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Car stunts have long been a key part of film and television work, and have also been staged as spectacular events in their own right. These stunts require a high level of skill and experience by drivers, and should never be attempted by anyone without the right training. Some of the best stunts are also designed for cars to be destroyed at the end of the event, with the driver being parachuted to safety. Some of the more notable car stunts of all time include Travis Pestrana’s record jump in California in 2009, as well as Liu Suozhu’s cable ride in 2008. These stunts, and more, are discussed below:

1 – Travis Pestrana Jump

Rally car driver Pestrana made a world record jump on New Year’s Eve 2009, leaping from the Pine Street Pier of Long Beach, California, onto a barge. Part of a Red Bull No Limits event, the 274 feet car jump beat the previous 171 feet record set a few years before. The 25 year old Pestrana achieved the stunt using a Subaru Impreza STI rally car, and completed it by doing a backflip into the river. Pestrana has also achieved records in double back flips on motorbikes, and jumping out of a plane without a parachute.

2 – Car and Cables

In 2008, Liu Suozhu set an unusual record in 2008 when he drove a car 150 feet above the Miluo River on two steel cables. The drive took around 3 minutes, and was held in the town of Piangjiang in the Chinese province of Hunan. The 48 year old driver depended on being able to balance all four wheels of the car to prevent falling into the river below. Tens of thousands of people watched the event, which was completed in a car without modifications. Suozhu, known as the ‘Car King,’ had previously set up an event where he had driven a pickup truck along cables for 15 minutes between two hills.

3 – Deadly 720

Part of aTop Gear tour, the ‘Deadly 720’ involved the television programme’s stunt team setting a new record for consecutive 360 degree loops. The car used was a specially designed buggy, which had to hit the first loop at a speed between 24 and 26 mph to complete the spin, and not suffer from G forces. The stuntman involved had made three failed practices before completing the loop, held in the Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa on June 16th, 2012.

4 – Man with the Golden Gun

One of the most famous car stunts ever committed to film, the 1974 James Bond hit The Man with the Golden Gun involved an AMC Hornet X Hatchback Special Coupe making a corkscrew jump over a river, before landing on the other side. Completed by specialist stuntman ‘Bumps’ Willard, the amazing jump was shot in one take, with the director having to slow down the footage for the final film. The stunt was also notable for being one of the first to make use of a computer to calculate the speed of the jump. Top Gear have attempted to recreate the stunt, but have so far failed to do so.

5 – Car Skydive

In 1997, a group of thrillseekers decided to jump out of a plane in Arizona while behind the wheels of a set of old convertibles. The skydivers then climbed out on the cars to complete their dive, with the cars tumbling to the ground. Unfortunately, one skydiver, Olof Zipster, was hit on the head while leaving his car, but still managed to complete his jump.

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