Ever drive a car that was so fast that it scared you?

Colin
By Colin Wood
Oct 27, 2021 | Fast cars

Photograph Courtesy Dodge

Is more power and more speed always better, or is there such a thing as too much when it comes to fast cars?

Have you ever driven a car so fast that it scared you?

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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
10/27/21 10:51 a.m.

I'll start with one that maybe didn't scare me but took my breath away as it was just so quick for its time: Supra Turbo. 

APEowner
APEowner GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
10/27/21 11:01 a.m.

I drove a 1,000 + HP Z06 Corvette that scared me.  It wasn't the horsepower so much as the poor calibration that didn't always close the throttle then you released the pedal.

The first time I drove a Northeast Dirt Modified it got my attention as well.

gearheadE30
gearheadE30 Dork
10/27/21 11:11 a.m.

Modified 911 turbo with a manual transmission, allegedly a bit over 600 wheel horsepower. An older one that didn't have traction control, or if it did, it didn't work. At least on the street, it was just too much. Hit the throttle in lower gears and it was on the limiter instantly, and pulls in higher gears where it would actually hook up were beyond extra-legal. The turbo lag really kept you on your toes if you were trying to drive in the midrange rather than just cruising or really pushing hard where the turbo would spool quickly. I'm sure it would be fun on the track or a drag strip but it was just too much to be usable on the street.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
10/27/21 11:15 a.m.

This is an odd one, but:  A Nissan Maxima.

I had one as a rental.  It wasn't that the acceleration scared me, it was when I got to speed I became immediately aware of how terrible the tires/suspension/brakes were by comparison.

ShawnG
ShawnG UltimaDork
10/27/21 11:20 a.m.

289 Cobra. The real thing.

Only in America would some idiot think that thing needs a 427.

RedGT
RedGT Dork
10/27/21 11:26 a.m.

Got through exactly one track event with ~400hp and decided that was a good way to get going way too fast way too quickly with relatively limited safety gear.  Went back down to 200whp track cars and am much happier.

chaparral
chaparral Dork
10/27/21 11:32 a.m.

Car, not really. 

Bike? Yes, a 2006 Honda CBR1000RR with no traction control and no ABS was ferociously scary on a cold wet day at Grattan with riders crashing and dropping antifreeze all over the place. It's the only time I've had one wheel locked and one wheel spinning simultaneously. 

Toyman01 + Sized and
Toyman01 + Sized and GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 11:34 a.m.

A very modified FD. Huge turbocharger. 740hp on the dyno. When the boost kicked in at 4500 RPMs it was almost impossible to keep the rear tires in contact with the road. It was pure misery to drive on the street but that 4500 to 8000 pull was guaranteed to get your heart rate up. You knew it was trying to kill you, but you had to do it anyway. 

 

akylekoz
akylekoz SuperDork
10/27/21 11:46 a.m.

900ish HP 2013 GT500, every time I drive it I both love it and can't wait to give it back.  Laying stripes at 90-100 MPH accidentally is not always fun.

Jesse Ransom
Jesse Ransom GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
10/27/21 11:50 a.m.

Every big bump up is a little unsettling at first. After a history of small, light cars hovering around 100hp, the 220-hp-according-to-internet-recipe swapped E30 was a little alarming at first. Similarly for the 265hp WRX though obviously that's a very composed package.

I got used to both of them pretty quickly, though I would say that on the street you only ever get to use that for a few seconds here and there. I mean, at some point I'd love to drive something with 1000hp and AWD just to giggle after tiny pulls into hyperspace, but I don't think that's where the fun necessarily is. In real-world driving around mode, the E30 was more than capable of overwhelming the stock size tires, and if it was, say, raining in Portland, and I was on the half of the roads paved in old concrete with all the aggregate polished, it took some attention to make more progress than wheelspin when merging from a stop.

Oh, and the Aprilia RSVR, though that's not a car. That took longer to get used to. It felt like the engine didn't notice there was a bike and a person attached. I was also, again after cars no faster than the E30, not calibrated to see turn one at PIR approaching that quickly. I just had zero experience with the phase of deceleration from 135 to corner entry... (Yeah, someone making a better exit off of turn 9 would have been arriving a lot faster than that, too...) Slow cars also don't prepare you for the sensory experience of sticking your head into a 135mph wind blast just when you're trying to concentrate on smooth inputs.

