A little while ago, we revealed that BMW South Africa had discontinued the manual versions of its M3 and M4 (although these are still offered in some international markets).
But now, in an interview with Drive, BMW M’s vice-president of sales and marketing, Peter Quintus, hinted that the dual-clutch transmission (DCT) could be on the way out, too.
Quintus told the Australian publication that BMW M cars would likely go back to conventional torque converters over dual-clutches in the coming years.
“The DCT once had two advantages: it was light and its shift speeds were higher. Now, a lot of that shift-time advantage has disappeared as automatics get better and smarter,” he told Drive.
“We are now seeing automatic transmissions with nine and even 10 speeds, so there’s a lot of technology in modern automatics,” he added.
Quintus also predicted that the manual gearbox would be completely gone in the “next six or seven years”.
He said that a typical manual gearbox could reliably handle up to 600 N.m, but anything beyond could affect durability. As a result, it seems unlikely that the next generation M3 will feature a manual option.