GoRV Issue #86 Out Now!



Want to hit the road and discover places off the beaten track? You’ll probably want a quality GPS for that. Here’s the good news: you can build your own for less than $200. Here’s how…

Road to Ruin?

By Max Taylor

I was reading about Ford’s Pro Trailer Backup Assist recently. It’s now available as an option on the Ranger and Everest and, essentially, it takes the pain out of backing up a trailer. The driver can tell the car which direction to reverse the caravan by turning a dash-mounted knob, and continue to make adjustments to the direction of travel as they reverse. Sounds great, right?

If I’m honest, it makes me a little… uncomfortable. Look, anything that helps a fellow traveller explore the country is a good thing, and if modern technology makes life easier, fantastic.

But whatever happened to an actual human learning a skill? And yes, reversing a 20ft caravan is a skill. The continued outsourcing to artificial intelligence of things that can be learned with practise seems an ‘interesting’ direction for society to take; however, in the case of caravanning, wouldn’t it be better to learn to reverse your van yourself, before becoming dependent on a computer and some sensors?

A generation of people have lost the ability to read a paper map, thanks to GPS. It now seems we’re on the cusp of loosing a generation of people who can reverse a trailer!

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