Robert Irwin Jr. turns 16 on Sunday and will soon be learning to drive.
And the teenager confirmed on Friday that he will be getting behind the wheel of his late father Steve’s famous pickup truck when he begins taking lessons next week.
The ‘Crocodile Hunter’, who died at age 44 in September 2006 after being pierced in the chest by a stingray barb, was known for driving the banged-up vehicle in his wildlife documentaries.
The pickup truck, more commonly known as a ute (or utility truck) in Australia, was even featured in Steve’s memorial service, which took place at Australia Zoo.
During Steve’s funeral, an Australia Zoo employee loaded the late conservationist’s belongings onto his truck before driving out of the crocodile arena.
The symbolic gesture was widely praised at the time, as the memorial service was broadcast across the world to an audience of more than 300 million people.
Robert and his mother, Terri, spoke about the teenager’s driving lessons during an appearance on Australia’s Today show.
Terri warned her son to ‘enjoy’ the 30-year-old vehicle, which has a manual gearbox and no automatic steering.
‘It’s a beast to drive. So once you’ve mastered that, I think you can drive anything!’ she said with a laugh.
Robert has already had a head start learning to drive, as his mother has allowed him to practice around their ‘beautiful conservation properties’.
Robert’s older sister, Bindi, also used her father’s ‘big old ute’ to pass her driving exam back in 2016.
Later in the interview, Terri described her son as ‘so much like his dad’ because of their shared passion for wildlife conservation.
Robert, who is the spitting image of his late father, has previously said that being compared to Steve is ‘the biggest compliment he could receive’.