Most new cars today are already install with an automatic transmission but there are still a lot of vehicles today that operates manually. And there are some motorists who still prefers driving a stick shift. The only difference between a VW automatic and manual transmission is the clutch. Basically, the clutch allows engine power to be applied gradually when a vehicle is starting out and interrupts power to avoid gear crunching when shifting. Engaging the clutch allows power to transfer from the engine to the transmission and drive wheels. Disengaging the clutch stops the power transfer and allows the engine to continue turning without force to the drive wheels. To fully understand how the clutch works, one needs to know the basic VW clutch parts. They are the flywheel, clutch disc, pressure plate, throw-out bearing and linkage. The main function of the flywheel is to transfer engine torque from the engine to the transmission. It also has teeth along the circumference, allowing the starter motor to contact when turning the engine over. The VW clutch disc is basically a steel plate, covered with a frictional material that goes between the flywheel and the pressure plate. In the center of the disc is the hub, which is designed to fit over the spines of the input shaft of the transmission. The VW clutch disc directs the flow of power between the engine and the transmission along with the pressure plate and the flywheel. Regular clutch discs are lined with asbestos, the same material that is used in brake shoes and pads to achieve friction. This special facing enhances the grip between the flywheel and the disc. A pressure plate on the other hand, is a spring-loaded clamp which is bolted to the flywheel. When the clutch pedal is depressed, the throw-out bearing moves toward the flywheel, pushing in the pressure plate's release fingers and moving the pressure plate fingers or levers against pressure plate spring force. This action moves the pressure plate away from the clutch disc, thus interrupting power flow. It is recommended to check the clutch. Although VW clutch disc are durable, they are still prone to wear out. Problems usually persist when most of the friction material of the disc is gone, it eventually won't transmit any power from the engine to the wheels. Resulting to poor driving performance. When the clutch doesn't fully engage then the VW clutch disc is bound for replacement. Another sign to notice clutch trouble is when the clutch engages and disengages close to the floorboard or the transmission grinds when shifting. Sometimes when the clutch pedal move easily but the transmission will not go into gear, the clutch linkage has become disconnected or a clutch cable has snapped. When you experience clutch chatter or jerking a replacement is needed. This chattering is often caused by an overheated clutch or from oil on the clutch disc. Since VW clutch parts are made from better materials chances are the vehicles will get faster and harder launches, quicker shifts and much better durability. Still, these clutch parts' performance will be dependent on the driver's usage and maintenance. So when one notices some troubling signs, it is suggested to replace the clutch immediately.