Automatic vs. Manual Transmission – Are American’s Lazy?

Alfred Horner Munro invented the first automatic transmission in 1921. According to an article on, General Motors released the first car with automatic transmission, the 1940 Oldsmobile Hydra-Matic. By 1957, 82.7% of American-made cars were built with automatic transmissions.

Cars with manual transmissions have traditionally been more fuel-efficient and are typically cheaper as well, however, only about 4% of car sales in recent years have been for vehicles with this type of transmission.

In his latest installment of Street Smarts, SafeAuto Insurance spokesman, comedian Norm Macdonald stresses this fact with the statistic that 9 out of 10 drivers prefer an automatic transmission to a manual transmission. Norm tells viewers another interesting statistic in his video pertaining to the fact that American’s are lazy. 

While Norm is using humor in his punch line about laziness, Daniel from actually thinks there might be some truth to this. According to his blog post, Daniel states, “Because of all the new technology we have, we’re considered lazy Americans.” Do you feel that American’s are lazy? Tweet us your thoughts on the subject to our Twitter handle, @SafeAuto!

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