Absolutely!!!Someone posed this question on one of the facebook groups: If they offered a Canyon/ Colorado Duramax with a 5-6 speed manual transmission, would you buy it?
I marked MAYBE as my answer (YES, NO, MAYBE)
I know how to drive a manual and I am one of the younger generation (born in 1989), but I was raised around agriculture, so I was kind of forced to learn how to drive them later in life for work with our big trucks and some of our work trucks with manuals. I did start off with a 1990 Honda Civic with a 5 speed and then later got a 2000 Honda CR-V with a 5 speed before finally staying with automatics as of late.
In cars, I liked the manual, but driving our work trucks with them (7.3 Powerstroke Diesels btw), I just don't care for them. Especially when you have to haul something. Racing around on back roads in a car, yes. Driving one in a big lumbering truck, not so much. I know our trucks are smaller, but I still don't think I would like it.
What about you?
As far as the MPG gains go, I don't know that a modern auto would do any worse than a manual. I believe that modern automatics have advanced far enough that they outdo manual transmissions on fuel economy because the manufacturer puts a lot of research into trying to figure out what transmission pairs best with the engine to maximize mpgs, hp & torque. I believe this is the reason that Honda no longer offers a manual in the regular Civic models: the Si still comes with a manual (actually, I believe the current Si's are ONLY available in a manual for enthusiast reasons). Their automatic transmission is far more refined than a manual and can hit the right shift points each time. Ford, RAM and GM all abandoned the manual transmission in their diesel trucks because their HD auto transmissions were far superior on maximizing hp & torque coming out of the engine. Here's the article I was reading on that recently https://www.drivingline.com/articles/what-killed-off-the-manual-transmission/Heck Yes I would go for the manual, if it was available. I am still convinced the 6L50 will be/ is the weak link on this truck. If they offered a manual, I wouldn't have the slightest concerns in reliability. Clutches are cheap and maintenance is extremely low for manuals. Finally, the manual would be a crowd pleaser, for those of you trying to maximize fuel economy. All of my VW TDIs have been manuals because the fuel economy is 5 + MPG better and the transmission service interval is 150k miles, compared to 30k on the DSG. Just my two cents.