Save the Manuals! MINI has a stick driving course in the U.S.

Learning to drive “stick” is not really unusual in the Philippines – every driving school has a course on that.

But in the United States, where automatics have ruled the roost for decades, driving a manual gearbox seems to have become a dying art, to the point that MINI has opened a special program for its American clients.

The British carmaker announced in a November 2022 press statement that it will open the MINI Manual Driving School, in light of the brand’s decision to offer three pedals in some of its models.

“To expand the accessibility and fun of driving a manual, MINI USA is offering a manual driving school that is open to any drivers looking for the opportunity to learn to drive manual in an engaging and safe atmosphere,” the company said.

The courses are conducted exclusively at the BMW Group Performance Center West in Thermal, California, which has offered programs for MINI owners since 2016. The MINI brand has been owned by BMW since 1994.

The school will focus on developing a solid foundation for manual driving, including vehicle controls, finding the friction point, practicing smooth starts, stops, acceleration and more. 

Participants will be tested on a timed course at the end of the program. 

’’For over a decade, consumers have ranked MINI as the most fun to drive brand in America, which is exactly why we brought back the manual transmission,’’ said MINI USA brand communications manager Rah Mahtani.

‘’The course is not only informative but also a fun and challenging learning experience for a new generation of MINI drivers that they will remember forever,’’ he added.

With automatics also gaining popularity in the Philippines, will we also see programs like this in the future?

Source: Save the Manuals! MINI has a stick driving course in the U.S.

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