People in Michigan can't stop talking about stick shifts

March 18, 2019

States with most manual transmissionsSurvey tracked 20,000 tweets that mentioned manual transmissions and stick shifts

Mark Phelan / Detroit Free Press / Feb. 15, 2019

Manual transmissions aren’t quite dead, and people can’t stop talking, or at least tweeting, about Ram trucks.

That’s the news from the Twitter machine, thanks to the car-crazy team at Autowise. They geotagged tweets to discover the most talked about pickup in the Twitterverse, and which state had the most folks tweeting about manual transmissions.

Not while they’re driving, one hopes. If we can’t expect somebody who’s gotta shift at every stop sign to put the phone down and drive, all hope is lost.

Manual transmissions were once so common they were called "standard transmissions," because an automatic was an expensive option. Falling costs and rising performance have turned the tables; manuals accounted for as little as 2 percent of U.S. new car sales in 2018.

Michigan was No. 1 in the survey, which tracked 20,000 tweets that mentioned manual transmissions and stick shifts. That tracks with our car-crazy culture, and the perception that “real” car people drive manuals!

The top 10 states in order:

  1.     Michigan
  2.     Missouri
  3.     Oklahoma
  4.     Washington
  5.     Tennessee
  6.     Texas
  7.     Ohio
  8.     Indiana
  9.     Illinois
  10.     Kentucky

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