Best Manual Transmission Cars for 2024

The manual transmission has gone from a dominant drivetrain feature across the automotive industry 100 years ago to a genuine rarity in today’s new car market. While operating a manual gearbox is universally seen as a more sporty and engaging driving experience, the harsh reality is that most drivers don’t want to bother with shifting gears. This is especially true in the modern world, with current automatic transmissions consistently outperforming manuals in both acceleration and fuel efficiency.

With so few buyers interested in manual transmissions, automakers have almost completely abandoned them in recent model years. But you can still find three-pedal configurations on the base model of entry-level economy cars like the Mazda 3, Mini Cooper, Nissan Versa and Volkswagen Jetta. They are also widely available on “hot hatchback” trim levels, in cars like the Honda Civic Type R, Hyundai Elantra N and Veloster, or Volkswagen Golf GTI and Golf R.

Those models all feature turbo four-cylinder engines with front-wheel drive, but manual transmission fans seeking all wheel drive (AWD) can find it on the Subaru WRX and Toyota GR Corolla. Moving beyond the hot hatch segment leads to dedicated rear-wheel-drive performance coupes like the BMW M2, Subaru BRZ and Toyota Supra, some of which feature twin-turbo engines to increase horsepower and performance. Classic muscle cars like the Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Challenger, and Ford Mustang are another vehicle type offered with classic “stick shift” transmissions.


Sadly, if you’re trying to pair the fun of manual shifting with the practicality of an SUV or crossover you have almost no options today. The Ford Bronco and Jeep Wrangler, two compact SUVs with serious off-road intentions, are your only choices. The same can be said for most iconic sports cars, from the Chevrolet Corvette to every modern Ferrari and Lamborghini, though Porsche does still offer a manual transmission on the Boxster, Cayman, and 911. And Cadillac provided one on its CT4-V Blackwing and CT5-V Blackwing.

iSeeCars has identified all these manual transmission cars and ranked them below based on their iSeeCars quality score, which takes reliability, resale value, and safety into consideration. We also list if the car has a five-speed or six-speed manual (or seven-speed, in Porsche’s case), along with fuel economy, new and used pricing information, and – when available – the engine options paired with the manual transmission.

Best Manual Transmission Sports Cars:

  1. Ford Mustang (coupe): 8.5 / 10

  2. Chevrolet Camaro (coupe): 8.5 / 10

  3. Subaru BRZ: 8.4 / 10

Best Manual Transmission Luxury Sports Cars:

  1. Porsche 911 (coupe) - 9.2 / 10

  2. Porsche 911 (convertible) - 8.6 / 10

  3. Porsche 718 Boxster - 7.9 / 10

Best Manual Transmission Small Cars:

  1. Honda Civic (coupe): 9.4 / 10

  2. Honda Fit: 9.2 / 10

  3. Toyota Yaris: 9.2 / 10

Best Manual Transmission Hatchbacks:

  1. Honda Fit: 9.2 / 10

  2. Volkswagen Golf: 8.8 / 10

  3. Hyundai VELOSTER: 8.8 / 10

Best Manual Transmission Subcompact Cars:

  1. Honda Fit: 9.2 / 10

  2. Toyota Yaris: 9.2 / 10

  3. Nissan Versa: 8.6 / 10

Best Manual Transmission Midsize SUVs:

  1. Jeep Wrangler Unlimited: 8.7 / 10

  2. Jeep Wrangler: 8.7 / 10

  3. Ford Bronco: Score coming soon

Visit our website for the complete list of Manual Transmission Vehicles.

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