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Not much to say - in first and second gear, car starts jerking violently when given any gas. The best association I can make is that it feels like the clutch is bouncing off of the flywheel, but that's just a guess - could be a sensor issue. CEL is not on. This happens predominantly when the car is cold. Clutch has been replaced, I am fairly sure car was abused by previous owner.

This happened to another used car I have owned before (the exact same feeling), but only with reverse. That car was also tracked prior to me owning it and clutch was replaced.

Any ideas on what could be causing this? Weak pressure plate?

P.S. I read the accepted answer here: Why does my clutch "bounce"?

I don't think that applies to me - I have driven a lot of manual cars smoothly, so I really don't think it's "user error", it's pretty dramatic and I can't moderate it by different driving patterns.

Edit: Car in question is a 2009 Honda Civic Si. 108k on the clock. I have also had this issue happen with reverse gear on a 1990 Miata.

  • It always helps if you can provide the make/model/year/engine/transmission of the vehicle in question. I realize it's a manual tranny in this case ... the rest would be truly helpful. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Jan 9 '17 at 0:17
  • @Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 I left it off on purpose, because I genuinely believe it to be a generic issue, but just added it in case it helps. – VSO Jan 9 '17 at 0:21
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    If this is just clutch "chitter" (vibrations on take off as you engage the clutch), was the new clutch bedded properly? Clutches need about 500 miles of easy city driving before they become fully bedded (broken-in). If the process isn't done easily, it can cause the chitter (or judder or whatever name for it you are used to ... the vibration on clutch engagement at lower speeds). – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Jan 9 '17 at 15:51
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A few things can cause clutch judder.. A weak or worn clutch cover can do it, as can the pressure plate if say a spring has failed or they've become weak, but as you say the clutch has been replaced already I think unless the new parts were faulty (which does happen) you could be looking at perhaps an oil contamination issue on the clutch if the rear main oil seal is leaking. A warped flywheel or failing spigot bearing can also cause this issue.

A less common issue but still something to consider especially on higher milage vehicles is excessive crankshaft end-float, as excessive axial movement in the crank will at least exaggerate any vibration or run-out in the clutch mechanism or flywheel resulting in judder.

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