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A manual transmission is fun to drive but can be a pain when you are stuck in traffic, especially when your sports car is also your daily driver. What if we say you can have your cake and eat it too? While the idea of paddle shifters is not new, it is currently available only on premium cars, but Master Shift company now can convert your conventional manual transmission sports car to have paddle shifters mounted on the steering wheel.
From a performance stand point, paddle shifters on a manual transmission is a lot quicker than a conventional shift knob. All you have to do is push a button to up-shift and pull the paddle shifter to down-shift. We have seen this technique in race cars, and now in some high-end cars without the clutch pedal by using a dual-clutch system.
Some enthusiast drivers prefer a full automatic transmission, some prefer a mechanical clutch, and there are those who like the “in-between” such as steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters. At the recent 2012 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Master Shift company showed a manual-to-paddle-shift gearbox conversion for the Corvette C6, and it is also available on other American muscle cars and the Porsche 911 as well.
The conversion kit replaces the conventional gear lever with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters while the driver still gets to operate the clutch by foot to activate the gear changes. This process acts like a sequential transmission in race cars. There is no internal modification to the transmission at all. Each kit is designed for a specific vehicle, which uses a pair of electric motors to push and pull the cables connected to the transmission for shifting.
Besides the electronic paddle shifters, there are optional features that can be had with the conversion kit, such as clutch safety, speed safety and neutral/reverse lockout, which all can be programmed with the included software. We don’t have the pricing list for this paddle shifter conversion kit, all we know is that you can install it yourself, but you can find out more details in the videos below.