How to shift with AWD or a Manual Transmission.

What is the easiest way to downshift into first? Many users report great success in downshifting into first gear by using the double clutch method.

Why is it hard to go into reverse? Reverse is a straight cut gear with no synchros. This means reverse can be tricky from time to time. Problems can be grinding or inability to go into reverse. Since reverse is usually engaged as soon as the vehicle has started, the lack of fluid temperature and flow plays as role as well. Most reverse problems can be overcome by selecting a forward gear first, rolling forward slightly, double clutching, or some other technique. What works for one car may not work for another, so experiment with the technique that works best for your car. “Problems” with reverse engagement are actually common with many transmissions from many manufacturers.

What is heel/toe? Heel/toe is a shifting technique. It refers to using the toe of your foot to apply the brake, while using the heel to apply the gas. It will result in the driver’s right foot (when looking down at it) to appear to be pointing left as opposed to straight up and down. Many also substitute this technique by using the left and right portions of their foot to the same effect. Though not heel/toe (more like big toe/little toe) in appearance, it serves the same function. It is usually used for rev matching during a downshift, but has other uses as well

How do I heel/toe? This depends on the user and pedal arrangement. Some users prefer to shift their right foot and use the traditional toe on brake/heel on gas technique. Others use their big toe for the brake and little toe for the gas. The use depends on the width of the drivers’ foot and if the vehicle is equipped with adjustable pedals or not. Some prefer one method or can use both equally as well. Once the placement is decided upon, it can take awhile to become proficient. Practice on the street, use on the track is wise advice for those considering this technique.


Shifting: How to heel/toe
Shifting: How to heel/toe