BMW has confirmed at the Detroit Auto show that, like its predecessor M5 V10, the new sports sedan will again offer owners the option of a six-speed manual transmission for North American owners of the upcoming 2013 BMW M5.
The six-speed manual will be available from the start of production this summer and will be offered as a no-cost alternative to the standard seven-speed M-DCT (M-Double Clutch Transmission).
The manual gearbox was apparently a popular choice for US customers of the previous generation M5 and continues to be a unique offering in the segment. Originally, BMW AG was intent on supplying the car without a manual option, but US customers demanded a stick-shift and were rewarded with it.
Although the six-speed gearbox has one less gear than the M-DCT transmission, the ratios have been optimized for acceleration, flexibility and fuel economy. Final drive ratio and special M differential are maintained. The new transmission is mated to a short-throw shift linkage topped with a black leather backlit shift knob.
The 2013 M5 will arrive at US BMW Centers in late summer 2012. Pricing, options and specifications will be released closer to the on-sale date.