For many years the idea of driving a sports car with an automatic transmission was laughable. These transmissions were capable of taking the shifting off our plates but couldn’t give us the fuel mileage we would get from a manual and certainly couldn’t give us the performance we desired. That has all changed and now more cars are fitted with automatics than ever before because they are now made to deliver better fuel mileage and certainly can shift faster and smoother than we can ourselves. Even with that thought, if you want to enjoy a manual transmission and handle the shifting duties yourself, here are twenty cars that still allow you to do so.
Mazda Miata – For over twenty-five years this little roadster has offered us looks that mimic a British model and the driver oriented features and driving that have made it one of the favorites to drive, especial when the driving is for fun.
Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S – These sporty twins are made to give you a drive that is direct, engaged and robust. The fact that you get to do the shifting only enhances this feeling as these two are certainly favorites of tuners.
Dodge Viper – As one of the smartest and most powerful cars on the road this might be a surprise, but the Viper is truly an American concoction which means you want to be able to enjoy the drive as much as possible.
Chevrolet Corvette Z06 – If it’s on the Viper it shouldn’t surprise you that it’s on the Corvette as well. There is just something we still love about being in full control of the driving experience and handing the shift work is part of that feeling.
Porsche 911 – No shock here either, that the sports car of them all offers you the opportunity to handle the work yourself. The 911 does have an amazing automatic, but who needs that when you can drive this car any way you want.
Fiat Abarth – The performance version of the Fiat 500 it’s really a great choice to offer the manual in order to handle the job. You can feel like you are in a cart race or chasing down a competitor from this driving position.
BMW M5 – Even though other BMW models are more popular, at the performance level the M5 is the crème de la crème. The awesome horsepower, fully engaged suspension and steering must come with the manual, it just must.
Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 – This is one of the most powerful and high performing Mustangs ever to grace the auto industry. This car is more athletic than what the GT500 was making for the perfect combination of driving excellence.
Volkswagen Golf R – Hot hatch is what this is truly by definition. This little speedster is one dealers can’t keep on their lots and when you step inside and enjoy the amazing power and performance you will know why.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon – The manual for the Wrangler is one of the most necessary features of the SUV, giving you better control over what happens during your off road excursion. This one must stay and keep the manuals going.
Porsche Cayman GT4 – Superior performance, amazing speed, a powerful engine and of course the manual transmission make this one of the most attractive cars ever to come out of the Porsche plant and give us something to drop our jaws at.
BMW M3/M4 – Much like the M5 the M3/M4 make up the high performance end of their lineup to show you a vehicle that can really get going on any road. Enjoy the BMW athleticism and the amazing performance that comes in these versions.
Cadillac ATS-V – For many years Caddy didn’t have performance machines, now they do. The ATS-V is a huge power player with some awesome performance that makes the car simply fun to drive especially with the manual transmission in place.
Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat – Considered being the most affordable car per horsepower the 707 horsepower beast with the best throwback style in the class offers you the ability to shift the gears yourself as you feel the power of the Hellcat.
Chevrolet SS – The SS is a sedan that really has everything. You have room for the family, a gorgeous looking car and a massively strong V6 engine that puts out 415 horsepower and gives you a six-speed manual to full enjoy the awesome drive.
Ford Focus RS – We finally get this beauty herein the US so you bet this baby is going to be offered with a manual for you to really enjoy the ride. The power underneath and performance mated to the light weight make for a winning combination.
Jaguar XE – You do have to wait until 2017 for this one, but the XE will be offered with the manual transmission and give you a powerful performance with an insane amount of true luxury for you to enjoy on any road, especially a beautiful canyon run.
Ram 2500/3500 Cummins Diesel 4WD – This pair of big and powerful trucks are both made to go the distance, especially when that distance is across a canyon, over a cliff, trolling a lake or even pulling a mountain. Using an awesome manual makes for the right tools for this job, which any guy can tell you is an absolute must when using a heavy duty truck.
Aston Martin Vantage GT – This smaller and sporty looking Aston still offers a manual where most of the larger models have gone completely away from them. With 430 horsepower from the big V8 the Vantage is a lot of fun to drive, especially when you are in charge of the gears.
Mini Cooper Works Hardtop – The Mini Cooper has given us several models we can love including the John Cooper Works hardtop. This version of the Cooper offers more power and a sportier suspension to be the top of the power lineup from this funky and fun little car.