in neutral

in neutral

Of a vehicle, having the gear stick set to "neutral," wherein the engine is running but doesn't transmit power to the wheels. OK, put the car in neutral, and we'll try to push it to that gas station down the road.
See also: neutral
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

in neutral

with the shift lever of a vehicle in the position where the motor is running but is not powering the wheels or other moving parts. The car rolled down the hill because I'd left it in neutral and did not put on the brake. If you are moving and in neutral, you do not have control of your vehicle.
See also: neutral
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
See also: