It turns out there are still automakers committed to manual transmissions.

The manual gearbox may be falling out of favor with buyers and automakers alike, but it’s not dead just yet, and you can still buy new cars with manual transmissions. In some segments, automakers remain so committed to the manual that some models can’t even be specced with an automatic. Even in the electric age, the manual will live on if brands like Toyota have their way. But in the year of our Lord 2023, which are the vehicles championing the manual gearbox? We’ve picked 10 of our favorite manual transmission cars, plus a bonus pick at the end, that are keeping the #SaveTheManual movement alive.


1. Volkswagen Golf GTI/R

Reports are circulating claiming that the Golf GTI with a manual gearbox is dead within the next two years, but we suspect American buyers will keep the manual Golf GTI and Golf R alive. North America is the only region in the world to get a manual variant of the Mk8 Golf R, and it was purely due to customer demand that it happened. While the broader market isn’t a fan of manuals, American GTI and R owners love them. That means you can get a 2.0-liter turbo engine with 241 horsepower (GTI) or 315 hp (R) and row your own gears through a six-speed manual gearbox the way the car gods intended. And if you get the Golf R, you get AWD with a drift mode, so you can feel like a driving god yourself, going sideways with a six-speed stickshift in hand.

Alternatively, you can still get a lightning-quick DSG that does all the shiftwork for you, but why would you want that?

Engine Engine Outputs Gearbox Options
2.0-Liter Turbo Inline-4 241 HP / 315 hp 6-Speed Manual
273 lb-ft / 280 lb-ft 7-Speed Dual Clutch Automatic

2. BMW M2

Much has been said of the BMW M2’s controversial looks and weight gain in its newest generation, but two things are beyond question: its outright pace and the fact you can still buy one with a manual gearbox (and likely will be able to until 2030). BMW M’s Frank van Meel told us the M2’s engineering team, in typical German engineer fashion, argued, “It’s not as fast as an automatic transmission. So why would you need it?” But according to van Meel, “That’s what our customers asked for. And we really actively listened to our customers, to our fan base. The fans asked for it. They got it.”

So, for your hard-earned money, you get a sporty coupe with a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six up front, 453 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque directed through a six-speed manual gearbox in the middle, and rear-wheel drive.

Sure, it’s a little slower than the available eight-speed automatic, but a few tenths of a second to 60 mph will never compensate for the interaction of swapping cogs yourself.

Engine Engine Outputs Gearbox Options
3.0-Liter Twin-Turbo Inline-6 453 hp 6-Speed Manual
406 lb-ft 8-Speed Automatic