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Little help. Never owned or driven a roadster before. I was just perusing the Sky website and under the Driver Experience section it stated that the pedals are designed for heel/toe driving. Can someone please explain to me just what that means? I doubt that my good 'ole Astrovan ever required that style of driving. Thanks.
 

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heel - toe

Heel - toe is a method of shifting gears, usually downshifting as into a tight corner, with using only one foot to operate both the gas and the brake at the same time.
Usually the preferance is to have the heel of your right foot on the brake & the toe of the same foot operating the gas.
Takes a bit of practice but the reults if you are racing are worth the effort
 

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Means the gas and brake pedals are close enough to operate both with one foot. You can do this on the Solstice too. Most the time racers would put oversize pedal covers on to aid this feature. This is for taking a car through turns harder and faster, really not for legal street driving. But once you learn it the fun of doing it on back roads is great! :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the info, both of you. Looks like I got some studying to do.
 

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Delnari said:
Means the gas and brake pedals are close enough to operate both with one foot. You can do this on the Solstice too. Most the time racers would put oversize pedal covers on to aid this feature. This is for taking a car through turns harder and faster, really not for legal street driving. But once you learn it the fun of doing it on back roads is great! :D
It also has to do with the near-max braking height of the brake pedal in relation to the height of the accelerator pedal.

I've now been educated that pedal placement is a "balance" - you don't want them too close together, or the complaints of accidental operation of the throttle when applying the brakes increase, but too far away and heel-toe becomes very difficult.

But what a lot of people don't understand that the whole reason you need to heel-toe downshift is because you need to downshift while you are braking . Usually, you need to do this while you are at or near max braking. I always laugh when someone drives a car around for a bit, then concludes the pedals are perfectly placed for heel-toe driving :lol:

There is really only one condition where you can properly evaluate it, and that is >half braking to max braking, THEN doing a shift, and seeing how easy (or not) and intuitive (or not) it is.

You know all about this, Delnari, don't you? I thought you race something or mentioned it a while back...
 

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Yes, I did my share of track time. Heel&Toe or as in my case Toe&Heel shifting on my front-wheel drive cars was just a way for me to get into the turns deeper than the heavier Mustangs and Cameros on the track. Like KappaMan said, it allows you to get the engine revs matched to your lower gear just as you re-engage the clutch pedal. Sounds really cool on a race exhaust too. :thumbs:
 

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I have a question...if u ordered the leather package, the SKY comes with the upgraded metal pedals...does the automatic come with them also or just plain rubber?
 

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Heel/toe is also used to start a car on a steep hill where you don’t want the car to roll back. I have use it on my fully loaded pick up truck when starting some hills.:)
 

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FWIW, heel and toe downshifting is somthing I don't think I will ever do or need to do. In the old days when transmission gear were unsynchronized, I think it was necessary to downshift. With synchronized gears, I think it is just use in racing to save wear on the clutch.

On the street, you will never ever need it. You may want to do it, to feel like a race car driver. Of course you can wear a helmet to. But until someone corrects me, I don't believe I will ever need to heel and toe during downshifts, even in very spirited driving.
 

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jimbo said:
FWIW, heel and toe downshifting is somthing I don't think I will ever do or need to do. In the old days when transmission gear were unsynchronized, I think it was necessary to downshift. With synchronized gears, I think it is just use in racing to save wear on the clutch.

On the street, you will never ever need it. You may want to do it, to feel like a race car driver. Of course you can wear a helmet to. But until someone corrects me, I don't believe I will ever need to heel and toe during downshifts, even in very spirited driving.
It all depends on how well you want to combine braking, handling.

You can always brake first, then coast while you shift, then get into your corner... but you will never be smooth enough to squeeze that last bit of time out of the car.

I do it all the time in "spirited" driving, even.

Heel-toe downshifting gets the downshift done without interfering with cornering and in the minimum amount of time. Kinda like killing two birds with one stone.

Do you HAVE to do it? No, and if you never intend to increase your driving skillz past on-the-street spirited driving, you prolly will never see a need for it. You don't have to finish above last place, either.

If you are even contemplating competition of any sort (autocrossing, time trials, club racing, track days where you are keeping track of time...) you are either a) not serious about competing, or b) have learned how to heel-toe downshift.

Even in today's cars with synchros - all synchros do is synch up the clutch disc with the speed of the transmission for the chosen gear. Heel-toe downshifting is matching the ENGINE RPMS to the SPEED OF THE CAR.

If you put a car into a lower gear without blipping the throttle, and just let out the clutch (engage the clutch to the engine) and your engine isn't matched, you might as well have pulled the parking brake - as the engine desperately tries to rev up to match the vehicle speed. Doing this in a corner is disasterous. Doing this in a corner on the side of a mountain... well, nice knowin' ya....
 

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Excellent explanation guys. :)

Not that I know how to do it right, mind you, but I find myself using my right foot to operate the brake and gas even in my automatics when I'm about to launch from a light. Some cars space the damn pedals out so far you wind up putting your foot to the floor between the brake and gas. Sporty cars assume you aren't club-footed and may want to roll back and forth while doing something else with your left foot, like shifting. :p
 

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well, it's not really like I'm performance driving, just kinda fooling around on the streets a bit... but I wanted to practice for when I get my sky, so I don't total it :lol: cause you can bet I'll be performance driving when I'm driving that :D
 

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marlboromike said:
I have a question...if u ordered the leather package, the SKY comes with the upgraded metal pedals...does the automatic come with them also or just plain rubber?
Yes, just not the clutch pedal (of course)
 
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