[A4] A4 clutchless shifting

Robert King gt40mkii at gmail.com
Fri Apr 20 11:45:22 EDT 2007

On 4/20/07, Larry Velez <larry at sinu.com> wrote:
> Speaking of clutch habits,  I never downshift through the gears when
> coming to a stop - I usually go straight to Neutral.
> What is the 'proper' way to come to a stop as far as the clutch is
> concerned?

Well, the "proper" way is one thats easy to do, doesn't hurt the car, and
does what you want it to.

Personally, I wouldn't downshift through the gears.  First off, it's not
necessary .  You don't need it for engine braking.  Engine or compression
braking is a holdover from early race cars which had inadequate brakes and
needed all the help they could get.  Your A4s brakes are more than capable,
and better yet, they're DESIGNED to slow the car -- your engine is not.

Secondly, you run the risk of missing a downshift.  As someone who has done
this before on a racetrack, missing a downshift can cost you big money.  No
rev-limiter in the world can save your engine when you mistakenly downshift
from 4th to 1st instead of 3rd!  Racers call that the "money-shift", as in
you get to spend lots of money rebuilding your engine.

Lastly, you end up putting unnecessary wear on the transmission synchros,
unless you're matching revs.  And since you're braking at the same time, you
will end up having to work both the gas and the brake at the same time with
your right foot (this technique is called a "heel-toe" downshift -- Google

Its much easier on you and the car to simply go to neutral, or keep the
clutch in and select the next gear you're going to need once you need to
accelerate again.

-- Robert

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