East Bound and Down!

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The Bandit is gone, but his spirit lives on – behind the wheel of this white Challenger Hellcat. Which not only outran Smokey, it outran the choppers following him in the air. Their max speed of 120 MPH wasn’t enough to keep eyes on the Challenger, which eventually just . . . vanished.

Many Clovers had their panties bunched up. Which is why this video is so got-damned enjoyable!

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  1. Aw gee that guy in the white car is nuts. My fave near death experience was a sustained 148 in a StingRay under the back window. My brother, the driver was far less concerned about the speed rating of his Mickey Thompson tires. The unpleasntries between the happy fecks in the seats would have been chopped off at the lower neck if a wreck and I clipped them off.
    My brother was a real dick. He had me tow his ’53 427 coupe to the show in South Bend behind a very tired ’63 GT. Even on the expressway it took some Clover planning to stop at the toll booth.

  2. Hope all of you have families who are driving on the freeway when the next knucklehead tries to evade police at 120 mph.

      • eric, I was just about to say same. 2-3 years ago the DPS would drive at well into triple digit speeds, no lights, no siren, nothing. They’d do this for several miles, slam on the brakes hard, turn around in the barditch and often right out in front of traffic to go after someone who might have been doing 10 over or either pull to the side with an overpass right behind the.

        I couldn’t tell you how many times I’d be coming up on a slower truck with my Speed limited to 70, check my left mirror, check how close I was to the slower truck, check my right mirror(you can see things with it going around a right hand curve you can’t see in the driver’s side. Start to swing out to pass and barely catch a glimpse of a DPS you were about to pull right in front of and all this would take less time than it takes me to write it.

        It was crazy dangerous and everybody complained. It did finally stop, probably because nobody complained but because a “trooper” got hurt and I’d include, injured or killed regular motorists but that doesn’t matter.

        In 76 we lived near Cedar Park Texas and 83 was a narrow 4 lane road with no turning lanes. One dangerous mofo it was but the DPS and cops worked hell out of it since that 55 PSL was manna from heaven. There was a large, new housing development about half way to Austin and it was real danger with no turning lane. Wrecks there every day but nothing was done.

        One day returning from Austin we came up on this bad wreck where a DPS had been doing high speed after one of those “dangerous” speeders, probably doing less than 65. He’d rear-ended a Pinto that was barely identifiable although the red pavement told much of the story. The Pinto had it front tires turned and probably had let off the brake just before it got nailed so it was knocked into the oncoming traffic and head-on with a Chevelle. It was terrible wreck, caused by the DPS. The next day there was a survey crew out there that got everything completely done for a turn lane and a few days later there is a turn lane there. It only took some cops killing a few people to get done what a years worth of carnage hadn’t been able to do. I sincerely hope the DPS were killed so as not to kill innocent people again. Papers barely mentioned it.

        • Thanks, Eight!

          A few years ago, a Va state AGW killed a guy who was just pulling out of his driveway in his vintage car. Creamed him at extremely high speed. The AGW was in “hot pursuit” – with lights and siren off. The poor guy got no warning, had no chance.

          If you or I had done the same as the AGW, it’d be felony vehicular manslaughter.

          Nothing happened to the AGW.

  3. Jeremy,

    “some gun control advocates say the suppressor may have caught the victims off guard. One survivor described hearing something that sounded like a nail gun.

    “Especially on a handgun, a suppressor will distort the sound in such a way that it would not immediately be recognizable as gunfire to people who sort of know what that sound is,” said David Chipman, a retired agent with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and now the senior policy adviser with Giffords, a gun-control lobbying group”

  4. Do I have to be the first one to say it?

    No one needs 700+ horse power.

    Especially not when equipped with a silencer.

    “Especially on a Challenger, a muffler will distort the sound in such a way that it would not immediately be recognizable as a 700hp car to people who sort of know what that sound is,” said some legislators.

    • Hey Tuan,

      No one needs 700+ horse power.

      Please, put this in quotes lest someone confuse you with a Clover.


      • Lots of things I can live without but I can’t think of one I’d prefer to live without including 700 hp or the 900 hp GM let’s you pump the Z’s up to with warranty. I know a guy who has 640 RWHP on a Camaro with a $17K Hennessy package. I have no doubt it would run off and leave the Charger. Like me, he’s thinking of changing ratios on the supercharger and getting another 100 hp.

