At 106 years old, Edythe Kirchmaier is the world’s oldest driver, and just last year she passed her driving test ensuring that she’ll be on the roads for the immediate future. All in all, Kirchmaier has been on the road for 86 years and originally learned to drive in a Model T Ford!
In a recent interview with Hot Rod Magazine, she says, “I learned to drive in a Model T. It belonged to my uncle, and he let me drive it around the farm, then eventually on the dirt road in front. If you say 25 mph was fast, then it was fast. I’d go 15 mph, and if I sped up to 25 mph, it was a rough ride. It had a hard seat. There was only the steering wheel, brake, and a stick shift.”
Today, the woman is more capable than ever and as tough as nails. In fact at 102 years old, she was still changing the oil and spark plugs on her minivan. Kirchmaier says, “I’ve never had an accident, a citation, or a parking ticket. When I get in my car, I have a lot of confidence. If I felt I couldn’t drive, I wouldn’t drive. And I always check my tires before I get out of the driveway.”
After news broke that she passed her driving test late last year, Kirchmaier skyrocketed to fame, making appearances on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and The Tonight Show. Hot Rod Magazine even did an in-depth profile on her (Check it out here).
In the profile, she spent some time reflecting on how trucks and cars have evolved, saying, “Cars are faster, but I don’t think they’re made to withstand accidents as much as in the old days. They were made heavier and stronger, and now cars are more flimsy. Although older cars didn’t have all the fancy things they do now, none of the things that distract—no radios, no TVs, none of that.”
That’s right; she’s old school, she’s tough, and she is one of today’s most bad ass drivers. So, if you see her on the road, step aside and show some respect.