Can We Guess if You Can Drive a Stick?

By: Nikki Weed

Can We Guess if You Can Drive a Stick?
Image: Adam Hester / The Image Bank / Getty Images

About This Quiz

If you can think back to your first days of driving, nothing was more daunting than trying to accelerate from a stop without either crawling or peeling out. To complicate things, some people had to learn how to drive on a stick shift. The already complicated task of driving got even more intricate with the addition of an extra pedal and the required finesse to press, release and press again without stalling out. Parents who were able to teach their children right away on a standard shifting car deserve trophies because it's not easy!

Currently, the manual transmission is getting swept under the rug in favor of innovative automatic transmissions. These incredibly advanced systems can shift at such a rapid pace that the driver doesn't realize the car has switched gears. This smooth transition between gears is nice, but what about the rush a driver gets while downshifting to speed around a corner? As the manual transmission slowly goes into extinction, so does the young generation of drivers who can master a clutch pedal.

Did you learn to drive in an old manual car? Can you tell stories of how you were a master at peeling out in high school? Maybe you learned later in life and now preach the gospel of the manual.

Take a spin through our stick shift quiz. Can we predict whether you can pop a clutch if needed or you'd be stranded in the parking lot? Who knows, you might want to learn how if you don't already know, after reading all of this cool shifting-related stuff!

1-Traffic Jam To you, what is the most aggravating part of a traffic jam?
Watching people pick their noses and wipe it on the headliner
The constant clutch use and shifting makes my leg tired.
Sitting at a standstill burns fuel — precious, precious fuel
How they seem to happen for the stupidest reasons

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2-Parking Lot What parking situation is the most challenging for you?
A crowded shopping mall
Parallel parking anywhere
Facing upward on a hill
Wedging in my own garage

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3-Holden When you hear the word "Holden," what do you think of?
Something you grab a pot with
A high-performance car from Australia
An odd Pontiac variation
Like, Holden Caulfield?

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4-Fast Car Which of these age classifications do you identify with the most?
100% boomer
Melancholy millennial
Generation Y-not!
Hardcore Xer all the way

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5-Manual In your opinion, what is the best automotive theft deterrent?
Clicking the lock button on the fob twice to make the car beep
Untinted windows for the world to look in and see the stick
Using the good old-fashioned Club on the steering wheel
Parking in a well-lit area and knowing my surroundings

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6-Rental Car While traveling abroad, what is your biggest complaint with rental cars?
They always smell like cigarette smoke.
They seem to have a speed governor.
The liter versus gallon fuel ratio is confusing.
The touch screen infotainment system is in a foreign language.

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7-Oil Without thinking too hard, what's the most expensive fluid to go into a car?
Brand-specific motor oil from the dealership
Automatic transmission fluid
High-temperature brake fluid
Triple Americano (in the cup holder)

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8-Pushing car What is a rolling start?
A technology startup from Seattle
How you start a car with a dead battery
A way in which they start certain races
Something you can be arrested for in certain states

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9-Burnout When you hear the term "15% rule," what do you immediately think of?
Something to do with how delegates get elected
The amount of power lost between the engine and the wheels
The term that refers to people who ride motorcycles
Organs getting in the way of getting a clean X-ray

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10-Driving What do you think about while driving?
Why people drive slow in the left lane
The throttle response after gear engagement
Which Spotify playlist best suits my mood
How underwhelming an automatic transmission is

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11-Driving What is the biggest aggravation of vehicle ownership?
Trying to reset the clock after daylight saving time ends
Keeping my desire to drive like Mario Andretti in check
Trying to get performance out of a stock engine
When the car runs out of fuel after I just filled it up

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12-Yellow Car What do you put on your feet in preparation for a long road trip?
My favorite pair of navy blue Crocs
A sensible set of athletic shoes
A well-worn set of Chuck Taylors
A slightly smelly pair of Birkenstocks

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13-Weather In all of your years of driving, what is the scariest thing you've ever piloted?
A Dodge Omni in the rain
A C7 Corvette on a road course
A very unpredictable Subaru WRX
A mountain bike on a rough trail

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14-Buttons Which button do you find yourself pressing the most inside your vehicle?
The hazard lights, but by accident
The fog light button, also by accident
The overdrive-off button, on purpose
The window toggle while at the Starbucks drive-thru

