How to Drift a Car

Seven Methods:Things to do Before You Begin DriftingDrifting with Rear Wheel Drive and Manual TransmissionHand brake techniqueClutch Kick techniqueDrifting with Rear Wheel Drive AutoPreparing to Drift with a Front Wheel Drive CarDrifting with a Front Wheel Drive Car

Drifting is when the back of the car slides followed by a regain of control. When done properly (and safely), it is often very thrilling.


Use this article to be fast and furious with your new learnt trick as well as to impress people. Remember to stay safe and use correct safety cautions.

Method 1
Things to do Before You Begin Drifting

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 1
    1
    Set up a cone in the middle of a safe area of tarmac. Drive up to the cone and rip the handbrake in an attempt to do a 180 degree handbrake turn. Practice this until you are no more, and no less than 180 degrees from when you started.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 2
    2
    Learn how to counter-steer by ripping the handbrake from a speed of 30–40 mph (48–64 km/h) (anything less will cause an inadequate amount of momentum to get you around the cone) and trying to control the car to a destination until the car stops.
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 3
    3
    Increase speed of each of these things until you are comfortable
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 4
    4
    Try to do the 180 cone too.

Method 2
Drifting with Rear Wheel Drive and Manual Transmission

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 5
    1
    Find a car with both rear-wheel-drive and a manual transmission. Ideally it should be a sports car with as close to a 50/50 ratio as possible, and enough power to keep the tires spinning is ideal.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 6
    2
    Head to an open area (i.e. an enclosed racetrack) safely free of pedestrians and motorists and police!

Method 3
Hand brake technique

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 7
    1
    Accelerate and shift into a gear with room to rev. Second gear is generally used because it allows the widest variance of speed and is best for harnessing the engine's torque.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 8
    2
    Push in the clutch.
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 9
    3
    Flick the steering wheel to the inside of the turn as if you were going to turn around it. While simultaneously pulling the hand brake.
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 10
    4
    Immediately put some pressure on the gas pedal, let out the clutch, and steer the car in the direction of the slide, using throttle to control the angle of the drift.
  5. Image titled Drift a Car Step 11
    5
    More throttle will make the car turn more, and also move the car away from the turn center.
  6. Image titled Drift a Car Step 12
    6
    Less throttle will reduce angle, and allow the car to move towards the inside of the turn more freely.
  7. Image titled Drift a Car Step 13
    7
    You're drifting!

Method 4
Clutch Kick technique

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 14
    1
    Used while you are already moving to increase angle and/or revive wheel spin.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 15
    2
    While you are drifting, you may feel the car begin to lose its drift angle and power. If this happens, you can kick the clutch to attempt to revive to tires spinning speed. This is similar to power shifting, and you are in essence trying to 'chirp' the tires again and again.
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 16
    3
    Enter a drift.
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 17
    4
    While you still have the power put on, kick the clutch pedal in and out a few times as fast as you can until the car is drifting again.
  5. Image titled Drift a Car Step 18
    5
    End with your foot off of the pedal.
  6. Image titled Drift a Car Step 19
    6
    Continue the drift, and when you feel the car begin to lose angle/power try to clutch kick again.

Method 5
Drifting with Rear Wheel Drive Auto

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 20
    1
    Find a large, open area.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 21
    2
    Accelerate to a speed of 20–30 mph (32.2–48.3 km/h) (depending on lot size and room)
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 22
    3
    If possible, lock the transmission into a low gear to provide maximum torque
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 23
    4
    Turn the wheel hard and floor it. You should feel the rear end slide around if this is done correctly. Only use full throttle to start the drift, after this you should use proper throttle control to continue through the corner.

