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Video: Mutts drive MINIs on a track

We don't know how it was possible for dogs to drive, but MINI has proved it.

By Exhaust Notes Dec 17, 2012 10:22AM
It's not uncommon to hear about dogs locking owners out of their cars or eating the entire interior out of anxiety. That happens. What never happens is a dog that can drive a MINI Cooper, entirely on his own.

In New Zealand, MINI brought a renowned trainer and three shelter dogs from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). The automaker retrofitted a four-door Countryman to allow the pooches to sit fully upright and accelerate, brake and grab the steering wheel with their paws.

What follows is an incomprehensible, mesmerizing video of Porter, a mutt that can even start the MINI's ignition and shift it into gear.



While it's safe to assume that this footage is a compilation of several separate attempts strung together, it's no less incredible. There is a dog in the driver's seat and the car is moving because of the dog. And it only took the dogs two months to learn.

The feat is meant to promote animal adoption (not that President Obama's pedigree dog, Bo, is unworthy, but with thousands of homeless dogs and cats put down every year, why wouldn't you adopt?). In any case, even if a dog can safely drive on a closed course in New Zealand, many of our motor vehicle laws don't allow dogs in a driver's lap.

In September, New Jersey proposed a law that would make it the first state to require pet harnesses. Hawaii bans Fido from riding in drivers' laps, and Arizona and Connecticut issue tickets if a pet is involved in a distracted-driving incident.

When autonomous cars reach the masses, we might see dogs taking our keys and driving to the park all by themselves. We'd rather have a smart dog on the road than another drunk or incompetent fool that doesn't deserve a license.

[Source: BMW]

7Comments
Dec 22, 2012 10:40AM
Dec 22, 2012 5:52AM
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I am amazed by this wonderful article!!! Such smart doggies!!
Dec 22, 2012 1:32PM
Dec 22, 2012 2:28PM
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Dogs are just amazing!  You wouldn't see a cat doing this.  Dogs are smarter than some humans.
Dec 22, 2012 4:22AM
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Darn thought I might get me Rosie O' fix in this article, color me dissappointed.

 

Dec 22, 2012 4:36PM
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hope he doesnt get pulled over for tailgating
Dec 22, 2012 8:45PM
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My dog Mukluks, a Siberian Husky cannot drive a car, but she sure can drive me crazy, but I love her anyways.
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