Skip to comments.Hagerty Driving Experience: Teaching young drivers three-pedal fun
Posted on 01/02/2014 9:54:08 PM PST by Impala64ssa
For the newest generation of drivers, and even those with years of experience, the skill of driving a manual transmission is one that few possess. With less than 10 percent of new cars produced today being equipped with a manual transmission, theres far less opportunity and need to learn how to operate a clutch and shift gears. The Hagerty Driving Experience Powered by Ford aims to help steer that outcome down a different road.
Pairing a classroom session with closed-course driving lessons, the Hagerty Driving Experience provides a unique and exciting opportunity for young drivers to learn how to operate a manual transmission. At six locations across the country, more than 300 participants finessed the pedals in a wide variety of vehicles that included a 1929 Ford Model A, 1963 Jaguar E-Type and 1969 Chevrolet Camaro SS.
The future of the car hobby depends on young drivers being excited about cars, and being able to actually drive them, said McKeel Hagerty, President and CEO of Hagerty. The Driving Experience gives them the chance to learn those skills from behind the wheel.
Ford Motor Company shares the passion for teaching young people how to drive manual transmissions, and it was with great pleasure that the Driving Experience officially partnered with Ford this year. Through the companys support, two 2013 Ford Mustang GTs and a Focus ST were provided for each event, giving participants the chance to experience modern performance vehicles in addition to a variety of classic cars provided by local car owners.
With the 50th anniversary of the Ford Mustang approaching in 2014, the inclusion of new Mustangs at each event offered a perfect opportunity for participants to experience the modern version of one of the industrys most iconic cars, one that is easily relatable to young and old alike.
Some events included both modern and classic examples of Mustangs. During the Orange County, Calif., event, ABC- 7 television personality Dave Kunz volunteered his 1965 Ford Mustang. It was with this car that he learned to drive a stick shift as a teenager, and he was thrilled to give todays young drivers the chance to learn behind the same wheel. Having Kunzs first generation Mustang roll alongside Fords 2013 Mustang GT was an ideal parallel that helped participants gain an even deeper appreciation of our automotive heritage and how the past continues to carry us forward.
The Driving Experience wrapped up the year at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in September. The experience was especially unique for 16-year-old Krystal-Jo Weiss, who used her newfound shifting skill to drive her 1967 Ford Bronco to her high school homecoming.
It was fun driving both the classics and the new cars, Weiss said. I learned that you really have to focus when driving a manual transmission. Youre more involved and more connected because you have to know your car better.
The Hagerty Driving Experience Powered by Ford continues to gain momentum for 2014. Our partnership with Ford Motor Company helped provide more young drivers the chance to learn the ins and outs of motoring in a unique and memorable way that will remain with them for years to come and might even lead them to owning a manual transmission vehicle of their own one day.
Pure BS. Ford has not offered its F150 largest engined P/U with a m/t for DECADES.
Any number of kids have grabbed the keys to mom's vehicle and taken off while she is sleeping. You can look it up.
Besides A/T's let too many peeps drive who should be taking public transportation.
I only have a 5 speed and it can still text, fiddle with the satellite radio, eat nacho's, and sip on an iced tea..or something...and cruse at 75
The trick is learning to drive with your knee :)
Turbo-Diesel engines help as there is even less need for shifting. Just hit the loud pedal and wait (a short time).
I hope they had some pickups or other vehicles with “ three on the tree” shifters too
It was a trip.
Agreed. The myriad soccer moms yammering on cell phones could not drive if they had to pay attention to something else.
Never had an auto as a daily driver for about fifty years of driving. Did have a Chevy van with an auto, but that was only an occasional hauler.
My little 5spd WRX wagon does go in for a 81k mile clutch replacement Monday. Turbos are clutch killers I have found if you mess up with too much throttle/boost and not enough clutch disengagement.
Manuals suck in a traffic jam and through crowded city streets, that is why I gave them up for auto.
Wasn't that what we all learned on back when?
My clutch work was so miserable, especially learning to get started from a stop on a hill. Pretty good now, but when 16, geez, what an ego killer.
Go back to the Model T with 3 pedals plus a hand throtle and advance lever to keep both hands busy.
Vehicular deaths would fall precipitously if automatics were banned.
I had driven over 2 million miles bedore i had an automatic but traffic finally got so bad i put a 700R4 in my pickup and I did put a 400 in my 1936 Chevy 3 window coupe.
It was more about getting it started in January in the 70's little ice age and learning how the loose shifter mechanism need to be finessed to avoid locking it up while shifting.
It’s great to teach them to drive a manual transmission but I’d like to teach them more!