Method 6
Preparing to Drift with a Front Wheel Drive Car

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 24
    1
    Go to a large, open area.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 25
    2
    Pull the handbrake or use the parking brake, riding it out the first time or two to get over your initial fear.
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 26
    3
    Set up a cone in the middle of the lot.
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 27
    4
    Drive up to it at speed (between 20 and 30 mph is desired).
  5. Image titled Drift a Car Step 28
    5
    Pull the hand brake and turn toward the cone. Immediately after you feel the back end come around, turn to the opposite direction. This is known as opposite lock.
  6. Image titled Drift a Car Step 29
    6
    Repeat the opposite lock at that speed until you can control your car well. Practice this for at least several weeks regularly until it becomes second nature. (Don't do this on roadways. It is dangerous to others and can get you fined.)
  7. Image titled Drift a Car Step 30
    7
    Slowly increase speed until you are proficient in a speed you are comfortable with. Get to know that speed--you should never drift above that speed unless you are practicing.
  8. Image titled Drift a Car Step 31
    8
    Upgrade. At the same initial speed, flick the steering wheel opposite of the turn and swing it all the way into toward the CONE (not turn, you aren't ready at this stage). As before, when you feel the rear end come around, go to opposite lock.

Method 7
Drifting with a Front Wheel Drive Car

  1. Image titled Drift a Car Step 32
    1
    Approach a turn at a comfortable speed, preferably in mid 2nd gear.
  2. Image titled Drift a Car Step 33
    2
    Pull the handbrake while turning into the corner, try not to lock the rear wheels.
  3. Image titled Drift a Car Step 34
    3
    You should still have the power on, try not to go less than 1/2 throttle at any time during the drift.
  4. Image titled Drift a Car Step 35
    4
    When you feel the car start to understeer, and lose angle, pull the brake harder.
  5. Image titled Drift a Car Step 36
    5
    When the car seems to turn too much, give it progressively more throttle, and release the handbrake some.
  6. Image titled Drift a Car Step 37
    6
    Don't tense up, just feel it.

Warnings

  • Never drift on the road. It is illegal. It might seem fun, but it's really not worth the risk. In many jurisdictions this activity is considered reckless endangerment, carrying penalties of jail time, license revocation and more.
  • Always drift a car at a controllable speed , when you first try to drift keep it below 40 mph (64 km/h).
  • Don't go faster than you can handle. Recovering from a spin takes skill and experience.
  • Use brakes when needed to slow the car down more rapidly than E-braking.
  • Know your local and state motor vehicle laws. You can be cited, fined or jailed for drifting, even if you are not on public roadways. Although not explicitly prohibited in motor vehicle codes, there is usually a "catch-all" provision that law enforcement can use prevent you engaging in this activity.
  • Don't try to drift in a carpark. You can damage yours or others' cars badly, or worse.
  • Because severe or uneven wear is a driving hazard, be sure enough tread remains on the tires when finished drifting, but the tires should either be checked out by a professional or changed immediately.
  • If you intend to drift an SUV or pickup, use extreme caution, as these types of vehicles can flip over. This can be done but you must be very experienced at drifting.
  • FWD and most AWD cars are not capable of drifting in the strictest sense, rather they simply drag their rear tires sideways across the pavement. This greatly increases wear on the tires as well as the rear end suspension components and can cause rapid failure. If you're serious about drifting, get a RWD car.

Things You'll Need

  • A car with:
    • A well serviced engine and transmission
    • Safety equipment such as a roll cage and racing straps
    • Rear or four wheel drive is preferred
  • Cheap rear tires are recommended when learning
  • A limited slip differential (optional)
  • A car with a lot of CASTER. This basically means that the more you turn your front wheels, the more they CAMBER inwards. You want this because increased negative CAMBER increases turning ability. Likewise, increased POSITIVE camber will cause you to have less turn-in, but allow an over-all steadier straight line car. (CAMBER is the "tilt" of the wheel)
  • A racetrack or open lot (recommended you have asked local authorities, tickets are not cool)
  • Cones or other markers
  • A scoreboard with a friend to judge while drifting and give you advice.

Article Info

Categories: Summarization | Driving Techniques