        Not sure I’ve ever seen “too much horsepower”, like Bill Kirchen said about “Too much fun”.

        • I watched the entire thing the day this was posted just wanting to make sure my mind wasn’t going since I had seen the entire video before where he gets caught.

      • Jeremy,

        Perhaps I’ve seen the light and drank the kool-aid, turned in my guns, and am driving around in my new Tesla with AOC/Bernie stickers.


        • T, I’m almost sure Hank would have lived a lot longer if he hadn’t “seen the light”. I know I grew up with that with the crutch crowd.

          When I was 15 my good friend talked me into helping him be the “youth” entertainment at a big revival. I didn’t want to do it but did so for him and a girl who asked me to do same, both friends of mine. I came down with some terrible thing that damn near killed me. I took it as a sign. I only showed up in church after that for a funeral or a wedding.

          I did sing whatever part they wanted at family reunions of which we haven’t had in decades now. I once almost teamed up with a female friend who had a great voice and knew all the songs. This was back when Jim and Tammy were hot and we were an attractive couple, esp. voice-wise(she was hot hot hot). We’d have been rolling in money if we’d gone ahead with it and maybe would have but her husband was soooooo jealous. We saw the light, the light of Benjamins. It was as close to being immoral as I’ve come I guess.

          Others might tell you my rough and rowdy ways were immoral but I didn’t hurt anyone but myself and did entertain a lot of people.

          You could’t know this but I once cut an album with Asleep at the Wheel, well, me and a thousand other drunks and long hairs at the Armadillo World Headquarters, the name of the album, Asleep at the Wheel at the Armadillo World Headquarters. I did hate to see that place go. We saw Miles and Miles of Texas, all the stars up in the sky. We saw miles and miles of Texas, gonna live here till I die. That was the chorus Asleep didn’t even sing and the audience did a great job of filling in for them. Damn, those really were the “good ol days”.

  5. We used to make fun of cops and authority figures like in Smokey and the Bandit / Dukes of Hazard / Blues Brothers / Animal House. Now its nonstop police worship in the movies and TV. Not to mention the weird firefighter worship with their giant American flags on all their trucks like their defending us against a Soviet invasion. Different times.

    • Amen, Mark –

      The badge-licking is weird. But I know when it began. In the ’80s, during Rrrrrronald Reagan’s second term and the Iran Contra hearings. Teary-eyed Ollie North was publicly fellated by the “conservative” establishment and from that moment onward, Authority Worship became the core tenet of “conservatism.” It became synonymous with “patriotism” to leg-hump anything with a badge and a costume – including Hose Heroes.

      Makes me queasy.

      • I watched as much as I could. Ollie was pathetic and I really wanted to kill him, just shoot him in the head. What was sick was when they put Ronnie on the stand. He couldn’t remember anything. It was like he was the ultimate liar only he wasn’t lying, he couldn’t even remember the names of his cabinet officers. The lights were on but nobody was home. Then you knew why he had so much support. He was only operating on 3 when he was elected but he could sure tell some great “feel good” stories, no matter if he remembered them correctly or not.

    • I work as a reporter and was especially disappointed to see the bootlicking mentality among reporters, who I was taught in J school are supposed to be the watchdogs, comfort the afflicted, afflict the comfortable, blah, blah, etc.
      I refused to publish a state police Great White Hunter photo (the ones where they pose with their booty after a drug raid.) I was pissed off at them for being less than forthcoming for a story I was working on and decided I could be an asshole, too, and stop with the free PR. My editor told me we were a “law and order newspaper.”
      Ummm … Huh?

      • Hi Amy,

        I experienced much of the same – and more – when I began my career as a reporter, then transitioned to being an editorial writer. Which eventually led to my transitioning out of that gig and off the reservation entirely. I have stories. Lots of stories. Anyone who has been inside the belly, so to speak, knows the score.

        And I worked at a “conservative” paper.

        It has gotten much worse – as you know. Most people don’t know the origin of the term, “politically correct.” It originated in the early Soviet Union and was a device used by Lenin first and then Stalin to single out those who were not instinctively orthodox.

        The same sussing out is rampant in the media. The only way to avoid being co-opted or cowed is to get out. I encourage you to do so!

