Of the three main vehicle markets in the developed world, Europe remains unique in that more than 85% of passenger cars (and an even higher proportion of light commercial vehicles) are sold with manual transmission. Although automatic transmissions are gaining a greater market share, especially in northern Europe (Germany, the UK, Benelux and Scandinavia) consumer resistance remains strong. Motorists with an interest in performance prefer changing gear for themselves, while those more concerned with economy still believe that - quite apart from their initial extra cost - automatic transmissions deliver inferior economy.
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