When we talk about the now departed E90/E92 BMW M3 models, we can start to see a certain trend concerning the transmission choices of the buyers.
And it seems that automatic is gaining the upper hand on the manual gear box.
While the preferences have been evolving over the years, it is only once the facelifted version of the M3 that the automatic became more popular than the manual.
When looking at the numbers, it is all obvious: before the facelift, on their E90 BMW M3 2080 people went for the manual gear box while only 200 chose the DTC automatic. The E92 BMW M3 was a bit more balanced, with 3707 buyers going for the manual and 3793 for the automatic.
But once BMW went and restyled the M3, the new LCI model saw increased demand for the automatic. Thus, the E90 BMW M3 was requested with 1055 manual transmissions and 2532 automatic. The E92 version saw an even greater difference, with 2528 manuals and 5771 automatic transmissions.
If the pattern holds, we can expect manual transmissions to become unavailable or at the very best and optional feature on the next M3 and M4 models.