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Car Skiing

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Want to show off a sweet stunt in your car?

Known as skiing, this maneuver is like a wheelie, except instead of balancing on two front or rear wheels, the motor vehicle balances on all the wheels on either the driver's side or passenger's side. Skiing may be assisted with a ramp or by letting some air out of the ground tires. The driver will often be forced to drive in a straight line due to having to balance the car by steering.

It can be used to cruise through tight spots, pull off impossible parking stunts, or just show how skilled the driver is. The higher the risk of falling over, the better. Bonus points for pulling off the maneuver in a cumbersome vehicle like a truck.

Truth in Television! However, since Reality Is Unrealistic, the average audience may not know that this is an actual maneuver and dismiss it as Hollywood physics. Still, Don't Try This at Home.


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  • Back when Saab was manufacturing both automobiles and fighter jets, a car advertisement played up the association between the two by showing a couple of Saab fighter jets banking, followed by two Saab cars doing this trope. There's also this advert of Saab cars doing co-ordinated stunt driving.

    Anime and Manga 
  • Case Closed: As implied in the New York flashback chapter, Yukiko loves doing this with her car often (Shinichi's expression when she tells him to get ready is an exasperated "what, again?").
  • In Girls und Panzer der Film, the Finnish themed tanker Mikko does this with a BT-42 Assault Gun of all things. Sure it has Christie suspension, but still.
  • The anime adaptation of High School Of The Dead has the group escaping the overrun mansion in the Humvee. To get past the barricades, the Humvee leans at such a ridiculous angle that it should have completely turned over instead.
  • Lupin III pulls this stunt often.
    • In the second Lupin III: Part 1 episode with Goemon, Lupin proceeds to car ski on a single log bridge to run over the samurai. Goemon naturally avoids it and slices the car in half. At which point, Lupin continues to car ski with half a car still trying to run Goemon over.
    • In The Mystery of Mamo, Lupin is car skiing on top of a falling barrier.

  • The Charlie's Angels (2000) movie shows a flashback in which Natalie pulls this during her driving exam.
  • D.A.R.Y.L. does this when driving through heavy traffic.
  • In the 1976 Freaky Friday film, during the chase scene, one of the police cars pursuing the Volkswagen driven by Annabelle accidentally does this while trying to avoid a road hazard. The driver ends up parking the car against a wall, and the car eventually overturns.
  • The Camaro in The Gumball Rally pulls this stunt to try to get past an L.A. traffic jam. It doesn't work; the driver loses control and rolls the car.
  • James Bond:
    • In Diamonds Are Forever, while being pursued by Las Vegas police, Bond uses a ramp to put his car up on two wheels to fit through an alley that would normally be too narrow. The police car following him also tries it but flips over on its roof instead. Unfortunately, the film crew screwed up: Bond's car is shown entering the alley on its right wheels and exiting on its left, forcing them to splice in an implausible interior shot of the car swapping sides as it moves down the alley.
    • The climactic chase in Licence to Kill has Bond commandeering a tanker truck and somehow managing to dodge a Stinger missile with this maneuver. French stuntman and stunt coordinator Rémy Julienne pulled this off and called it the most difficult stunt of his long career. Initially, it was planned to utilise a rig that had been built so that the truck could be propped up and drive at a 45-degree angle, only for Julienne to prove it not necessary.
  • Live Free or Die Hard has McClane pull one off on the crumbling freeway with the assistance of a misguided pilot and missiles.
  • At the beginning of the first Police Academy movie, Mahoney uses car skiing to park a belligerent businessman's car in an otherwise full parking lot.
  • In Speed, this is done with a bus, though the passengers are asked to act as a counterbalance as the bus makes a hard turn.
  • Super 8 has this happen when the creature slams into a military bus transporting the gang. The raised tires end up breaking when the driver manages to tip the bus back.
  • In Transformers (2007), Bumblebee does this to scan and transform into the 2010 model of the Chevrolet Camaro.
  • Frank of Transporter 3 skis between two semi-trucks during an escape sequence.
  • In the movie Twins (1988), Schwarzenegger's character does one of these completely by accident his first time driving a car.
    Vincent: Julius, let me give you a little advice: here in America, nobody likes a smartass.
  • Done with a train in Unstoppable - one of the few Hollywood exaggerations of the film.
  • In Encino Man, Link does this while driving the car used for Driver's Ed, after being inspired by playing Rad Mobile.

    Live-Action TV 
  • On an episode of CHiPs, Bonnie was dating a member of a stunt car team, who did this during their show. Later in the episode, Ponch wound up doing it during a highway chase in his Trans Am.
  • Done regularly on The Dukes of Hazzard. One time, a film crew was in town and happened to see them doing it and hired them to do it on film.
  • Knight Rider: KITT has a dashboard function called "Ski Mode" that allows him to do this maneuver.
  • The movie portrayal of this stunt as easy to do was busted by the MythBusters — Jamie was injured during a training run, and Adam flipped their car over.note  And both of them qualify as Badass Drivers.
  • A stunt team on Wetten Dass took this to the extreme: The driver had to ski on the driver's side for four minutes because the track he had to drive on wasn't longer. In the meantime, the passenger had these four minutes tops to change the rear tire on his side while it was up in the air. They succeeded.

    Theme Parks 
  • The Moteurs.......Action! stunt show at the French Disney park and its American adaptation Lights, Motors, Action! at Disney Hollywood Studios features several of the villain Opal Corsas skiing during the third scene.

    Video Games 
  • In all Grand Theft Auto games of the III era, you can pull this off and get a bonus for doing so. Also, in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, there's a side-mission in a stunt driving school where one of the tasks is to do one of these.
  • In Midnight Club from the second game onwards, you can do this with the tap of a button. It serves two main purposes: The first is that it can squeeze you past an obstacle if needed, the second is that it prevents opponents from behind you from using your car to get a slipstream boost.
  • One of Q's gadgets in NightFire, the Q Wedge, allows Bond to tilt the Vanquish on its side and skid past two blockade cars, earning the player a "Bond Moment".
  • Star Fox 64 introduced the Landmaster, a tank vehicle. The player can pull off this maneuver using either one of the Landmaster's jets.
  • This is one of the more difficult stunts you can pull on Stuntman.
  • One of the stunts you can pull in True Crime: Streets of LA and True Crime: New York City.


Video Example(s):


Bond's Car Skiing

Bond does this while chasing the train, using the car's underside to block bullets fired at him.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / CarSkiing

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