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Old 07-16-2013, 05:05 PM   #1
ragingclue25
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Default Wrx as first manual car

Hey everybody this is my first post, I am looking into purchasing a 2013 wrx soon. The only problem is I have never driven a stick shift before. I know the basics of how to drive since Ive been watching a ton of videos, but would it be a mistake to pick up the car without driving a stick beforehand.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:07 PM   #2
STi_Ry
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Easy car to learn on.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:08 PM   #3
Stevetoter
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You might want to try it out on a less expensive car first. But I say go for it, you'll pick it up quickly. Good luck!
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:15 PM   #4
Masta Splint
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Honestly the best way to learn is by actually doing it. You can watch as many video as you want but you just need to do it top really learn. The WRX is a good car to learn on because the clutch isnt super hard like the STi and the car has enough power its not gonna bog down or stall out a lot like it would if you were learning in like a civic with no power. So I would say go for it dude you will pick it up very fast and love it. I picked it up in a matter of half an hour to an hour of driving. Good luck and welcome to the site. Def let us know and post pics of whatever you get when you pick up your WRX.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:18 PM   #5
Loyale93
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Don't you have a friend's old beater to destroy first rather than destroying the clutch of a new-to-you WRX?

Not to mention, if you accidentally launch your friend's 5spd Sentra, that's a little different than accidentally launching your new-to-you WRX.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:23 PM   #6
Ruhh-Roh
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Do it! You'll be happy you did, it wouldn't be a mistake to learn in your wrx. You can learn in a different car but every car has a different "feel" anyway. My s13 was no near as sensitive as my sti if ya know what I mean, it was like teaching myself all over again with the super stock-stiff clutch.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:29 PM   #7
ragingclue25
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Thanks for the replies guys! I think my friend has an old civic beater I might be able to drive. I just want to get the basic feel down for how it is to drive a stick
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:32 PM   #8
13swp
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Yes! Get it! Check out SmurfinWRX's videos on YouTube...they might come in handy and answer some questions you have (some specifically about the WRX)

These are his videos on how to drive a manual car (on a WRX): http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list...f2E3S_RAV4ff_t
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:37 PM   #9
kkam030
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My wrx was my first as well. Just don't be a goober and take your time. Maybe have someone else drive it home from the dealership though.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:43 PM   #10
MorganaMotorsports
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Its a new car under warranty. Just go for it. You will pick it up quickly so nothing to worry about.
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Old 07-16-2013, 06:35 PM   #11
Bluebattery70
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I learned on my wrx and it was the best way. In about a weeks time you'll get the hang of it and learn your cars quirks. Don't worry about destroying the transmission, it's tough enough. Enjoy the car!
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Old 07-16-2013, 07:11 PM   #12
KevlarFunction
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I picked up my '12 hatch without any prior practice other than reading and watching videos and learned on it. Personally, I thought it was the best way to pick up driving manual. Congrats if and when you do decide to go through with it!
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Old 07-16-2013, 07:50 PM   #13
Johnblaze
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevlarFunction View Post
I picked up my '12 hatch without any prior practice other than reading and watching videos and learned on it. Personally, I thought it was the best way to pick up driving manual. Congrats if and when you do decide to go through with it!
Same here. Picked up my sti without knowing how to drive a standard. Got out of the lot ok but the first stop sign I came to that was on a hill, I stalled out about three times. Then I just revved it up and dumped the clutch. BANG and I was off. Drive an hour and half home with no problems. The hardest part is getting going. Just remember, take your time, relax, if you stall, you stall. Like my dad said, the only thing you're hurting is your ego. The people behind you can just go around. Probably after some beeping and sign language but just ignore them. Took me about a week to drive manual smoothly and naturally.
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Old 07-16-2013, 08:07 PM   #14
DannyLerch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnblaze View Post
Same here. Picked up my sti without knowing how to drive a standard. Got out of the lot ok but the first stop sign I came to that was on a hill, I stalled out about three times. Then I just revved it up and dumped the clutch. BANG and I was off. Drive an hour and half home with no problems. The hardest part is getting going. Just remember, take your time, relax, if you stall, you stall. Like my dad said, the only thing you're hurting is your ego. The people behind you can just go around. Probably after some beeping and sign language but just ignore them. Took me about a week to drive manual smoothly and naturally.

This +1

You'll cringe after a few months of driving and think back to your first week on a MT car. But in the end after a few days you'll get the hang of it. The trick is to listen to your motor and shift when you hear it revving to the sweet spot where it is thirsty for the next gear. Rather than looking at the RPMs to gauge when you shift. Drive your auto, watch where the tranny automatically shifts. Practice taking your foot on the gas and applying pressure to your imaginary clutch. The trick is learning not to come off the clutch too fast and giving it enough gas not to stall out. I know I usually take my rpms up to about 2.5k to ease into first gear. About 3k for the rest of the gears for conservative driving. 4.5-6k while under spirited conditions and I rarely ever go into the red. Same with downshifting and rev matching. If you do it correctly your car will thank you later, and same with your wallet on gas.
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Old 07-16-2013, 08:11 PM   #15
C4RBON_F1BER
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevlarFunction View Post
I picked up my '12 hatch without any prior practice other than reading and watching videos and learned on it. Personally, I thought it was the best way to pick up driving manual. Congrats if and when you do decide to go through with it!
Same here. Stalled driving it off the lot

My biggest problem was not using the clutch enough.

