Fast & Furious first stormed the scene in 2001. This movie was a fresh release by Universal Studios that promised fast cars, wild stunts, and a plot line audiences could follow with ease. The cars were definitely the draw though and we all went along for a ride as Dominic Toretto went on a wild spree through the streets of LA.
All car fanatics can easily agree that the Fast & Furious series gives you some awesome entertainment value and delivers on their promise to tantalize moviegoers with some slick drifting, modified cars, and exhaust sounds that are good enough to rev anyone up. The other thing we can credit this movie franchise for is confusing the masses! While some of their stunts are so incredibly tacky and obviously not possible in real life, there were some that distracted us enough that they managing to dupe us. They even used fake cars in this movie, and we were none the wiser.
It’s easy to get lost in what’s happening on the screen without questioning how that pairs with our perception of reality. After all, that’s what movies are for, right? Just to set the records straight though, this movie had us believing a few things about cars that just aren’t true. Here are 20 car myths people believe, thanks to the popular Fast & Furious franchise.
20 Car’s Armour Protects All
Fast & Furious shows us a multitude of cars flying through the air, landing aggressively after launching, and being catapulted into the air, ripping up the road….and yet they all look impeccable and nobody in the cars ever gets injured. The car’s armour protects them at all times. Windshields never break, potholes are never encountered – or if they are, we definitely haven’t seen a flat tire.
The ridiculous and very over-stretched capabilities these cars possess are nothing more than on-screen features. In real life, cars could never sustain this type of impact nor would they stack up to this unrealistic level of preservation that Fast & Furious leads us to believe is possible.
19 Double Clutching Wins The Race
The words “double clutching” gets us all excited. It equates to being fun, effective, and such an adrenaline rush! This move is definitely not the key to winning a race though. Any driver would tell you that this is a technique used to fully enjoy the driving experience, but not the focus of racing structure.
Brian uses double clutching to win a race, when in reality, this is a lot of wasted time in a race environment. The coordinated hand to eye to both feet movements shave off precious seconds that can easily be the difference between winning and losing the race, and they’re supposed to be in it to win it in this movie!
18 It’s Easy To Drive Fast With One Hand
Dom seems to do this a lot, and he does it in virtually every movie within the Fast & Furious franchise. He’s either gifted with superhero capabilities or this is just another car myth that viewers easily buy into. We’re going with the latter on this one.
Racing a car requires impeccable attention to detail, a fast-eye, incredible motor skills and strong steering-wheel control. There’s no way Dom is able to control any of his supercars with one hand, and the relaxed look on his face that makes this appear to be as simple of a task as pouring coffee. This is especially true considering the power enhancements in this case. We know Dom can’t really finagle this!
17 Racing A Submarine Is Tough Work
Really though? We’re all familiar with the racing scene in The Fate of the Furious, as cars scurry and accelerate, pushing beyond the limits to race against – a submarine. Yes, that’s correct – we’re supposed to believe that it’s a tricky game to try to outrace a submarine.
The top speed of the average submarine is pegged at around 46 mph, according to ExtremeTech. Need we say more? We know this is a movie, and things will be exaggerated, but let’s not perpetuate this myth! The super cars battling a submarine sequence is the equivalent of a snail race against a horse. There’s no comparison, and the cars in this scene should really not be struggling.
16 Fast Cars Are The American Success Story
This movie suckers audiences into believing that the American Dream is hinged upon ownership of supercars and that aftermarket mods are the key to happiness. Although most of us would agree that having a fleet of suped up race cars in our garage would be a great start towards living the dream, many would argue that this is only a fraction of a much bigger picture.
When it comes to this series, cars and racing are the be-all and end-all of life. The measure of success varies depending upon the belief systems and priorities of the people you’re speaking with – but in this case, owning and racing cars are the dream, and the measure of the most ultimate form of success.
15 Hot Cars Equate To Hot Women
While we can see the correlation, it’s not really a fact. We know enough folks out there with some serious engine work done on their impeccable sports cars, yet their passenger seats are empty. The car culture within this movie suggests that the key to happiness is through your car. If you have a fabulous ride, you’ll win the races, and get the girl. It’s easy to believe on the big screen, but it’s not really true when we look at reality.
