Jost Capito, the managing director of the Volkswagen R division, says that ever-increasing torque outputs in performance vehicles could lead to the demise of the manual gearbox in such cars.

Speaking to Autocar, Capito suggested that the cost of developing manual transmissions capable of handling high torque levels, rather than a lack of demand from buyers, could eventually spell the end for the humble stick-shift.

“If powertrain performance gets to a point that developing a manual costs too much, manufacturers won’t do it,” Capito told the British publication.

The current Golf R is no longer offered with a manual gearbox, and Autocar speculates that Capito’s comments mean its successor will also be made available in DSG form only.

Capito is apparently working on an aggressively expanded "R" range, which will reportedly include true R-badged crossovers and a more extreme version of the Golf R.