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"Automatics Overtake Manual Transmission"

Wave GOODBYE to Manual Transmission and Say HELLO to Automatics

Manual transmission remains a popular choice for car buyers in the UK and Europe whilst in other countries like the United States, Japan, and China, manual transmission has already become a thing of the past.
 
The trend in the UK is starting to follow suit as automatics have been steadily accelerating over the last 3 years. In 2018, automatics accounted for 43% of sales, which increased to 49% in 2019. In 2020, for the first time in the UK, more than half of new-car sales were automatics, with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders reporting 54% in the first 9 months.

It will not be long before the sale of automatic vehicles takes over manual sales completely, especially with the growth of hybrid and fully electric vehicles, all of which have an automatic transmission. This paired with countries implementing initiatives to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles in the near future, is increasing the sale of automatics. This year, automatics have had a strong start to the year, with What Car reporting 2,000 more vehicles purchased in January than the previous year (even whilst we were in lockdown).
54% of new-car sales were automatics in the UK. A significant milestone. (Source: SMMT)
Manual transmission remains a popular choice for car buyers in the UK and Europe whilst in other countries like the United States, Japan, and China, manual transmission has already become a thing of the past.
 
The trend in the UK is starting to follow suit as automatics have been steadily accelerating over the last 3 years. In 2018, automatics accounted for 43% of sales, which increased to 49% in 2019. In 2020, for the first time in the UK, more than half of new-car sales were automatics, with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders reporting 54% in the first 9 months.

It will not be long before the sale of automatic vehicles takes over manual sales completely, especially with the growth of hybrid and fully electric vehicles, all of which have an automatic transmission. This paired with countries implementing initiatives to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles in the near future, is increasing the sale of automatics. This year, automatics have had a strong start to the year, with What Car reporting 2,000 more vehicles purchased in January than the previous year (even whilst we were in lockdown).
54% of new-car sales were automatics in the UK. A significant milestone. (Source: SMMT)

The Growth of Automatics

Performance of automatics has improved, especially the dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which offers drivers better control. Automatics also offer a less stressful driving experience whilst many OEMs are racing to cut CO2 emissions with innovative eco-friendly technology. A win-win for both parties.

OEMs have already started to phase out manual gearboxes, especially within the luxury car market, which have adopted this change much more easily and quickly. In fact, manuals were often known as the best choice for sports cars, but innovative race-led technology is making it possible to replace them with automatics.

The Growth of Automatics

Performance of automatics has improved, especially the dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which offers drivers better control. Automatics also offer a less stressful driving experience whilst many OEMs are racing to cut CO2 emissions with innovative eco-friendly technology. A win-win for both parties.

OEMs have already started to phase out manual gearboxes, especially within the luxury car market, which have adopted this change much more easily and quickly. In fact, manuals were often known as the best choice for sports cars, but innovative race-led technology is making it possible to replace them with automatics.

Will this change occur worldwide?

Whilst a company like Tesla can adopt this change, other manufacturers will still have a need to produce vehicles for countries that are not able to setup charging networks or have a poor road infrastructure. In these poorer markets, the OEMs will need to continue to supply affordable cars and take advantage of the lower production costs of manual vehicles. This will help keep them alive for some time yet to come.

Will this change occur worldwide?

Whilst a company like Tesla can adopt this change, other manufacturers will still have a need to produce vehicles for countries that are not able to setup charging networks or have a poor road infrastructure. In these poorer markets, the OEMs will need to continue to supply affordable cars and take advantage of the lower production costs of manual vehicles. This will help keep them alive for some time yet to come.

Whilst a manual transmission can be more fun to drive, it allows drivers to feel physically connected with their car, but modern automatics are simply better. They are more responsive, easier to handle, and boost performance. Manuals will continue to survive within the budget segment in the poorer countries for a while longer but it is inevitable that the switch will occur worldwide one day.

Whilst a manual transmission can be more fun to drive, it allows drivers to feel physically connected with their car, but modern automatics are simply better. They are more responsive, easier to handle, and boost performance. Manuals will continue to survive within the budget segment in the poorer countries for a while longer but it is inevitable that the switch will occur worldwide one day.

- + Disclaimers