We feel bad for all the guys out there that truly believe they can attract women with their cars and expect to find love this way….if only it were that easy!
14 Cars Can Basically Fly
Have you ever been airborne in a car? If so, did it last for nearly a full minute, and span over nearly 2 kilometers? We didn’t think so. The Fast & Furious cars seem to have superpowers. We watch as they repeatedly get torpedoed well above the ground and seem to take flight, always landing perfectly without any issues or damages.
In reality, the slightest bit of air would impact your car upon landing and the damages would be multiple, and expensive to repair! It would really be amazing if this were true to life – think of all the traffic we would be able to avoid. Thanks to the Fast & Furious movies, we are all wishing this could be a real-life feature!
13 Cars Can Burnout And Do Wheelies At The Same Time
Let’s take a look at that race between Dom and Brian in the Charger. There was a point there that the Charger did a wheelie and a burnout at the same time. If this doesn’t leave you scratching your head, then you’re just not paying enough attention. This one should not have happened.
Considering that this is a movie about cars, we’re surprised that they let this one slide, and are disappointed that they are letting viewers think this is possible. This is so unrealistic and can never be achieved, ever. Someone should let Dom know that he has to choose one, as the car can’t do both at the same time! This defies the laws of physics!
12 Diesel Cars Need Spark Plugs
They seem to need this in the Fast & Furious, by some strange coincidence. This was likely an oversight that they didn’t notice until after the movie was widely released. We’d like to think the reps of Universal Studios have fact-checkers that would have caught this one in advance, but clearly that was not the case here.
In Fast & furious 6, Owen makes a whole production out of requiring a spark plug to repair his flipcar – which has a diesel engine. Yet diesel vehicles don’t rely on plugs, since the heat required to ignite the fuel is generated by compressed air. No need to get too technical here, as this is a pretty basic fact!
11 Car Weaponry Is A Thing
Many movies feature cars that have wild weaponry and special accessories that we all wish we had on our vehicles. The Fast & Furious really takes this to another level though. In other movies, the cars visibly had weapons and special technical features affixed to the body, and we could all see that they were prepared to cause damage if the opportunity presented itself! Not in this case though.
This series makes us believe cars can have weaponry that is magical and can be completely concealed. Then, out of nowhere, it appears and there’s a full arsenal at our disposal. We’re pretty sure the grappling hooks that magically appeared in the New York car chase would probably need to be affixed to the vehicle in advance. It’s unlikely that they’d just mysteriously eject from the car’s body at a moment’s notice.
10 Cars Can Sustain Massive Impact
Crash landings are a staple for this movie, and there’s no shortage of them! We’d be hard-pressed to think of even one car in this movie that hasn’t been forced to endure a crash landing of some sort. By some sort of vehicular miracle, none of these cars ever seem to get damaged upon impact.
In Fast & Furious 5, the fibreglass-bodied Corvette is visibly airborne as it’s launched off the train, then it lands hard and is pushed to do some off-roading. During this entire time, and all the different forces of impact, the fiberglass never once breaks. Let’s not try this one at home folks, unless a pile of broken fibreglass is what you’re hoping to end up with.
9 Cars Easily Glide Under Trucks
Don’t try this one at home, folks – it doesn’t end well! This stunt was “successfully” attempted in both the first Fast & Furious movie, and in the seventh movie in the series.
In the first movie, there’s a Honda Civic that makes an intentional veer under a transport truck in order to avoid a road crew and manages to sail under the truck and get to the other side of the road with smoothly. Let’s get serious about this one, shall we? There’s no way this is possible. The gap between the underbody of the truck and the roadway is simply not enough clearance for a Honda Civic of any sort, no matter how low or modified it may be. This would be a dangerous and unattainable real-life stunt.
8 Mustangs Are Drift Cars
There is a bit of controversy surrounding this one. In Tokyo Drift, this car was a source of huge upset, when it became known that it was actually powered by a Nissan RB26DETT. This was a massive, insulting blow to those who worship the real, raw power the original Mustang possesses. The debate between power and drifting became a heated one, and we are going to side with the Mustang club on this one.
