Mercedes is ditching the manual transmission. We have been hearing it for years now, haven’t we? But this time, it finally makes sense. The news comes right after the premium car company announced its plans to get rid of the lower area of its portfolio.
In a chase to cut costs and turn more profitable, Mercedes is putting the manual transmission on the black list, auto motor und sport reports.
From 2023, Mercedes will only offer automatic gearboxes. This year, Mercedes will stop production of the A-Class and B-Class with manual transmissions, followed by CLA in 2023.
The reasons are related to the reduction of costs and the rationalization of production as well as the elimination of the time-consuming certification of the various gearbox variants. An important role in this decision is played by the transition to electromobility in which manual gearboxes are not needed.
With the launch of the C-Class last year, only the A-Class, B-Class, CLA and CLA Shooting brake still have manual gearboxes. Auto motor und sport announces that the option for manual gearboxes will disappear for the 180, 200, 180 d and 200 d models after the upcoming facelift.
The manual transmission would make no sense in the future Mercedes lineup
Furthermore, the offer of manual transmissions has been shrinking lately. It thus makes no sense for the premium-turning-luxury company to invest in the development of new manuals, nor to upgrade the new ones. Furthermore, steering the financial resources into getting the entire range electrified and into going electric by 2035, together with investing in autonomous driving tech are more reasons to ditch the manual. Electric cars do not require a manual transmission.
The American market has long left behind the old-school transmission. The Germans haven’t manufactured a manual transmission-equipped car there since 2011. Back then, they were selling the six-speed gearbox in the C300. The car enthusiasts who’d rather go for a Benz with three pedals instead of two could try the used car websites. It’s their only chance in the U.S. and it’s been so for more than a decade.