2020 Subaru Legacy: Does it Come with a Manual Transmission?

If you’re in the market for a new sedan, you may be wondering if the 2020 Subaru Legacy comes with a manual transmission. The answer is no. Despite previous generations of the Legacy offering a manual transmission option, the 2020 model is only available with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). In this article, we’ll explore the reasons behind Subaru’s decision to eliminate the manual transmission option, discuss the benefits and drawbacks of CVT technology, and provide some alternatives for drivers who prioritize a manual transmission.

Key Takeaways

  • The 2020 Subaru Legacy does not come with a manual transmission.
  • Subaru eliminated the manual transmission option in the Legacy due to low demand and to focus on technological advancements.
  • The CVT in the 2020 Legacy offers improved fuel efficiency and smoother acceleration compared to traditional automatic transmissions.
  • Drivers who prioritize a manual transmission can consider alternatives such as the Subaru WRX or the Mazda3.

Why Did Subaru Eliminate the Manual Transmission Option in the Legacy?

Subaru’s decision to eliminate the manual transmission option in the Legacy was largely based on low demand. In an interview with Car and Driver, Subaru of America CEO Tom Doll stated that the company was only selling approximately 1% of Legacy models with a manual transmission. This low demand made it difficult for Subaru to justify the cost of manufacturing and marketing the manual transmission option.

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In addition to low demand, Subaru’s decision to eliminate the manual transmission option in the Legacy was also influenced by the company’s focus on technological advancements. CVT technology has improved significantly in recent years, and Subaru has invested in improving the efficiency and performance of their CVT transmissions. By focusing on CVT technology, Subaru can offer drivers improved fuel efficiency and smoother acceleration, as well as advanced features such as adaptive cruise control and lane centering.

What Are the Benefits and Drawbacks of CVT Technology?

While some drivers may prefer a manual transmission, the CVT in the 2020 Subaru Legacy offers several benefits compared to traditional automatic transmissions. One of the biggest advantages of a CVT is improved fuel efficiency. Unlike traditional automatic transmissions, which use a fixed number of gears to transmit power to the wheels, a CVT uses a system of pulleys and belts to continuously adjust the ratio of engine speed to wheel speed. This means that the engine can operate at its most efficient speed at all times, resulting in improved fuel economy.

Another benefit of a CVT is smoother acceleration. Because there are no fixed gears, a CVT can provide seamless acceleration without the jerking or jolting that can occur with traditional automatic transmissions. This can make for a more comfortable driving experience, especially in stop-and-go traffic.

However, there are some drawbacks to CVT technology as well. One common criticism of CVTs is that they can feel unresponsive or "sluggish" compared to traditional automatic transmissions. This is because the engine speed does not always correspond directly with the vehicle’s speed, which can make the car feel less connected to the driver. Additionally, some drivers may find the lack of engine noise during acceleration to be disconcerting or unsatisfying.

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What Are Some Alternatives for Drivers Who Prioritize a Manual Transmission?

If you’re a driver who prioritizes a manual transmission, there are still several options available to you. One alternative to the Subaru Legacy is the Subaru WRX, which is a performance-oriented sedan that comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission. The WRX also features a turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive, making it a popular choice among driving enthusiasts.

Another option for drivers who prioritize a manual transmission is the Mazda3. While the Mazda3 is not available with all-wheel drive like the Legacy and WRX, it does come with a six-speed manual transmission as standard on the base model. The Mazda3 also offers impressive fuel economy and a stylish, modern design.

Conclusion

While the 2020 Subaru Legacy does not come with a manual transmission, the car’s CVT technology offers several benefits in terms of fuel efficiency and smooth acceleration. Drivers who prioritize a manual transmission can consider alternatives such as the Subaru WRX or the Mazda3. Ultimately, the decision between a manual transmission and a CVT comes down to personal preference and driving style.

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Billy Covington

With a passion for all things automotive, Billy is our go-to expert on Subaru performance upgrades and modifications. He's been featured in several car magazines and blogs, and his extensive knowledge and expertise make him a valuable member of our team. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys playing guitar and writing music.

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