In the more innocent National Stick Shift Days of yore, celebrating the joys of a manual transmission meant emphasizing the sensile pleasures and rewards of three-pedal operation. Though that remains as true as ever in 2020, the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic mean that there’s another, more practical way to view manuals: In addition to being a theft deterrent, manual transmissions are often the cheapest available option in a car’s transmission lineup. Knowing how to drive one may feel like a luxury, but paying for one doesn’t have to be.
Related: How to Drive a Manual Transmission
Sure, there are plenty of ways to readily unload cash that may be burning a hole in your pocket on a manual — have you considered an Aston Martin Vantage or BMW M4 lately? — but if money is the only object, the good news is that there are still several stick shift cars available at cheap prices.
We ran some reports to determine which vehicles offer manual transmissions (that require a clutch full time, none of this semi-automatic balderdash) for the 2020 model year, then whittled the list down further by price. Interested in a manual but don’t want to break the bank? Here are the most affordable options as you shop: