This is the Last Year You Can Buy a New Full-Sized Pickup Truck With a Manual Transmission

Illustration for article titled This is the Last Year You Can Buy a New Full-Sized Pickup Truck With a Manual Transmission
Image: FCA

The 2018 Ram 2500 will be the last big truck you can buy with a manual transmission. Ram’s three-pedal option is going away for 2019, and every other brand abandoned stick shift for its full-sized trucks a long time ago. It’s not surprising, but it’s still sad.


As of right now, you can order a new Ram 2500 with a 6.7-liter inline six-cylinder Cummins diesel engine and a G56 six-speed manual transmission. You can even pair that powertrain with four-wheel drive and the medium-luxury Laramie trim. I don’t care what anybody’s payload and towing max claims are, to me, what I just described has been King Of The Trucks for as long as it has existed.

Image edited by the author
Image edited by the author
Image: FCA

So while I’m sure the flatbrim folks are already sore from fist bumping over Ram’s “1000 lb-ft of torque” claim announced today, I will solemnly pour out a little diesel on the deck tonight for the death of the stick shift sovereign.

Manual transmissions have not been common in full-sized trucks like the Ford F-Series and such since the 1980s. Well, they’ve never really been common in America since automatics were invented, but relatively speaking. You could spec most trucks with a stick until the ’90s when they basically got relegated to being paired with small engine options as the “cheap” choice in a brand’s lineup, and over the last 10 years they essentially disappeared altogether.

Today, the mid-sized Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier can still both be ordered with a manual transmission, their top engine and four-wheel-drive. Even the mighty 2019 Tacoma TRD Pro can be bought with a stick, as well as the less extreme and much less expensive 2019 Frontier PRO-4X.

You can have the smaller 2019 Chevy Colorado with a manual too, but only in the ultra-lean 2WD four-cylinder base model.


That makes the herd of trucks you can buy stateside, with a stick, pretty darn thin. So I guess if you have $60,000 to spend on a truck right now, you’d be smart to buy a 2018 Ram 2500 manual because you’ll probably be able to resell it for its weight in gold in a few years. If you want evidence of that, check out what a 10-year-old Cummins manual 4x4 with 250,000 miles costs today. If you can find one... it’s a lot.

Jalopnik Staffer from 2013 to 2020, now Editor-In-Chief at Car Bibles


Brad Landers

I fully grok the sports car enthusiast’s love for manual transmissions, but someone talk me through the truck enthusiast’s perspective. Do people drive their trucks seeking a sense of involvement and engagement like I do a sports car?

Edit: This is not a rhetorical question meant to malign the viewpoint of other enthusiasts. I’m curious.