Manual cars are having a ‘modest but real resurgence’

March 3, 2023 10:31 am in by Pip Doyle

It looks like the ol’ manual could be on the same path as vinyl records and point-and-shoot cameras.

The Wall Street Journal reported a “modest but real resurgence” in manual car sales already this year after data analytics company J.D. Power revealed manuals accounted for 1.7% of total new vehicle sales in 2023, up from 1.2% last year and a low of 0.9% in 2021.

The US Autotrader also apparently reported a 13% rise in online page views for new manual cars in 2023 compared with this time last year.

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Mini, which has its own manual driving school, found that out of 1000 drivers, two-thirds of drivers between 18 and 34-years-old were keen to learn how to drive one.

Over on TikTok, #manualcar and #stickshift hashtags are super popular, I mean, this ‘how to drive a manual’ clip alone has clocked more than 15 million views.

@pushingpistons Reply to @felipe8274 I’ve never stalled in my life 🤥 #howtodrive #manual #cadillac #cartok ♬ Love You So – The King Khan & BBQ Show

The reason for the uptick in interest hasn’t got anything to do with cost or performance but, The Journal put simply: driving them was more fun. Particularly in an ever-increasing automated world, these drivers were keen for a more connected, analogue driving experience.