Yes. Under Shopping cart price rules, you can setup a promotion with a rule that says if a product is by a specific manufacturer, it gets free shipping.
1. In your Magento Admin Panel, go to:
Promotions -> Shopping Cart Price Rules
2. Click “Add New Rule” button in the top right corner.
3. Click “Actions” in the left column.
At the bottom of the right column you should see a section with this title
“Apply the rule only to cart items matching the following conditions (leave blank for all items)”
Assuming you’ve already made the Manufacturer attribute....
4. Click the green plus button.
5. Find Manufacturer under “Product Attribute”
6. Make sure it reads: Manufacturer is ...
7. Click on the ... and select the first manufacturer that gets free shipping.
Repeat 4 -> 7 for each manufacturer. Leaving out any that don’t get free shipping.
8. At the top of this page, change “Free Shipping” to yes.
9. Go back to the “Rule information” page (left column for link) and fill out the rule details. (Remember! No coupon.)
Now you should have free shipping on any product that uses a listed Manufacturer.