Did you know that July 16 was National Stick Shift Day? Okay, it’s not an official holiday, but it’s a holiday according to cars.com. Learning to drive a manual is becoming a lost art. Only an estimated 4 percent of Americans know how to operate a stick shift. However, it’s never too late to learn, and the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback is the ideal vehicle for learning this valuable skill.

What makes the Toyota Corolla Hatchback ideal for stick shift learners? For beginners, the trickiest part of driving a manual is managing the clutch. They either let the clutch go too slowly, or release it too quickly, causing the engine to shut off. The Toyota Corolla addresses this problem by incorporating a new resin slave cylinder. This provides smoother friction, thereby expanding the engagement range for the clutch. Essentially, this gives newbies more room for margin of error.

The 2019 model also has a new feature called Downshift Rev Matching, which is available for both the SE and XSE trims. The feature works in conjunction with the vehicle’s Intelligent Manual Transmission. When the latter is activated, Downshift Rev Matching automatically changes engine speed to match the gear you’re shifting to. This makes downshifting far smoother.

Another benefit is a reduced likelihood of the vehicle stalling. In fact, even if you take your foot off the clutch just a little bit, you can hear the rpm adjusting. The car will also move forward without engaging the gas pedal.

Though the 2019 model isn’t out yet, you can check out the 2018 Toyota Corolla iM. You can schedule a test drive or stop by Toyota Chula Vista with any questions you have. Even seasoned stick shift drivers need to get a feel first for a new manual vehicle.