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Shifter Is a Benchmark - 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Convertible Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,059
edited February 2016 in Mazda
imageShifter Is a Benchmark - 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Convertible Long-Term Road Test

The shifter in our long-term 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata is one of the best out there.

Read the full story here


Comments

  • ebeaudoinebeaudoin NE IllinoisPosts: 509
    Interesting! I didn't know there were two types. I guess it makes sense- there are automatic shifters that are only linked to the transmission by computer (a vast majority of cars these days are this way.)
  • reminderreminder Posts: 383
    If you want an organic, old school gear swapping experience try a Muncie 4-speed.
    AKA 'The Rock Crusher'
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    So two things. One, since the transmissions are basically the same, does that mean that you could put the direct shift linkage off a Viper onto the manual transmission of a Mustang GT?

    Second, this sort of hearkens back to the old adage about the best buggy whip manufacturer ever. When cars started getting popular, sales of horse-drawn buggies started declining. Eventually, companies that made buggy whips started failing. The last ones to die were either the ones that made the best product, or the ones that made really horrible ones that were cheap to manufacture. This is sort of the deal with manual transmissions. Due to the fact that they're such a declining product (percentage wise, it's very low), its sort of like the manual is reaching it's zenith. It's hard to find a vehicle that offers a manual. Sad to say.
  • So two things. One, since the transmissions are basically the same, does that mean that you could put the direct shift linkage off a Viper onto the manual transmission of a Mustang GT?


    It's unlikely. Direct shift linkage is physically limited as far as shifter placement, i.e. the shifter can only be mounted on the given location of the transmission and where it ends up inside the car is not adjustable. So if the tail of the transmission in the Mustang ends somewhere near your ankles, you're not going to get that shifter to work.
  • 5vzfe5vzfe Posts: 161


    Second, this sort of hearkens back to the old adage about the best buggy whip manufacturer ever. When cars started getting popular, sales of horse-drawn buggies started declining. Eventually, companies that made buggy whips started failing. The last ones to die were either the ones that made the best product, or the ones that made really horrible ones that were cheap to manufacture. This is sort of the deal with manual transmissions. Due to the fact that they're such a declining product (percentage wise, it's very low), its sort of like the manual is reaching it's zenith. It's hard to find a vehicle that offers a manual. Sad to say.

    In the U.S. that is. Other countries get all sorts of cool cars with manual transmissions. In some European countries, if you take your driver's license test in a car with an automatic, you are not legally allowed to drive a manual equipped car - but taking the test in with a stick grants you the right to drive both.
  • boffboff Posts: 91
    edited February 2016

    So two things. One, since the transmissions are basically the same, does that mean that you could put the direct shift linkage off a Viper onto the manual transmission of a Mustang GT?

    Second, this sort of hearkens back to the old adage about the best buggy whip manufacturer ever. When cars started getting popular, sales of horse-drawn buggies started declining. Eventually, companies that made buggy whips started failing. The last ones to die were either the ones that made the best product, or the ones that made really horrible ones that were cheap to manufacture. This is sort of the deal with manual transmissions. Due to the fact that they're such a declining product (percentage wise, it's very low), its sort of like the manual is reaching it's zenith. It's hard to find a vehicle that offers a manual. Sad to say.

    The GT and GT350 use different transmissions than the Viper et al. The old GT500 did use the T6060 though, I believe. The aftermarket has come up with many products to convert the remote, body-mounted shifter on the GT to a transmission-mounted. From a simple bracket (e.g. Blowfish) to an entirely new shifter assembly (e.g. MGW), they do seem to make an enormous improvement on the sloppy and imprecise feel of the stock shifter. But note that they still retain the external linkage to shift the gears. Therefore, I think that it should be clarified that it is not the external linkage that is the problem; rather it is the mounting of the shifter to the body versus the transmission. When the shifter is mounted to the body, you get deflections under load in the transmission relative to the shifter that can muck up shifts. And Ford fits the GT shifter with an embarrassingly chintzy shifter bushing of very soft rubber zip-tied to a bit of pressed aluminum. There is correspondingly a bunch of much stouter aftermarket bushings available (though they can increase NVH).
  • nagantnagant Posts: 176
    reminder said:

    If you want an organic, old school gear swapping experience try a Muncie 4-speed.
    AKA 'The Rock Crusher'

    I had a buddy in high school with a 69 SS396 Chevelle and when it was cold you almost had to kick it with your foot to get it out of gear. He finally learned to keep it in neutral when parked in the winter (he had a flat driveway) and let it warm up about 15 minutes before driving.
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