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
10/27/21 11:53 a.m.

Renault R5 Turbo. It wasn't the speed that scared me, but the torque steer. Those things were pure evil in a very, very attractive package.

Margie

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
10/27/21 11:55 a.m.

Not driven, and not quite "scared", but I have experienced brain-rebooting acceleration on the street.  The cars in question both made about 1000hp and were turbocharged, full-interior cars, so they were a lot quieter than one would expect from that kind of acceleration.

 

Driver: I'm going to do a pull in 3rd

Me (head in laptop, setting up a log): Okay

Car: booOOOOOOOOOST

Me: (brain reboot noises)

bearmtnmartin (Forum Supporter)
bearmtnmartin (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
10/27/21 12:18 p.m.

Not a car but when I was 16 I swapped my Honda XR200 for a CR480. It genuinely frightened me and I thought about taking it back. But by week two I was yee haw.... I did a lot of tight west coast trails and it would beat me to death, and sometimes coming home dog tired it would find some traction and just spit me straight off the back. I want another one.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
10/27/21 12:19 p.m.

Car, no but the most powerful road car I've driven is a 780hp Viper.

Single seater wise; a 240hp car was such that you'd arrive in places carrying a lot of speed but that was not scary to me but at that level of car things can go wrong in a hurry. 

The operative words being "to me" as I'm an idiot motorcycle road racer ADD poster child...........so It takes a lot. 

I've ridden a couple of bikes that were eye opening but for me the one I found scary was a heavily modified 500cc two stroke motocross bike making an honest 70hp.  Mostly because I am not a particularly good motocross rider and I was so far behind the bike. I kept roaring up on things (big double jumps) that I didn't have the skill set to negotiate so I'd be all over the brakes trying to get the bike down to my skill level. 

With that said I'm pretty sure a sprint car would be frightening. 

NickD
NickD MegaDork
10/27/21 12:21 p.m.

Nope. I drove a C7 Z07 and was disappointed with how unenjoyable it was on the street, but wasn't scared. I was impressed with a Tesla Model X but it wasn't frightening by any means. Those are probably the two fastest things I've driven. 

I did take my boss for a ride in his own C6 with headers, big cam, ported heads, exhaust and a tune and I did manage to scare him a little bit, that was pretty funny.

Jay_W
Jay_W SuperDork
10/27/21 12:27 p.m.

Like Chapparal, the one that got my attention most was another cbr 1000 rr, repsol repliracer with pipes and a jet kit. Open 'er up in 3rd and it turns into a 130 mph stripelaying burnout unicycle. Get the wheel back on the ground, grab 4th, it can't do that in 4th, right? 160 mph tiresmoking unicycle. Verrrry carefully get the front wheel on the ground, get the bike back to its owner (well I had to find another straight and do a 5th gear run, holy cow), explain that as a responsible grownup with a wife and kid and all, I just didn't have the maturity or discipline to ride a bike like that on the street or track and live. That bike was bath salts crazy. 

I simply cannot imagine what that ridiculous Kawasaki H2 must be like....

Opti
Opti Dork
10/27/21 12:47 p.m.

I dont do bikes and Im sure they have the capacity to scare me, but cars, no.

Ive never had anything that the power made it scary, Ive driven stuff that was set up so poorly it felt like power was the problem, but it wasnt. Ive driven very high horsepower cars that are well sorted and dont feel scary at all.

asphalt_gundam
asphalt_gundam Reader
10/27/21 1:02 p.m.

Most recently and first time legitimately NOT OK getting out of a car was just a few weeks ago at Road America. I forgot to turn the shocks up and track was damp (or at least looked like it) + first laps there in a year.....had zero feedback from the tires and spent the session pretty much in fear of the car snapping around on me from a wet spot or bad driver input. Still ran a PB but was hyper and stressed out for a few hours.

