According to BMW M GmbH President Frank van Meel, the high performance unit has decided to officially retire the manual transmission option from the M5 and M6 series.
According to the executive “demand had dropped to zero” for the six-speed manual transmission in the M6 and the box has also been a slow seller in the M5 so there’s no more business case for producing it for the models – which will occur when the current model year versions go out of production this fall. While the decision to axe the manual transmission on the M5 and M6 may seem harsh, van Meel said the company is not looking to retire the gearbox option entirely – “On M2, M3, and M4, the manual transmission will stay.”
This is not really surprising since the models were only available exclusively with the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission in most markets – though it’s sure to make some fans angry, especially since Porsche for example has backtracked from such decisions with the 911 R for example. On the other hand the auto box is a tad quicker than the manual counterpart and the M5 goes to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 4.2 seconds with the dual-clutch and the manual is a tenth of a second slower. By the way, the company is looking to enhance the M5 and the new model is scheduled for an unveil sometimes next year packing an updated 4.4-liter M TwinPower Turbo V8 engine delivering up to 626 horsepower.
Via Car & Driver