Motoring Alternatives for Autistics

Like  many autistics, I find driving difficult and never bothered to get a license. Clumsiness, absent-mindedness, poor reflexes and anxiety are some of the issues that may challenge autistic drivers. For those who encounter such problems (autistic or otherwise), there are now alternatives to the standard car that may be easier to drive. Two are shown below, the Renault Twizy and the Piaggio MP3. The Twizy is what they call a ‘microcar’, an electric-powered vehicle for city driving. The main advantages of the Twizy are its maneuverability, compact size and small turning circle; making it easier to park and weave through city streets. Doors are optional, and removable for better all-round visibility. The driver’s seat is in the centre, further improving side-visibility. The first video below is ‘with doors’, the second ‘no doors’.

Having said that, there are a few concerns worth highlighting for the Twizy. There is a single back-seat, but it’s cramped. The optional doors have no windows, so the interior is ‘open to the public’ and you’ll get wet in heavy rain. UPDATE: It turns out you can now buy windows for the Twizy either from Renault or third-party suppliers. Just google ‘Twizy windows’.

The Piaggio MP3 is a three-wheel motorbike that offers the stability of a car without the restrictions of driving a one-ton steel box. The two front wheels tilt on corners, so it feels like a normal bike on the road. But unlike a normal bike, you can come to a full stop without putting your leg out, and no worries about falling over. The MP3 offers excellent all-round visibility and handling: but it’s still a bike, with most of the usual disadvantages when it comes to security and weather-proofing. The Twizy and MP3  are just two of the many motoring alternatives out there for autistic drivers, choices depend on your particular strengths and weaknesses. Other options include trikes, motorbikes with sidecars, and other types of microcars.

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