If the cars are another character in the Fast and Furious movies, then the way they flip and fly and crash and casually stop global annihilation is, in fact, the titular role. Of course, we love Dom (Vin Diesel) and the rest of the Family™, but let’s talk about the real reason we keep tuning in: The insane stunts, that only get more insane with each new installment.
F9 (in theaters on Friday) packs in plenty of physics-defying, car-crunching stunts, so we decided it was high time we go through all of the films in The Fast Saga and see whether any of the most implausible-seeming stunts are at all humanly possible. To do so, we turned to automotive expert Todd Hovsepian and ET’s resident car buff, Hank Daniels.
Here’s what they told us about the franchise’s most bonkers stunts:
Movie: The Fast & The Furious
What Happens: Settling their beef with a street race, Brian (Paul Walker) and Dom use NOS to out-run a train, after which Dom’s Dodge Charger is clipped by a semi-truck and literally flips over Brian’s car.
So, Is It Possible? “Nice wheelie, Vin! Although, realistically this Charger R/T couldn’t have held it that long, even with the amount of horsepower it has on Brian’s Supra. I mean, it’s a HEAVY beast. The flip in the end was awesome as well, but only possible with a convenient little stunt jump before the truck.” — T.H.
Movie: 2 Fast 2 Furious
What Happens: During a street race in Miami, Tej (Ludacris) “surprises” the racers by raising a drawbridge. Brian hits his NOS and literally flies his Nissan Skyline over his competitor’s Toyota Supra, clinching the race.
So, Is It Possible? “Nitrous oxide is a very simple way to provide big horsepower gains to any gas engine. Essentially, pumping nitro into an engine creates more oxygen during combustion, allowing more fuel to be injected, therefore increasing the amount of power. The way they utilize nitro in small bursts in this scene is definitely realistic. The vehicles actually being drivable AFTER JUMPING OFF A BRIDGE? Not so much.” — T.H.
Movie: 2 Fast 2 Furious
What Happens: To catch a drug lord escaping on a yacht, Brian and Roman (Tyrese Gibson) jump a Yenko Camaro from shore and land it perfectly on top of the boat.
So, Is It Possible? “This car can fetch anywhere between $150k and $250K at auction…why would you fly it into a yacht?! Nonetheless, I am no stunt expert, but I would find it difficult to jump that vehicle ONTO A MOVING YACHT with such precision.” — T.H.
Movie: Fast & Furious
What Happens: A fuel tanker hijacking in the Domican Republic goes wrong and Dom and Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) must out-run a loose rig after it explodes and starts barreling down the road towards them.
So, Is It Possible? “This Buick Grand National has a V6 powering it’s wheels and not the throaty V8 you’re actually hearing. The larger points of contention here are (A) the truck driver’s pet iguana is completely random. And (B) there is NO WAY they would make it out alive with a tumbling, burning oil tanker careening down towards them. No way.” — T.H.
Movie: Fast Five
What Happens: Brian and Mia (Jordana Brewster) lead an escape effort to break Dom out of prison by T-boning the bus he’s being transported in against Brian’s car, causing the bus to spiral out of control.
So, Is It Possible? “This scene is worth is for the game of chicken between a prison bus and Mia’s 2003 Honda NSX alone! However, I’m pretty positive Brian’s 1970 Dodge Charger 440 R/T would have been obliterated if a bus full-on rear-ended it. But since it was just a little flip-nudge, of course it makes sense…” — T.H.