Last week you guys told Charlotte with the four adopted, mechanically interested kids not to buy an old car for them to dismantle, arguing that it would be too dangerous. I know your lawyers probably won’t let you guys say anything else on public radio, but this is one time when you are dead wrong. If these kids want to learn about real cars, the only way is to interact with a real car. Yes, that means some bumps and scrapes along the way. It can be made safer by removing the wheels, doors, battery, wires, and toxic fluids, but to remove all risk is to remove the value and goal of the activity.
The best mechanic I know, my father, educated himself by dismantling lawnmowers and tractors before age 10, moving on to motorcycles and cars. He went on to become an airplane mechanic and pilot. A plastic “toy” car is an insult and a disservice to a budding mechanic.