Is driving a standard car really that difficult?

My boyfriend and my best friend that's a girl both drive standard cars. I love them! I think it's so neat that you have to shift and do all that fancy stuff.

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I learned how to drive one sort of, a while back with an old Volkswagen Bug with my dad, but I was nervous and didn't really learn anything.

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Can someone tell me how to possibly drive one without showing me in real life?

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Oh and another question. If you were to move the shifter accidentally without having your foot on the clutch, would it change gears, or even move at all?

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I think standard cars are SO awesome. Any websites or tips or anything would be really cool. Anything you wanna tell me, go ahead! =)


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No substitute for doing it, but it's not that hard.

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It's very tactile. You feel what's going on with the car. You feel how you're letting out the clutch vs. how the car is accelerating. You feel if the gear has gone in correctly. Etc.

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If you try to move the shifter without your foot on the clutch, it resists in a way you'll instantly feel is wrong. So you learn to not push very hard, and feel the tactile feedback.

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Yeah they get better fuel economy and some say are fun to drive. Here's a weird thing. Michigan is totally flat and 95% of the cars are automatics (no sticks hardly.) San Francisco is crazy hilly and hard to park in, and 50% of the cars are sticks. Go figure that one out!

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Anyway, sticks are dying. It'll all be hybrid in another 10 years, or whatever comes after that.

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Just something you have to do to learn. The best way is to practice in traffic and don't be afraid.

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i love driving a manual might seem hard at first, but once you get the hang of it, it's totally easy.

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I remember the first car I purchased was a stick shift. I couldn't even drive it out of the showroom for fear of laying rubber on the showroom floor. I remember after about 200 miles, I was eating, smoking and driving at the same time..

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But in the beginning, I was really concentrating (no radio, totally focused) ahhhh the good ol days!

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Professional rally drivers can change gears without using the clutch, because their timing is right on the spot. But don't do it because it can screw up your clutch and you will be whopping around $1000AUD just to get it fixed. Also, do not ride the clutch, meaning holding down the clutch while the car is moving for a set period of time. This will wear out the clutch, thus getting it fixed. I self taught (most of the time) driving a manual and it's better fun than a boring auto. You can tell when to change gears by the sound of the engine. If your dashboard has a REV meter, i usually change gears every 3000 revs. Make sure you don't get high revs or you'll screw up your engine.

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Your main challenge is up hill starts. I rely on my handbrake when doing hillstarts

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there really not that hard to learn to drive its more about coordination than anything you have to set your mind to work with your feet,and gas pedal all at the same time,really its not hard to do,once you get the general idea of it,you can easily learn it,most people are actually afraid to try it,and that makes them miss out on some fun driving,i like driving one,i have an older model Porsche,944 and its a 5 speed,and it feels good to change gears in it ,you,ll learn it just give it time ,good luck,i hope this helps.

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I didn't think that it was that hard to learn and, like anything else, it just takes practice. Do NOT practice in traffic when you first start driving unless you want to get someone killed. Practice on a parking lot until you have the clutch/shift movements down reasonably well THEN try traffic.
If your foot isn't on the clutch when you move the shift the gears will grind and make a terrible noise, but the gears won't shift. Your foot has to be on the clutch for the gears to disengage so they can shift to another gear. Believe me, when you hear the gears grind you will get the message to put it back in gear really quick.

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It compares to riding a bicycle. You have to learn and then it's easy. That's the only way to learn.

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If you move the gear shift you can knock it out of gear.
I used to shift all the time without the clutch, but there is a trick to it. You have to let the engine idle down and then throw it in gear when the transmission speed equals the engine speed. It's not really good on the synchronizers but you can get away with it for years if you do it right.

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i have no clue how to drive one! 4 different people have tried to teach me, but they give up after a couple hours of me killing the car after moving a few feet. the last time i got to going around and around in circles going fast and slow, but when i tried to go out of the little parking lot i always killed it. lol- good luck and i hope you get it down!!

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Driving a standard shift vehicle can seem hard at first.But with a patient and experienced driver.You too can learn in a short time.Remember when you first learned to ride a two wheeled bicycle?You had to learn to make the contolling an extension of your body by manipulating the pedals and handle bars.Now, just find an abandoned or empty Parking Lot and have fun learning.DO NOT DRIVE in traffic while attempting to learn.Once you are pleased with yourself.Then try to drive in light traffic like back streets first until you are comfortable with this kind of driving.Oh yes, if you accidently knock it out of gear with your foot off the clutch pedal.It will only go into the neutral position.It would only grind if you force it to go into gear without your foot on the clutch.Although it is possible to drive without using the clutch pedal.But only experienced drivers should attempt this.The transmission has to be a synchromesh type.

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Driving a standard is like dancing.What it is you do while lifting your left foot up off the clutch you slowly push down your right foot on the gas.You will feel pressure increase while your foot coming up off the clutch and you will learn by the feeling on how much gas to add.About it accidentally changing gears its possible depending on your speed and what gear.Practice in a safe place away from traffic maybe a empty parking lot.You need somewhere to practice stop and go's until you feel comfortable.GOOD LUCK

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no not really as you probably found out with the vw. it just takes practice and determination. Some good sites for cars 1969 to 1975 and also earlier and later years:

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perhaps you can get a car with a tiptronic transmission this way you can drive automatic and manual.

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Its not difficult but no one can show you You have to do it.If you moved the shifter without your foot on the clutch the engine would stall you would also get a grinding noise from the gear box.Mick UK

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Driving a standard gets very old after awhile. Especially in rush hour traffic.
Somtimes when you hit the shifter while it can pop out of gear, but this usually only happens if your not giving it any gas. Normally it will just make a grinding sound and stay in gear.
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