.

The price gap does remain. A Honda Accord with an automatic transmission costs around $800 more than a manual one, while drivers opting for an automatic transmission on a Chevrolet Corvette Stingray have to pay $1,725 more. But that doesn't seem to have stifled demand.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jeff, US Army Master Sergeant Retired
Administrator/Founding Member
2009 SLK 55 AMG Black/Black
Kleemann Supercharger thread here:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Kleemann ECU Tune, headers and downpipes thread here:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Albums:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

ClearBra
OEM MB Plexiglass Draught Stop
Smarttop version 3.22
Previous - 02 SLK 320, 05 SLK 350
jbanks15 is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 Old 09-15-2014
Premium Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Phoenix
Vehicle: 1999 slk 230
Other Toys: 1966 Mercedes Heckflosse
Posts: 14,573
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 530 Post(s)
Thanks: 1,120
Thanked 1,420 Times in 958 Posts
Garage
I got Sticks in all my Cars You see the Trend of Auto Transmission in Semis more and more. We do not have Truck Drivers anymore just Steering Wheel Holders.
jbanks15 likes this.
Berliner Heckflosse is offline  
#3 Old 09-15-2014
Registered Users
 
MarkR171's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Alexandria, VA
Vehicle: '07 SLK55 030
Posts: 806
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Thanks: 11
Thanked 132 Times in 71 Posts
Garage
Both have their pros and cons... and I have one of each. Auto in the AMG and manual in the Abarth. Funny enough, I daily drive the manual and save the auto AMG for more special drives that I can enjoy more than a commute.

It's a shame that manual availability is dropping though. I can't imagine how good the SLK55 would be with a 6-speed manual...

Sold: '07 SLK280 | 18" TSW Bremmas | Toyo T1-R 225F/245R | SmartTop V.3 | Green Filters
Sold: '07 SLK55 AMG | 030 Package | Custom X-Pipe | Secondary Cat Delete | SmartTop V3.33 | Mod R170 Antenna | BC Racing Coilovers | Racingbrake Two-Piece Rotors | Enkei Pf-01, Michelin Super Sport 245F/275R

Current: '15 Alfa Romeo 4C | Black on Red | Track Package
MarkR171 is offline  
#4 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Vancouver, WA
Vehicle: 1999 SLK 230
Posts: 105
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
The new autos shift quicker than manuals and often get better fuel economy. Most race cars are auto with paddle shifters. My manual Jeep was a pain in city traffic and I was at a disadvantage when rock crawling in it as compared to autos. Get a stick now if you can find it as I think they will be gone in the next 10 years.
Whybu1 is offline  
#5 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Orlando, Baldwin Park
Vehicle: 2007 SLK350
Other Toys: Goldwing, ST1300, Suzuki
Posts: 163
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Thanks: 1
Thanked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whybu1 View Post
My manual Jeep was a pain in city traffic ......
You hit the nail on the head !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
JeffreyJ is offline  
#6 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
foranor's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Bochum, Germany
Vehicle: SLK200Kompressor R171 2007
Other Toys: iPad, 'puters...
Posts: 400
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Thanks: 92
Thanked 40 Times in 28 Posts
Garage
If, like me, you spend between 30 and 60 minutes in stop and go every day, you'll be happy you have an automatic slk, not a manual one.

Manual driving was a lot of fun when I could go where I wanted, but daily trips through heavy traffic made me decide for NO-chance-I-buy-a-stick...
Sneaky Pete and JeffreyJ like this.
foranor is offline  
#7 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
raymond.harper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Ringles Cross Uckfield
Vehicle: SLK 230 2001
Posts: 197
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 21 Post(s)
Thanks: 8
Thanked 36 Times in 33 Posts
I hate automatic gearboxes. I had two Corvettes, both autos, and the gearbox ruined it for me. Yes the modern trend is for autos. But I feel you have more control with a manual.The way things are going we will soon not be driving our own cars with the rise of driver less vehicles and so the lost art of a manual gearbox and the technique of double de clutching will be lost. But on the bright side a manual box is a lot cheaper to fix than an auto box and its a much better driving experience.
raymond.harper is offline  
#8 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Orlando, Baldwin Park
Vehicle: 2007 SLK350
Other Toys: Goldwing, ST1300, Suzuki
Posts: 163
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Thanks: 1
Thanked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by raymond.harper View Post
"the lost art of a manual gearbox and the technique of double de clutching will be lost".
Are you serious? "Art" ????? I thought Art is short for Arthur, not some way of wrist and elbow action........................Hmmmmmmm....let me rethink the meaning of life............Try driving a stick shift in New Joyzee on the Pulaski Highway at 4 p.m. or the Western approach to George Washington bridge and let me know how much fun it is.
JeffreyJ is offline  
#9 Old 09-16-2014
Registered Users
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Netherlands, Eindhoven area
Vehicle: 2008 SLK 350 Designo-Platinum Black exterior Designo Black/Chablis interior
Other Toys: 2004 Triumph Thunderbird Sport
Posts: 2,172
Country:
Chats: 0
Mentioned: 282 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 551 Post(s)
Thanks: 26
Thanked 484 Times in 438 Posts
After commuting for over 20 years every day 220 km in heavy traffic with a lot stop-and-go, I bought my first car with an auto now 4 years ago. Don't want anything else anymore.
Manual is fun when you can use your car just for fun. When, like for me, it is also your daily ride, it becomes a whole different story.
JeffreyJ likes this.
Sneaky Pete is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

  Lower Navigation
Go Back   Mercedes Benz SLK Forum > General Discussion about Mercedes Benz SLKs > Off Topic

Bookmarks

Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Upload your files to MEGAUPLOAD
Upload your images to ImageShack

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Mercedes Benz SLK Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Manual Shift Knob, My Aftermarket Replacement Bezgreshen General Modifications R171 7 12-19-2013 01:31 PM
SLK350 Manual Transmission Owners gdb069 SLK R171 General Discussion 14 04-25-2013 10:23 AM
Manual transmission? cah1708 SLK R172 General Discussion 21 08-23-2012 04:26 AM
R171 service manual CD Bleen SLK Parts For Sale 4 06-08-2012 12:42 PM
A20 manual wanted Normski SLK Parts Wanted 2 03-13-2010 01:54 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome
 

Clubs, Garage Plus vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.