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Mario drifting in his Kart

Drifting (also referred to as Powersliding) is a move in the Mario Kart series, allowing the kart to keep speed around corners, at a cost of a bit of handling. Beginning with Mario Kart 64, it is possible to use both directions of the D-Pad (left and right) simultaneously while in a drift to cause the kart to get a short, but helpful Mini-Turbo when the drift is ended. In most Mario Kart games, the player must hop before being able to drift. The exceptions to this are in Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, where there is no hop button – the player simply needs to keep press the R Button button (or L Button button) instead – and in the Mario Kart Arcade GP sub-series, where the player needs to tap the brake to enable drifting.

Due to the emergence of the "snaking" technique in Mario Kart: Double Dash!! and Mario Kart DS, starting from Mario Kart Wii, performing Mini-Turbos by drifting has been simplified by becoming time-based rather than by tilting/pressing the control pad multiple times. Mario Kart Wii also introduced the "inside drifting" mechanic, in which the vehicle will commit to the turn by going to the inside instead of drifting to the outside when the player attempts to drift. All sport bikes in the Mario Kart series uses this mechanic.

In some games, one can perform a long powerslide by steering at the opposite direction while holding the drift button (when drifting to the left, steer right and vice versa), at the cost of speed. However, starting from Mario Kart Wii, performing this technique would delay the Mini-Turbo and causing it to take longer to charge.


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ドリフト
Spanish Derrapar To skid
French Dérapage Slip
Italian Slittata
Derapata (Mario Kart Wii and onwards)
Russian Управляемый занос
Upravlyayemyy zanos