Why You Should Learn How To Drive Stick

I used to be very intimidated by the stick shift. I just couldn’t wrap my head around it. When I was 18, some friends and I went on a road trip across the country. The car was a manual transmission and I didn’t take my turn at the wheel until the third day… it wasn’t pretty.

Then, one winter, I got a job in the mountains, where all we had to drive were trucks… all of them manual. I had no choice… either get mocked for not being able to drive, or suck it up, get over the intimidation of it and learn to drive stick. I learned and I love it!

Why would people choose a manual transmission over an automatic?

Control – Many drivers prefer the enhanced sense of control that comes with the additional attention required to drive a manual transmission They also get better performance when passing, and better road feel when rounding curves and driving on steep hills, especially when they’re slippery. Many also believe that the more interactive style of driving helps them to remain more alert.

Save Money – Driven to full efficiency manual shift vehicles offer the best economy. The acquisition cost alone can save you $1,000 or more, plus the additional taxes and finance charges. Your fuel savings can vary from 10% – 15%, which could easily add up to several hundred dollars per year. Brake replacements tend to be less frequent and transmission repairs do not require a specialist.

Vehicle Choice – Some vehicles come available only in manual shift. This may be especially true of new sports cars during the early stage of their launch into the market. There are also those who derive tremendous pleasure out of driving a manual transmission correctly. For these people sheer joy of driving is unimaginable without a manual transmission. Once they drive one they will probably choose it for life.

There are other reasons, such as:

Travel – Traveling to Europe? Renting a vehicle is certainly a convenient way to wander off the beaten path and discover less well-known attractions. Renting a manual transmission can save you thousands of dollars and you have a wider range of vehicle selection. The fact is, most European rent-a-car agencies rent only stick shifts. Automatics are rare and very pricey. What’s more, even when you book ahead, you can’t be guaranteed of getting one.

Job Opportunities – Whether it’s landing a role in a film or being a hotel valet or a car jockey, knowing how to drive a shift opens up countless jobs.

Emergencies –You’re better able to respond to any emergency, especially if immediate medical attention is required. Possessing the skill to drive a manual vehicle can make all the difference. And save lives. Though less urgent, but equally as important, you can be the designated driver when a friend has had “one too many.”

There are many websites that will walk you through the process of driving stick shift, or you can contact a driving school… either way, I know driving a manual transmission has made me a better driver, and gotten me out of a few slippery situations. I suppose the general rule “Be Prepared” is a good one to take from my driving experience.

LaSorsa Chevrolet
3510 Webster Ave.
Bronx, NY 10467
(800) 743-1788

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GM & Safe Kids Worldwide Mark 15 Year Partnership

The General Motors Foundation, General Motors and Safe Kids Worldwide celebrated 15 years of the Buckle Up program a few weeks ago.  The program has helped reach millions of parents and caregivers and their young passengers during a rapid evolution in auto safety technology.

through the Buckle Up program, (the nation’s most extensive multifaceted child passenger safety program) Safe Kids, the GM Foundation and GM continue efforts to keep children and families safe in and around cars.

“The GM Foundation’s 15 year commitment to Safe Kids Buckle Up is a sterling example of corporate social responsibility at its best,” said Kate Carr, Safe Kids President and CEO. “There is no doubt that countless child fatalities and injuries have been prevented as a result of this partnership and the GM Foundation’s long-term dedication to it,” Carr added.

The Safe Kids Buckle Up program began with a focus on child safety seat checks at GM dealers. Over the past 15 years, it has grown into a multifaceted program that addresses child safety in and around vehicles. To date, certified experts at nearly 80,000 car seat checks have inspected more than 1.5 million car seats for proper installation. Additionally, more than 550,000 car seats have gone to at-risk families, many at no cost through the NAACP and the National Council of La Raza; and more than 22 million people have been exposed to the program’s events and outreach activities.

The Buckle Up program also includes:

  • 118 mobile child safety vans, completely equipped to conduct child passenger safety events;
  • 500 permanent child safety seat inspection stations, including at GM dealerships;
  • Spot the Tot and Never Leave Your Child Alone, programs aimed at preventing fatalities and injuries to children in and around vehicles;
  • Safest Generation (for kids 11 and 12) and Countdown2Drive (ages 13 and 14) to address the needs of older children and their families; and
  • Activities that advocate for stronger state child passenger safety laws.

“The safety initiatives created through our partnership help ensure that our nation’s youth are protected from the time they are infants to teenagers getting behind the wheel for the first time,” said GM Foundation President Vivian Pickard. “These initial lessons instill good safety habits that last a lifetime.”

For parents who want assistance, Safe Kids hosts car seat inspection events across the country throughout the year. Parents are invited to bring their car, child safety seat and child to an event in their area where certified child passenger safety technicians provide one-on-one “hands-on” help with installation. Parents and caregivers can locate an event in their community by visiting the Safe Kids website.

LaSorsa Chevrolet
3510 Webster Ave.
Bronx, NY 10467
(800) 743-1788

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