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America's 2019 Volkswagen GTI Won't Ditch The Manual

Scoop / 3 Comments

Unlike in Australia. Sorry about that, Down Under.

A few days ago, it came to our attention that the 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI will lose its six-speed manual transmission option in Australia. Carsales reported VW will only sell the 2019 GTI with the more powerful Performance Edition, which features an upgraded 2.0-liter turbo four and the seven-speed dual-clutch DSG transmission as standard. A few other upgrades, such as the Golf R's electro-mechanical front differential and ventilated front and rear disc brakes, will also be included. But the six-speed manual is gone Down Under.

That made us wonder if the same will be in store for the US market 2019 GTI. We reached out to Volkswagen USA product and technology communications manager Mark Gillies who confirmed that "As things currently stand, the US market is due to have both DSG and manuals on the 2019 GTI." This makes sense given the manual (which comes standard) take rate is pretty high, about a 60/40 split in favor of the DSG, according to Gillies. Through April, US GTI sales are comparable to the same time last year. Furthermore, overall 2017 sales saw around a 30 percent sales decrease from the previous year.

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However, 2016 saw the greatest number of GTIs sold in America since 2010, according to GoodCarBadCar. The current seventh generation Golf is due to arrive next year, but will likely launch first in Europe. Expect 2020 to be its first model year in the US. And yes, a new GTI will soon follow, and based on the current popularity of the manual transmission (at least in the US), it will likely stick around.