Is there (or has there been) any SE site where I can ask questions about driving techniques, car handling, etc?

I couldn't find anything in the list of sites or on Area51. Close misses include travel.SE, which has a "driving" tag but which I believe understandably limits it to driving-related issues in long distance trips (e.g. driving abroad, rental cars, etc), and mechanics.SE, which doesn't allow driving questions. There's a "cars" Area51 proposal, but it's for car enthusiasts, not about driving, and it looks to be going nowhere/duped to mechanics.SE.

It'd be remarkable if we had sites for cyclists and pilots, and a proposal for a boating site, but not drivers or motorists. I was expecting to find something like a failed "Motorists" beta; I'm surprised to find nothing at all.

Here are a few example questions I'd be interested in seeing authoritative, fact-based, SE-style answers to - where people I know and sources I've tried online give a variety of contradictory or weakly reasoned answers. For some of them I've even had contradictory answers from different driving instructors:

  • Is there any harm in changing gear to "2" or "L" in an automatic while moving at a speed suitable for that gear?
  • Is there any difference between driving an automatic in "L" and "D" when you won't exceed 5-10mph (e.g. up a very steep hill)?
  • Can an automatic engine stall? (and if it can, how to safely get going again without a clutch?)
  • Is it ever safe to coast while moving downhill, e.g. at very low speeds? (in countries where it's legal)
  • In regions where drivers expect the horn to be used during ordinary overtaking, at what point during overtaking will sounding the horn most reduce the risk of collisions?
  • Why does driving a manual car (usually) use less fuel than an automatic with the same number of gears?
  • What signs should a driver of an automatic look for that their transmission might be failing?
  • Does driving an automatic at below the 1st gear tick-over speed by applying the footbrake cause wear to the breaks? (or does it behave like easing off the clutch in a manual?)
  • Do "reverse" and "first" gears always have the exact same speed:power ratio?
  • Is there any type of incident where a rear-facing dashcam could avoid a driver being unfairly blamed? (which wouldn't be presumed in their favour anyway)

Update: it sounds like there isn't one, so I'm expanding this question to - has any such site ever been attempted? I know that failed sites are often deleted from Area51, which might be why I'm not finding one. Also, might anyone be interested in starting one - "driving and motoring", maybe, covering all aspects of car ownership and use except those covered by mechanics.SE? (I'm not experienced enough to do it myself).

  • 2
    "in which countries" isn't going to be ontopic anywhere, it's a list question. If you are traveling in country X, and someone beeped at you while passing, and you were wondering what that meant, you could ask about country X only on travel. – Kate Gregory Nov 30 '15 at 15:53
  • also, questions related to saving fuel might be on topic on Sustainability – Kate Gregory Nov 30 '15 at 15:54
  • @KateGregory You're right, I've changed that one to a different related genuine question I have that is more "driving" than "travel" – user568458 Nov 30 '15 at 16:09
  • A few of these questions would be on topic on vehicle maintenance e.g. What signs should a driver of an automatic look for that their transmission might be failing? – Robert Longson Nov 30 '15 at 21:13
  • right here? – gnat Nov 30 '15 at 23:15
  • @Chenmunka is there any info about why it failed or what happened? I can't see it on Area51 - is there any way to learn from its experience? – user568458 Dec 2 '15 at 11:37
  • @Chenmunka cool, I realised that this was a seperate question which I think hadn't been asked before, so I asked it, and if you find a way you can post it there as an answer – user568458 Dec 2 '15 at 11:48

There was a site proposed two years ago called "On the Road" that was described as:

Proposed Q&A site for everybody affected by road traffic. This site should be used to ask/answer questions on a wide variety of traffic issues, ranging from local traffic question to question addressing driving amongst traffic abroad.

With 25 followers and 4 eligible "example questions", it was closed after 1+ year in Definition. If you have reason to believe this can work a second time around (typically coming up with an existing community who wants to build this thing), you are certainly welcome to try again.


Robert Cartaino♦ kindly emailed me some of the content of the now-deleted On the Road proposal.

It's pretty hard to see exactly what went wrong - looking at the stats and questions, I guess it never really grabbed or excited any community of experts. I didn't see any discussions in what I was sent; but here's the top voted example questions. These might be relevant to anyone thinking of trying again:

  • +11 Which has a higher accident rate - roundabouts or traffic lights?
  • +10 How to suddenly stop car when raining ?
  • +10 Does sleep deprivation have the same effects on driving as drinking?
  • +10 Can I have multiple drivers licenses from different countries?
  • +10 What are the differences between the EU and USA regarding yielding at a cross road? [comments suggested it's too broad; it might be on topic at travel.se]
  • +9 What is the optimal driving style on highways to prevent traffic jams?
  • +6 Can you increase highway capacity by applying different road markers? [seems to be creeping towards town planning]

...and various others along similar lines.

Many of these seem a bit basic (could be answered from Highway Code or similar), which maybe supports my suspicion that to work, a "Driving and motorists" type SE site would need to aggressively target the experts and professionals (driving instructors, taxi drivers, etc), and engage them as the core question-answerers by actively seeking out interesting advanced-level and professional-driver-career content.

Then, it can allow everything from learner questions and car enthusiast questions to career questions around taxi licensing etc, and there will be a core rump of experts who can enforce quality.

This might be a challenge because I don't think there's much overlap between professional drivers and SE's current demographics. Aviation intersects via flight simulation enthusiasts, bicycles intersects via urban professionals/tech-hipsters, etc, but in my experience, driving professionals are rarely "computer-y", while SE tends to be disproportionately white-collar.

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