I consider myself a car guy. I also consider myself a jalop. I've owned six cars and exactly one of those have had a clutch pedal. I don't dislike the manual, but I also don't seek them out. I just don't care. And here's why.
My first car was a 1983 Datsun 280ZX with a three-speed automatic courtesy of Borg Warner. Now were that car to show up on a NPoCP article on the front page, the commenters would cry and rage for a 5-speed to replace the auto-tragic.
But here's the thing: I loved that car. Probably one of my favorite cars ever. And that's because I love the experience of the car. I love the way a car looks, smells and sounds. How a car drives is only a part of the overall experience for me. I know some people only care about pure speed and for those people, C5 Corvettes and Nissan GTR's are over thattaway —->
I don't feel like a transmission can make a car fun or not fun. The car does that. I'm tired of hearing people say "but it's a manual!" about their otherwise dull car. A manual transmission is like a bikini: It makes hot girls look hotter but you can't make an unattractive girl look attractive by getting her to wear a bikini. In the same way, I don't think you can slap a clutch pedal on a humdrum car and make it a driving revelation.
I'm just tired of people acting like a manual is some secret elixr that can transform a car. It makes some cars more fun but I just don't care that much. i care much more about the car that shifter is surrounded by.
End of rant.