The BMW manual transmission is quickly evaporating from the North American automotive landscape. There are now just a few offerings left and even those are dwindling fast. Here’s the current state of the manual in the US.
BMW Manual Transmissions as of 2019
2 Series (all models). If you’re in the market for a manual non-M car this is will soon be last one standing. It ends production in 2020 but the rumors are that BMW will maintain the manual offering for one more generation before phasing it out entirely. That would mean approximately 2027 – but a lot could change. While the standard rear wheel drive 230i with a manual is a great car, the M240i is (unsurprisingly) the one to get here.
M2. The current M2 is the best car BMW makes in our opinion. And in newly released Competition trim, it’s one of the best M cars full-stop. We’ve been saying for years that BMW would maintain the manual for one more generation and it now appears to be the case. Look for the next generation M2 (debuting sometime in 2022) to once again offer the manual. This will likely be the last manual standing in the line-up.
4 Series (Coupe only). With production ending in June of 2020 your opportunity to have a classic 3/4 Series coupe with a manual is dwindling. The manual is in the Coupe only and really helps bring the car alive in a way the excellent ZF 8 speed can’t.
M3/M4. BMW has recently confirmed that the US market’s continued interest in manuals for the M3 and M4 has saved the option for one more generation. That means that even with the current generation of cars going out of production (the M3 is done, the M4 will be 6/20), you’ll have plenty of time to order your manual. Therefore look for a manual to be available in these cars until around 2027.