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You could get a Cobalt without ABS or Traction control until 2010.
The base model 2011 Nissan Versa didn't have ABS as standard. It didn't come with A/C or a radio, either.

Around that time, Nissan also had a "customer order only" base model Altima with a manual transmission, no A/C, and no radio. But I have seen no proof of any of those ever existing. Later they upgraded it with a CVT and A/C, but still no radio as standard. I've seen at least one of those, with an aftermarket radio added to it.
 

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2018 VW Jetta SE 1.4T 5-speed manual
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Last Honda with "beep-beep-beep-beep" (letter H in Morse code) door chime: 2015 Pilot.
Speaking of which, do any cars still use a mechanical bell door chime? (Not a speaker playing a recording of a bell -- an actual bell struck by a tiny hammer.) That was one of the few things I actually liked about my 2007 Kia Rio.

And likewise, do any cars still use a mechanical relay clicking as their turn signal indicator noise, instead of a little speaker playing an imitation of it?

But I realize this is super-geeky and most people won't realize the difference... except for the cars which get cute and play a "musical" turn signal indicator noise, like on the Chevy Cobalt where it sounded like the Casio keyboard in Trio's "Da Da Da".

 

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^ I briefly flirted with the idea of a XFE at one point (had 155 hp which was solid back then and a super-tall 5th gear that let it turn like 2700 at 80 MPH). Plus 37 MPG highway was the best non-diesel hwy MPG back then IIRC.

ABS was optional on the Yaris prior to 2009. I tried to buy one a few times back then but could never find one so equipped and the dealers and regional distributor here were not interested in spec'ing one out for me. The LRR 175mm tires mine came with were skid-a-thons in the rain so I am glad to have it -- though it is much MUCH better with its current H-rated 175/65-15 Michelin summer tires (from the base Mini).
 

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Does the current Lada Niva still offer a hand crank starting option? Most people think of this as a 1920s thing, but foreign cars, particularly French ones, had an emergency crank start into the 60s and 70s pretty commonly.



 

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Discussion Starter #85
Does the current Lada Niva still offer a hand crank starting option? Most people think of this as a 1920s thing, but foreign cars, particularly French ones, had an emergency crank start into the 60s and 70s pretty commonly.
Oh that's amazing.
 

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I don't think I saw this mentioned but what was the last car sold in the US with a vent window? So nice to get gobs of fresh air scooped into the cabin.

 

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Does the current Lada Niva still offer a hand crank starting option? Most people think of this as a 1920s thing, but foreign cars, particularly French ones, had an emergency crank start into the 60s and 70s pretty commonly.
The Brits did this as well into the 70ies.



And Toyota did as well.



The Russians might have kept that around the longest.
 

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Does the current Lada Niva still offer a hand crank starting option? Most people think of this as a 1920s thing, but foreign cars, particularly French ones, had an emergency crank start into the 60s and 70s pretty commonly.
nerd comment: I've read that pushing down for the crank (first video) is wrong and pulling up to crank is right (2nd video) because if the car should backfire it just pulls the crank out of your hand rather than breaking an arm. :peace:

I'm not sure how inserting a crank into the grille of your Valiant to pull start a 318 would go over though. Maybe that's why American cars gave up on this so soon. :laugh:
 

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13” wheels will probably be the Geo/Chevy Metro. Wire wheel covers will be the last year of the Olds 88, was it 1999 or 2000? My Grandpa was an Olds guy, and had a string of 88’s growing up, although his last one was an LSS, which was superseded by an ‘01 Aurora when they stopped making the 88.

Last car with manual steering? I know early NB Miatas had manual steering, but I think the Lotus Elise also had manual steering (were any of them power?) so I’ll go with that as my final answer.

The VW Fox (1987-1993) had manual steering and no power window option.
 

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The Metro would actually be the last car with 12" wheels, tied with the Subaru Justy (1994 model year). The last 13" wheels in the USDM were on the 2005 Hyundai Accent.

Very close on the Olds 88, but it was a different H-body, the 1999 LeSabre. Olds dropped the wire wheel covers in the mid-90s when they tried to move the cars in a more sporty direction.

For manual steering, the last one I know is the 2011 Kia Rio. It looks like 2011 was also the last year for a road-legal Lotus Elise in the US (fueleconomy.gov has no listings after that year) so those two may be tied for that one, unless someone comes up with something newer.

I'm not sure about manual brakes, but I'm thinking it must be something in the '80s...maybe the Chevette?

-Andrew L
I'm shocked the Rio kept manual steering until 2011. Of course the Smart and the Elise kept it, being more specialized.

The Subaru Justy has the distinction of the last carburated car sold in the US.



In the U.S., there were manual gearboxes with no synchromesh on first gear until 1972 in cars and until 1976 in light-duty trucks:

https://www.curbsideclassic.com/aut...ronized-first-gear-grinding-gears-until-1976/

It's no wonder why Americans so overwhelmingly started favoring automatic transmissions in the '60s and '70s, if they had to put up with that!

By the early 1980s, American manual transmissions (in non-sports models) were still so cumbersome that even taxi drivers in Iraq rejected them:

https://www.curbsideclassic.com/blog/automotive-history-snapshot-1981-chevrolet-malibu-iraqi-taxi/
Another Curbside Classic fan:thumbup:.

I posted a thread last year arguing that the main reason Americans switched over to automatics so quickly was because Detroit kept 3 speeds (with wide ratios and an unsynchronized 1st) around for far too long, and even when 4s were available they were a pricey option that few people bothered with. The 3 speed (with a syncro with 2/3) was basically what Ford had as far back as the 1932 B/18.

https://forums.vwvortex.com/showthread.php?9316341-The-REAL-reason-manual-transmissions-died-out-in-the-US
 
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