  6. Wow. This dude watched vanishing point… white Challenger and all! Boy has that movie vanished down the memory hole!

  7. Now THAT’S a man who took full advantage of the Hellcat’s capabilities… 🙂 He even outran the chopper!

    If you want to outrun the coppers on a bike in the city and get away with it, what you do is give ’em the slip; pull into a gas station with a roof and hole up under that; call a friend with a van; when friend arrives (pulling under the roof to stay out of view of any choppers), put the bike in the van and go!

  8. “the car is travelling at a high rate of speed…”


    The above phrase, commonly used by cops and others thinking it makes them sound “official”, is completely illogical. Speed = velocity, rate usually means change in common speech, so rate of speed = change of velocity = acceleration, not velocity. They’re saying he’s travelling at a high acceleration. Very good calibrated eyeballs, to be able to calculate acceleration like that from motion imagery!

  9. The reactions and comments by the newspeople is just scary, they are such wimps.
    “OMG he’s going over 110 .!!!!!”
    “OMG he is weaving !!!!!!!”
    Dodge should make a commercial from it.

    Long live the 392 !

  10. The guy stole the car,,, he was eventually caught running through a field after the car apparently ran out of fuel. One of the coppers that caught him punched him out,,, the cop is under investigation….. lol……. like they do anything to cops these days,,, other than glorify them! The perps name, Mohamed Ahmed Abu-Shlieba, 25 years old.
    That was an amazing run…. Last run I seen that good was the original “Gone in 60 Seconds” but there were many accidents in the movie… No accidents in the Houston chase.

    • Hi Ken,

      True story, which I know I ought not to post publicly. But what the Hell!

      A car journalist (not me) was driving a supercharged Jaguar press car at a velocity considerably in excess of the lawful maximum. He had been coming up a wonderful series of S curves and had just crested the mountain, where the road straightens out for about 2-3 miles, when there appeared coming the other way an AGW. The car journalist saw the front end of the AGW’s car compress from the braking force as the AGW sought to stop in order to execute an about face and pursue the Jaguar. Inside the press car, the high-pitched keening of the blower’s screws was all that could be heard as the V8 developed every hoof of the 500-plus horsepower it was meant to make. In very short order, the Jag had achieved a speed vastly higher than the AGW’s Crown Vic was capable of, given all the time in the world.

      And was gone.

      Once out of sight, the country just swallows up a car that doesn’t want to be seen.

      Buh-by Mr. AGW!

      • reminds me of a good one my brother did on a motorcycle back when the cops used the two pressure strips for speed detection. He went over them fast, saw the cop raise his radio mic to tell the cop ahead to stop him. brother stopped fast and turned around and went back by the cop with the wires connected to the cop car. the cop was seen trying to unplug the wires to pursue. they didn’t get him. priceless

    • I wonder how long the gas would last in a Hellcat being used, shall we say, to its potential? I know that crotch rockets are good for 2 hours max ‘at full chat’, as they say across the pond…

      • I don’t think it would last that long. I once had a borrowed Corvette for a week and at full throttle the fuel economy display would go down to low single-digit MPG, possibly freezing on 1MPG (which would indicate that the car was getting less than that.) That was with a very similar-size engine, with no blower and pushing a much lighter, more aerodynamic car. So… maybe 100 miles, if it starts with a full tank?

    • Any cop gets close enough to read the plate (by eye or machine) or any sort of automated toll and they’ll just get ya at home.

      • I have to wonder if an infrared-light plate frame would get around at least the cameras. They do exist as a speed camera countermeasure. (Especially when combined with that hyperreflective spray someone came up with to troll red light cameras). If it worked, the cops would have to read your plate with the naked eye which is difficult even in normal driving when everyone is moving at normal speeds and you’re not jacked up on adrenaline.

        • Hey Chuck,

          Or, get yourself another license plate and glue four small rare earth magnets on the back. Anytime you’re planning a high speed run, slap it over your real plate.


          • The problem is, I’m pretty sure that’s almost as illegal as doing 200 MPH on the freeway itself. Maybe more. This way, your plate is TECHNICALLY valid and visible, it’s just impossible to read unless an officer can close to within about a car length and hold his car steady while reading out your plate.

