The car builders and dealers may blame the take rate for the loss of manuals but I don't think it's the take rate at all.
Typically in trucks when you see a manual trans, it's attached to a less equipped truck. Less equipped trucks sell slower than the fancy models. For instance, my old '88 F-150 was an XLT with the M5OD and manual windows, locks and locking hubs. It was a trim level rather than an option group. The manual trans helped to keep the MSRP down.
If Ford built a King Ranch truck with a manual trans, it would be interesting to see if it would sell.
Looking just a few months into the future when Ford's 10 speed auto will be coming out, I'm having a hard time believing that an 8 or 10 speed manual gear box would even fit in anything that's built for personal use.
Let's compare a little just for giggles:
The M5OD in my '88 required an ATF change every 60K miles. The 6R80 in my 2011 requires no maintenance for 150K.
My '88 was limited to a 5K tow rating, partly due tot he manual trans and partly due to it's design. My 2011 is rated to tow 9200 lbs which easily bests an HD F-250 of the '90's.
My '88 at best achieved 18 MPG's hwy. My 2011 gets 19-20 in mixed driving and 24 all day on the freeway.
I've never so much as had to add a drop of oil to my 2011 in 40K miles. By the time my '88 had 40K on her, she had new plugs, new plug wires, new tires, a serp belt, a battery, rear diff flushed, trans drained and refilled and the locking hubs / wheel bearings were dismantled, cleaned, re-lubed and re-installed and the new front brake pads were installed as well.
Ain't technology great? I get to perform my bi-monthly checks (as if they are needed) add gas, keep it clean and drive.
__________________ Tim SCPO United States Coast Guard Retired
2011 F-150 XLT 4x4 Ecoboost
2010 Ford Focus
2004 Expedition XLT 4x2 FTE Guidelines
Unfortunatley, Manual transmissions are no longer required to keep the CAFE (corporate average fuel economy) higher as automatics with their six, seven even eight speeds are much more efficient and motors are being built that far exceed the v6's of the past in fuel economy. Plus who want's the young dolts who are already texting, tweeting, facebooking and pineresting on thier phones and tablets while driving to have one more thing to do that will ge us all killed.
If the Mazda built 5 speed transmission the 1/2 ton and some 3/4 ton trucks wasn't such a big POS, maybe the manual would have been a little more desirable. The PO of my F150 had replaced it once before I got it. The replaced transmission was toast when I got it. I replaced it with a real transmission, the ZF-5S. It should easily outlast the truck now.
...never owned an automatic in a Ford pick-up...
"Frankenstein" 94 F150 4X4 XLT with 92 5.0 and 89 ZF542
Ford pick-ups I have owned:
63 F100 SWB 292 V8 3 speed w/od
72 Courier 1.8L 4 speed
85 F150 Std Cab LWB 300 I6 4 speed od
It feels like I've lost a part of me. I own two Ford trucks right now- a 1995 Flareside (300/M5OD), and a 1997 E-350 Box Van (5.4/Auto). There's something about the manual in the Flareside. It just seems... perfect.
I inherited a 1987 Chevrolet R10 (305/700R4) a few years ago, and there's just not as much fun as there is with the manual for me.
I keep vehicles forever, so I'm not too worried for myself. My children will someday still learn on one.
My first year of winter driving was in Wyoming with a regular cab, 2x4 Flareside, with the M5OD. I learned so much car control with that manual.
Today's automatic is way more efficient, and will outlast my M5OD. But, I'd still take the manual.
Most of the rest of the world still drives stick, only in USA/Canada are the auto's dominant. In overseas (any continent) 95% of the cars are manual and TD, you can buy most compact and subcompact cars with CDI TD. Just drove a Ford Transit 9 seater full size bus TD. and M6 for 3 weeks as a rental in Germany, the thing used 9L/100K 27MPG in mixed driving. If you want to rent anything Auto you pay almost double. I am sick of not having options, they say there is no demand for it, sure there is, there is huge demand for nini vans, full size PU's and SUV's with a medium size 4-6cyl CDI TD engine, and there are several being made right here in the US and Canada but for export only! (Jeep Wrangler, Chrysler mini van etc). GM and Toyota makes plenty of TD truck SUV's and vans in Asia, but for Euro and overseas export only.
