BMW Maintains Manual Transmission in Face of Peaking Gas Car Sales

Clutch pedal to remain in M2, M3, and M4 models for foreseeable future.

In a recent announcement, BMW’s Chief Financial Officer, Walter Mertl, indicated a notable change in the company’s sales trends. According to Mertl, the turning point for sales of cars with traditional combustion engines has been exceeded and he highlighted that electric vehicles are now leading the way in driving the majority of the brand’s sales expansion.

Mertl predicts that the current plateau in sales of combustion cars will continue and eventually decrease. He believes that this is a result of upcoming environmental regulations that will limit the purchase of traditional vehicles. This issue affects various regions, including China, the European Union, and certain states in the US, leading car companies to feel mounting urgency to speed up the process of designing and manufacturing electric vehicles.

BMW has successfully navigated through the obstacles presented by the automotive industry and achieved a noteworthy accomplishment of commanding a 15 percent market share for all-electric vehicles in the last twelve months. The i4 M50, a flagship offering from BMW M, has been a top-selling product for the second year in a row, showcasing the brand’s resilience and popularity. Looking towards the future, BMW has set an ambitious goal of capturing a third of the market with electric vehicles by introducing six innovative models under the Neue Klasse EV lineup. The first of these models, a compact SUV similar in size to the X3, is expected to hit the markets in 2025.

According to Mertl, BMW’s profitability for both traditional and electric vehicles will not be in sync until at least 2026. He cited the significant expenses involved in implementing advanced battery technologies into future models as the main reason for this gap.

In spite of the growing trend towards electric cars, BMW remains dedicated to marketing cars with manual transmissions. The corporation has officially stated that the current line of M2, M3, and M4 models will still be equipped with manual gearshifts. In response to inquiries about the proportion of manual gearbox purchases, BMW informed TopGear that approximately 15 to 20 percent of M3 and M4 units were sold with the traditional three-pedal setup, while an even larger percentage opted for the manual option on the M2.

Source: Reuters

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