Will manual gearboxes still be available as standard equipment on future supercars? Will they even be an available option? One expert thinks there will be no need for the item in the near future. Details inside.

Could manual gearboxes go the way of Betamax and the dodo? Probably not, but one pundit seems to think the technology could disappear from supercars.

Paolo Mantelli, the automotive transmissions chief for Italian manufacturer Oerlikon Graziano, said "There will always be a market for manuals in Europe as long as legislation allows them, but it is interesting that we are now being asked to design AMTs [automated manual transmissions] that don't have a manual option."

The result of Mantelli's research has helped to create lighter weight and faster transmissions that also take up less space and shift more smoothly. Indeed, an Oerlikon Graziano transmission is used in the 700-horsepower Lamborghini Aventador, which races from a standstill to 62 mph (100 km/h) in under three seconds.

"The need for a manual option is disappearing at the supercar end of the market, where we have recently introduced three new transmissions for vehicles that do not have a manual option," Mantelli told just-auto.com.

"It is inevitable that this philosophy will be increasingly reflected in lower cost segments."

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