With the switch to e-mobility, it's not just the type of drive that changes. Manual switching will be a thing of the past, it is ready to move into the museum. It has been in retreat for a long time. Modern assistance systems get along better with automatic transmissions. The self-intervening person is a disruptive factor that one prefers to keep outside.
There have been regular discussions about how to switch for a long time. The group of sports drivers defended the manual gear change with all strength, even if it has become more and more difficult to find arguments in recent years. Automatic machines have long switched better and faster than humans. To make matters worse, they are even more stingy with fuel.
You don't need a manual gearbox in an electric car. Torque and speed reach what feels like infinity. A gearbox with one or two gears is standard. If there are actually two, the switching process is of course fully automatic. Nobody will cry after the manual gearshift, at least not in the electric car.
Consequences for future generations
How long will driving schools continue to train with manual transmissions? The end is foreseeable, it could come by 2030 at the latest. Then new combustion engines could also be banned in Germany, in other countries they are already. The flood of assistance systems also blows out the lights on the manual gearshift.
At some point there will be a generation of drivers on the road who do not know how to use manual gearshifts and who are also not allowed to drive it. A development with fatal consequences for oldtimers and classics.
What will become of the sports cars of the past? Where are the old Porsche 911s that were mainly shifted manually because the 4-speed automatic was frowned upon in the relevant circles? What effects does it have on the British roadsters, those with the bone-hard, precise gearshifts. These classics with a heart that always brought joy?
Manual shift - there was something
Perhaps they will not be for sale even if they could be climate-neutral with an alternative fuel. Because from a certain point no young person can drive it anymore, the legislature demands additional training, or the extinction could benevolently let it happen.
The fact is that people lose more and more skills that they once had. Assistance and navigation systems make orientation skills, acquired over thousands of years, superfluous. The feeling for driving physics, which was extremely important 20 or 30 years ago, is no longer needed. Since the introduction of ESP, the computer has been regulating everything. At least until physics does win the upper hand. And, to the amazement of the driver, the vehicle ends up in the ditch.
At Saab, the manual shift story was never the big hit. The Swedes have always been a long way from the qualities that BMW, Alfa Romeo and Porsche once delivered. The gearboxes in Saab 99 and 900 were always terrible to shift. Imprecise, unmotivated, the powerful turbo engines alone made up for it.
The final vengeance from Detroit
The gearboxes were only really good to shift in the Saab 9000, at least acceptable, with a slight fun tendency, in the 9-3 I, 900 II and 9-5 I. The 9-3 II simply had too much plastic built into the shift linkage for that It could have been fun. And finally, with the Saab 9-5 NG, the circle was closed again. The manual transmission was GM's last revenge, and it is not for nothing that buyers prefer the automatic transmission, which is also noticeable in the prices of used copies.
Do vehicles with manual transmissions end up in museums, or do they have a long-term chance of being moved as veterans? It is up to the legislature whether or not they will give automotive cultural assets a chance. After all, this has offered the option of one since April 1 (!) 2021 Additional training
10 hours of 45 minutes more in practice on a switching vehicle - combined with a 15-minute additional test is sufficient, even if you have completed your driver training on an automatic vehicle. The key number 78 of the class B driver's license then becomes the number 178 and you are authorized to drive a manually shifted vehicle. Owners of an automatic driver's license can also get additional training and change their driver's license.
Will that be enough to save the manual gearshift from extinction? Probably not.