How to Drive a Semi-Automatic Car

Last Updated on 4月 2, 2018 by Carusedjp

As a car owner, you can easily be torn between the ease of use offered by an automatic transmission and the control and speed that manual transmission allows. Thankfully, you can have the best of both in a semi-automatic vehicle. With a semi-automatic vehicle, you can have a paddle shifter which allows you to shift gears without mastering the complicated process of using the clutch.

Advantages of a Semi-Automatic Vehicle

  • You can experience smooth drives when shifting gears.
  • If you experience slippage in the torque converters, you wouldn’t worry about losing energy.
  • There wouldn’t be energy loss during manual shifts as well.

Disadvantages of a Semi-Automatic Vehicle

  • Semi-automatic cars are more expensive to maintain as compared to taking care of a manual vehicle.
  • It can be expensive to repair a semi-automatic. In some cases, it would be more affordable to purchase a replacement.
  • Semi-automatic vehicles tend to frequently fail and malfunction. On the other hand, the causes may not directly involve the transmission.

How to Drive a Semi-Automatic Car

It is easy to learn how to drive a semi-automatic vehicle. Here are the steps you have to follow:

  1. Start the engine by turning the key in the ignition. Typically, you do not have to follow a special process to start a semi-automatic.
  2. You will find that the parking brake is already engaged by seeing the gearshift set to ‘P.’
  3. Make sure you hold down the brake pedal to ensure that the vehicle won’t move forward while you shift it into gear.
  4. Disengage the parking brake of your vehicle and place the vehicle into first gear by pilling back on the right paddle (the ‘+’ paddle).
  5. To accelerate, lift your foot off the brake pedal while you step down onto the gas pedal.
  6. To shift up through the gears, pull back on the right paddles. Shift down by pilling back on the left paddle (the ‘-‘ paddle).
  7. Generally, you should upshift when the engine reaches about 3,000 RPM or when the engine seems like it’s working too hard. You should downshift when decelerating. When you upshift, you do not have to let off the gas, but for each downshift, you should let off the gas a bit.
  8. Make sure you have your foot on the brake and you have the vehicle in neutral before you place it in reverse. You can do this by pressing the reverse button (often indicated by the letter ‘R’).
  9. If you want to return to neutral, simply pull both shift paddles toward you.
  10. To slow or stop your car, step onto the brake pedal and downshift all the way down to the first gear. If you are in reverse, you can simply slow down the vehicle to stop it.
  11. Once you’ve stopped the vehicle and you have your foot on the brake, you can place it into neutral by pilling both shift paddles toward you.
  12. Before you turn off the car, make sure you engage the parking brake. Hold the gearshift and move it next to the letter ‘P’. Doing so will allow you to turn on the brake.
  13. The final step is to turn off the engine. You can do this by turning the key in the ignition. Once you’ve done this, you can safely exit your vehicle.

As you can see, it is relatively easier to learn how to drive a semi-automatic vehicle. For semi-automatic Japanese used cars, contact today!

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7 thoughts on “How to Drive a Semi-Automatic Car”

  1. I drive a 2002 Smart FourTwo City Coupe and it is a semi automatic. Now, I have a question, when I start breaking, the car starts down-shifting itself. Is that okay or should I downshift with the lever?

  2. Hello,
    I’m trying to find info on how to revert the gear shift BACK to fully automatic after using semi automatic….
    Can anyone help?

  3. I have a semi automatic car but use it on automatic at all times , however sometimes when taking off or uphill it struggles before it takes off


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