ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Double Clutch & Heel and Toe Downshifting: Advanced Car Driving Technique

Updated on August 16, 2011

BMW M3 racecar cockpit

Photo taken by me
Photo taken by me

Worth the practice it requires!

Double-clutching is a racecar driving technique that is rarely heard of by the average person. It can only be performed on a manual transmission vehicle. It involves the driver revving up the engine rpm’s in neutral while shifting down one gear in order to allow for a smoother shift and less stress on the synchros. Proper double-clutching will increase the longevity of synchros.


When one puts a car into a lower gear without double-clutching, the driver and passengers sense a rough feeling when the gear engages. It is often sloppy. When double-clutching, the driver pushes in the clutch with their left foot, but does not immediately put the stick-shift into the lower gear. Rather, they put the stick in neutral for a split second (the motions go quicker when you practice a lot), let off of the clutch pedal, and rev the engine up by pressing the gas pedal with the right foot. While the engine rpm’s are temporarily increased, the driver again presses in the clutch and shifts into the lower gear as quick as possible. This accommodates for the increased engine rpm’s when the vehicle is put into a lower gear. There is little to no stress felt when downshifting with this method. The faster you are going in each gear before downshifting (the higher the engine rpm's already are), the MORE gas you are going to have to give the car in neutral, in order to insure the rpm's match up. Conversely, if you are cruising slowly in 4th gear and would like to double-clutch into 3rd before a more windy part of the road, you would only give a small "blip" of the throttle.

Take your time and do not make abrupt motions.

Proper downshifting can only be acquired with a lot of everyday practice. Be careful not to damage your clutch or gears by being too rough. It is all about being smooth and calm... with your shifting- up-shifting too! After a lot of practice (and it does take a lot of practice), double clutching feels natural, and the driver can effortlessly match the engine rpm’s of the lower gear without much thought. When double-clutching becomes habitual, a driver will never return to the standard method of downshifting. Double-clutching is superior, although it feels very awkward at first.


After double-clutching is mastered, it is advised to learn how to heel-and-toe downshift, which is an even more advanced method of double-clutching.  It is the same process, except you brake at the same time, and with the same right foot that you rev the gas pedal with.  The "toe" of your right food, or the front left side of the foot, applies brake pressure, while the "heel" or the back right side of the foot taps the gas pedal. Sounds complicated, but it really is simple and comes second-nature after practice.

Be prepared for some awkward, abrupt shifts and loud engine revs when practicing!

Shifter on a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX

Image from:
Image from:


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • dcasas profile image


      8 years ago

      great hub! learned these techniques just by driving around too much when i first got my car and they all came naturally but every driver should know how to do this. Very descriptive keep up the good work.

    • profile image

      Jay"Mr.iDrive" YT 

      8 years ago

      Needed the explaination to prove my point. Thanks a bunch.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Really helpful...... Appreciate it.....

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      you saved my life mate. nobodys been able to teach me how to double clutch as im only 17 and none of my mates know what it is. cheers


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)