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Discussion Starter #1
I may be getting a 5 speed Insight in the next month or so, the trouble is I don't know how to drive a stick. Is learning in the Insight a good or bad idea? The only other stick we have at the moment is my sister's supercharged Civic Si, which she was able to learn on. I wouldn't want to destroy the clutch on either car. Advice?
 

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I don't think it'll be hard to learn stick on the Insight. The car is very light and it's not a tough stick to drive. One nice thing about the Insight is that if you let the clutch out too fast, instead of stalling or bucking, the IMA usually kicks in and gets you going with no problem. Your sisters Civic would not be so friendly. Just keep the revs below 2k when launching and try to minimize the time your slipping the clutch.
 

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I learned to drive a stick on a 1993 Toyota Celica. It was a car I borrowed from a friend, so I only had a month or so to get the basics down. When I went to look at my manual Insight (which was being sold by a private party), I was scared to death about grinding the gears on the test drive with the seller riding with me in the passenger seat :oops: . (Even toward the end of when I drove the Celica I still occasionally ground the gears. It ran very rough.) However, the test drive went perfect, and the Insight was definitely a smoother transmission than the Celica ever was. I mastered the Insight much quicker than I did the Celica.

Just a word of caution about learning on an Insight. While it is sufficiently powerful to safely be on the roads, it does not accelerate "the same" as a regular car (in my opinion). You have to learn how to manipulate the gears in order to obtain maximum power for acceleration. This comes from shifting at the right times in order to maximize the benefits of the battery and gas engine working together. (This is really hard to explain but becomes quickly obvious when you drive the car.) Point being, when learning on the Insight be careful and do not pull out in front of traffic as you might in a regular car. If you are unfamiliar with the car, you can't always rapidly accelerate as you can in a regular gas engine. And if you are trying to figure out the gears, this makes your acceleration even slower. However, with experience shifting the Insight can become a little speed demon :evil: !
 

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Learning on manual insight

I taught my teenage daughter to drive in my MT insight. I think it's a perfect car for learning. It's virtually impossible to stall since the IMA kicks in. This makes the student much more confident and can concentrate on the rest of the skills.

If you find auto-stop to be distracting, turn on the A/C to disable it.

Jim
'01 #191
 

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I've taught several friends how to drive a manual transmission car with my Insight. It's easier to learn compared to many other cars. It's important to find someone that is very good at it to teach you and give you feedback on how to drive a manual car properly.
 

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In my opinion learning to drive a standard is a valuable life skill. Personally, I find automatics dangerously borring.

The clutch on the Insight is hydraulic and light under foot. The transmission is synchro. It's a real pleasure once you "get it" Properly used the clutch should last hundreds of thousands of miles. A few botched starts in first gear won't harm the car. Attempting to slip the clutch in third from a stop.......well lets not go there. ;)
 

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IMAhybrid said:
learning in the Insight a good or bad idea?
I learned stick in the Insight, and it's easy because even if you release the clutch too early, the Electric Motor will "kick in" and accelerate the car (instead of stalling).
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Aaron Cake said:
Personally I think an Insight is a poor vehicle to learn to drive standard in. It has too many quirks that aren't found in other cars (auto stop, IMA assist that makes it hard to stall, etc.).
I currently drive a Civic hybrid (CVT) so I am used to the funny things hybrids do, but I was still a little concerned about it.

jgessling said:
I taught my teenage daughter to drive in my MT insight. I think it's a perfect car for learning. It's virtually impossible to stall since the IMA kicks in. This makes the student much more confident and can concentrate on the rest of the skills.

If you find auto-stop to be distracting, turn on the A/C to disable it.
Thanks for reminding me I could turn on the AC, duh! :)

Since the Insight is the car I will be driving it will probably be best to learn on it from the start. Thanks everybody for the encouragement, I feel better about it now. I've actually driven this car about 2 years ago, and stalled it quite a few times :oops:, I don't think I was giving it enough gas... or electricity. ;)
 

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i think it would be a great car to learn in...i learned in a 91 civic...

i have recently begun teaching my friend how to drive in my insight and have no worries about the clutch or anything else breaking
 

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I learned to drive stick in the largest U-Haul truck they offer.
If you can learned to drive THAT you can drive ANYTHING IMHO.
 

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Hmmmm. Well I learned to drive standard in an Envoy Epic, (alias the Holey car for its rust). Three forward speeds and reverse if you could find it. The synchro rings were toast so it was a real fist rattler if you didn't get the RPM just right! Forty three horsepower, zero torque, and a rusty hand brake made it exciting on hills. Ha! Good days I'd almost forgotten. :D
 
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