We've heard that 'Ring times have become the de facto benchmark for performance cars of late, but this is ridiculous. Not so much a ring as a loop, stuntman Steve Truglia just attempted to drive a Toyota Aygo through a 40-foot loop for the (other) British motor show, Fifth Gear. The stunt was filmed at a Suffolk airbase, and was planned by a team that included a Cambridge physicist.
While anyone with a Hot Wheels track growing up might know that the stunt can be done, a real-world reenactment with a real car and real driver is so dangerous it is referred to as the "Death Loop" by professional stuntmen. While it might seem that a driver could merely power in at a high speed to carry enough momentum to complete the loop, the truth is that the g-forces on the driver at anything above 30 mph can be catastrophic. So stuntman Steve Truglia trained with jet pilots to learn techniques that would help him deal with the centripetal forces.
The car also had to be chopped to increase its approach and departure angles. He had to enter the loop at precisely 37 mph, then immediately slowed to 16 mph as the modified Toyota went up and over. Did he succeed? You'll have to watch the special episode this Saturday, or at least find the torrent. We don't think we're giving too much away to say that Steve plans something even bigger for his next stunt, even though it doesn't involve a car. He plans to skydive, from space.
There's a video montage of Truglia's work, where he talks about the science behind the stunts, after the jump.
[Source: The Daily Mail]