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Wanted: A normal car if they still make them

I am looking for a new vehicle and I am concerned that “normal” vehicles are not made anymore.

I want a real manual transmission, no auto start/stop, no AWD.
Prefer a pick up, but a SUV/hatchback would work.

The internet knows all.

Toyota Tacoma SR5 comes close. V6 manual pickup, but I think it has stop/start.

Do your own internet search… in this order…start with all cars with a manual transmission for 2021. That is a small list and it is here:

Find the vehicle that is close and search their manufacturer’s website for stop/start features. AWD is usually an option so that that one is easy. Stop/start won’t be. Most can be disabled with the push of a button every time you drive but not permanently.

Not sure why you’d want a manual except for fun. They get lower fuel economy than autos these days.

Keep in mind any of these cars are going to have a dozen computers on-board no mater what trans they have.


Thanks for the response. I have been doing what you suggested, just was hoping for a short cut.

The reason I want a MT only is because I had two pickups that I drove a little over 400,000 miles each and my total cost for transmission maintenance and repairs on them was zero. No one has ever made a AT that will go over 400,000 miles without any cost. One $3,000 repair bill on the AT wipes out everything saved by a couple of MPG’s. I have owned several other cars with MT’s besides the two pickups, and still my total repair/maintenance for all manual AT’s since 1985 is zero.

So you never replaced a clutch on either truck in 400,000 miles?


Some people have mastered the art of not abusing clutches and it’s clutch abuse that gives manuals a bad name.

No, I honestly never did. The first vehicle was a 1985 Nissan pickup, and the 2nd was a 1991 Nissan pickup, bought both new. This is why I want a MT, to get the same life. Nissan has gone to a nine-speed AT only.

400,000 miles in 6 years ?
That would have to be almost all highway miles, very little clutch use doing that.


Perhaps both were owned concurrently for several years after 1991 :man_mechanic:

Fuel economy and the requirements cars have to meet isn’t about saving money. It’s about saving gas. I’m not saying it’s right, just that that’s the way it is.

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Saving gas? ICE has no future. Waste of time.

That does sound like the ultimate in “ideal driving conditions.”

No problem. All you have to do is change your definition of “new” to mean “15-20 years old, but in good condition” and you will have plenty to choose from. Also, the reason people want an automatic transmission has nothing to do with fuel economy or efficiency. People want them because it is much easier and more pleasant to drive an automatic. And with proper care, it is not unreasonable to expect an automatic transmission to last for 250,000 miles.

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Or a Nissan frontier up to 2019, Chevy Colorado dropped the manual around the same time.

Wanting a manual means that some very nice vehicles will be left of the list of choices .

I really wonder if two different vehicles each made 400000 miles on the original clutch or if that number was for both of them . 400000 in 6 years is 66000 miles a year .

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I have 150k on my clutch in the MR2 at the moment. And I suspect I’ll be replacing it early because the rear main seal is due to go out, and I might as well as long as the transmission’s off anyway. Otherwise it’d probably last a lot longer. But unless I’m driving enthusiastically, I only use the clutch to get it rolling in 1st.

You remind me of a friend of mine who went to buy a new car after many years of not doing so. He went to a Subaru dealer and a salesperson was demonstrating the various models on the floor. He gets to the infotainment system and my friend says" I don’t want any of that, just a radio with an on/off/volume knob, a tuning knob, and buttons for presets". Salesperson says “if I had a car like that in inventory, I wouldn’t sell it, I’d donate it to a museum. Now please excuse me while I go wait on someone who might actually be interested in buying a car”.


Co-worker asked the Nissan sales manager about a manual Sentra a few years aggo and was told he could order one but the last one they had took at least 6mo to sell.

20 years ago, cars like that were EVERYWHERE. You could have gone to a dealer selling any non-luxury brand, and they’d have several models in stock with those excellent features. Remember that as late as 1998 you could get a Toyota Camry with no power options, and as late as 2000 you could get a Honda Accord like that. As late as 2005, you could get a Dodge Neon with hand crank windows and just an AM/FM stereo.

My 2008 Toyota Yaris has hand crank windows and a AM/FM radio, and a 5 speed manual.
Although I gotta admit it also has AC, power brakes, and power steering. You gotta have AC in Texas!
The last motorcycle I had that wasn’t electric start was a '78 Yamaha SR500. I loved that bike!