YoungDrive! Program Lets UK Kids Learn to Drive MINIs

Official Release: Youth may be wasted on the young, but the charms of the new MINI Hatch won’t be. MINI has further strengthened its relationship with MotorSport Vision by supplying 11 new MINI Cooper D Hatch models for its YoungDrive! programme.

The YoungDrive! scheme offers children as young as 11 years old (and a minimum of 4 feet 8 inches tall) the chance to have their first taste of motoring. It’s intended to allow eager pre-teens the opportunity to experience driving in a safe and controlled environment.

MINI YoungDrive

Available at Brands Hatch, Oulton Park, Bedford Autodrome and Snetterton, each session in the MINI comes with a DSA-approved instructor who will teach the young drivers essential motoring skills in a traffic-free environment before they hit the road for real.

The 11 dual-control MINI Cooper D Hatch replace a fleet of previous generation MINI One Hatch that MotorSport Vision has used for the YoungDrive! scheme since 2012.

MINI YoungDrive

“What better way to experience driving for the first time than by climbing into a new MINI Hatch?” said Chris Brownridge, Director, MINI UK. “The MINI Cooper D is agile, nippy and a perfect accompaniment to some of the UKs most famous racing circuits – it really is the perfect car for young people to sample driving for the first time.”

Jonathan Palmer, chief executive of YoungDrive! operator MotorSport Vision, said: “MINIs are the perfect choice for our unique YoungDrive! programme – they’re easy to drive and they’re fun, perfect for encouraging the desire to learn car-control skills and for fostering a love of driving.”

Source: MINI

  • Get em while they’re young…

  • Geepers

    I have to question the reasoning for teaching a “child” how to drive a MINI at age 11, when the UK minimum driving age is 17 years. Only then a person can get a “L” learners licence for two years with very tight restrictions. So why encourage “kids” who can’t be legal for at least 5 years? Even if a 17 year old could afford to buy a MINI, he/she would attract such high insurance premiums that would make it a very expensive exercise.

    • fishbert

      It’s not that uncommon for kids to learn how to drive before the official driving age. Especially in more rural settings. And early-learners often seem to turn out to be much better drivers in the end.

      • caerbannog

        Yep — I remember my high-school driver-ed days.

        A girl from out in the country who already had behind-the-wheel experience far outclassed the rest of us in driving skills. The instructor kept using her as an example of what to do when behind the wheel. He also used me&others as examples of what not to do, but I don’t want to get into that. 😉

        Kids who get safe and controlled behind-the-wheel experience well before they take driver-ed will almost certainly end up as safer teenage drivers.