On the surface, it's easy to write off monster trucks as big, dumb and dangerous vehicles, but when you start looking deeper, they get a lot more impressive. At least for the people competing in the Monster Jam series, there's a commitment to safety and some seriously cool engineering to make all of those huge jumps and stunts possible night after night. Of course, driving one of these behemoths isn't exactly easy, either.
New monster trucks seem to join the Monster Jam circuit every year, but it's not often that one gets the official blessing of an automaker. That's about to change, however, as Chrysler's truck division has teamed up once again with Hall Brothers Racing – which already fields the championship-winning Raminator and Rammunition trucks – to field the series' first new Original Equipment Manufacturer monster truck in over a decade.
Live vicariously through Jessi and Patrick as you watch The List #0555: Drive a Monster Truck. Not only will you learn what it's really like to drive a 1,600-horsepower pickup on 66-inch, hand-cut agricultural tires, but you'll also discover what happens when you break someone's really big, really expensive toy.
Our automotive leanings generally favor cars that sit down close to the ground, with low-profile tires and suspension travel measured in the inches. Still, a good helping of Monster Jam never hurts, and it can be fun to watch machines with mondo-size rubber and a few generous feet worth of springs and shocks jumping hither and thither off platforms, ramps and, of course, other cars.
It doesn't really matter what age you are, we can all agree that monster trucks are awesome. How can you argue with a 20-foot tall tube-frame harbinger of destruction, mowing down row after row derelict cars and trucks? Every "SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY!," somewhere in America, a dirt-filled arena is hosting this spectacle of high-horsepower automotive carnage.
It has been less than ten days since a tragic accident at a Tacoma, Washingon monster truck show killed a six-year old spectator. Now comes word that a promoter/announcer at a Madison, Wisconsin Monster Nationals event has been killed at a similar event run by a different promoter.