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Not even O and the idiot congress critters would try that..Obamacare would be a faint memory if folks were forced to actually drive..
Idea being that modern cars are far too easy for incompetent fools to get behind the wheel.
Demonstrating a minimal level of dexterity, awareness/reaction time, and decision making skill would probably cut driving accidents drastically.
Of course, it would also eliminate the majority of democrats from driving..............
Digital Computer Engine Control is a boon.
A/T shift busyness, not so much.
Not sure what you mean. My '99 F150 short WB step side has a 5-speed manual tranny.
It was a trip.
You took a '64 Chevy wagon skiing?
How'd you get it on the ski lift?
They should be banned from owning guns too. (and voting)
Back in the day there was no separation between the parking lots and the slopes.
Not so long before that time , automotive engines (and plenty of used wheels) ran the rope tows.
I just taught my 17 year old son how to drive a manual, got him a 5 speed VW Jetta, he’s doing fine,a chip off the old block :-)
I'm working on getting a Ram 3500 diesel 4x4 m/t.
Probably a rope-tow “lift”, or maybe a “J-bar”.
I’ve got a F250 4x4 too. Big disappointment in ride quality, as they’ve went with a solid front axle. If you go that big, I agree, go with the Ram 3500. Anything less (F150), and I’d go with Ford again.
BTW, trucks aren’t the only thing Ford sells. The Mustang comes with a row-your-own, for one. The GT-40 *only* comes in manual (though not many kids are going to get to drive one of those). I’m pretty sure at least a few of their econoboxes come with a stick as well, or did until recently.
Interestingly enough, here in India something like 95% of all vehicles come with manuals. Automatics are still a “luxury”, and only come on high-end vehicles, and then generally only as an option.
Solid axles front and rear are manly. It's a TRUCK. It should ride like one.
Buy a Porsche for the summer on road.
Station Wagons and Vans.
It's always been a struggle to find a 4dr., Station Wagon body, Manual Trans, largest engine , 4x4.
Four simple criteria. How hard can it be?
Of course now I find I want a Turbo-Diesel too.
(Foot tapping) I'm waiting...
Just make sure to grow out your mullet to match it.
Around that period, the F150 was not only the most popular truck on the road, it was the most popular automobile period. It gets 21 mpg. That's not bad for a 4x4 that can do 90 mph all day long or drag another truck out of a ditch with four flat tires (in low range and 1st gear of course).
I learned to drive 40 some years ago in a manual in the hilliest town in a northern state that was basically nothing but one way streets. Not only can I drive on hills in the snow, I can parallel park on either side. I still drive a stick and really don’t like driving the wife’s automatic. I was doing research in Namibia and my vehicle there was a right hand drive manual - the gear pattern and the pedal layout is the same as here, but obviously you shift with the left hand. Took a while to get used to. Really made it awkward to downshift and use the turn signal at the same time, something I’d always done and never realized.
I love American Folk Art....
That’s VERY nice. The wheelbase matches perfectly (as far as I can tell).
You ought to be able to fit just about any manual under that. The beer-tap shift knob might gash the headliner though :). And while you might not be able to manage fitting a Cummins in there, the Duramax will probably work ok. Not sure how the Powerstroke would work, as it’s pretty tall.
There are some driver training courses here in the UK for 11 year olds and older. I took my daughter to one at Brands Hatch raceway, 2 hours in the classroom, and 2 hours seat time, she had a blast, and now is proficcent driving a manual, and asking to get into karting while waiting to reach 16 and do her provisional test.
And yeah, whoever did that conversion spent some time to do it right. Everything is very nicely proportioned and spaced right.
Imagine my disappointment in 1989 when I tried to buy my second Eddie Bauer Bronco II, that the dealer could not trade for a five speed gearbox anywhere within 500 miles.
For us hardliners, there are still the semi-manual autos, which I still use. While it's not really the same, when you feel the absolutely wussified "response" of the latest eco-boosted "shifting," it's tough to let the computer make the decisions.
In congested traffic just throw it in neutral and let the auto tranny’s hill gear of the car behind push you until you can actually drive. Problem solved.
I also have an a/t Escape that always manages (when cruise control is on) to downshift just at the top of a minor hill on the freeway. Very annoying. If it is even minorly hilly, I have to cut out the cruise and go to (manual) constant throttle position.
You raise an interesting point. The article mentions the Model A. Wouldn't the Model A have a non-synchronized transmission? Driving the "modern day" synchronized transmissions is a whole different ball game.
It always seemed to me that one reason for the success of the model T must have been because it wasn't as hard to shift gears as in other cars of its day.
At any rate, I doubt that they were really teaching people to double clutch (or float gears) at the event mentioned in the article.
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