More fun times were riding in my friends E30. Turbo S54 swap and drag setup. LOW boost was 36psi and yielded burnouts from any speed to limiter at 150+. He said high boost was around 58psi and when things were right it's an 8 second car. On the flip side he rode in my car and stomping all over an imaginary brake pedal on corner entry...

A very healthy respect for a car, especially because it was a customers (we had permission to rod on it) was a cobra kit car with a 427 windsor we built. Made 610HP and something like 580ft/lbs. Repeatedly told a coworker in an extremely serious tone "DO NOT wreck this car". After he came back the secretary wanted to go for a ride so I drove. Half to maybe 3/4 throttle tops in 2nd, 3rd, and beginning of 4th was rear tires lit up. That was more than the secretary was prepared for and drove it real easy the rest of the way. BTW the reason for my stern wording to my coworker was because after getting the car put together the first thing the customer did was floor it in 3rd on the interstate....immediately putting it backwards into the median. Extremely lucky he didn't get hurt or destroy the car.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
10/27/21 1:06 p.m.

I drove a 1600 Chevette with a normally collapsed front suspension at highway speeds once.

My first few laps in a ASA late model on the 5/8mile at LaCrosse certainly got my attention, too.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
10/27/21 1:06 p.m.
chaparral said:

Car, not really. 

Bike? Yes, a 2006 Honda CBR1000RR with no traction control and no ABS was ferociously scary on a cold wet day at Grattan with riders crashing and dropping antifreeze all over the place. It's the only time I've had one wheel locked and one wheel spinning simultaneously. 

Same here. Car? No. '06 R1 that I pegged on the rev limiter in 6th gear. 

A friends 03-04 Aprilia Mille.........didn't have the top end of the R1, but the midrange made it feel like it was about to throw you off of it. 

914Driver
914Driver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 1:18 p.m.

Launch mode in a Porsche Taycan didn't scare me, but glad I had a headrest!  Drove OK but finding electrons far from home scares me.

frenchyd
frenchyd UltimaDork
10/27/21 1:22 p.m.

First time I drove a sprint car I was scared. By the end of the first practice session I was ready to go faster, Chet clamped a Vice Grip on the right front brake hose and taped it to the straight axle.  
     We changed the left rear tire to a smaller one and I was ready for qualifying. On the pole by my 5th lap. Yawn!!! 

buzzboy
buzzboy Dork
10/27/21 1:44 p.m.

My friend has a 698whp Terminator. He had never heard the car from the outside. He said he trusted me so asked if I'd do a lap around the block and get on it as I passed the parking lot where he stood. I granny shifted to second, rolled into 1/4 throttle and the cold ET Streets started spinning. I coasted into the next entrance to the parking lot and handed the keys back to him.

alfadriver
alfadriver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 1:48 p.m.

Indigo.  Only 400hp, but no roll over protection at all.  And it was really light, too (CF Chassis by Reynard).

CyberEric
CyberEric Dork
10/27/21 1:54 p.m.

I mean the Tesla Model S P90D was scary in the sense it made me feel sick during acceleration.

Cactus
Cactus HalfDork
10/27/21 1:58 p.m.

I've never been scared by power, just by (a lack of) brakes or a chassis that doesn't feel like it'll hold together or stay upright.

scottdownsouth
scottdownsouth HalfDork
10/27/21 2:10 p.m.

A 85 CR500...I was heavy onto mx and had a thing for Hondas. I figured if a CR250 was good a CR500 was better.

Oh it was insanity, if you could get it to crank without breaking your leg you could find out how fast you wanted to go, just shift it into the next gear.

God likes fools and I was one of them.

 

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
10/27/21 2:13 p.m.

I haven't experienced a car where the speed or acceleration were scary on their own, but have dealt with several which could reach top speeds that way exceeded the car's level of sketchiness. One of the cars I learned to drive on, a 1981 Datsun 210 that had been in several crashes, managed to qualify with only 50 hp.

Motorcycles, on the other hand - I've had those scare me without the motorcycle itself being sketchy. (Just the rider.) I recall test riding a Buell Ulysses where it seemed only the first quarter of the throttle was usable in first gear.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
10/27/21 2:27 p.m.
z31maniac said:
chaparral said:

Car, not really. 

