In a noteworthy incident in Bethesda, Maryland, the efficacy of a manual transmission as a deterrent against theft became evident when three armed carjackers failed to steal a Porsche due to their unfamiliarity with manual shift operations. The victim, Myo Maung, owner of a Bethesda restaurant, was targeted by the assailants as he was leaving his establishment. The attackers, after pistol-whipping Maung and confiscating his keys, attempted to escape in his Porsche 718.
However, the thieves faced an unexpected challenge—they lacked the knowledge to operate a manual transmission. In a dashcam video obtained by Fox 5 DC, the carjackers can be seen struggling to start the Porsche, experiencing delays likely caused by their unfamiliarity with the clutch pedal. Their attempts were marked by multiple stalls, ultimately leading them to abandon the effort and flee in their Nissan, leaving the Porsche behind.
Despite Maung reporting hearing at least one gunshot during the incident, subsequent police investigations found no shell casings, and the video did not capture any gunfire. Although the carjackers successfully escaped, law enforcement is appealing to the public for information, given that the license plate visible in the video may be linked to a stolen or counterfeit vehicle.
While Maung is in the process of recovery from the injuries sustained during the attack, the silver lining in this incident is that his Porsche remained unscathed. The event sheds light on the diminishing familiarity with manual transmissions among drivers, a trend attributed to the automotive industry’s gradual transition away from manual transmissions in favor of automatic alternatives.
The ironic twist in this episode, humorously reminiscent of “Millennial anti-theft device” memes, underscores the occasional accuracy of stereotypes and the unintended protective quality of less common skills, such as the ability to drive a manual vehicle.
As technology evolves, this incident serves as a reminder that certain traditional skills, even ones seemingly mocked in memes, can unexpectedly prove valuable in certain situations.