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The U.S. still gets manual 6-speed option

Much of the sports car world today is moving away from the manual transmissions that driving purists and many drivers prefer to semi-automatic transmissions. The reasons for moving to a semi-automatic transmission are compelling and include faster gear changes, better fuel economy, and the ability to go full auto when you’re feeling lazy or plodding around in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
The downside is that part of the thrill of driving fast for many enthusiasts is working the shifter and clutch to perfection. But in the end, there’s no real right or wrong way to shift gears when it comes to modern automobiles. However, the ire of drivers comes in when their choice in gearbox is taken away.
Audi S5 

Fourtitude is reporting that Audi has killed the manual transmission option in its revamped S4 and S5 range of sporty cars in Europe. While Europe has to give up those 6-speed manual cars, the U.S. (land of the automatic transmission) is getting to keep its manual transmission. Audi is going to the S-tronic transmissions exclusively in Europe likely due to the faster shifting and better fuel economy.
The confirmation of the death of 6-speed S4 and S5 Audi's came by way of Audi's own Barry Hoch, the product planning manager of the S4 and S5 lines. Hoch emailed Fourtitude and wrote:
They (Europe) lose the manual. We keep the manual! 100% confirmed, although I don't know what other markets also get to keep it. I don't want to fear for my life when I leave the office. The manual transmission enthusiasts are... umm... passionate individuals. Save the Manuals!
This is the first time that the U.S. has had a transmission option that Europe didn’t get according to Fourtitude

Source: Fourtitude

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RE: Manual is so common in EU we don't care
By Keeir on 11/10/2011 2:25:34 PM , Rating: 3
In some ways it is about automotive image.

The Manual Transmission repersents many things to many people. But it is still considered part of the classic sports car approach.

If they were canceling the manual on the base models, this might make sense. Or if they were canceling manuals on the super exotic models, again this makes sense. But on the bread/butter sports car line (S4/S5) it seems a stupid move. The cars move further away from sport and more towards sedan... but the whole point of thier existence is to be close to sport!

(BTW, if your really stuck in traffic jams and driving simply light to light all the time, why even get an S4/S5? Oh, because you want the image of a "sports" driver?)

By Reclaimer77 on 11/10/2011 8:46:11 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you but the S4 and S5 are pretty much land boats today. Calling them "sport" sedans is a stretch. I guess Audi decided to make them official lazy road pigs and do away with manual trans.

I drive a real sports sedan, the Subbie Impreza, and I hope I never see the day where they pull a move like this and totally neuter the feel of the vehicle.

By Spuke on 11/10/2011 9:28:59 PM , Rating: 2
if your really stuck in traffic jams and driving simply light to light all the time,
I agree here. There's no way I'd drive my Solstice if my commute was just stop and go. I'd drive something that I didn't care much about (cause it's going to get dented sooner or later).

"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher
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