Bike? Yes, a 2006 Honda CBR1000RR with no traction control and no ABS was ferociously scary on a cold wet day at Grattan with riders crashing and dropping antifreeze all over the place. It's the only time I've had one wheel locked and one wheel spinning simultaneously. 

Same here. Car? No. '06 R1 that I pegged on the rev limiter in 6th gear. 

A friends 03-04 Aprilia Mille.........didn't have the top end of the R1, but the midrange made it feel like it was about to throw you off of it. 

I remember the first time I rode a GSXR-1000.  I was doing like 65, eased on the throttle in 2nd and was staring at the sky in a split second.  Definitely a code brown moment.

akylekoz
akylekoz SuperDork
10/27/21 2:51 p.m.

Oh, bikes.  Late 90's CR500, shaved head, bored past the decompression ports, pipe, next step was to run it on alky.  One tooth bigger front sprocket to help tame the power.   This was a dune bike, that doubled as a trail bike.  Not my bike.  I once stalled it on top of a dune.  I was having trouble kicking it over when some fella asked if I needed help.  I declined, telling him " if I'm not man enough to start it I shouldn't be riding it".    It was fun to pretend to top end race the fast bikes, then just as they thought they had you, stand it up and pull away on one wheel.

It was hard to launch on wetish sand but once rolling it would just reel them in.  At the end of the drag strip I chopped the throttle after embarrassing the competition, this caused extreme tank slapping.   First thought was "how do I hit the ground softly" then remembering what bike I was on, cracked the throttle to stand it up and set it back down gently.

 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
10/27/21 3:11 p.m.
ProDarwin said:
z31maniac said:
chaparral said:

Car, not really. 

Bike? Yes, a 2006 Honda CBR1000RR with no traction control and no ABS was ferociously scary on a cold wet day at Grattan with riders crashing and dropping antifreeze all over the place. It's the only time I've had one wheel locked and one wheel spinning simultaneously. 

Same here. Car? No. '06 R1 that I pegged on the rev limiter in 6th gear. 

A friends 03-04 Aprilia Mille.........didn't have the top end of the R1, but the midrange made it feel like it was about to throw you off of it. 

I remember the first time I rode a GSXR-1000.  I was doing like 65, eased on the throttle in 2nd and was staring at the sky in a split second.  Definitely a code brown moment.

That's why I preferred my R6. The literbikes are just too much. 

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
10/27/21 3:16 p.m.

Perhaps if we had access to 1100hp Porsche Can-Am cars we motorcycle racers could frighten ourselves properly.

 

Duke
Duke MegaDork
10/27/21 3:35 p.m.

Oddly enough, it was not a monster, but one car that made me nervous to drive was my friend's breathed-on first generation Mazdaspeed 3.

Boost was laggy but came on hard, and you never knew which direction the bushings were going to compress.  Any time you got on it, the first couple seconds were filled with white-knuckle excitement as you waited for the jump scare you knew was coming, and then quickly tried to hang onto the steering wheel while figuring out which way to steer to stay in your lane.

ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter)
ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
10/27/21 3:42 p.m.

Our 90's Buick LeSabre Lemons car was terrifying at track speeds, but it wasn't really because it was fast.

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
10/27/21 3:46 p.m.

I've not driven on a track in anger, so I've rarely had the opportunity to really push a car to the point where it scares me. I have unwisely done so on the street when I shouldn't have, but not in many years.  These days I rarely push it on the street to the point where I'm mildly uncomfortable, much less scared. The joys of aging, I suppose... 

The main "I don't have enough talent to operate this" vehicle was my 2016 Intense M16C downhill racing bicycle.  That bike needed to go a certain speed in order to work and I simply didn't have the raw skills required to let it go that fast.

Of cars I've driven, probably my ex's '97 M3. Partly due to my lack of experience driving a RWD car with any amount of power and mostly due to the fact that if anything happened while I was driving it she would have murdered me.

02Pilot
02Pilot UberDork
10/27/21 3:51 p.m.

