Forget car computer games this Christmas as children as young as 10 are learning basic driving skills, including changing gears and reversing.
And it would appear that getting behind the wheel for real is giving the virtual online experience a run for its money, with driving experience provider www.trackdays.co.uk reporting a 32 per cent increase in bookings for its young driver experiences in the last six months.
In these experiences, children aged from just 10 have the opportunity to see what it’s like driving a car, including the opportunity to change the gears, park the car and drive in reverse.
Dan Jones, operations manager at www.trackdays.co.uk, explained: “While car driving games have state-of-the-art graphics and give a taste of putting pedal to the metal for youngsters, nothing can beat getting behind the wheel for real for pure excitement.
“Of course, safety is paramount as each child is individually assessed for their capabilities and is accompanied by an approved driving instructor.”
Among the other real-life driving skills that children, some of primary school age, can learn are steering correctly and stopping safely, using the mirrors and pulling away smoothly.
Dan said: “A young driver experience makes an unforgettable Christmas present, as well as giving the ultimate playground bragging rights.”
Meanwhile, children with a little more confidence also have the chance to jump into the driving seat but this time in supercars, including Ferraris, Porsches, McLarens, Lamborghinis and Aston Martins.
Dan added: “It’s great that children have the chance to drive a car from a very young age in a safe and controlled environment. While it is great fun, more importantly, it can give them a head start in learning basic skills.”