Where Have All the Stick Shifts Gone?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by El Tele Lobo, Apr 8, 2019.

  1. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I understand a lotta kids today ask "what's that for?" when they see a third pedal.
     
  2. StrangerNY

    StrangerNY Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    My wife comes from a proud family of stick shift drivers. We bought her a 2005 Mustang new, and even though I keep telling her that she can replace it any time she wants, she refuses to let it go.

    We're at the point now that instead of buying her a new car, we're shopping for a body shop to do a full restore/re-paint. She hates the new Mustangs, says they look like a Toyota. And there's no way she's going to give up that 5-speed.

    - D
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2019
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  3. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I had a Muncie M22 and now have a Borg Warner Super T-10, but not familiar with a Super M23.
    Is that a rebuilt hot rodded vintage Muncie style?
    Looks like an added steel middle plate between the main body and tailshaft?
    I have a pile of Hurst shifters, mounting plates and rods, set up the ST-10 with a track shifter mounted high and to the rear with short stick, would have to cut the floor up a bit.
    Went with a bellhousing from an old Vette for the bigger 11" clutch, got all the parts ready including a new flywheel.

    What's that gear going in?
     
  4. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    How in hell can a mechanic or body shop guy that can't drive a stick get hired for their car skills and know how?
     
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  5. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My 200hp turbo Volvo wagon has the manual option on the adaptive four speed auto trans.
    Pull the stick to the left and it shifts up and down one gear at a time by forward and back tugs, until you push it back to the right. Dash light shows the gear. Seems like a cool option and the wagon performs really well for a family grocery getter pickup truck replacement with ladder racks for lumber hauling.

    I never use that option though, and while the paddle shift has become a standard device for car racing, I'm not sure it's as much fun without the clutch.

    It does though allow the whole performance shifting experience once driving.
    I guess the clutch is really only needed for feel and fun, compared to the latest tech in auto trans with manual capability.

    Some of us just like a basic Telecaster, or better still and Esquire!
     
  6. Lonn

    Lonn Friend of Leo's

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    My first stick was identical to this, a 1975 Vauxhall Viva right hand drive. I'm halfway a lefty anyway so shifting with my left hand was no problem.

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Some of my info comes from traveling and some of it comes from right where I am .
    I'll start with the easy part , right here .
    Working at an auto auction has provided me with considerable input concerning what is here . Unless in the high performance realm , cars destined for the American market are overwhelmingly auto trans . European cars seem to be the exception . The German imports are the only ones that I see with lighters and ashtrays instead of 12V portals and storage areas in those areas . VW seems to be the holdout when it comes to non performance cars with a manual clutch .
    As far as my experience in travel , I did 56 days in Europe in 1996 and 43 days in Australia in 2000 . Many manual clutches and stick shifts in both places . In fact , I was told in 1996 by an Italian , that automatic cars are kept on hand by rental companies just for Americans and he was concerned about getting one for me while I needed alternative transportation . I assured him that it was OK because I had never owned an automatic equipped car and that I was very competent behind the wheel in any arena , which I am and he quickly learned . Fiat Uno Punto .
    One of the ironies of the Europe trip was seeing the presence of leaded gas .
     
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  8. imwjl

    imwjl Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've had to eat a lot of my thoughts and opinions from travel prior to 2000. Just look at data and charts on Internet use and the motion from level 2 to level 4 nations as a good example. I also know this well from having relatives and relatives by marriage in other parts of the world. My wife's cousin negotiates air freight routes. He's always shaking his head about how daft so much of the USA is about standards of living and a broad USA attitude about where the world's smart people are.

    A former boss and another guy former coworker are in the car and auction business. The one who works for a large new and used dealer points out auction inventory is a lot different than the new fleet now. The other guy to a lesser extent. The big move to CVTs is very recent. Hands free phones not much older. I'm not sure what part of that you work in. These guys fill the used inventory at rather large volumes. They make it sound like there's a big divide related to the generation auto platform.

    Also, you're looking at niche stuff. Most sold in the US is common pickup truck type platforms and the main platforms from the major auto makers. That is really obvious to me right now having been car shopping in recent weeks, and last year with my daughter. Go count how many BMWs or Golfs are sold against the main Honda and Toyota platforms etc....
     
  9. mad dog

    mad dog Friend of Leo's

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    I preferred manual also. Then got a 2013 Subaru Impreza, with the 5 speed manual. Which I really enjoyed. Had it only a short time, then traded in for a new 2015 Impreza - same car - but with the CVT auto trans. My buddy had told me it was really good, and he was right. Significantly better gas mileage. I could see it on the tach. At 70 or 75 on the highway, the CVT rpms would relax back to 2200 or so on the flats. With the manual, same conditions, stayed at 2600 or so.

    First time I've ever preferred an automatic.
     
  10. lammie200

    lammie200 Tele-Afflicted

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    If I were lucky enough to have space for a really fun car I would get a stick. Most of my cars have been sticks. As of now for a daily driver I prefer a tiptronic auto. I have a FIAT Abarth. The tipronic is very ergonomic and fun to use. Even more so with a tune slapped on the ECU.
     
  11. Antmax

    Antmax Tele-Meister

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    I got a Mini Cooper S with auto so my wife can drive it and still have my trusty 15 year old Miata in the garage.

    Even in sport mode the automatic isn't that great compared to a manual and that is the only mode that comes close. You get engine braking just like a manual but the auto tries to second guess your intention which can put you in the wrong gear when downshifting quickly and aggressive use of the throttle.