What scares me most about fast, powerful cars are the other people driving them.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 4:01 p.m.

Not yet, still looking. 

The 400 hp MGB on 195 section tires is probably the one that wants me the most dead, though. And I will admit that slotting 5th on the V8 Targa Miata on a twisty road in the fog did make me take a deep breath. Just follow the centerline and trust the notes...

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
10/27/21 4:07 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Not yet, still looking. 

The 400 hp MGB on 195 section tires is probably the one that wants me the most dead, though. And I will admit that slotting 5th on the V8 Targa Miata on a twisty road in the fog did make me take a deep breath. Just follow the centerline and trust the notes...

What about that LSA exocet?

 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
10/27/21 4:11 p.m.

In reply to codrus (Forum Supporter) :

Was thinking the same thing.

Running out of 4th gear in a Miata on a foggy country road would have had me noped out a gear or so back...

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) PowerDork
10/27/21 4:16 p.m.

Not a car. I've been surprised, but not scared. I've never been in anything really fast though, not by today's standards. 
Ive been on bikes that were intimidating, but once I had a couple minutes on them I was comfortable. And a couple that should have scared me. Momma always said, "No brain, no fear." I had one experience where I rode in anger (literally, I needed to blow off some steam) and shortly afterwards realized that the bike was for sale or I was gonna kill myself on it.  I've stuck with small displacement stuff since then. And Lima powered mustangs. 

Kreb (Forum Supporter)
Kreb (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
10/27/21 5:05 p.m.

I've never been scared by the speed of a car per se'. I've been scared numbers of times by cars whose power was disproportionate to its stability, brakes and handling. A classic example was my cousins 1970ish Malibu SS. It would scream in a straight line, but all the while it would be gently swaying, and it didn't slow down well either. My 1964 Ranchero was a little slower by virtue of not being able to get traction to the ground, which in retrospect was probably a feature, not a bug.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
10/27/21 5:11 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

The race track cured me of riding a street bike like I had a death wish.  Pretty much the same for cars.

ShawnG
ShawnG UltimaDork
10/27/21 5:14 p.m.

I had one of those garbage Sunbirds with the 2.0L turbo.

It would head for the ditch every time the boost came on.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 5:37 p.m.
codrus (Forum Supporter) said:
Keith Tanner said:

Not yet, still looking. 

The 400 hp MGB on 195 section tires is probably the one that wants me the most dead, though. And I will admit that slotting 5th on the V8 Targa Miata on a twisty road in the fog did make me take a deep breath. Just follow the centerline and trust the notes...

What about that LSA exocet?

Wasn't really scary. It did what it was told. Might have been exciting over turn 1 in Laguna Seca, though. Never got a chance to drive it there. But there's a difference between fast and scary.

m4ff3w
m4ff3w GRM+ Memberand UberDork
10/27/21 5:46 p.m.
alfadriver said:

Indigo.  Only 400hp, but no roll over protection at all.  And it was really light, too (CF Chassis by Reynard).

So Jealous!

I had Indigo and GT90 folders in highschool.

m4ff3w
m4ff3w GRM+ Memberand UberDork
10/27/21 5:47 p.m.

Our Model 3 Performance is as quick to 60 as our 160+ HP bikes, 2.9-3.0s

 

I can't imagine what the Model S Plaid feels like.

 

 

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
10/27/21 6:38 p.m.
m4ff3w said:

I can't imagine what the Model S Plaid feels like.

There's a youtube video where it spanks a Hayabusa and a ZX-14R in several drag races.

 

Stefan (Forum Supporter)
Stefan (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/27/21 6:43 p.m.

Hmm, not yet.  Though my Focus RS is certainly faster on the track than I am as a driver right now.  Getting old and being away from high performance driving does that to you though.

I do have the story of a car that I drove daily that was basically undrivable by everyone else. 

Everyone knows that Turbo-Dodge cars from the 80's were torque steer monsters.  Just a fact of life and regular drivers learned muscle memory to automatically tighten their left bicep to counteract the torque steer while they shifted with their right.  God help you if you hit a wet manhole cover as you accelerated through an intersection, ZING! 

