AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Despite tremendous advances in automatic transmissions over the past decade, many driving enthusiasts still prefer a traditional stick shift and clutch. A testament to just how tightly the less-than-silent minority of three-pedal drivers is, came when BMW tried to drop the 6-speed manual from the previous generation M5. The uproar was so significant that eventually BMW execs and product planners changed their minds, offering a 6-speed manual with the warning that it will be slower than the SMG.
Advances like the dual-clutch transmission have led to faster shift times than a manual, while 7-speed and 8-speed auto-boxes, not to mention a rumored 9-speed unit by Mercedes-Benz and an upcoming 10-speed transmission by Hyundai mean that there’s no longer a fuel efficiency reason to choose a stick shift either.
Porsche may look to extend an olive branch to traditionalists with the launch of the next generation 911. According to a report by Road & Track, the German sports car maker may look to offer a 7-speed manual transmission, in addition to its 7-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic. The extra gear should help the stick-shift tranny keep up with the PDK, both in terms of acceleration and fuel economy.
Other details about the next 911 include a 3.4-liter flat-six in the base Carrera, with the Carrera S possibly getting a 3.8L with as much as 400-hp. Also look for a lighter curb weight and a wheelbase that’s a total of 4-inches longer.