Most people are familiar with the basic functions of a car. And it is that, even if you do not drive yourself, you have probably been in a car and seen how they work. However, even experienced drivers can become confused when they see a M on gear stick. After all, most gears have number names, and even the ones that don’t (drive, reverse, and neutral) don’t start with an M. But don’t worry, here’s what means the M on the gear stick of your car.
What does M stand for on your car gear stick?
If you drive an automatic transmission, you may see this M mark on or near the gear stick. Although it is more common in Toyota vehicles, other manufacturers may include this option in some of their models.
The letter M on his car stands for Manual or Manual Controland is a way to switch your vehicle between automatic and manual transmission functions.
Having the option to switch to manual control may not seem like a big deal, but it can actually make a big difference in safety and performance in the hands of an experienced driver who understands manual driving.
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Why switch to manual transmission mode?
Generally, the most common reason for switching to manual mode is that driving in manual mode gives you slightly better control over the vehicle. It can react to much more information than the car’s computer, including weather conditions, light levels, nearby traffic and more.
Switching to manual mode can also be useful when driving on a rough road, or in dangerous conditions such as icy roads, or when there is standing water on the road during a storm. It is also often used when you want to control the power, either you need more or you want to reduce it.
When should you use manual mode?
When to use it depends on each driver and situation. Remember that different drivers will have different opinions about when it is most useful to switch to manual mode.
For example, some will prefer to drive in manual mode and may switch to manual mode just because that is how they prefer to drive. Others may just use it to tackle rough conditions and rough roads because of the extra control.
Likewise, others might prefer not to use manual mode, especially on vehicles that still have a clutch or use an abnormal shift method while in manual mode.
It should be noted, preferably, that you shouldn’t shift into manual mode during a difficult part of driving only to discover that you don’t know how it works on your vehicle. It would be best to practice beforehand, in order to better understand how your vehicle works and prepare for a future situation. Although, of course, if you never have to use it, that’s perfectly fine too.