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Sajeev
Community Manager

Best Car for Learning to Drive a Stick? The answer will surprise you!

This local driving school (in the Bay Area) uses a Scion xA as the vehicle to teach people how to drive a stick.  In the link below, they explain why and it's pretty convincing to me.   I will write this up as a Hagerty Media article soon, since it's great to see driving schools care to keep the stick shift alive! 

 

https://www.bayareastickshift.com/the-car 16107352_232243313853701_3568438580789943160_o.jpg

14 REPLIES 14
CaptainCardigan
Intermediate Driver

I am not too surprised. I learned in both a 4th gen. f-body and a corolla/matrix. The 4th gen was a bear, the corolla was super easy. 

 

I've taught someone to drive stick in a WRX, that was a bear for everyone. 

 

Having good ergonomics, a large clutch to the p/w ratio and as little 'drivetrain' as possible really makes it easy to learn those first few skills. 

Sajeev
Community Manager

I enjoyed the surprise benefit of the xA's center gauge cluster.  Makes sense, actually. 

Eric
Hagerty Employee

I have a friend who taught around 7 people to drive stick on his 2011 Honda Fit Sport. It was really ideal -- spacious, great visibility, easy clutch take-up with a shifter that was fluid and easy to place in the gates. Naturally aspirated engine for predictable throttle response.

Sajeev
Community Manager

Oh yeah, that'a a great choice too! 

Greg_I
Hagerty Employee

I think anything low power is great to learn on. I learned on a 4-cyl. S-10 pickup. Teaches you a lot about building revs and controlling the clutch release to keep from stalling.

Hagerty Fan
Not applicable

Keep the recommendations coming! I'm hoping to learn stick this summer. 

CaptainCardigan
Intermediate Driver

@Hagerty Fan: Miata. It's always Miata. Just Miata. GET A MIATA. (I always recommend Miata) 

Hagerty Fan
Not applicable

Noted! Miata! 👍👍
Guitar74
Gearhead

I learned in an '88 Ranger v6 5 spd. Mom made me get out of the truck and switch seat with her on a steep hill for my first lesson. I must have killed it four times before I got fed up, revved it up and dumped the clutch. It didn't earn me any points with her, but I got my frustration out at the expense of her rear tires.
Torino
Advanced Driver

gated shift Ferrari. why not? it'll be at the dealership in a month or two anyway. have em put a clutch, pressure plate ,throw out bearing in while they're at it.whats 10 or 15 grand (at least ) extra matter?  (ps) way to go Lewis!

hyperv6
Racer

We learned in a VW chassis we used as a go cart. It was a rolled Karman that we pulled the body off of. 

We learned how to shift with no clutch in a Fiat. 

I also drove first on the road in a medium duty GMC truck. No one ever asked if I ever was on the road in a manual. I just hit the road, 

Massimo
New Driver

DSC_4020b.jpgFiat 500 (1956-1972). Not only to learn how to drive stick, but, being a crush box, you have to learn how to double declutch too! When you can do a 3rd to 2nd, without embarassing noises, you are ready to drive whatever you want....   

Rob1
Instructor

Learned to drive stick when I was 12 ish Dad retired a mid fiftys ENFO (english Ford) Council 4 banger three on the tree to a field car that I ripped around steady the family riding mower was always out of gas as well as the yard Tractor.LOL cheers R

jonZ
Instructor

My Grandpa had the patience of Job allowing me to trash his 61 Falcons clutch and gearbox. It was not a stick but rather a three on the tree. He was a good teacher. After mastering the technique he taught me how to rebuild the gearbox and replace the clutch! I was ten and drove him all over the place on our rural area dirt roads. Six years later when I got my license I drove it to school. I drove it like the idiot teenager I was. Then he taught me how to rebuild the engine! Been driving Falcons ever since.