This car deserves way more credit and bigger credentials than what it was offered by this movie when it was declared as their drift car. The sheer power of this car was underestimated and underplayed and many would say, misrepresented.
7 Racing In Reverse Hits Top Speeds
Have you ever tried to reverse quickly down a laneway? Even at a reduced rate of speed, this takes work, and we don’t know of any cars that can drive in reverse at excessive rates of speed. This doesn’t compute on any level. In 2 Fast 2 Furious, Brian gets over-confident and drives his Lancer in reverse at a very high speed. This is just not possible to achieve.
There is no car designed to accelerate to a high speed while in reverse, nor would that even be a useful feature! Younger movie watchers may be easily fooled by this one, but we’re here to set the record straight.
6 Automatic Cars Have A Clutch
We aren’t sure if this is an oversight or a really annoying myth that's being projected by the makers of this movie, but regardless of the intent, we’re not OK with the outcome.
In Furious 6, Letty drives a really incredible Jensen Interceptor. After the initial awe of this gorgeous car wears off, we notice Letty pushing down on the clutch repeatedly and intentionally. Yet we also can clearly see that this is an automatic vehicle. This is another case of pick one, you can’t have both. For all the stick shift enthusiasts out there, we’re shaking our heads too.
5 Hacking Into Cars Is A Cinch
Hold on a moment while we hack into everyone’s automotive systems and take full control of their cars – this should be easy, right? Not really! Cipher sure made it looks easy though, as hundreds of cars were hacked into and manipulated, apparently to the degree that full steering authority was easy to take over. All this happened within the infrastructure of New York’s busiest streets, no less! This is a bit of a stretch.
Car hacking is really not a simple task, and manipulating hundreds of cars through New York would literally be impossible. It’s the movies, and some things can be overlooked, but this one seems like a bit of a stretch.
4 Driving Through Skyscrapers Is Simple
While we already know Fast & Furious movies have not kept it true-to-life in their display of car antics, there are some things that are just notably more believable than others, and this one crossed the line way too far. In Furious 7, Toretto launches his car through one side of a skyscraper and comes clean through the other side with success. To top it off, there’s no damage sustained to his car, and there are no visible injuries. The car just keeps on going.
This is so far overboard that it’s no longer entertaining. There’s no way this would be achievable, and this movie should have served up a better stunt that this one to keep us entertained.
3 It’s Possible To Drive While On Fire
Only in the movies though! There’s an unforgettable scene where Dom’s car is fully ignited with visible flames clearly coming out of the vehicle, yet he keeps on driving. The car is fully able to respond to Dom’s demands as he maneuvers it and continues along his way as if nothing happened.
Let’s not get too carried away with this one. It’s impossible to continue to navigate even the simplest roads with the smallest car fire. Not only is the risk of explosion significantly high, but the controls would cease to operate!
2 Cars Can Be Parachuted
Fast & Furious would like us to all buy into the fact that with relative ease, a car can extend itself to the sky and seamlessly and effortlessly glide through the clouds on a parachute.
In Furious 7, a multitude of cars are efficiently parachuted and glide through the air as though they were completely weightless. There’s no awkward jerking, and better yet, they make it look so simplistic that it seems believable. Car and Driver pegs the weight of a Charger to be roughly 2073 kg, and we aren’t easily convinced that a parachute will be trekking that way across our local skies anytime soon.
1 Can Drive Extensively Without Service
We’re not sure if you realized this, but all the cars in the Fast & Furious series are really put through the grind repeatedly, and over extended lengths of time. Anyone watching professional car racing is familiar with the pit-crew that is on standby and constantly seen running out to produce the world’s fastest road-side servicing. The movies make us think this is a non-essential element and that cars can be pushed to their limits for long periods of time without so much as needing new rubber!
We aren’t buying into this; these cars would fall apart if they were put through these grueling street races without pause for repair!
Sources: Extreme Tech, Car and Driver