What is a Short Shifter and Why Does Your Vehicle Need One?

31st Mar 2021

short shifter in a vehicle’s interior

The sheer experience of driving a manual performance racing or tuned-up car is unparalleled in the auto industry. Many enthusiasts love the engagement that comes with shifting gears. If you’re in love with your manual shifter, there’s no better way to make it even more thrilling than installing a short shifter. It’s reasonably inexpensive and relatively simple to install.

Well, you might be wondering, what is a short shifter? In this short guide, we’ll look at what short shifters are, how they work, and why you need one for your manual car.

What is a Short “Throw” Shifter?

Stock shifters are designed to ensure the effortless and smooth shifting of gears. However, they’re not the perfect option when you want to shift much quicker. This is where short shifters come in. So what does a short shifter do? Shifting gears in a manual requires physically moving the stock shifter into different positions, which takes time. A short shifter solves this problem.

A short “throw” shifter cuts the time you need to shift your gears and has a shorter throw than the stock shifter. Your hand ends up traveling less, speeding up your gear shifting and making it much easier to keep your engine revs high and ensure maximum power. Now that you know what a short shifter is, let’s look at how it works to improve the overall driving experience.

How a Short Shifter Works

It’s important to understand that a short shifter doesn’t necessarily mean a “physically short shifter.” A short-throw shifter works by altering the angles inside the shaft — the part of your manual shifter that usually travels between the gears. By simply changing the pivot point, a short-throw shifter helps reduce the shaft’s angle. There’s no length reduction of any component.

To understand what a short shifter is and how it works, think of it this way: imagine having a shorter wrench and longer wrench when you want to remove a bolt. The longer wrench will travel more to remove the bolt while the smaller wrench travels a much shorter distance. If you compare a short shifter to a stock shifter side-by-side, you’ll notice that the short shifter often looks longer in most cases. Why is this?

The pivot point is relocated to a higher position than it previously was to ensure shorter throws. While short shifter designs in the market look fancy and particularly short, the working principle is the same — they simply alter the pivot point to shorten shift throw lengths and gear shift time. One thing to note is that shifting between gears will require more effort.

Why Do You Need a Short Shifter?

Nissan 370Z on the street

Now you know what a short shifter is, and if you love faster shifts and a more engaging driving experience, a short shifter, as well as other universal performance parts, will appeal to you. The benefits become noticeable when you’re having fun behind the wheel.

Generally, you can opt for a short-throw shifter if you’re looking for:

  • Marginally improved gear shifting times
  • Better shift tactility and confidence
  • Less time keeping your hands away from the steering wheel
  • Cool-looking manual shifter
  • Increased level of interaction with your car
  • A less laggy gearbox feel

Shop Aftermarket Short Shifters Online

You have the answers to your questions: what a short shifter is, and what does a short shifter do? If you’ve decided it’s something you’d want to transform your driving experience and make those track racing moments worth it,, you can get yourself a premium aftermarket short shifter at Enjuku Racing. Upgrade today and take advantage of our competitive pricing and fast turnaround times.