Thinking back, I should have posted this before the previous article. You see, I saw a comment by one of our readers asking for posts on automatic transmission. That is why I am on a seemingly “automatic mode” right now. Anyhow, I realized that as simple as this topic may be – driving can’t get any simple than automatic, right? – it will still be useful for some.
So this is what you do to get started…
Once in the car, take a look at the two pedals on the floor in front of the driver’s seat. The pedal on the right is the accelerator and the pedal on the left is the brake. Unlike with the stick shift, you only have to use your right foot to man those two pedals.
Look to your right and get to know that gear shifter by heart. The automatic gear shifter will normally have settings with these labels: P, R, N, D, 2, and 1. P stands for park, R for reverse, N for neutral, D for drive, 2 for 2nd gear, and 1 for first gear.
Now you may be wondering what the gears are there for – it’s an automatic car right? the first and second gears are there in case you need them for bad weather conditions. Don’t diss them just yet – you will find them handy one of these days.
Now you’re ready to drive. Check that the gear box is set to P. Most cars will not start unless it is on P anyway, but just make sure. Step on the brake, and start the engine. Now shift the gear box to D or R, depending on whether you have to go forward or back up. Slowly ease up on the brake until the car begins to move. (If you’re used to driving manual, this first movement might be a bit surprising.) Put your right foot on the accelerator and go!