    I never really realized till I got the auto that a clutch is a really helpful safety feature. Even compared to manual mode in the auto. With a clutch, when your stopped at an intersection and rev the engine to pull off, if something unexpected happens like someone pedestrian, bike or car goes through a light you have a split second to push the clutch and stop the car taking off. With manual control in an auto you don't have the clutch, once it's moving you can't pull it back from taking off and everything becomes an awkward uncontrolled mess.

    Almost every day I regret getting a mini so my wife can drive. I end up doing all the driving anyway and it's no where near as much fun. The only thing I prefer in the mini is freeway cruising. Miata does 4200 rpm at freeway speeds which gets pretty tiring with a sports exhaust, even one with a baffle insert and soundproofed hardtop to keep the exterior noise out. The mini is quicker and more agile but you never feel in control and it doesn't communicate much to the driver. Especially corners where Can't feel the tires start to buckle as you reach the limit of traction and keep it on the edge of sliding out like you can on the miata. In that car driving around town at the speed limit can be fun using clutch, gears and as little braking as possible.
     
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  12. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Poster Extraordinaire

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    This thread has gone a few pages and I probably don't have anything new to add. I believe a number of factors have led to most autos being shipped automatic.

    One, is the mfrs. probably have studies showing that individuals prefer them and fleet managers believe their drivers prefer to have automatics.

    Two, the mfrs. have data from the dealers that show a public preference for autos because they are less work.

    Three, people probably prefer autos because they are less work and less expensive to rebuild and repair. Replacing a burned out clutch on a manual transmission is quite expensive on some models because of location and tight access issues. Finding a manual tranny rebuilder is not easy these days, either.

    Fourth, fuel economy requirements have led to transmissions with more gears and more technical complexity. Drivers may be thrilled to drive fast and go through 6 gears in a slotted 6 configuration, but they probably do not want to shift through 10 gears. The automobile manufacturers believe and assert that computer assisted shifting in an automatic tranny with more gears is more efficient than a human shifting gears. Even over the road heavy diesel truck manufacturers and component makers have taken steps to reduce driver load with automatic and hybrid transmissions that require fewer shifts up and down per day by the driver. A significant number of 2.5 ton trucks have auto trannies now, autos are all you will see if you go to the lot to rent one from U-Haul, Penske, etc.
     
  13. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Poster Extraordinaire

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    Check out this Pete with an auto tranny.

     
  14. maggieo

    maggieo Tele-Holic

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    Last edited: Apr 9, 2019
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  15. Maricopa

    Maricopa Friend of Leo's

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    Some of us just built our own.


    Newpics30.jpg
     
  16. JazzboxBlues

    JazzboxBlues Tele-Afflicted

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    93407417-F125-4F5D-82BF-E0EE8ACD5EAD.jpeg
    A M23 is a 100% new trans and basically a M22 that’s stronger and geared differently. I wanted to maintain a traditional 4 speed with an external shift linkage and have a somewhat capable highway car. It’s got a 2.99 1st gear for getting out the the hole with a 3.25 rear gear. It’s going into a ‘65 Chevy Biscayne with a 496 big block. It’s replacing a M20 that’s not quite up to the task of managing the torque the engine is capable of.
     
  17. Antmax

    Antmax Tele-Meister

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    Most European countries are the opposite of the USA. Last time I looked the USA was about 5% Manual where the UK was about 95% manual transmission.

    Some of the reason European countries have manuals might be the smaller engines they have over there. When I moved to California there were hardly any small cars with sub 1.8L engines. Maybe a couple of 1.6's. Fords and VW were typically over 2.0L and a huge chunk had V6's or V8's.

    Back home 1.0 - 1.4L was very common. Road tax is higher on vehicles over 2.0L (classed as a luxury) and now probably taxed higher for emissions too. Those cars would be hard to drive on the freeway in CA where people do 70 in the slow lane and sometimes theres a stop light on the on ramp 100 feet from where you merge. In a car that does 0-60 in more than 16 seconds, that could be really dangerous. Back home they have strict lane discipline and HGV's like big rigs, coaches have governors, have to stay in the slow lane and have lower freeway speed limits than other vehicles. So it's a lot easier for under powered vehicles to get by.

    Crazy thing is that Americans have pickups to haul their caravans. Back home in the 80's and 90's people used 1.6L Ford Fiestas, Escorts and Cavaliers with manual transmissions to pull theirs. that was normal.
     
  18. imwjl

    imwjl Poster Extraordinaire

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    A lot different than my days with twin sticks, 9, 10, 13 and 18 speeds. No comparison to the old Allison automatics I had to drive a few times and hated. There's a warm spot in my heart for big Cummins - what I liked in the day - but the whole integrated drivetrain thing makes sense. Confession: My last day driving a class 8 rig was late 1989. I know things have changed.

    I recently tested an Acura car with 10 speed automatic and it reminded me of the trucks to the extent that you don't really notice the turbo lag when a 10 speed and electronics are keeping RPM and boost ideal for your driving scenario.

    I still want to test the new Subaru models where they have turbo with CVT but the Ascent model does not interest me. I'm curious to know how the CVT vs Accura's 10 speed approach work.
     
  19. Flat6Driver

    Flat6Driver Friend of Leo's

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    This is a pretty big shop. My guess is that moving the cars around is left to the "porter" which is generally a low paid job. I'm guessing that 95% of what they have in there are banged up Hondas so they took the risk and hired only one porter that could drive a manual.

    That's my only guess.
     
  20. notmyusualuserid

    notmyusualuserid Friend of Leo's

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    It's an American thing :)

    Plenty of manual box options available here.
     
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