Porsche says it won't build hybrids with manual transmissions

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Fancy a hybridized Porsche with a manual transmission? Not so fast, says the German luxury and sports car maker. At the debut of the 2019 Porsche Cayenne, the brand said it won’t build any hybrid vehicles equipped with a manual gearbox.

Road and Track spoke with Dr. Gernot Döllner, who is vice president of the Panamera line, but also worked as an engineer on the Panamera Hybrid and 918 projects. He told the publication that manual transmissions and hybrid powertrains simply don’t jive. Automatics and Porsche’s PDK transmissions are the only way to extract efficiency from the hybrids, per Döllner. That means any future performance-oriented Porsche hybrid won’t be available with the enthusiast’s favorite choice of transmission.

We’re thinking of the off-again, on-again Porsche 911 Hybrid, which is reportedly back under consideration. Porsche originally confirmed a 911 with a hybrid powertrain in 2015 but walked back the comments earlier this year. Then, Porsche technical communications manager, Hermann-Josef Stappen, said a 911 Hybrid would be “the best 911 ever” before confirming its future hasn’t been decided. Noting Döllner’s comments, a PDK transmission plopped into a 911 Hybrid would actually serve as an efficiency booster, not just a component for quick shifts.

As the industry moves toward more hybrid powertrains and electrification in general, it’s likely the manual gearbox will become an even more obscure option, but we likely won’t see it disappear altogether for quite some time.

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