You can imagine that we get a lot of skepticism about why we’d come up with a business for trying to help keep the manuals alive. People are always asking us why we’re doing this and why anyone would want to learn to drive stick shift. For some, they’re learning for work reasons (valets, longshoremen, UPS drivers, etc…). But for many others, they’re learning because they want to drive a stick shift. It’s not about need. It’s about something much bigger than need. So, in no particular order, these are the most common reasons why people say they prefer to drive a stick shift
1) Emotional Connection - Feeling More Engaged
First and foremost, driving a stick shift is a completely different feeling and one that I would argue is better. Driving a stick shift makes you feel way more connected to the car and the environment around you. Because of that direct connection, you have a much better sense of what the car is going to do when you make a change, which enables you to make better choices for the environment. That engagement also makes you much more focussed on the task at hand than, say, the infotainment system, your phone, or something else. You simply do not have the mental bandwidth to focus on anything else. While that may not seem like fun, consider how distracted drivers are more likely to get into accidents than non-distracted drivers. Distracted driving — including texting while driving — is the cause of more than 58% of crashes involving teen drivers and that nearly 4000 people per year are killed in accidents that were caused by distracted driving. Being more connected is also just more fun. I do all sorts of things simply for the enjoyment of it. I go for long bike rides fairly frequently, snowboard, swim, cook somewhat complicated meals, and do all sorts of things simply for the enjoyment of the task. Sure, I could find more efficient or easier ways of getting things done. But why would I? Driving stick shift turns what otherwise would be a boring drive to the store into an opportunity to have fun.