How to Drive a Car Automatic – A car with an automatic transmission is typically simpler to learn to drive; all you have to do is press the “D” button to start the car. However, you must ensure you are driving in the appropriate gear for the speed and road conditions because manual cars typically have up to seven gears.
Although automatic cars do a lot of the work for you, if you’re used to a manual transmission, getting behind the wheel of one can be challenging. This article will outline what to anticipate, describe the various automatic gearboxes, and offer critical advice on safely operating an automated vehicle.
The various automated gearbox types
It’s essential to familiarise yourself with the different automatic transmission options before we begin your automatic driving lesson so that you know what to expect while operating the vehicle.
Traditional automatic transmissions
Conventional automatic gearboxes, the most popular and refined automatic transmission, have anywhere from three to ten ratios and a torque converter in place of a clutch. However, they do use more fuel than manual transmissions.
Transmissions that change gears continuously (CVT)
A CVT uses a belt to give a press-and-go sensation, smoothly putting the car into motion with no apparent ratios. CVTs are frequently seen in hybrid vehicles.
The absence of gears results in smoother, more efficient travel; however, acceleration is a little slower than with comparable automated gearboxes.
Autos with two clutches
Dual-clutch automatics use two automatically operated clutches and are similar to conventional automatic gearboxes but lack a torque converter. While the other clutch gets the gear you wish to switch to ready; the first clutch controls the gear you’re in.
As a result, they are frequently found in sports cars that demand lightning-fast gear changes.
Automated manual transmissions
Automated manual gearboxes function similarly to regular manual gearboxes in that they automatically choose ratios and operate the clutch with an inbuilt computer rather than a pedal.
Such gearboxes were once kings of the automatic world, but in recent years, their jerky performance and more advanced automated competitors have caused them to lose favour.
Tips for operating an automatic vehicle
Learning to utilise the gearstick
We recommend being familiar with the gearstick before moving on. Keep the brake depressed to switch between driving modes precisely as you would in a manual.
The basic driving modes found in most automatic cars are as follows:
P – Park: Used when you’re stopping and exiting your car. Doing so ‘locks’ the transmission, which prevents it from rolling away, but you’ll still need to apply the handbrake when parked.
R – Reverse: Much like you’d expect, this acts the same as a reverse gear in a manual and should be used when you need to drive backwards.
N – Neutral: If you’re stopping at lights or in traffic for a couple of seconds, you should put the car in Neutral. Just be sure to use the brake/handbrake too to avoid rolling.
D – Drive: Used to go forwards, the car will automatically switch to second, then third and so on providing you’re moving fast enough.
Additionally, automatics may be equipped with additional gearstick settings, such as:
1: Stay in first gear (useful when climbing hills)
2: Stay in second gear (again, good for hills)
L: Stay in low gear
S: Sport (provides greater acceleration)
First time with an automatic transmission
It’s time to start driving now that you are more comfortable with the gearstick. Even though automatics are simple, stopping and starting can be challenging.
Put your right foot on the left-hand brake pedal and depress it to start the automobile by using the key or start button. Put the gearshift in Drive or Reverse, depending on which direction you want to go while keeping your foot on the brake.
The gearbox will choose the appropriate gear for the speed once you’re moving.
When you must stop and have arrived at your destination, keep your foot on the brake and shift into the park. Exit the vehicle after turning off the ignition.
The clutch pedal, or the absence of one
Those accustomed to driving manual vehicles may find the lack of a clutch pedal and the presence of only the brake and accelerator a little confusing because there is so little to focus on while operating an automated vehicle.
Whether the vehicle is automatic or not, it is not recommended to depress the accelerator and brake pedals simultaneously. But you might learn this the hard way out of sheer force of habit.
Many manual drivers who switch to automatic transmission tuck their left foot behind their right foot while getting accustomed to the new situation. In this manner, their left foot cannot accidentally straddle the clutch. learn more.
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