But sales of the Dodge Challenger Hellcat are proving that theory wrong. The 707 horsepower supercharged V8 is available with a 6-speed manual or 8-speed TorqueFlite automatic and what they’re actually selling the most of is the manual transmission.
The manual is outselling the automatic by a ratio of 55/45 according to a new report, which seems like a small edge, but is a big deal considering the expectation was that people would flock to the automatic.
The 6-speed manual comes to the Challenger Hellcat from the Dodge Viper, while the 8-speed is new and was the transmission they used for that NHRA certified quarter mile of 11.2 with stock tires and 10.8 with drag radials.
There’s just something about slamming through those gears on your own that is completely lost with an automatic, and it looks like most Hellcat buyers agree.
The ratios could change over time with most hardcore manual enthusiasts showing up early to get their cars while those who might opt for the automatics still waiting to buy. Either way, buy a Hellcat, and you’re likely to have a very good time no matter the transmission.