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Manual car sales: the clutch is gone, this time for good - voila! vehicle


Only one out of every 79 new cars sold in Israel last year was manual, most of them commercial. Jumping off-road with a manual Suzuki Jimny reminds us what we are missing

Suzuki Jimny manual.

One of the last models that are still sold in Israel not only with an automatic transmission (photo: Walla! system, Audi Etzion)

Turn the key to the right, and the feeling of a machine spreads.

In an age where so many cars already come with a start button, and a key that you can leave in your pocket the entire trip.

The brain sends an instruction to the left leg to press the pedal next to it.

Habit, tries for a moment to remember how to do it, and executes.

The right hand moves the gear stick to the left and up, and the left leg begins to rise.

move forward

Here, even in 2023 I was still able to find a manual demo car in the fleet of an Israeli car importer.

Suzuki Jimny is one of less than 20 models that are still offered in Israel with a manual transmission.

The importers grumble that it has long been uneconomical and is a chore for some crazy people, but a minority of them still bother.

Of the manual Jimny, 186 units were sold in 2022, compared to 792 automatics.

Those who purchased the manual version not only received a third pedal for the same price, but also saved NIS 10,000 and paid NIS 150,000 for the small SUV.

Jimny in the field.

The clutch allows good speed control when passing obstacles, but requires skill (photo: Walla! system, Udi Etzion)

Jimny is not really a sports car.

Not even - not at all.

That's how it is when your ID shows numbers like 14.2 seconds in the acceleration section from 0 to 100 km/h, and 140 in the top speed section, in km/h, not in miles.

Jimny is a threat to the speed camera industry.

Luckily his threat suit is very small.

In the field manual gear is an advantage and a disadvantage.

5 manual gears compared to 4 in the automatic helps to use engine braking on descents, and clutch work can help control speed in sections of offense that require precise driving.

But you have to be precise, because clutches are a perishable and not cheap product.

About NIS 2,000-2,500 including work in his case.

Therefore, although the precise gear stick is easy to operate, in the field a driver who is not super skilled will have an easier time with the automatic box.

Although this model is slightly weaker in its performance, it saves hard work for the left foot in the rocks.

In both, the Jimny has a power transmission and control over the type of drive: on the road, you drive in rear-wheel drive, in easy terrain, you switch to 4x4 high, and when it gets difficult, you switch to 4x4 LOW.

Manual transmission does not guarantee performance.

On the road, the Jimny has no problem cruising at 120 km/h, but then it is quite loud. He climbed the Castel with only a driver at a speed that silences her well, but a pleasant ride for a trip would be in the area of ​​only 100 km/h, slower than the pace of traffic.

That's how you have the drag coefficient of a cube with a 1,500 cc gasoline engine, 100 hp, no turbo, no hybrid unit.

Nor does it guarantee economy: 12.5 km per liter we achieved in the combined test.

Some customers buy the Jimny to sit high and park briefly in the city.

They miss the car.

The Jimny is crowded, slow and thirsty for fuel, but in the field it puts you in a place that normally you have to pay NIS 300,000 to get to.

Despite the dimensions, it is really tough, well built and sews challenging tracks.

In India, the production of a 5-door version is now starting, I wish Suzuki would be able to export it to Europe, then we will also get it, and it will also be suitable for small families.

As it is today, with 3 doors, it is a niche vehicle, which, as far as it is far from perfect, is full of charm.

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Dacia Duster.

The manual vehicle sold in Israel.

736 units in 2022 (Photo: Ronan Topelberg)

But it's not exactly a road test, just driving a reminder, and perhaps more correctly a farewell, to the manual transmission.

In 2022, only 3,410 manual cars, most of them commercial, were sold in Israel.

According to data from the Automobile Importers Association, only one out of every 79 new cars sold was equipped with a manual transmission.

We knew that the transition from gasoline and diesel cars to streetcars would eliminate the manual transmission, but it would die even before that.

As mentioned, 1,808 were commercial, among which 1,082 manual versions of the Citroen Berlingo stood out.

1,602 were private.

Dacia, most of its models are manual, a rarity today even in Europe, sold 947 manual cars, of which 736 were the Duster off-road vehicle, which is produced in a 4x4 version only with a manual transmission, cheaper than Jimny, more spacious and comfortable, better on the road, and good Less in the field, although very successful in jeep concepts.

There is also a manual-only front-wheel drive version, which is cheaper.

Suzuki sold 302 manual cars, an option that it still only has in the Jimny, Swift and Ignis, and is no longer offered as before in the Bass Cross (formerly the Crossover).

The other importers together sold 408 private manual cars, including 110 Hyundai i10s, the cheapest new car in Israel, at a price of NIS 77,000.

Renault delivered a manual 67 Clio and a Skoda 50 Octavia diesel to taxi drivers who still prefer to use their left foot

Mazda MX5 with 13 deliveries in 2022.

The only manual in Mazda's offer in Israel (photo: manufacturer's website, manufacturer)

Sports cars?

They are also mostly automatic.

Abarth delivered 72 manual 595 models just before it goes electric and deletes the clutch from the supply.

Mazda delivered 13 manual MX5s, but Porsche only delivered 5 manuals, 3 from the 718 and 2 from the 911.

Ferrari, in a record year, delivered 19 fully automatic cars.

Ferrari no longer makes manual cars.

Soon the rest of the industry too.

This trend is not unique to Israel, and even in Europe automatic gearboxes, which were once considered a solution for disabled and elderly drivers, are becoming the standard, and this is even before the increasing penetration rate of electric cars, to which a clutch is just as foreign as 95 octane.

We have already seen several prototypes for a system that would resemble a manual gearbox for electric cars.

It's as natural and logical as kosher shrimp.

We can see a manual transmission in a museum, or maybe on the racetracks until motor sports finishes being electrified, or finds a way to switch to alternative fuels that will be able to preserve the internal combustion engine.

It's good that there are still manual cars on the used market.

Grab one while you can.

The most sold manuals in Israel in 2022:

Dacia Duster:


Suzuki Jimny:


Dacia Jogger:


Hyundai i10:

110 delivered

Dacia Lodge:


Abarth 595:


Renault Clio:


Suzuki Swift:


Suzuki Ignis:


Skoda Octavia:


Data: Automobile Importers Association

  • vehicle

  • technology


  • clutch

Source: walla

All tech articles on 2023-03-17

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