Rent Standard


I need to rent a standard car for my road test.

Any ideas where I can rent one?

Or any ideas how I can get my hands on a standard car to use for the test?

Start by going to a car dealer and test driving a car that interests you. You can check inventory on line to find a dealer with a car you like with standard transmission. Both new and used cars are on a dealer’s lot. This will narrow down the list. If the test drive isn’t long enough for a decision, then think about renting. Unless it’s an exotic car, check the major rental agencies to see if they might have something. You could also rent automatic cars to see if they meet your other needs, then drive a manual to see if you like the way the transmission shifts and applies power.

In the time you took to post and monitor this for answers you could of done the easiest thing. Call around to different rental agencies.

What cars are you interested in? A web search shows that off-brand rental companies offer a few cars with manual transmission. But you are stuck with what they have on hand.

Today, very few cars are available with standard transmissions…Rental companies are NOT interested in having their cars used for “Road Tests”…

What state requires a test in a stick to drive one? I’ve often mused that passing the test in an AT ought to give you a license “limited to AT vehicles,” but AFAIK no state does it that way.

@PvtPublic; aready did that, that is why I am asking.

@jtsanders: compact car. At home I have a Ford Fiesta. I have also ridden a Matiz, Focus and Jetta. So you get the picture. somehtinga around “compact”.

@Caddyman: Sounds a little odd. I mean as long as I pay them and return it in good condition (as handed it in) then I don’t see any point on a dealer backing out of rental. In fact I wouldn’t let them know I will do a road test, I would just rent the car, do the test drive, and drive for the rest of the day around town.

@meanjoe75fan: I never said it was “required”. I am asking because I have dirven for 20 years standard and automatic is challenging to me (I understand it is not for most people, but for me it is) so I would prefer to rent a car do the test and that’s it, than to go through several rentals of automatic, to learn how to drive and then do the test.

If anyone can think of any options I would appreciate it!

What state requires a separate test to drive a manual tranny? I’ve never heard of that.

“Road Tests” usually involve maximum effort acceleration, maximum effort braking, measuring the maximum G-force obtained on a skid pad, measuring the top speed obtained, fun stuff like that…Rental companies are simply not interested in having their cars abused in that way…

Okay, I get it now…You want to rent a car to take a Drivers License Road Test…So, apparently, you will avoid having “automatic transmission only” stamped on your license…(What State??) Catch 22. You can’t rent a car without a valid license…

Most rental car companies will not rent a car to someone without a license.


@caddyman @bloody_knuckles I have an international drivers’ license. That is not a problem.

The OP says driving an automatic transmission vehicle is challenging !! Surely you jest.

So let me read between the lines.

you are not a citizen of the US, but are here (school or work) and would like a drivers license while here.

In your home country you have cars but all are standard transmission and you have little experience with an Automatic.

So you would like to rent a car with a standard to take the test with.

Ask around. Some friend, co-worker, other student must have a standard that can help you out.
If you are a student, most schools have a bulletin board where you can post requests.

In the US, it seems that everyone has become accustomed to automatic’s.


It’s unlikely the major rental companies will have any standard transmission equipped cars to rent, but no harm asking. You’ll have to call around to the smaller off-brand rental companies, located in town, not at the airport, there used to be one named “rent a wreck” as I recall. And I think in some areas there are rental companies that rent pre-1977 air-cooled VW Beetles, most of which are manuals.

I learned to drive stick, decades ago, in Germany. Automatics were not that common then, mostly found on higher end vehicles. And my family never had that kind of vehicle

When I came to the US, that was the first time I ever drove an automatic vehicle. There was some adjustment involved

So . . . I don’t believe OP is jesting when he says driving an automatic is challenging for him

@Yosemite thought of that, none of my friends has one… they offered their automatic cars, but I don’t want to be a burden as I will need time to practice.

@GeorgeSanJose seems that is my only chance.

@db4690 true, at home only people who can’t drive manual use automatic. So automatic are not common around.

Thanks guys, seems there aren’t many options. Really appreciate all the help!

Unless you’re buying a high end car, like a 'Vette, I’m not sure you can even buy a manual tranny in the U.S. anymore. I don’t think anybody offers one.

I’d go to a dealer. When my wife was going to Norway and needed to know how to drive a manual, we went to the Buick dealer where we had bought a new car before. They had one standard on the lot that they let us use for a day or two to practice on.

@Bing yeah some of my friends suggested this but they say they will help me unless if I commit to buy a car from them. Worth a try though. Thanks!

@“the same mountainbike” not interested in buying, just in the licence.