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Looking to purchase a new, moderately-sized SUV to replace my wife’s 2002 Kia Sportage. We have two definite requirements: manual transmission & 4WD…the real kind, not AWD or full-time 4WD.

Are there any such vehicles any more?


IF it’s manual you’re after, it’ll be a barebones type of vehicle, so a Hyundai or Kia MIGHT have it available.
Go to, it’ll list available options for all new vehicles

Good luck…If you want a basic “truck” SUV with manual. The first thing that comes to mind is something like a mid size Tacoma, Nissan etc Crew cab with a cap. They have as much seating room as an SUV and the ONLY way I’m aware of you can get that combination.
You get real off road truck performance, towing load carrying capability along with seating and that “truck bounce” you seem to prefer as well :=). These vehicles are why IMO, you don’t see this type of SUV offered by many manufacturers. It’s a duplication.

I doubt you’ll find a moderately sized SUV with a stick shift these days. I’m interpreting “moderately-sized” to mean mid-sized. And by “mid-sized”, I’m thinking about vehicles the size of an Explorer, Grand Cherokee, or 4 Runner. The base model Nissan Xterra is the only mid-sized SUV that I can think of that offers part-time 4WD and a stick shift.

The 4-runner and the Pathfinder no longer offer manual transmissions. But the X-Terra and the FJ Cruiser do offer manuals. They also offer a true 4wd system.

You can get them pretty loaded even with a manual tranny.

I may be wrong but I believe the FJ Cruiser with the stick has a full-time 4WD/AWD system. If you want the part time 4WD, you have to get the automatic.

You may be right there…I do know that you can at least get a manual with the FJ…A manual isn’t even an option anymore with the 4-runner. My old 98 Pathfinder was fully loaded SE…with a manual. Most were being sold with Autos. The dealer had to hunt one down for me. Now they no longer offer the manual.

Just missed the Hummer H3. Perhaps a 4 door Jeep Wrangler