Monday, July 18, 2011

Wired's Autopia Blog: 'Ford Proves That Blind Drivers Can Learn A Stick Shift'

Administrator's Note: This report by "Wired" magazine talks about a separate project to help the blind drive, but mentions in detail the Blind Driver Challenge...

Ford of Europe let 30 blind and visually impaired drivers get behind the wheel at their test track in Cologne, Germany in an attempt to give blind people a better understanding of automobiles and examine how they interact with cars.

Last week’s test drives put drivers in control of all vehicle inputs, responding to the directions of a sighted driving instructor. The fastest driver got their Fiesta up to 74 mph, and Ford reported that all drivers quickly mastered the fine art of a stick shift through feel and sound.

“Driving it was not a big problem for me,” said driver Katrin Berus of Kleve, Germany. “Operating clutch and gearshift was easier than I expected.”


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