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15-Clutch If you were to overhear somebody talking about a clutch popping, what would you first think about?
A loud noise coming from underneath the car that made people clutch their chest in fear
Somebody needs to get down to the nearest parts store and buy a new battery ASAP.
The sudden jerk of a vehicle when you let the clutch out a little too quick
A woman possibly got her purse stuck in the door and she had to pop it out

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16-First Car What was the very first car you had all to yourself?
1977 Formula Firebird
1990 Z24 Cavalier
1992 Toyota Camry
2002 Nissan Altima

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17-Sports Car What do you consider the sportiest part of a car, and why?
The trunk, because that's where you can put your sports gear
The engine, because you can go from zero to hero at every stoplight
Body kits and spoilers — nothing looks sportier than a big huge wing.
The radio, because you can listen to ESPN on the Sirius XM

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18-Car Parts The average car is composed of around 30,000 parts. Which component seems the most complicated to you?
How an automatic transmission knows to shift
How rain sensing wipers automatically turn on
Why it's so hard to replace a headlight bulb
How a catalytic converter actually works

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19-ATF Can you select what ATF stands for?
All-Terrain Focused
Accredited Testing Facility
Automatic Transmission Fluid
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms

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20-Driving What is the absolute most fun you've ever had in a vehicle, either while driving or not?
Going through the automatic car wash that has colored foam
Blasting down the Pacific Coast Highway with the top down
Friday night cruise night in my small Midwestern town
Parking at Inspiration Point after my senior prom

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21-Driving Can you define what "overdrive" is?
When a car decides it wants to go over and above the call of duty and shifts into high gear
When the transmission selects a higher gear due to sustained speed, thus keeping the RPM low
A button on the gear selector that you push to let the car know you're towing something
When the engine communicates to the transmission that it's doing a really good job

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22-Manual If you were to compare your driving style to a Samuel L. Jackson movie, which movie would it be and why?
"Pulp Fiction," because I am a total boss on the streets and not afraid to cut people off in traffic
"Snakes on a Plane," because I have about as much patience for bad drivers as he did with those snakes
"Shaft," because I'm the coolest cat cruising down the strip and I occasionally break traffic laws
"Jurassic Park," because I take everything incredibly seriously and obey every single traffic law

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23-Stoplight If you were at a stoplight on a hill, what would you be mentally computing?
Exactly how long the light cycle is and who's the traffic engineer, because I'd like to speak with them
My technique of feathering the clutch and the gas at the same time to keep the car perfectly stationary
How to keep one foot on the brake and one on the gas to have the quickest takeoff without rolling backward
How many cars are in front of me, if they'll get where they're going and how I can shorten my commute

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24-Stall Let's do a word association activity! What's the first word that comes to mind when you hear the word "stall"?
Embarrassing
Delaying
Bathroom
Horse

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25-Fuel Costs Fuel costs are rising! What's the easiest way to save fuel?
Buy a hybrid car and put all the money I save on fuel in a piggy bank
Pay attention to what gear I'm in and adjust accordingly
Adjust the tire pressure according to the ambient temperature
Use cruise control whenever possible and fuel up only in the morning

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26-Heel Toe Can you explain in one sentence what the heel-toe technique is?
When a driver is able to pivot their right foot from the brake to the gas without moving the heel
When a driver utilizes all pressure points of both feet at once, resulting in higher driving performance
When you prepare the engine for shifting by engaging the clutch, brake and gas pedal simultaneously
A combination of words that I say to myself while trying to walk across uneven surfaces in high heels

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27-Mountain Road What is the best part of taking a scenic drive through the mountains?
Enjoying all the botanical beauty the roadside has to offer
Hitting every single apex flawlessly and blasting through straights
Listening to the dulcet engine notes as I accelerate down the road
Passing slow drivers and avoiding collisions with slow-moving wildlife

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28-Learning To Drive Who taught you how to drive?
The drivers education instructor
I taught myself ... in the womb.
My dad, the ex-race car driver
It was a full family effort.

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29-Brakes In a panicked braking situation, what is the quickest and safest way to come to a stop?
Use two feet to violently press the brake pedal.
Downshift and press the brake pedal simultaneously.
Use the brake pedal first, then downshift when safe to do so.
Yank the emergency brake and close my eyes.

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30-Lazy On a scale from 1–10, with 10 being Jabba the Hutt, how lazy are you?
Totally 10. Give me a couch and a remote, and I'm set!
A solid 1. There's way too much to do before I die!
A moderate 4, but aspiring to do more with my life!
A toss-up between 7 and 3, depending on the day

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