I want a 4x4 Excursion or Suburban with a 6cyl CDI and 6 on the floor!!!!
Am I alone?
I have no use for an automatic. I like shifting my own gears.
For member Frdtrkrul he sounds like he's never really owned a stick. If you own it and drive it, you don't even think about shifting, you just do it. Do you think about walking?
I learned on a stick, my first car was a stick, all my trucks were sticks, and
Most people are city dwellers now. Less than 5% of the population is involved in agriculture. I'm guessing 30% of truck buyers are women, and lots of people are using their truck as a luxury mall crawler...
Sounds like a business opportunity doing conversions for the 5% of buyers who want a stick!!
04 F350 FX4 SCLB SRW 6.0PSD/6 spd. Stock for now.
-(Gone but not forgotten)-96 F250 SCLB 460 5 spd. 6" susp/3" body, 39/18/16.5 Mickeys on 16.5x12 Eagle Alloys
I know that they're going to start offering the Mustang in Europe in 2015 which is a first for Ford; is there any chance that the F150 or Super Duty will ever make their way to Europe where manual transmissions still rule? That may be the best hope for us that an F150 will someday be built with a manual transmission (at least somewhere) and we can all do manual swaps 10 years from now.
Just my two cents: I prefer a clutch. Not because it is fun to drive, but because it is practical. You can easily jump start a clutch, it gets better gas mileage, possibly better performance all else being similar.
But what has Ford become? Their trucks are basically luxury vehicles. They have come a long way from the work trucks of the 70s and 80s. They are expensive. They are loaded to the gills with options and luxuries and these same options are all going to break down after 5 years so the average person just pays off the truck then trades in for a new one.
Clutch is popular with more economic vehicles where people are looking for practicality i.e. the chevy spark, maybe toyota trucks or other similar brands. Mr. T-Bone pickens who is driving his $45,000 Ford Truck down the road probably doesn't want a clutch so its no surprise its dying in these vehicles, but that doesn't mean its unpopular in all vehicles.
Though I admit a big obstacle is people learning to drive a clutch. If there were classes or easy ways to teach people more people would get clutches.
I guess on the opposite extreme it could be true too: creating a luxury top of the line truck that is manual for people who simply enjoy manual. The problem is the "cheaper" Ford trucks that have the manual can't compete with a cheap-o, high gas mileage and durable toyota or nissan for those people who really want the clutch for practical reasons.
How can you claim that manual transmission was discontinued because people weren't buying them when they weren't being offered. What was the last year an F150 was offered with a manual transmission for the V8? So if they aren't selling them then the statistic that people are not buying them is meaningless.
The manufacturers can make more money on maintenance for an automatic and so they pushed people that way. I have driven nearly 2 million miles in more than ten manual vehicles and never had a clutch or gearbox issue. My choice of vehicle would be a coil sprung large pickup with a diesel engine, all wheel drive and manual transmission. But I can't have that because they aren't making it. My wife drives a very old manual car. I used to have an F250 7.3 diesel with a manual box. Now I have a turbo diesel auto. The manual had 207,000 miles on it when I swapped, it was still working like the day I bought it, never gave a moment of trouble. I wish I could say the same for the interior, but the guy who bought it was happy enough.
In Europe the only reason to buy an automatic is that you are infirm or stupid. Even my 82 year old mother drives a manual Honda in England and she has a disabled tag for her arthritic knees.
Up til now a snow plow on a 150 will void the warranty.I heard a rumor from a salesman that the 2015's will be coming with a snow prep option.Has anybody heard anything or can tell me where to go for info.Forget the dealers around here.Thanks!
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