The head of Audi Sport says the brand would have been wasting its time and money developing a manual transmission option for hot variants such as the new Audi RS3 and TT RS, because buyers wouldn’t be interested in it.
Audi Sport boss Stephan Reil told Motor1.com that the outgoing TT RS was first introduced in Europe in manual form, before a dual-clutch option was added some two years later. Just one-tenth of buyers, however, went for the stick-shift.
“And, of course, that’s not a business case to develop a manual and everything that goes with it,” Reil told the publication.
He added that the Ingolstadt automaker’s S tronic dual-clutch automatic transmission offered the “best of two worlds”.
“For me, the double-clutch is the best of two worlds. It’s just like a manual, but without a clutch pedal,” he said, adding that good dual-clutch gearboxes tended to allow both faster acceleration and better fuel economy.
Audi product planner Anthony Garbis added that potential buyers often told the automaker that they wanted manual gearboxes, “but then they buy S tronic anyway”…