Example 2

Changing gear

In contrast to the USA and Japan, manually shifted gears in cars are the most common type in Europe. Many Americans dislike that, and apart from the additional effort that is required for driving such a car, another reason for the dislike might be that there is no standard gear box. Type A (depicted below) is common in many cars nowadays, e.g. in a Peugeot. In order to select “Reverse” you need shift to the right end and backwards. In other cars the reverse is on the left end front (Type B below), such as in many Renaults and Opels (Vauxhalls). In these cars you also need to release the gear by an additional lever, in other conditions (e.g. in some Volkswagens) depress the gear or alternatively lift it. Things really get complicated when you rent a van. In most van gear-boxes the order of gears is different. In a Mercedes van for example (shown as Type C), the second gear is where in most cars you would find the first gear. If you accelerate, there usually is no problem as the order in which you change gear is the same, however, shifting back to a lower gear cannot be done “on the autopilot”.
I have no idea why this was done.

car5g car5gop van5g
Car: Type A Car: Type B Van: Type C

submitted by Dick de Waard

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