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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
Detailer

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.

Anthony
Moderator

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

CaptainCardigan
Intermediate Driver

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

Anthony
Moderator

Noted! Miata! 👍👍
Guitar74
Technician

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
Instructor

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
Detailer

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
Advanced Driver

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.