On Life Support: Every 2021 Car You Can Buy With A Manual Transmission

On Life Support: Every 2021 Car You Can Buy With A Manual Transmission
[Photo: Ford]

As we make our way through another year, it’s largely the same old story. The manual transmission is slowly dying out, with few automakers hanging on to the third pedal across their lineups.

Fortunately, the manual transmission is clinging to life, as enthusiasts clamor for it to stick around. Some manufacturers still offer them to curry favor with those fickle few of us who want an alternative to modern automatics and CVTs, even while the latter are more fuel efficient (and in an increasing number of cases, modern automatics are faster).

If you’re one of those folks who yearn to shift your own gears, there is more hope in the 2021 Ford Bronco. The resurrected SUV competes head-to-head with the Jeep Wrangler, which also offers a manual option, and there’s actually a use case for it to achieve the best possible crawl ratios when you’re going off-road. Die-hard enthusiast cars, like the Porsche 718, as well as some economy-minded cars still offer a manual transmission. So, if having that clutch pedal is a requirement for your next car, here is every 2021 model where you can actually get it.

One area the manual transmission has pretty much died off entirely is trucks. The Toyota Tacoma and Jeep Gladiator are the only models that still offer a row-your-own option, and even then it’s only in certain configurations.

As we near the model year change, this list covers 2021 car and SUV models we know will have a manual transmission. If news breaks of a new model offering a manual (or, more likely, an automaker killing one off, as is the case with Genesis after 2021), we’ll post updates below.

On Life Support: Every 2021 Car You Can Buy With A Manual Transmission
The 2021 Ford Bronco is one notable addition to the list, though several models aren’t offering a manual transmission option after the 2020 model year.

2021 Cars and SUVS With A Manual Transmission

Make/Model (Body style)GearsTrim levels (all unless specified)
Aston Martin Vantage7
BMW 2 Series (Coupe/Convertible)6Coupe: 230i (RWD); M240i (RWD)

Convertible: M240i (RWD)
BMW M2 Competition6Standard (dual-clutch opt.)
Cadillac CT4-V6Blackwing model only
Cadillac CT5-V6Blackwing model only
Chevrolet Spark5
Chevrolet Camaro6
Dodge Challenger6All V8 models except the Hellcat Redeye
Fiat 124 Spider*6Discontinued in 2021; you can still buy carryover 2020 models
Ford Bronco7w/ 2.3L EcoBoost only
Ford Mustang*6All trims except the Shelby GT500
Genesis G7062.0L I-4 RWD only
Honda Civic6Sport (Hatch), Sport Touring Hatch, Type R (no 2021 Coupe/Si models)
Hyundai Accent6SE
Hyundai Elantra6N Line, Elantra N (coming soon)
Hyundai Veloster62.0 (Base), Turbo R-Spec, N
Jeep Wrangler6V6 models only
Kia Forte6FE, GT
Kia Soul6LX
Lotus Evora GT6
Mazda36Hatchback (FWD) w/ Premium Package
MX-5 Miata6Soft-top and RF
Mini Hardtop/Convertible6Cooper/Cooper S, JCW (will be available again in 2021)
Mini Clubman6Cooper S (FWD) only
Mini Countryman6Cooper (FWD) only
Mitsubishi Mirage/G45Refreshed for 2021 (same 1.2L engine)
Nissan 370Z*62020 model year carryover; new “400Z” coming in 2021
Nissan Versa5S only
Porsche 718 Boxster/Cayman6
Porsche 9117Targa 4S only
Subaru BRZ6The new 2022 BRZ is still available with a manual
Subaru Crosstrek6Base, Premium only
Subaru Impreza5Base hatch, sedan only
Subaru WRX/STI6
Toyota 86*6A new 86 may arrive in 2021
Toyota Corolla6Sedan: SE, Apex Edition (limited run)
Hatchback: SE, XSE
Volkswagen Golf GTI6The Mk8 should arrive later this year
Volkswagen Jetta/GLI6S, R-Line, GLI

*Based on 2020 model information; updated 2021 models could lose their manual options.

7/28/2020 Update: Added Aston Martin Vantage.

Notable deaths

While performance cars have been a bastion for the manual transmission, that may not be the case in the next few years. Cars like the Chevrolet Corvette C8 and Jaguar F-Type have dropped their three-pedal options entirely. Others are hanging on by a thread, as we don’t yet know whether the replacement for the current-generation Nissan 370Z or the Chevrolet Camaro (if there is one) will still have a manual option.