What percent of American Drivers cannot drive a Manual Transmission car?

Title is pretty self explanatory, but I’m doing a paper and need some stats. It would be nice to have a source as well, but a ball park guess would do for now.


8 Responses to “What percent of American Drivers cannot drive a Manual Transmission car?”

  1. kelleylu says:

    I have no real evidence to back this up, but I bet its 75% Even if some older people who used to drive sticks had to now, they probably couldn’t remember how. I tried teaching my husband forever and finally gave up , in fear that he was burning up my clutch.

  2. Vittorio says:

    From the top of my head probably more than 80%.

  3. Deo Gratias says:

    A ballpark guess is that about 15-20% of Americans say they can drive a stick.

    But in my personal experience, most people who say they can refer to an experience “back when I was twenty” with “an old jalopy my uncle had” and have had no recent experience. I’d never lend out my manual transmission vehicle, because so many people I know who claim they can drive it end up burning rubber or stalling the vehicle, and I don’t want to deal with that.

  4. Christian says:

    LOL well as for a source I am not so sure about that but I am willing to bet its more than we can imagin. I learned how to drive on a stick shift vehicle and several of the work trucks are manual trans. When you look outside of the USA a lot of people only drive stick shifts as a vast majority of vehicles over their are manual trans.

  5. CarMan says:

    I don’t think any professional studies have been made on this topic, but my educated guess is that the percentage of people who cannot drive a manual transmission is pretty high — about 65%. And that’s only because there are still a lot of older drivers still around. A higher percentage of people less than about 30 years old — about 75% — and a higher percentage of females — about 85% — don’t know manuals.

    Most driving schools and instructors don’t even try to teach manual transmissions any more. And you can’t even get many car makes and models with a manual transmission.

    Many people who are able to drive “sticks” are not comfortable with it and don’t do it. Some hate it, especially those who drive in stop-and-go rush hour traffic.

  6. rotis93 says:

    I don’t really have any exact stats for you but I think you should try to find something that includes age groups, almost any american over the age of 50 can drive stick, I would say 50% of the americans under the age of 25 can’t drive stick.
    I am a car nut and have been all my life.
    Automatics are becoming more common, but your question can also get more complicated.
    I have driven a model A ford and I would say very few drivers american or otherwise can drive that car.
    I went to test drive a 1 ton flat bed with a 454 and a 4 speed standard on the floor. I pulled up in a 5 speed convertible, full synchro manual transmission 2.0l 4 cylinder turbo.
    The owner of the truck asked me if I knew how to drive stick, I said “yes I drove up in a standard”
    I got behind the wheel of the truck let the clutch out in second gear, acelerated and went for third, the gears ground and I couldn’t get it into third, and I couldn’t get back into second.
    The old man that owned the truck laughed and said “you kids these days don’t ever know how to drive stick. That is a heavy duty bus transmission, there are no synchros, you have to hear the motor talk to you and tell you what gear it wants, and you have to mach the rpms with the gas pedal to get in gear. Move over and let me show you how its done”

    That was mine first time with a non sychromesh manual transmission.
    Just cause you can drive a modern manual, don’t mean you can drive stick.
    Also Diesel are harder than gas because of the roughly 17:1 compression ratio.

    I hope I gave you some thoughts for your paper.

    I thought I would add: once you learn to drive stick it is like riding a bicycle you don’t forget.
    I haven’t drove stick in 2 years and I had to move a manual transmission that was parked 6″ from a bumber on a slight downhill, it was a car I didn’t know, and I was nervous, I found the friction point in the clutch, quickly swapped brake for gas, and let the clutch out. Old hat like I never stopped, car didn’t roll and inch, buck or stall. Granted this was a small car and there easy to drive.

  7. Ozdevil says:

    69% of new yorkers even can not drive auto transmision so you figure it out the manual side!!

  8. James H says:

    It looks like everybody has roughly the same ball park, Between 65%-80% sounds about right. I’m learnign to drive one now actually, lol. Buuut, im 17, so its cool. lol.

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