22 February 2024
New cars with a manual gearbox in Singapore

As we gawked at the recently launched BMW 3.0 CSL with a manual gearbox, it got us thinking, “So, which car could you buy, brand new, with a manual gearbox in Singapore right now?”

At €800k (yes, Euros), the 50 units-only 3.0 CSL will remain a special car for the privileged few.

But say you’re a purist. A real-men-drive-three-pedals kinda guy. What are your options for a stick-shift brand-new car in 2024? Well, we’ve put together a list:

Suzuki Swift Sport

Starting with the most affordable choice of all, we have the beloved Suzuki Swift Sport.

Coming in at just under SGD 200,000 with COE, you get a peppy 138hp with a 6-speed shifter that will bring back memories of the JDM hot hatch that stole the hearts of many in the mid-2000s, albeit now at double the cost.

You won’t find this at the authorised distributor; if you’re keen, you’ll need to hook up with a grey importer, ACM Automobiles, for this baby.

Subaru BRZ

We actually drove this recently but were unfortunately offered the automatic version. But the good news is that MotorImage will bring in the manual if you beg them to do so.

With 237hp, this rear-wheel-drive sports coupe will offer you both adequate power and 6 manual gears to swap about as you enjoy its sublime chassis on the road. Be prepared to part with about SGD 230,000 in exchange for that.

Toyota GR86

You can’t talk about the BRZ without mentioning the GR86. The two cars have been joined at the hip since they were launched as offspring from a marriage between Subaru and Toyota.

Thankfully, Borneo Motors will sell you one of these with a manual tranny at SGD 142,000, without COE, of course.

Toyota GR Yaris

Speaking of Toyotas, the Gazoo Racing outfit has been churning out model after model of the fun and sporty kind. The good ol’ GR Yaris still avails itself through parallel importers.

If you’re in the market for a sweet revving 1.6-litre, 3-cylinder turbocharged hatch, we hear VINCAR might still have a couple of units.

Toyota Supra

Surprise, surprise! Well, we know for a fact that Borneo Motors brought in two manual units of the 6-speed Toyota Supra at the end of 2023. Whether or not they have since been sold, I guess you’ll have to call them to ask.

Lotus Emira

For something of the more exotic kind, you’ll be looking at yet another Toyota-powered car. The supercharged 3.5-litre V6 that powers the Lotus Emira might not sound the most inspiring, but the car as a whole is nothing short of special.

We had the pleasure of driving it (in manual!) last year, and as an ex-Lotus owner, I can say that the Emira is everything a modern Lotus should be. Pure finesse on wheels.

BMW M4 Coupe

Surprised we’re still here? So are we, actually.

When I started researching this article, I thought I’d find three or four models at best. But thanks to enthusiasts-business owners, we have importers who have brought in quite a few more choices, such as special cars like the BMW M4 coupe with a manual transmission.

For slightly more than half a Buck, ACM Automobiles will have a rare German M car sitting on your front porch.

Morgan Plus Four

Perhaps everything above was too conventional. Want something quirkier and unique? Well, the Morgan Plus Four might fit the bill.

The four-cylinder BMW-powered Plus Four is packed with a 255hp powerplant and is available on an indent basis through NB Auto. Speccing a manual gearbox would fit perfectly with this car’s old-school charm.

Porsche 718 Boxster GTS

Though this was launched some time ago, interestingly, Sgcarmart still lists this as an available model from Porsche Singapore. Well, we’re not complaining.

The 718 Boxster has been a favourite with the AutoApp team for a long time, and the 4.0-litre GTS is extra special, made even more so with the three pedals that you’ll have to work through to extract all the joy out of this 400hp machine.

And we’re done.

So there you have it, all nine cars.

There are, of course, other pre-owned alternatives in the second-hand car market you can add to the mix. The manual gearbox army may not be as strong as it used to be, but it looks like it’s not dead just yet.

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