People aren’t buying manual transmissions anymore, according to data coming from Toyota.
This is probably coming as no surprise to anyone these days. Manual transmissions are on their way out. Automatic transmissions are quite simply more efficient and easier to use than using a clutch to swap gears the old fashioned way, so people aren’t buying manual cars anymore.
And since people aren’t buying them, carmakers have started to stop selling them. You can’t get a manual Ford F-150 pickup, nor can you get a Chevy Silverado or GMC Sierra in manual. You can’t get a Jeep Cherokee in manual or a Ram 1500. Most Cadillacs no longer have manual transmissions and neither do most Dodges.
Toyota is one of the few carmakers that still sell manual transmissions on their cars, with the Corolla, Tacoma, Yaris, and 86 all getting a three-pedal setup. But the new 2020 Supra? Automatic only.
That’s surprising when you think that the Supra would be the consummate “car guy” car. But even enthusiasts are tossing the clunky manual for a computer-controlled automatic.
According to a Toyota spokesperson speaking with CarBuzz, the number of people that buy a manual transmission is vanishingly small. Just 1% of all Corollas sold in 2018 were manual transmissions, which meant just 2,800 vehicles. Most of those were the Corolla Hatchback, which had a manual uptake of just 15%.
For the Tacoma and Yaris, just 5% of all vehicles sold are in manual. So few Yaris hatchbacks are in manual that Toyota will no longer sell them starting in 2020.
For the Toyota 86, the enthusiast sports car prior to the Supra, sales of manual transmissions were much higher at 33%, but that still means 67% opted for the automatic transmission with paddle shifters. It seems that being a car enthusiast no longer means swapping gears yourself and instead means flappy paddles on either side of the steering wheel while having an automatic do all the heavy lifting.