The manual transmission is, unfortunately, dying a slow death. Most drivers nowadays are opting to choose automatics or continuously variable transmissions (CVTs), and we can’t blame them. Thanks to new technology, automatics and CVTs have become far more efficient than its manual counterpart. Not to mention they’re also easier to drive because you only have two pedals to deal with rather than three.
However, there are still automakers who believe in a proper stick shift and want to see manuals live on in the next generation. One of them is Volkswagen. The German automaker has recently revealed a new six-speed manual transmission which is said to be more efficient than its predecessors. Officially called the MQ281, the automaker says it features new bearings, seals, and uses less oil. Drivers will also feel less vibrations and unpleasant noises courtesy of a revised gearbox housing. Thanks to the new internal parts, the gearbox also produces fewer emissions.
Volkswagen says the new MQ281 gearbox can handle torque loads from 200 to 340 Nm, allowing it to be used in various engine applications be it gasoline or diesel. It is expected to make its initial debut in the new Passat. From there, Volkswagen says the transmission will make its way into the upcoming Mk8 Golf and other upcoming models including crossovers and SUVs.
In a world where electric and hybrid vehicles are ever-growing in popularity, Volkswagen wants to show that we don’t have to bid farewell to the manual transmission, not yet at least. This way, enthusiasts can still have time to appreciate a proper stick shift before electric cars consume us all. Now if only more manufacturers start following this trend.