Yesterday, BMW's financial chief, Nicolas Peter, the company will drop manual-transmission versions of the 2-Series in the U.S. to cut costs and fund R&D. The 2-Series is our favorite new BMW coupe you can buy today, so we were a little worried to hear it might be losing its manual gearshift.
So we reached out to BMW North America to set the record straight, and a spokesperson assured us the manual-equipped 2-Series is alive and well—for now, at least. Here's what he said:
Nicolas Peter’s, Board Member BMW AG for Finance, talked about the need to reduce the number of variants BMW produces and described the process where BMW continuously evaluates its model portfolio and optional equipment offerings to determine if they are needed to satisfy customer demands. As part of the discussion, he used the 2 Series Coupe with a manual transmission as a hypothetical example. This 2 Series example has been incorrectly reported as a fact.
However since the manual transmission is still a popular option with our 2 Series core enthusiast customers we can assure you that the manual transmission has not been dropped from the option list for the US market. In fact, we recently announced the updated 2 Series Coupe and Convertible, both of which are available with manual transmission.
So BMW NA claims Peter's statement was merely a hypothetical, and that we have nothing to worry about with the current 2-series. But that's not the whole story. What about the next-generation 2-Series?
In a statement given to , BMW said it "cannot speculate on the availability of a manual transmission on future generations of the 2 Series."
It is possible Peter was talking about the next-gen 2-Series, not the current one. He referred to dropping the manual as a way to cut the cost of certifying components, meaning the current car—which has already been certified for U.S. roads—was never in danger of losing the manual. The future car—which has yet to be certified—could still see the stick shift cut to save money.
We'll find out for sure the first time we sit in the next generation 2-series.