Why Do We Love Manuals?
Updated: Jun 18
For most people in the world, cars are nothing but machines that take them from Point A to Point B. It’s upsetting that the majority of people are preferring automatics over manuals and the percentage sales of manual cars are depleting day by day. As a result, car manufacturers are targeting automatic cars by reducing the production of manual cars because no one is buying them besides all the enthusiasts out there which is quite depressing for the car community.
On the other hand, for that minimal amount of population, driving is all about cruising and crunching numbers. Most of us have grown up seeing our dads driving, shifting gears, and imagining ourselves in that place because back in time, the manual cars ruled the automobile industry as there were barely any automatics in existence. The journey of learning the process of driving a manual was a bit rough. A slight mistake in controlling the clutch would result in a grinding sound from the gearbox which ultimately resulted in stalling the car and it made us feel miserable.
People who are naive with their driving skills conveniently prefer automatics over manuals as they are unchallenging and effortless. They get comfortable in it. No doubt the dual-clutch automatic transmissions like the Porsche’s PDK (Porsche-Doppelkupplungsgetriebe) and the DSG (Direct-Shift Gearbox) available in VWs and Audis are buttery smooth. They go sailing without any trouble and their smoothness is unparalleled. These gearboxes shift way faster than a human and provide a much better fuel economy. Very few high performance sports car manufacturers still consider manufacturing manual cars like the Porsche 911 GT3 which packs a 4.0-litre flat 6 engine producing 500 HP all the way up to 8,350 RPM. It uses a six-speed manual transmission borrowed from the limited 911R.
Manuals are highly respected and valued by the car community as it makes you feel connected to the car unlike the automatics where you just keep driving with your hands stuck on the wheel. There is barely any engagement of the driver with the car.
Eventually, it’s all about the incomparable feeling in a class of its own with minimal technology and sheer driver’s involvement because that’s where the heart of a car guy or a girl rests.