Anyway, my older brother had an 86 GLH-S and helped me acquire an 87 CSX for my first real car.  So fast forward several years and I needed to work on the CSX at his place because the steering rack bolts worked loose and wallowed out the holes in the K-member.  I had been driving this thing for a decent amount of time (with the MP computer because I'm also a stupid young man) with at least 1/4-1/2 turn of slop in the steering.  So when the boost came on, you'd have to catch the slop as it moved from one side of the hole to other.

So anyway, I acquired a newer K-member with the better geometry and wanted to swap it at his place, since he had a garage and having help would be handy, plus I could borrow his GLH-S for a couple days so I could get to/from work.  After I left, he decides to take my car down the street to get something from the grocery store.  He made it to the end of his block before he turned around and parked it.  He said it was completely undrivable (which it was for those not experienced in the ways of crapitude).  Hard to believe I drove it daily for several weeks like that.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
10/27/21 7:11 p.m.
m4ff3w said:
alfadriver said:

Indigo.  Only 400hp, but no roll over protection at all.  And it was really light, too (CF Chassis by Reynard).

So Jealous!

I had Indigo and GT90 folders in highschool.

I don't think the scary part was the handling, though smiley

 

The Hummer From Hell could accelerate faster than it could brake, but it was never really "scary".  Accelerating that fast was still only fairly moderate, because it was 8-9000lb of truck...

ORIF (Forum Supporter)
ORIF (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand New Reader
10/27/21 7:11 p.m.

Like others, not  a car, but a bike.

KTM 300xc in tight woods, when it came on the pipe.

In hindsight,  I wasn't nearly as afraid of that bike as I needed to be. The mellow, yet fantastic KDX200 trail bike that I had  previously ben riding somehow no longer excited me as it used to. I was seduced by  the speed and fury  of the Katoom 2 stroke. When riding it, I would be reminded of the Star Wars scene where they were on those pods chasing each other through the forest.

It was nearly 3 months after the surgery before I even regained the courage to open the storage shed where I had parked it after the accident.

I then proceeded to finally clean the tree bark out of the triple clamp and front brake lever, but anxiously, like one might pet a feral cat that you just don't quite trust.

A 401 CJ
A 401 CJ SuperDork
10/27/21 7:33 p.m.
codrus (Forum Supporter) said:
m4ff3w said:

I can't imagine what the Model S Plaid feels like.

There's a youtube video where it spanks a Hayabusa and a ZX-14R in several drag races.

 

If you're talking about this one, the Busa yes but the 14 held its own.

https://youtu.be/nd-2AS2WjCY

 

BlindPirate
BlindPirate Reader
10/27/21 7:41 p.m.

I had a Plymouth Barracuda with a violently fast 440 along with the typical sketchy 70s muscle car suspension and brakes. It was fun and frightening 

11GTCS
11GTCS Dork
10/27/21 7:53 p.m.

I haven’t driven it yet but I’m sure it would scare me:  Mid 90’s New Edge Mustang that a friend built as a sleeper.  Aluminum 5.4 with a ginormous turbo, a 5 speed stick, caged with racing belts.  It’s supposed to make close to 800 WHP and broke into the 9’s on a pass at Epping NH.  He thinks it has more in it but would need to do upgrades to the cage and other safety gear that would make it a lot less fun on the street.    Definitely beyond my skill set.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
10/27/21 8:48 p.m.

In reply to ORIF (Forum Supporter) :

I had a 96 KTM 300 with Onlins suspension that was plated. It had a completely flat powerband and was one of the best dirt bikes I've ever owned. 

B13Birk
B13Birk HalfDork
10/28/21 7:31 a.m.

1100HP Ariel Atom. Dude showed up for driving instruction. I didn't feel comfortable instructing him at first because he had only ever done 1/2 mile drag racing in it. He offered to let me drive the car and said when I was done taking it for a spin we could turn it down to 700 LOL. Easily the fastest car I have ever driven. It was absolutely insane. 

gearheadmb
gearheadmb UltraDork
10/28/21 7:42 a.m.

