Mini Just Killed Manual Transmissions

Do you drive a car with a manual transmission? They’re beginning to fade away from new vehicles altogether slowly. However, a select group of people still love driving a stick shift, and there are a few benefits. One of the most popular automakers that still makes affordable manual cars is doing away with them. At least for now, Mini just killed manual transmissions.

Why isn’t Mini selling manual transmissions?

2023 Mini Cooper Countryman
2023 Mini Cooper SE Countryman All4 Untamed Edition | BMW of North America, LLC

According to KBB, Mini will no longer feature manual transmissions in its lineup of vehicles. However, a Mini spokesperson said the change is temporary, and the stick shift will return. Although other automakers are eliminating manuals, Mini noted this is just a result of supply chain problems. For right now, it’s easier for the automaker only to sell vehicles without a third pedal to increase production.

“In order to secure maximum production output to meet increasing customer demand, our product offer needs to be simplified,” the company said in a statement.

In the United States, the change won’t affect prices at all. Mini charges the same price for manuals and automatic vehicles in America. However, models equipped with a stick shift are a bit cheaper in other markets, so Minis will be a little more expensive.

Is the manual transmission dying?

A manual transmission gear select inside of a vehicle with black interior.
Manual transmission gear select | Getty Images

KBB says this could be a sign of things to come. After all, Mini is changing its entire lineup to electric vehicles by 2030. As a result, there won’t be a single manual model left in the lineup. Electric cars don’t have manual transmissions. However, it is possible to build one if the automaker were genuinely dedicated to its fan base. Jeep did it for a concept car, but no one can purchase one of those.

Furthermore, even the concept car had an unnecessary part forced into it to make it a manual. We wouldn’t expect automakers to spend extra money and effort inserting unnecessary parts into vehicles. Once Mini, and other popular brands with manual transmissions transition to a full lineup of EVs, the manual will likely die.

What are the benefits of driving a stick shift?

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It’s no secret that fewer people want to drive a manual than an automatic. Moreover, automakers aren’t removing the feature from cars for no reason. Automakers probably wish the manual transmission was more popular. According to KBB, they’re mechanically more straightforward and easier to build. We think most brands would jump at the opportunity to develop their cars more quickly, especially right now. However, a recent report showed that only around six percent of vehicles sold in the U.S. are manuals.

In addition, up to 87% of new cars available today don’t offer a manual transmission as an option. They tend to only be in vehicles driven by people who love driving and cars in general. Minis are the perfect option for those who love to drive. On top of being affordable and easy to repair and mod, KBB pointed out that they’re like “little go-kart-like cars.” Mini just killed manual transmissions, and we’re sure that’ll make a lot of people upset.

Mini manual transmissions are leaving the lineup

In unfortunate news, the Mini manual transmission will no longer be available. Luckily, the automaker claims this is a temporary fix to a (hopefully) temporary problem. Once supply chain issues improve and Mini can produce its vehicles at a higher volume, the manual transmission should return. That is, until around 2030, when the entire lineup goes electric.

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