Cadillac isn't the first to try and unseat BMW's 3-series as the entry-level luxury sports sedan benchmark, and as such, it offered a manual transmission on the 2013 Cadillac ATS. But there seems to be an issue with the three-pedal option, as Cadillac is said to have stopped production of the stick-shift car while it sorts an issue with the gearbox.
According to Motor Trend, the problem has more to do with the subjective performance and feel of the gearbox rather than any technical issues. During a comparison with the new 3-series, Motor Trend staffers found the transmission's throws were imprecise and led to many missed gears. The manual is only offered on one of the engines offered in the ATS, the 2.0-liter, turbo inline four good for 272 horsepower.
The fix is said to involve installing softer bushings in the transmission linkage to improve feel and get rid of the issue.
It's not likely these ill-shifting manual-transmission cars will actually reach customers, as the car in the comparison may have been a pre-production unit. Only auto ATS models are currently on sale and shipping to customers and it's likely Cadillac will address the issue before any manuals are sold.