A shelby mustang, I'm gonna guess from 2010 or 2012 that had been souped up some. It had way more power than traction. I shouldn't say it scared me as I was careful with it, but it definitely made you aware that it could get out from under you any time it wanted. I think what scared me was understanding what it was capable of and the realization that they would sell cars like that to anyone who wanted one. 

Those, hellcats, and anything else over 500hp require either a lot of talent or a lot of self control, otherwise they are just plain dangerous.

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
10/28/21 8:47 a.m.

Passenger in a modified 964 that made over 700 to the tires when we were done with it. Trying to tune it for "driveability" on some back roads in NJ and I feel like I was looking at the woods on either side of the road more than straight ahead. If given the chance I wouldn't even drive it.

RevRico
RevRico UltimaDork
10/28/21 8:53 a.m.

I live in Pennsylvania, even a versa is scary on some of these roads.

gearheadE30
gearheadE30 Dork
10/28/21 9:01 a.m.

New top of the list as of yesterday: an early 2000s Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, lifted, no sway bars, big wide low-offset wheel and tire setup, stick shift, on a bumpy back road at dusk in the rain. That thing would NOT go straight. Ripples in the road yanked at those big tires, inducing body roll, which caused roll-steer, but by the time the body was rolling one way, there was a bump that would tug the steering back the other way. Trying to chase the steering and body roll always seemed to get all out of sync right when I needed to reach for the shifter. Zero steering feel to tell what's happening at the tires, since it had some aftermarket pump setup on it. It would probably have been better if it were light out and I could see what bumps were coming.

At 40 mph it felt like you were pushing the limits of safety. I'm sure it is just me not being used to tall, soggy off road vehicles with super short wheelbases, but I was mentally worn out after a half hour of that. I don't know how people drive jeeps with that much scrub radius. I think with more appropriate offset and narrower tires it would have been okay.

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE Dork
10/28/21 9:40 a.m.

I haven't driven anything super sketchy, but I've been in something sketchy.

Back when I was like, 10-12 my sister had a wannabe boyfriend who was determined to show off to the entire family and I got to ride in his father's drag ford, which was some scarcely-legal caged out monster. I don't remember what it looked like at all, but what I DO remember is it was a 3-speed with a 460 and a turbo I could loose my head in. Each time I try to remember power figures, it gets bigger. Middle of a midwestern summer, and I was trying to get over my fears of new events to spite all my families illnesses that were keeping me visiting hospitals.

I couldn't see over the dashboard in the sunken, barely-there aluminum bomber seat. That thing teleported between lights, violently. I only remember quite a bit of fear and not being able to hear the owner at all. To be frank, it scared me from cars for years. We'd go around a turn with the rear tires shifting, hit a straight on the interstate- and the water in my eyes would be pushed back from the G's. I think he only took it to 100 for my sake.

Trent
Trent PowerDork
10/28/21 10:01 a.m.

A 70's Caterham that had a K24 swapped into it. It was like riding a laser beam.  Mash throttle and instantly change speed. 

It made the Roush 427 powered Backdraft Cobra replica I had driven earlier that day seem like an old man's car.

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
10/28/21 11:40 a.m.
Trent said:

A 70's Caterham that had a K24 swapped into it. It was like riding a laser beam.  Mash throttle and instantly change speed. 

It made the Roush 427 powered Backdraft Cobra replica I had driven earlier that day seem like an old man's car.

That must have been one exciting day.

Jay_W
Jay_W SuperDork
10/28/21 12:56 p.m.

In reply to B13Birk :

155mm howitzer derringer. Hand grenade toothbrush. Thermonuclear leafblower.  1100 hp Ariel Atom...

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/28/21 1:19 p.m.

I built a 502 BBC with an 8-71 blower for a customer's 70 El Camino. Almost 1000 hp at the wheels.  Of course we did that part first and had to drive it to the dyno about 6 miles away.  Problem is, it had 40 year old bushings, 235mm radial all season tires, steering slop, blown shocks, and all kinds of craziness.  

Good thing the seats were being replaced.  They likely became soiled on that trip.

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/28/21 1:26 p.m.

