Manual transmissions are dying off, but they might survive into the electric vehicle era.
Toyota Motor Corp. filed eight patents this month for mechanisms that allow an EV to simulate stick-shifting. The system is designed to be comforting for drivers who are used to manual gearboxes or just enjoy the feel of one, according to The Drive.
The system uses "pseudo-clutch" and "pseudo-shifter" inputs to adjust the electric motor's torque and a third pedal that can push back on the driver's foot and vibrate to imitate the feel of a real clutch. The electric motor can even make the vehicle feel like it's stalling — without the potential danger of actually doing so.
Toyota is not the only automaker looking at ways to keep stick shifts alive as the industry evolves.
Ford Motor Co., in a 2018 filing published last November, has patented a manual transmission with an electric clutch, Ford Authority reported this month.