Kia Forte: Manual transaxle operation
The manual transaxle has 6 forward gears.
This shift pattern is imprinted on the shift knob. The transaxle is fully synchronized in all forward gears so shifting to either a higher or a lower gear is easily accomplished.
Depress the clutch pedal down fully while shifting, then release it slowly.
If your vehicle is equipped with an ignition lock switch, the engine will not start when starting the engine without depressing the clutch pedal.
The shift lever must be returned to the neutral position before shifting into R (Reverse). The button (1) located below the shift knob must be pulled upward while moving the shift lever to the R (Reverse) position.
Make sure the vehicle is completely stopped before shifting into R (Reverse).
Never operate the engine with the tachometer (rpm) in the red zone.
CAUTION - Downshifting
Do not downshift more than 2 gears or downshift the gear when the engine is running at high speed (5,000 RPM or higher). Such downshifting may damage the engine.
- During cold weather, shifting may be difficult until the transaxle lubricant is warmed up. This is normal and not harmful to the transaxle.
- If you've come to a complete stop and it's hard to shift into 1st or R (Reverse), leave the shift lever at neutral position and release the clutch. Depress the clutch pedal and then shift into 1st or R (Reverse) gear position.
CAUTION - Prematurewear
Do not use the shift lever as a handrest during driving, as this can result in premature wear of the transaxle shift forks.
WARNING - Inclineparking
Before leaving the driver’s seat, always set the parking brake fully and shut the engine off. Then make sure the transaxle is shifted into 1st gear when the vehicle is parked on a level or uphill grade, and shifted into R (Reverse) on a downhill grade. Unexpected and sudden vehicle movement can occur if these precautions are not followed in the order identified.
Using the clutch
The clutch should be depressed all the way to the floor before shifting, then released slowly. The clutch pedal should always be fully released while driving. Do not rest your foot on the clutch pedal while driving. This can cause unnecessary wear. Do not partially engage the clutch to hold the vehicle on an incline. This causes unnecessary wear. Use the foot brake or parking brake to hold the vehicle on an incline. Do not operate the clutch pedal rapidly and repeatedly.
When you must slow down in heavy traffic or while driving up steep hills, downshift before the engine starts to labor. Downshifting reduces the chance of stalling and gives better acceleration when you need to increase your speed again. When the vehicle is traveling down steep hills, downshifting helps maintain safe speed and prolongs brake life.
Good driving practices
- Never take the vehicle out of gear and coast down a hill. This is extremely hazardous. Always leave the vehicle in gear.
- Don't "ride" the brakes. This can cause them to overheat and malfunction. Instead, when you are driving down a long hill, shift to a lower gear. When you do this, engine braking will help slow down the vehicle.
- Slow down before shifting to a lower gear. This will help avoid over-revving the engine, which can cause damage.
- Slow down when you encounter cross winds. This gives you much better control of your vehicle.
- Be sure the vehicle is completely stopped before you attempt to shift into R (Reverse). The transaxle can be damaged if you do not.
- Exercise extreme caution when driving on a slippery surface. Be especially careful when braking, accelerating or shifting gears. On a slippery surface, an abrupt change in vehicle speed can cause the drive wheels to lose traction and the vehicle to go out of control.
- Always buckle-up! In a collision, an unbelted occupant is significantly more likely to be seriously injured or killed than a properly belted occupant.
- Never exceed posted speed limits.
WARNING - Vehicle handling
Avoid high speeds when cornering or turning. High speed cornering and turning increases the risk of vehicle rollover due to loss of vehicle control. Rollover accidents are extremely violent and unpredictable.