I used to own this below.  86 S10 short bed single cab.  The ultimate stripped down version.  We called it The Landscaper.  Under the hood was an LS1/T56 with a carb intake and an MSD 6LS box.  Big shiny Holley carb.  Notice the 185mm whitewalls?  Probably the only thing keeping it from exploding the 7.5" rear.  You could stab the throttle at 65 mph in 5th and light them up.

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
10/28/21 1:51 p.m.

In reply to Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) :

That's awesome!

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
10/28/21 2:45 p.m.
Jay_W said:

In reply to B13Birk :

155mm howitzer derringer. Hand grenade toothbrush. Thermonuclear leafblower.  1100 hp Ariel Atom...

What he said.

 

That's like the power to weight of an F1 car qualifying during The Turbo Era, without all that pesky downforce and tires.

wearymicrobe
wearymicrobe PowerDork
10/28/21 3:00 p.m.

First time I actually drove this in anger.  800hp, 1500lb spring rates on slicks, 1800lbs of downforce (allegedly) First time diving a properly setup car I built on the track and the transition from no grip, to more speed to all the grip from the wing, back to no grip when you slowed for a corner and it shook me up hard. First time where small changes in setup had massive changes in how it drove. Just a hateful hateful thing to get sorted out, once it was sorted it was a sweetheart. 

 

I also got to sit in a 917-30 when they were firing it up for a vintage race series. People who drive those at speed are made of much better stuff then me. 

 

Viper Owners Association

B13Birk
B13Birk HalfDork
11/1/21 9:32 a.m.
Jay_W said:

In reply to B13Birk :

155mm howitzer derringer. Hand grenade toothbrush. Thermonuclear leafblower.  1100 hp Ariel Atom..

This made me literally laugh out loud. You are not far off. The car was absolutely nuts. Got to 140 before I could think about it. Your comparison is valid. 

 

wspohn
wspohn SuperDork
11/1/21 11:35 a.m.

I used to race my MGA against a guy with a C2 Corvette (I was 0.1 sec. a lap faster at Portland but of course he would motor off at every straight, which is where the start/finish was....)

Fred Yeakel switched to running a Cheetah and commented that it was the scariest car he had ever run - oddball handling, drum brakes and too much power.

https://www.cheetahcars.com/AGcar2page6.html

 

84FSP
84FSP UltraDork
11/1/21 11:39 a.m.

My buddy has a 475whp Corrado VR6 turbo. I have driven it in anger and it scared to e36m3 out of me.  Lighting the tires up and changing a lane at 125mph was code brown.  Very cool but yikes.

pinchvalve (Forum Supporter)
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
11/1/21 11:51 a.m.

No, but I sat on a Huyabusa once and thought "nope, that is not for me".

Tom1200
Tom1200 UltraDork
11/1/21 11:53 a.m.

In reply to wspohn :

I've talked to two Cheetah owners/drivers and they used the words  respect and sketchy a lot. I think both cars were making 500-600hp at the wheels.

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
11/1/21 3:42 p.m.

Two cars come to mind:

2017ish Tesla Model S P90D: Co-worker's car. There were three of us in the car, and I felt weightless during acceleration. No car I've driven before or since is faster than that thing, and I've driven some fast stuff over the years. It's pee-your-pants fast.

1992 Plymouth Laser RS: This was a friend's car. I didn't drive it, but I did ride in it. He gutted the interior save for two seats, the steering wheel, the front seat belts, and the shifter. No dash (except gauges), gutted door panels, etc. Stock engine and turbo, but he had a manual boost controller and a full turbo-back exhaust with a tuned ECU. The thing was pulled from a junkyard, complete with steelies with winter tires. Still had the yellow junkyard pen writing on the damn thing. That stupid car pulled HARD. Handling was sketchy, and knowing that instant death was around the corner if something went wrong scared the crap out of me. But man, that thing was FUN!!!

maj75 (Forum Supporter)
maj75 (Forum Supporter) Dork
11/2/21 5:43 p.m.

Cobra replica with a Holman & Moody 427 with 4 Weber carbs.  3/4 throttle was as far as I got.

'72 Kawasaki 750 H2.  NEVER gave it full throttle in gears 1-3.

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