Volkswagen to stop developing manual models – report


Those who like to shift their own gears will soon have to strike Volkswagen off their list.

According to Auto Motor und Sport, the next-generation Tiguan and Passat — both due to be unveiled in 2023 — will be the first models to be developed by the brand to completely eschew a third pedal.

The change is being driven by economics, with the company keen to free up development dollars for its ever-growing commitment to electric vehicles.

Volkswagen is expected to have a completely electric range in Europe by 2033.

It’s expected that by 2030 there will be no manual option available anywhere in the Volkswagen range in the US, China and Europe. 

If true, the end of manual transmission development for Volkswagen will likely affect other brands in the automaker’s portfolio, including Skoda, Seat and Cupra. 

Outside of pure electric models, such as the Cupra Born and Skoda Enyaq iV, all Skoda and Seat models use the MQB architecture that underpins most of the Volkswagen range.

At present the only Volkswagen passenger cars available in Australia with a manual are the entry-level Polo 70TSI Trendline and 85TSI Comfortline, and the Golf 110TSI.

There are more manual options in the commercial vehicle range with the Amarok TDI500 Core, and various Caddy, Transporter and Crafter models, all available with a clutch pedal. 

Overseas, some performance variants, such as the Golf GTI and Golf R, are available with a manual transmission.

Although not mentioned in the German report, it’s likely manual transmissions will continue to be offered in models developed, built and sold in Latin America.

MORE: The cars and SUVs you can still buy with a manual transmission


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