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• STEP 1: Look at the floorboard; you'll see three pedals. From left to right, they
are: clutch, brake, gas.
• STEP 2: Study the simple diagram on the top of the gearshift, which will show
you where the gears are. In most new cars, this will look like a three-legged H.
First, third and fifth gears are at the tops of the legs; second, fourth and reverse
gears are at the bottoms. The crossbar of the H is neutral.
• STEP 3: Make sure the parking brake is engaged and the car is on a flat surface in
an area where you have plenty of room.
• STEP 4: Press down on the clutch pedal and then move the gearshift into the
neutral position.
• STEP 5: Start the car.
• STEP 6: Keeping the clutch pedal down, put the car into first gear by moving the
gearshift to the top-left position.
• STEP 7: Apply the foot brake and release the parking brake.
• STEP 8: Release the foot brake when you're ready to start moving.
• STEP 9: Begin to release the clutch pedal slowly; when you hear or feel the
engine begin to slow down, slowly press down on the gas pedal as you continue to
release the clutch. The car will start to move forward.
• STEP 10: Accelerate until the car has reached about 3,000 rpm, then take your
foot off the gas, press down on the clutch pedal, and pull the gearshift directly
down through neutral to second gear. Be sure to pull the gearshift down until it
can't go any farther.
• STEP 11: Release the clutch pedal gently, simultaneously pressing down gently
on the gas pedal.
• STEP 12: Repeat the shifting process each time you hit 3,000 rpm until you're
driving at the appropriate speed. (Third gear is up and to the right; fourth gear is
all the way down from there; fifth gear is up to neutral, right and then up again.)
• STEP 13: Downshift by releasing the gas pedal when you want to decrease your
speed. Press down on the clutch and move the gearshift through neutral into the
next-lower gear (move down only one gear at a time). Once you're in the lower
gear, release the clutch slowly and brake as you do so.
• STEP 14: Stop the car by downshifting to second gear and applying the brakes.
Apply the clutch just before the car stops. Don't downshift into first.
• STEP 15: Drive in reverse by following the same steps you would for starting in
first gear. The reverse gear engages more quickly than first gear, however, so be
sure to release the clutch slowly and begin to press the gas pedal as soon as the
car begins to move.

Tips & Warnings

• When you park your car, leave it in gear and set the parking brake. That way, it
won't start rolling as soon as you put it in neutral to start again.
• You'll know you're in the right gear for your speed if the engine is running
smoothly. If it's coughing and sputtering, shift to a lower gear. If the engine noise
pitch is too high, shift to a higher gear.
• Avoid coasting with the clutch all the way down (called "riding the clutch"), as
this will cause needless wear and tear on the clutch. When stopped at a traffic
light, put the gearshift into the neutral position and release the clutch rather than
sitting with the clutch engaged.
• The best way to start out is to find a patient friend or relative who knows how to
drive a stick shift, and practice with him or her in a large, empty parking lot where
you can practice safely.
• Repeated jerking, stalling, grinding, lurching and similar mishaps can wear on the
clutch assembly. Be kind to your car'ask for help if you're having difficulty

How to Drive a Car With an Automatic Transmission

Driving an automatic car is easier than driving a manual car because you don't have to
learn how to change gears; the car does all the work for you. Perhaps you have been
learning to drive in a manual car and are finding it difficult to master gear changes and
clutch control. If you are having a problem perhaps you should consider changing to an
automatic. The steps below give you some guidance on how to go about it.

1. Find an experienced driver, preferably a professional driving instructor, to teach
2. If you have been learning to drive in a manual car explain this to the instructor.
3. Tell him about any problems you have been experiencing such as not knowing
how or when to change gears.
4. Sit beside the instructor and listen to him as he explains the different controls.
5. Notice there are only two foot pedals - the brake and gas pedals.
6. Remember both pedals are operated by your right foot - your left foot stays on the
7. Study the gear selector. Instead of markings 1 - 5 and R (for reverse) an automatic
gear selector has the following markings - P for Park, R for Reverse, N for
Neutral (use this if the car has to be pushed or towed) and D for driving.
8. Check that the car is in Park (P).
9. Turn on the engine.
10. Press the brake pedal down with your right foot.
11. Move the gear lever to drive.
12. With your hand on the handbrake look all around, including the blind spots, to
check it is safe to move off.
13. Release the handbrake.
14. Use your indicators if there is anyone around who is likely to benefit from a
15. Lift your foot gently off the brake - the car will start to move forward.
16. Move your foot over to the gas pedal and press down to increase speed.

• Be aware that driving a go cart car is extremely boring before you learn in one.
• Remember the car will creep forward as soon as you select D for drive. It is vital
you keep your foot on the brake until you are ready to move forward.
• Driving an automatic car is far easier than driving a manual car. This means you
can spend more time studying the road conditions and looking out for hazards.
• You still need to learn how to drive safely and considerately.
• You will still need to learn about all the road signs and markings.
• It is not necessary to put the car into neutral every time you stop at a junction or
traffic light. However, if you are stopping for more than a few minutes then you
should put the car into neutral.

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