You Don’t Have to Double Clutch Anymore

I believe it was a 16th-century poet who said, “You almost had me? You never had me! You never had … Continued

I believe it was a 16th-century poet who said, “You almost had me? You never had me! You never had your car! Granny shiftin’, not double clutchin’ like you should. You’re lucky that hundred shot of NOS didn’t blow the welds on the intake!” Or maybe it was Dominic Torreto in the O.G. Fast and the Furious. Who can be sure?

What we can be sure of is that most people don’t know what double clutching actually is. To finally put that quote into context and educate the masses, Car Bibles’ snobby cinephile editors have your back with a guide of what double clutching is, why you don’t need to do it anymore, and why Brian lost his Eclipse to Dom. Hint: He never should’ve connected his manifold to the car’s floor pan.

What Is Double Clutching?

Double clutching is when a driver shifts from one gear to neutral and then to the next gear, each time depressing the clutch to actuate the transmission.

How Does Double Clutching Work?

Essentially, you’re shifting into neutral with every shift in order to better preserve the transmission’s gears. This used to be standard practice in older cars, but modern manual transmissions no longer require it. Some big-rig trucks still require a form of double-clutching, though.

The black interior of a Chevrolet SS is dull but sporty.
The Chevrolet SS was an underappreciated classic.

What’s the Difference Between Double Clutching and Regular Clutching?

Today’s manual transmissions only require a single depression of the clutch to get from one gear to the next, no need to shift to neutral and depress the clutch again. Double-clutching requires the depression of the clutch every time you shift out of gear, into neutral, and back into gear.

Car Bible’s Transmission Glossary

Welcome to Bible School!

Clutch

The clutch is what allows you to actuate the gears and ensures your transmission doesn’t eat itself when you shift. It is part of what transfers the energy from your engine to the wheels.

Shifter

The shifter puts the transmission into gear.

Granny Shifting

Another name for the proper way to shift a manual car.

Sequential Manual

A sequential manual transmission is one found on motorcycles and some race cars. Instead of an H-pattern, a sequential has it’s gears in a row, with forward for downshifting, and rearward for upshifting.

Your Questions, Our Answers on Double Clutch

Car Bibles’ editors answer all your burning questions!

Q. Does Double-Clutching Make You Faster?

A. No, it’s slower.

Q. Is Clutchless Shifting Bad?

A. Unless you have a sequential where no-lift-shifting works, then yes, clutchless shifting is bad.

Q. Why’d Dom Beat Brian?

A. Because Brian never had his car.

Video on Double Clutching

Car Bibles’ editors understand that not everyone is a text-based learner. For those kinesthetic people out there, we have your back with a video showing you exactly what double clutching is. We pulled it from one of our favorite, and most trusted, sources and it’s a great additional resource.

Car Bible’s Favored Transmission Related Products

You can buy tools for working on your transmission at almost every auto parts and home improvement store. As well as online stores like Amazon. You have a sea of options to select from. Our favored products include these Transmission Fluid Additives, as well as Shift Knobs and Car Jacks.

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Jonathon Klein
Jonathon Klein

Jonathon has jumped Aston Martins for Automobile Magazine, clocked 200 mph in a McLaren 720S for Playboy, and sampled his best life behind the wheel of a Ferrari Dino Evo for Road & Track. He’s hopelessly addicted to the strongest coffee he can brew. Please send him more. Contact the author here.