Newer car models now offer option of a manual transmission as stick shifts become rare

Stick shifts are few and far between these days and are found in only about 1% of new vehicles sold.
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The 2022 Cadillac CT4-V and the 2022 Honda Civic hatchback wouldn't seem to have much in common - different designs, different engines and very different price tags.

However, they each have a feature that's becoming quite uncommon: the option of a conventional manual transmission.

"It is a whole different experience, and assuming you aren't stuck in traffic on the 405, it's a better experience," said Karl Brauer, an executive analyst at on driving a car with a manual. "It's a more entertaining and engaging experience."

Stick shifts are few and far between these days and are found in only about 1% of new vehicles sold. There was a time when nearly every car had a manual, and an automatic was seen as a luxury.

Now, only a handful of stick shifts are available, mainly on sporty cars, but the fact is that nearly every performance car performs better with today's automatics, which use modern technology. Die-hards don't want to see the stick go away entirely.

On social media, the hashtag #SaveTheManuals has been a thing for a number of years now. Some automakers are trying, but the lack of popularity with buyers overall makes manual transmissions a hard sell.

One reason you find fewer cars nowadays available with stick shifts is because there are fewer cars available. In other words, vehicles that are traditional cars as opposed to some kinds of SUV.

In recent years, a lot of car models have been discontinued, taking their stick shift options with them.

Chevrolet, Fiat, Ford, Honda, Mini, and Volkswagen have all discontinued car models that used to offer manual transmissions. Also, with electric cars coming on very strong in the near future, there will be even less room for stick shifts.

But here's an out-of-the-box thought: Dodge has promised an electric muscle car after making muscle a selling point for years.

What if they took the bold move of creating an exciting electric car with a stick?

"If there's a brand that should do a manual shift electric car, it's Dodge," said Brauer.

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Electric vehicles priced for mainstream buyers may be arriving in showrooms, but when it comes to the combination of luxury and battery-powered cars, the sky seems to be the limit.

In the meantime, clutch pedal constituents can take solace in a practical aspect.

"There's a lot of people who do not know how to drive manual shift cars, and if they also happen to be crooks, they can't take your car anywhere," added Brauer.

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