A total of 8.4 million automatic cars are now on Britain’s roads…
…And in 2017, an astonishing 40 per cent of all UK news cars were fitted with an automatic gearbox, including CVT and ‘semi-automatic’ varieties.
According to this articles report: Only 18 Percent Of Americans can drive a manual transmission. That seems about right to me. Another article from the Chicago Tribune says only 2% of cars sold in 2018 in the U.S. had manual transmissions and only 20% of all models world wide, even offer one.
UK based vintage fashion maven to celebs and royalty alike, close friend Sally Aljoe recently took possession of a new Mini Cooper JCW in London. Small, cute, nimble, it’s not just her choice of cars that marks a trend in the making, it’s the gearbox.
As a life-long 3-peddler, Ms. Aljoe may have simply have become frustrated with the notoriously hilly park lot behind Kensington Palace, or grown clutch leg weary queuing up for the valet parking coming her way at the London Fashion Week spring of 2020.
Now the world seems to be embracing the automatic transmission for a number of reasons:
- Automatic transmissions, though more expensive to repair, have just gotten better to the point of requiring less maintenance.
- Manual trans are less capable of extracting engine performance as there is big dip in engine RPM’s when shifting.
- It’s a pain in the butt and expensive for auto manufacturers to offer both types of transmissions.
The market will drive (no pun intended) the stick shift off a cliff in the very near future, save niche applications (see Lotus Evora GT drive) from Porsche, Aston, and underpowered cars.