Looking to buy a new car with a stick-shift? You'll have to pick one of these.
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Good news: the sporty Buick Verano offers a six-speed manual transmission. Bad news: If you want it, you'll have to purchase the Premium Turbo Group, which adds $8,240 to the sticker and reduces your fuel mileage by one mpg on the highway.
The Chevrolet Spark was redesigned for 2016, and at $13,535, it's one of the cheapest cars available. The Spark comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission, but if you expect to get the 41 mpg that's splashed all over the Spark page on the Chevy website, you have to buy the Continuously Variable Transmission, and it adds $1,100 — an eight percent increase — to the price tag. In the 2015 model, the automatic transmission was only $500.
The Sonic is all new for 2017 and doesn't go on sale until the fall of 2016. For the 2016 model year, though, Sonic Sedan or Hatchback have a standard five-speed manual transmission. Manual and automatic transmissions both offer the same 26 city/35 highway fuel economy.
The Chevrolet Cruze is standard with a six-speed manual transmission in the lowest L trim, saving $2,500 off the price of the the cheapest automatic in the Cruze LS. Fuel economy in the manual is better, at 25 city/36 highway, versus 22 city/35 highway. The Cruze is also available in a hatchback for the 2017 model year.
All Dart trims, including the lowest-priced Dodge Dart SE, have standard manual transmissions. Unfortunately, to get the full 28 city/41 highway fuel mileage, you have to step up to the Aero trim, which costs $4,000 more. The SE comes in at 26 city/36 highway. The Dart and its stablemate, the Chrysler 200, will be cancelled some time after 2017.
If you're a manual fan on a budget, the Fiat 500 could be your car. All Fiat 500 models (including the cabriolets) are equipped with a five-speed manual transmission as standard equipment. The Pop, Sport and Lounge trims all offer the best fuel economy with the stick, at 31 city/40 highway.
The benefit of the 500L over the smaller 500 is that its standard-across-the-board manual transmission gets a sixth speed. Every 500L trim charts its fuel mileage at 25 city/33 highway.
The Ford Fiesta comes standard with a five-speed stick in the cheapest S trim. To get the best fuel economy of 31 city/43 highway, you'll need the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine, which is available only on the SE trim, at $1,230 more.
The Ford Focus starts with a manual in the S and SE trims. The pricier Titanium trim gets an automatic as standard equipment.
The Honda Fit comes with an easy-shifting, six-speed manual transmission as standard equipment, but again, if it's fuel mileage you're after, you'll have to opt for the Continuously Variable Transmission that delivers 32 city/41 highway. That adds $800 to the bottom line.
There are seven separate Honda Civic models, each with a half-dozen trim levels. The cheapest way to get a manual is to select the Civic Coupe LX at $18,640, which provides 30 city/39 highway fuel economy. The HF model offers 31 city/41 highway, but it starts at $20,040 and only includes a Continuously Variable Transmission.
In a lot of ways, the Hyundai Accent is an old-school economy car, specifically by offering its best fuel economy (27 city/ 38 highway) with the manual transmission. It's standard on the cheapest Accent trim, the $14,745 GLS.
The redesigned 2017 Hyundai Elantra provides a six-speed manual transmission on its cheapest trim (the SE), but selecting it instead of the automatic results in a one-mpg penalty in both city and highway mileage. To get the automatic, you'll pay a $1,000 price increase.
The sporty Hyundai Veloster is equipped with a six-speed manual transmission at the cheapest price ($18,000). You do suffer a one-mpg penalty, but the automatic rings in at $1,250 more.
Both the LX and EX trims get a six-speed manual transmission as standard, and it offers the best fuel economy (27 city/ 38 highway) the Rio can muster.
The Kia Forte features a six-speed manual as standard equipment, but it suffers a fuel mileage penalty of one mpg city and two mpg highway versus the automatic (26 city/ 39 highway). To get that mileage, the automatic adds $1,710 to the bottom line.
In all trims, the Kia Soul features a six-speed manual transmission as standard. The base trim doesn't suffer a fuel mileage penalty, though the higher trims do provide about a mile per gallon better mileage than the base model's 24 city/ 30 highway.
The Mazda3 is the sportiest sedan in the compact class, and as such is equipped with a six-speed manual transmission in all trims except for the top-line S Touring and S Grand Touring. Both the automatic and the manual provide 41 mpg highway, but the manual gives 29 mpg city, a one-mpg penalty versus the optional automatic.
Mini takes pride in offering manual transmissions on every model it makes, from the base 2-Door Hardtop to the "big" (for Mini) Countryman. The cheapest way to a manual is the Mini Cooper 2-Door Hardtop, with a base price of $20,700. The Cooper's fuel mileage is TBD for the 2016 model year, but the Clubman delivers 28 city/35 highway.
The Mitsubishi Mirage is one of the cheapest way to get anywhere, this side of a Greyhound bus. For $12,995, you get the five-speed manual, but if you want to get the full 37 city/ 44 highway fuel economy, you'll spend another $1,100 for the CVT.
The Mitsubishi Lancer is entering its final year, but for 2016, it still provides the Lancer ES with a five-speed manual transmission. Selecting the CVT does increase city fuel mileage one mpg to 26, but the highway mileage stays the same at 34. Like the Mirage, the Lancer CVT costs $1,100.
Undercutting the Mitsubishi Mirage by a thousand bucks, the Nissan Versa is the cheapest car in America. The S starts at $11,900 and provides a five-speed manual. However, you won't enjoy the Versa's optimal fuel economy of 31 city/40 highway unless you pony up for the CVT.
The Versa Note is the more stylish, five-door hatch version of the Versa, and it also offers a five-speed manual transmission, but only on the bottom-feeder S trim level. Every other trim comes with the Xtronic CVT, with a $1,250 boost in the price tag.
The Sentra S starts at $16,480 with a six-speed manual, and it's rated for 27 city/ 36 highway fuel economy. To get 30 city/ 40 highway, you'll be stepping up to the FE+ S, which only offers a CVT and adds $1,250 to the price tag.
For the moment, Scion still exists. The Scion xB provides a five-speed manual as standard equipment. It delivers exactly the same mileage as the optional sequential automatic transmission. The base price for the xB is $17,915.
The sportier Scion tC starts off with a six-speed manual as the base transmission. It also offers a six-speed automatic, but both transmissions deliver the same fuel economy. The tC starts at $20,005.
The Subaru Impreza provides a five-speed manual transmission as standard, but the mileage is significantly less that that offered by the optional CVT. The manual provides 25 city/ 34 highway, while the CVT bumps that up to 28 city/ 37 highway. The CVT adds $1,000.
Toyota's entry-level Yaris is $14,845 with the five-speed manual transmission. It provides slightly better highway fuel economy than the automatic at 37 mpg, but the same 30 mpg estimate for city fuel mileage.
The Corolla offers a manual transmission as standard equipment in the L trim, but it's not the way to get the best fuel mileage. In order to get the LE Eco's 30 city/ 42 highway fuel economy, you're at $19,064 with a CVT, versus the Corolla L at $17,230.
It's good to know that the Volkswagen Beetle still offers a manual transmission as standard equipment, as we haven't seen one in the test fleet for some time. The base price is $20,695 and it offers the same 24 city/ 33 highway fuel economy as the automatic.