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Skid control training

Broadcast date : 4th February 2007

Manís quest for speed is age-old. And itís an anomaly that every new car sold in South Africa is capable of breaking the 120 km/h national speed limit.

With 250 km/h cars now common place, isnít it time that high-performance driving skills are a legal requirement?

Not only are even the most mundane shopping cars capable of a 160 km/h plus, but thereís a vast diversity in the way cars respond to steering inputs and heavy braking. Understanding the way your car behaves in an emergency, and what to do about it, could save your life.

And like anything in life, basic vehicle control is best learned slowly. Hence the Zwartkops Skid Car, which can go into a "skid" at walking pace.

In this strange device, those arcane terms understeer and oversteer become instantly understandable.

The beauty of this device is that everything happens slowly. That funny rear axle has made the Skid Car inherently unstable Ė a situation that can occur to any car no matter how sophisticated, at high speed.

And the beauty of this invention is that itís relatively inexpensive. This trolley-like axle bolts in place of conventional rear wheels.

The course is all about sensing direction and smooth inputs on the wheel.

The skid car concept is not new, but Zwartkops have simplified it in the interests of low cost.

By simplifying the concept, Zwartkops Driver Training is able to offer tuition in the car at an amazingly low R250. Itís aimed at novices, but even experts can learn from it, including racing drivers and motoring journalists.

This particular road safety course will never be in danger of being boring. The beauty of it all is that itís aimed both at youngsters without a driverís licence, and licensed road-users. This could be the most valuable R250 you will ever spend in our life.

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