OP, go for it. You'll figure it out soon enough, and there isn't a better car to learn on than your own. Find a big parking lot and practice until you feel comfortable enough to drive in traffic.
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:55 AM   #16
zolaman
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When my my little brother purchased '11 wrx the saleswoman said she would teach him to drive stick so that's how he learned. I taught him the basics and let him get a feel for it then he learned very quickly on the 2nd day when she took him for a drive. I say just find a friend who is willing to teach you. I learned on mini cooper and picked it up fast. Just try not to get nervous when you stall: ) I stalled in middle of road, red light, drive thru, etc

Like two months ago when I drove his car I felt the clutch was way too heavy and told him to go to a dealer to get it checked and now he has a brand new clutch. If you think you going to mess up the clutch its ok you got warranty.

Last edited by zolaman; 07-17-2013 at 03:00 AM.
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Old 07-17-2013, 03:45 AM   #17
hiyobeats
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Agree with the above posts on how easy it is to learn on the WRX. (Don't know if it's my short-shifter doing the job though; haven't driven a stock WRX before)
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:31 AM   #18
Trea17
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Parking lots are friends, traffic is enemies. when you go to take off in first give her a little gas and YOU will feel the car start pulling( pretty much impossible to feel this as a passenger) as the car starts to pull SLOWLY start easing on the gas while releasing the brake. It will either go 1 of 2 ways each time.
1. "OMFG IT FEELS LIKE SNOOKIE IS BEING EXORCISED UNDER MY HOOD!!!!" That's ok, push the clutch back in and give it another go.
2. You pick up quick and it's easy and fun.

I have been driving standards for years and #1 still happens sometimes. Don't get pissed 6 months later when you stall your car at a light and feel dumb. It's not the first time or the last time this will happen to you or anyone else.

My little sister got my wrx going using only the clutch with no gas in a parking lot on her first try, I got faith in ya.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:39 AM   #19
snowboarder2587
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MorganaMotorsports View Post
Its a new car under warranty. Just go for it. You will pick it up quickly so nothing to worry about.
Clutches are rarely covered under warranty because they are considered a wear part. If it fails (not gets burned up) then they may cover it.

OP there are plenty of people that learn on WRX's for their first car and every single car's clutches have different feel and engagement points. It will take a little time but you'll get the hand of it quick.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:42 AM   #20
cmiovino
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I'd suggest a manual beater before purchasing a WRX. Or get a friend who has one and use his if he's down.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:45 AM   #21
EvoXtoWRX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmiovino View Post
I'd suggest a manual beater before purchasing a WRX. Or get a friend who has one and use his if he's down.
I agree on this start with another car that's a manual. Then once your good and comfortable then buy a WRX. My .02
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:45 AM   #22
sgoldste01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ragingclue25 View Post
I know the basics of how to drive since Ive been watching a ton of videos, but would it be a mistake to pick up the car without driving a stick beforehand.
Yes, this would be a mistake. Not because it's a WRX. It would be a mistake regardless of the car. Please get some parking lot and then road practice with a mentor before going to pick up a brand new car.

If you live near me, I'LL give you a lesson myself. But I'd never recommend that someone drive on the street after only watching videos. That's just crazy.

Last edited by sgoldste01; 07-17-2013 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:54 AM   #23
Mr Wrex
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I also say go for it. I taught my friend how to drive my WRX and within 30 minutes, she was driving in stop-and-go traffic. She reminds me of the chick in this video (mentality-wise), but she still picked it up fast. If she can, then I'm sure you could too

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Old 07-17-2013, 08:58 AM   #24
bigmaninjapan
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WRX was the first manual car I ever owned myself. I didn't learn on it, but I was really rough (really horrible, it was bad) for the first week or so. I made myself get up an hour earlier for the first week to get into work before the morning rush. I drove it as much as I could. Absolutely nothing wrong with learning on a WRX. Don't buy another car just to learn on it. If you have no intention of keeping it around it will be a waste of money.

There is a really good Shifting FAQ on this site that you should read through. I think its linked in Unabomber's Manifesto.

Go get you a WRX and have some fun with it! Welcome aboard!
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Old 07-17-2013, 09:12 AM   #25
sgoldste01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmaninjapan View Post
Don't buy another car just to learn on it. If you have no intention of keeping it around it will be a waste of money.
I'm not suggesting that he buy another car. I'm simply saying that his first hands-on experience with a clutch and shift knob shouldn't be after he signs on the dotted line and then climbs into his brand new WRX.

Find a friend who is willing to spend an hour or two giving you lessons and pointers in his car. Get the basics down. Practice slipping the clutch. Practice making the car creep at very low speeds (so that you can maneuver gracefully and safely in parking lots, like when pulling into and backing out of parking spots, or when creeping forward at an intersection to see if anyone is coming before you pull out). Learn how to find the clutch's catch point so that you can start smoothly on a hill. Learn how to easily/quickly find the line that contains 3rd and 4th gears so that when you're trying to shift from 2nd to 3rd you don't accidentally grab 5th, or so that when you're trying to downshift from 5th to 4th you don't accidentally grab 2nd.

None of this is rocket science. But you're going to be nervous enough driving your brand new car away from the dealership. Don't escalate the stress by having that be your first time behind the wheel of car with a clutch.
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