Top Selling Vehicles with Manual Transmissions

Share this article:

There's something special about the connection to the road you feel when driving a manual transmission. Changing gears to go around a corner or up a hill allows you to experience driving in a different way than you would in an automatic vehicle.

Stick shifts are becoming less and less common in today's new cars, but there are several fun-to-drive vehicles that are still available with a manual transmission. We've listed the vehicles our clients choose most often with a stick shift. (The first three are in a dead heat so we've tied them all at #9 on this list.)



9. Jeep Wrangler

Why we love it: With its classic looks, rugged performance and storied history, the Wrangler personifies the off-road mystique. It's no surprise that our clients often opt for a manual transmission in their Wrangler. Both a 5-speed automatic and a 6-speed manual are available.



9. Toyota Tacoma

Why we love it: The Tacoma is available as an access cab or double cab, and can tow up to 6,500 lbs. It is the only truck on this list and our top-selling truck overall. (See What are our most popular work trucks and vans?) It comes as a 4-speed or 5-speed automatic; or as a 5-speed or 6-speed manual.



9. Mazda Mazda3

Why we love it: With a fuel economy rating of 30 city/41 highway, the Mazda3 is one of the most fuel-efficient compact cars on the road. It's an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ when equipped with optional front crash prevention. It is available with either a 6-speed automatic or manual transmission.



8. Audi A4/S4

Why we love it: The combination of luxurious amenities, elegant styling, and agile performance make the Audi A4 (and the high-performance S4 version) consistently popular with Cartelligent clients. The A4 os available with a 6-speed manual, 8-speed dual-clutch automatic, or a continuously variable transmission (CVT); the S4 is available with a 6-speed manual or 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.



7. Volkswagen Jetta

Why we love it: The roomy, fun-to-drive Jetta is always popular with Cartelligent clients and is an IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2015. It comes as a 5-speed manual, 6-speed automatic or 6-speed dual-clutch automatic.



6. Volkswagen GTI

Why we love it: The Golf GTI (with the Golf) was named North American Car of the Year (2015), Motor Trend's 2015 Car of the Year and an IIHS Top Safety Pick (applies only to four-door models). It is available with a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.



5. MINI Cooper

Why we love it: The iconic MINI is known for its agile handling and performance, as well as its sporty, retro styling. It is available with a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic transmission.



4. Volkswagen Golf 

Why we love it: The Golf shares in the accolades listed above for the Golf GTI, but with a more economical price tag. The Golf is available as a 1-speed direct (eGolf), 5-speed or 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic, or a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic.



3. BMW 3 Series

Why we love it: The BMW 3 Series combines the style and handling the brand is known for with an array of features and an attractive price point. It is available as both a 6-speed manual and an 8-speed automatic.



2. FIAT 500

Why we love it: Also available in convertible and all-electric versions, the chic FIAT 500 appeals to urbanites who want a distinctive looking car and a fun drive. The 500 is offered with a 5-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission.



1. Subaru WRX

Why we love it: The rally-car inspired WRX combines the performance of a true sports car with the reliability of a Subaru. The WRX is an IIHS Top Safety Pick for 2015. Our top-selling manual transmission, it is offered with both a 6-speed manual and a continuously variable transmission (CVT).


Whether you're looking for a manual, dual-clutch automatic, or an automatic transmission, Cartelligent can help you get a great deal on exactly what you want. Call our team of car-buying experts at 888-427-4270 or get started today.