We are buying more automatic cars than ever, according to new research published today.
The increased uptake of automatics means the gap between new-car manual and automatic has narrowed considerably in the last five years, vehicle data expert Cartell.ie says.
In the case of first-time Irish registered cars, the number of automatics has gone from 18,831 new purchases in 2015 to 36,286 vehicles last year - a near doubling of the genre.
Over the same period, manual transmission vehicles have fallen from 106,837 to 77,183.
And for this year the ratio of manual to automatic comes in at under 2-to-1. That reads: 25,474 manuals compared with 14,166 automatics.
According to Cartell.ie, there are several reasons for the increase:
* Manufacturers including automatic as standard in new luxury cars;
* Even though they can be more expensive, more people are viewing automatics as easier to drive;
* Most electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) have automatic transmissions as standard;
* There are also now negligible differences in emissions between the two transmission types.
Cartell's John Byrne says: "It's interesting to see how popular automatic transmissions have become. Automatics are easier to function and many current variants are incredibly intuitive.
"The days of the manual are not gone but remember that electric vehicles (EVs) generally require automatic transmission so as we phase towards EVs we can expect the growth in automatics to continue."