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August 20, 2023

In 1965 Ford Introduced the “Wrist Twist” Steering System for Cars

It’s worth remembering that in 1965, most of the cars on the road didn’t have power steering, in fact some people had never even driven a car with power steering. With this in mind you can only imagine how futuristic the “Wrist Twist” system must have seemed to the American public.

The car that the experimental controls are fitted to is a 1965 Mercury Park Lane convertible, it’s powered by a 400+ cubic inch V8 (~7.0 liters) and it tips the scales at approximately 4,211 lbs or 1,910 kgs.

The Park Lane convertible is 215 inches (5.4 meters) long and 81.1 inches (2 meters) wide. Given the sheer physical size and weight of the car, it’s no surprise that engineers were looking at ways of making the vehicle controls as easy as possible to use.

The “Wrist Twist” system consisted of two small dials, essentially small steering wheels with one for each hand. Due to the different ergonomics the driver had arm rests on either side that they rested their arms on while using the dials to control the vehicle.

Ultimately the “Wrist Twist” never caught on and was never put into production. It’s one of many new steering systems that have been experimented with over the years, only for the traditional steering wheel to win out in the end.

(via Silodrome)


  1. And with no seatbelts...a double mastectomy if it was in an accent..

  2. Were you meant to hook your thumbs in the small circles at all times?




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