I need a Noob guide to Manual Shifting w/Clutch

Hi everyone,
I have always been a Forza fan but frankly I get bored with it after a month or two. Now, keep in mind I have always been an Automatic shift racer.

So, now that I have just bought the Forza 6 Ultimate Edition, :slight_smile: I believe I can instill a new longer lasting Forza life by officially switching to Manual Shifting with Clutch.

I was wondering if any of you know of a great track or great car setup to practice on? I want to grind this for 3 days straight to learn it for good!

All recommendations welcome. I want to make the switch and never look back on Automatic!


You don`t need any setups or a certain track for learnig how to manual shift. And it may be easier to switch the handbrake and the clutch button so the you can shift with a+x or a+b.

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Thanks for the tip, I have already done that with my controller setup.

Would love to know just a good track to practice on. One that has some good straights, but also a couple easy turns to work on downshifting while braking, etc.

Maybe start with manual w/o clutch to get used to shift timing first, then start working in the clutch.


Maybe I will do that. Is there a speed difference in using the clutch though?

I kinda want to train or practice one way and never look back.

In previous games manual w/ clutch is faster than regular manual so I assume its the same here. Honestly just mash A and B / A and X at the same time for the fastest gear changes. It’s not that realistic as you’ll peg the rev limiter on slower shifting cars but its easy. The real learning part comes with knowing where to change gears. For example shifting mid corner can upset the car and cause a spin. Start with slower cars (class D/C) and off the top of my head tracks with big straights would be good for practice. I’m think Road America or Road Atlanta. Both have multiple turns requiring down shifts of 2-3 gears.

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monza is a good track for down shifts into the 1st turn chicane… down 4/5 gears depending on car. With shifting, manual and clutch you will take more than three days to perfect it. So don’t expect to improve your times for a few weeks as you’ll make small mistakes on almost perfect laps which will discourage you greatly.

I use a wheel, so I paddle shift and use the B button for clutch. Learned this way due to only two pedals years ago in FM4. Now with three pedals can not make myself use the clutch pedal…Ha! Except when just playing with friends and H shifter. But for LB times, it’s B button clutch.

Good Luck as it will help you reduce times over auto shifting… but as suggested above… start with Auto Clutch, just to get your timing down.

In Forza 4 it was as simple as mashing two buttons at the same time. 5 and 6 need a little more rolling motion on the buttons. I never really got the hang of the proper rolling motion in 5 consistently so I swapped back to clutchless. When you get it right it is quicker though.

Dont start without Clutch. Since u swapped clutch with Handbrake u can easily just press a+x or a+b at the same time…wasted time to learn it without clutch. I think a nice Racetrack for Practice is Le Mans Bugatti (not the Full one!). Always shift at the Limitpoint of the Speed limiter …thats how i do and im not the slowest out there ^^.

I think Road America full w/ the chicane is a great track to do it on - you have some nice straights to figure out your upshifts and a good mix of sharp turns along with curves.

I would start in C class - I think D class cars would be a bit too forgiving, but start there if you need to)

A RWD car would be best as well … find a tune in rivals that posted a good time so that you know you are working with a good car

I’m not sure what you are using for assists, but it would be a good idea to take TCS off at the beginning so that you can get feedback on how much pressure you should be applying on the accelerator

It might be a bit frustrating at first, but going manual is well worth it - not only are you faster, it makes the game far more interesting/engaging

As an aside - for the controls, I have A/X for upshift and A/B for downshift … I had it as reversed in FM5 as there was no option for this new setup … I found my thumb to be in an awkward position having to hover around A/B for upshifts - you usually get your downshifting done in rapid succession so no issue there. It’s much more natural to have it over A/X for upshifting.

Good luck!


I am really excited to get home from work tonight to try all these different tracks.

GREAT Stuff mdg! - I think you may be right about the upshifting on button X … using A+X - I am going to try that tonight as well.


I find the opposite (A+B upshift, A+X downshift) works best for me. It just feels the most natural. I agree with Road America for a good combination of straights and different types of corners.

In FM3 manual with clutch was definitely the way to go. In FM4, not so much. I have a Fanatec set up with a clutch pedal and I often run without the clutch on some cars. I run virtually the same lap times. I don’t have FM5, so I can’t speak of that. With 6, I have unfortunately been forced back to the controller for the time being. Using the clutch with the buttons is awkward at best. I can never quite get it right. I have found that just installing the race clutch whenever possible and running just manual is fine. I have had no trouble being competitive.

Here’s a snippet of a message I sent to someone awhile back regarding FM4 (it should also work on FM6)…

Hopefully that’ll be of some use to you.

Some have said this but I love having

“A” as the clutch.

Up shift is “X”

and down shift would be “B”

With a proper tuned car you wont need any TCS or ABS activiated

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I think the clutch does make you faster in some cars - probably more impactful in the slower street cars. I know this is true because I tested in a previous game on the drag strip. (haven’t tested in FM6 though). I could accelerate faster using clutch. I also tried with some GT cars and while they were faster, it was very slight.

Since I was mostly racing GT cars I stuck with manual w/o clutch. Believe it or not pushing the extra button with my thumb throws me off just enough to disrupt my balance with the car and I find I over brake, or too heavy on the gas on the exits and I get the car loose. Braking seems to be a bigger problem for me. This was not worth the small acceleration gain that I got from using clutch.

I would again recommend learning shift points without the clutch first and once that becomes second nature, then adding in the clutch. moving to manual from Automatic should provide a much larger gain than when adding in the clutch so I would concentrate on that first.

My favorite option is to leave LB as the clutch and change the shifting with the right thumbstick and then invert the right thumbstic in the options.it makes it fun like in real life! So when u move the right thumbstick up its to up shift and down to downshift.

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WOW - I never knew you could make the Right Analog Stick the Shifter!

That sounds like a great option and actually seems like it would be the easiest to train your brain to do. I might try it without clutch first using analog as shifter. So many options!
Just gotta get to that lab! -work sucks! :wink:

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I never really noticed any advantage to driving with the clutch. It always just felt like I was having to press an extra button to shift gears for seemingly no reason.

Forza (and driving in general) is WAY more interesting with a manual transmission. Forza gets boring pretty quick when all you have to do is control throttle and brakes. But the ability to change gears makes it a lot more strategic. There’s just so many things you can do to improve the handling and speed of the car when you have full control of the transmission.

Now as for the clutch, I will say that I don’t notice much of a difference time-wise between clutch and no-clutch. They’re about the same for me. BUT, w/ clutch forces me to drive a little better, because switching gears is slightly more effort, so I try to stay in a gear a little longer, which generally helps me hold speed and smoothness.