Seven New European Cars That Offer A Manual Transmission
Spoiler alert: the 2019 BMW 3-Series does not come with a manual transmission. And while that won't matter to most people in the world, it matters to us enthusiasts who love to row our own gears. Thankfully, there are other new European cars on sale you can buy right now that offer a manual transmission, and we've taken the time to compile them all into one list for your new-car shopping purposes.
Pictured: 2019 Volkswagen Golf R
Ah, the hot hatch. We love you.
While Audi (part of Volkswagen Group) is doing away with their manual gearboxes, Volkswagen (the brand) itself is not. Why? "We sell about 50 percent of Golf Rs with manual transmissions here in the U.S. - it is a higher percentage than GTI," said VW spokesperson Mark Gillies.
It’s worth mentioning, however, that not all markets are getting a manual option in 2019 (sorry, United Kingdom). So, let this serve as a PSA to those who want to continue buying new cars with manual transmissions - if you continue to buy 'em, they'll continue to sell 'em (hopefully).
2. 2019 Fiat 500 & Fiat 124 Spider
Pictured: 2019 Fiat 124 Spider ABARTH
Fiat may not be the first thing people think of when we say “rowing through the gears,” but their ABARTH versions certainly are. Both the Fiat 500 ABARTH and the Fiat 124 ABARTH are an absolute blast to drive, and offered with manuals. Coupling that with an insanely loud exhaust means an A+ driving experience regardless of which one you're behind the wheel of.
3. 2019 Mini Cooper
Pictured: 2019 Mini Cooper S
This may come as a surprise, but Mini is one of the only manufacturers that offers every single model in their lineup with a manual transmission. They pride themselves on it, and we love them for it! Whether you’re looking for something that can take the kids to practice or just take to the track, they have you covered.
4. 2019 Jaguar F-TYPE
Pictured: 2016 Jaguar F-TYPE SVR
When introduced, the Jaguar F-Type had one of the most obnoxiously (read: perfectly) loud exhausts out of any new vehicle on sale. The random pops and overruns during up and down shifts provided an aural soundtrack unlike any other. At the time, it was regarded to be the F-Type on sale, until the V6 came out with a manual gearbox option on the build sheet.
If you’re looking for a mix between luxury and performance, the F-Type is an excellent choice (assuming you have the coin).
5. 2019 Porsche 911, Cayman & Boxster
Pictured: 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS
When putting together this list, we knew we’d be able to count on Porsche, another company under the Volkswagen Group umbrella, to offer several cars with a manual transmission. Like Mini, their manual offerings span a wide range of their vehicles, but unlike Mini, there is no manual Porsche SUV that you can buy new today.
Perhaps the best news from Porsche this year is that the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3 has a manual option. It’s "slower" and less fuel efficient than it’s 7-speed automatic brother but who cares?
6. 2019 Lotus Exige Sport 410
Pictured: 2019 Lotus Exige Sport 410
The 2019 Lotus Exige Sport 410 is track car that just so happens to live on the streets, probably just in the time it takes to actually drive the car to the track. Did we mention it produces 410hp and only weighs 2,300 lbs? Because it does. And it's great. We love it.
7. 2019 Aston Martin Vantage
Pictured: 2019 Aston Martin Vantage
"I would love to be the last car manufacturer providing stick shifts in the U.S.," Andy Palmer, Aston Martin’s CEO told Car and Driver in a recent interview. "That's my hope, we will keep the faith."
And so will we, Andy. So will we.
What about everything else?
Luckily, European car companies have offered manual transmissions longer than they haven't. And that's a good thing for you, if you're shopping on the used car market.
And if you're shopping on the used car market, chances are that vehicle is going to need some T.L.C in some way, shape or form.
Let us help you keep it running smooth.