Mini Is Doubling Down on Stick Shifts for 2024
Good news for manual transmission enthusiasts
There was once a time when knowing how to drive a manual transmission was an essential part of being a driver. After a certain point a few decades ago, that went from being mandatory to being optional — making the process of driving significantly easier, but also frustrating auto enthusiasts who prefer the heightened control that a manual transmission offers. Now, some automakers have opted to phase out manual transmissions altogether — at least in the United States. There are some notable exceptions, and Mini is one of them.
As Autoblog reports, a significant percentage of Mini buyers in the US — especially those opting for the John Cooper Works editions — are choosing stick shifts over automatic transmissions. That makes it wholly understandable to hear that, for model year 2024, MINI USA is expanding the number of their cars where buyers can select a manual transmission.
The Mini Cooper S, in both four-door and ragtop editions, is among the models where you’ll be able to order a stick shift. Autoblog notes that the Cooper convertible and four-door hardtop will also have manual transmissions available.
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Last year, The Atlantic noted that around 30 models could be purchased with a manual transmission in the United States. It certainly feels like a feature in decline — the article is titled “The End of Manual Transmission” — but it’s not gone yet. And if this announcement from Mini is any indication, enthusiasts for the feature remain a viable market in the automotive world.
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