            • Hey Chuck,

              Of course it’s illegal. The predicate is that you’re going to attract porcine attention and try to outrun it. If you get caught you’re fucked.


              • I always loved….and once, nearly built a 007 style plate spinner. Back then though, my main goal was to never get caught. As unlikely as never getting caught was(when trying to flee)I never did…..and I did flee many times.

                I got hot asphalt from a melting traffic circle all over my car one day. It really pissed me off but I bought a gallon of kerosene and melted it off. I washed and waxed my car after that and decided to use this new style of chrome cleaner, a Du Pont product. Damned if it didn’t make my bumper look good and as I went across my plate I noticed it was taking the black off the white, really shitty paint job. Well, about a letter and a half were gone before I realized it was going to do this if i continued to wipe it off so I stopped and washed the plate but it still had that letter and partial gone.

                A couple days later the DPS pulled up behind my car when it was parked. They hunted me down and I told them how it happened. Well, they’re written the plate down I”m sure so they didn’t sweat it since it would actually make it easier to say they’d gotten my license plate number when I outran them.

                Several months later it was terrible cold and I was in Lubbock Texas having taken my GF with me to a banquet my parents had engineered for a new credit union.

                We all left when it was over but my car would barely run because I had left the “cold” plugs in it and this was the first really cold day. I was driving along with unburnt fuel spewing out and the engine missing to beat the band. I was just hoping it would warm sooner than later and quit missing when a Lubbock poleeze car pulled me over. They actually slammed me against the car for that plate. And then gave me shit for my car making noise and spewing a cloud of exhaust, a way over-board reaction to the situation. It took a while for me to explain mechanically why my car was doing what it was doing and why those numbers were gone from my plate. Meanwhile my parents were long gone and unaware of my plight. Seems like I bought some black paint the next day and did a “do-over” nobody ever noticed. Cherry Bombs will get you noticed every time. I got a ticket when they were only a couple weeks old. There was no ‘wearing them out’ for me. They wore me out and I bought some Corvair 2 1/2″ turbo mufflers to replace them. I couldn’t tell any difference in performance. Cherry Bombs just looked like mufflers anyway….as I discovered. This was back before anyone but Chevy made “turbo” mufflers but I had an in in the parts dept. so I didn’t have to pay through the nose for them. It was definitely a “live and learn” lesson.

                • I love the sound of a straight pipe but don’t want my neighbors to kick my head in when I come home late. I wish there was a muffler that kept the raspy sound and the off-throttle crackle but cut the decibels just enough to get away with. Closest I’ve found is… Super 44, I think?

                  Also considering a cutout, so when I’m out in the boonies and there are no houses around, I can let the non-drivers of the world know I’m coming for their gutters. Even if they have “SUPER EUROBEAT 90 MINUTES BEST MIX FOR RUNNING” stuffed in their ears at max volume.

                  • I like cut-outs too, the reason I’ve used a couple sets.

                    I was headed home from college going SE on 84 ab out 25 miles NW of Snyder, Tx. when I came on a Nova SS that sounded pretty good. Going around him he got into it and matched my speed, not much over 90 as I recall. He downshifted and held up 3 fingers. I downshifted and held up 2 which caused him to have a strange look.

                    Not really racing yet we met a DPS going the opposite direction. I saw him heavy on the brakes so I just nailed it and left the Nova in my wake. I met another DPS just a mile or so on and he turned around too.

                    I forgot about the Nova and had it nailed, probably doing 140 or so. I kept it at that speed till I got to US 180 where I pulled off and headed east to the house. 35 miles later I was in town and pulled into my buddy’s station’s wash bay and sprayed a bit of water on the grill to chill it down a little before cutting it off.

                    Well, I started washing it and my buddy came over and we shot the shit and I gave it a good washing and dry ing. I was contemplating a wax job when that same Nova came into the gas pumps and having seen me, was intent on a conversation. It had been over half an hour since I pulled in but never got a chance to ask where he’d been because he started telling me he got stopped at a road block at 180 and got a ticket and a lot of shit wondering where his “buddy” was.

                    I had no idea all this was going on so it was news to me and I bought him a Coke and we all talked about it a while. The roadblock turned out to be for the both of us but they were quite a bit late for me. The guy cooled off, got some gas and left. I never heard word of it again except from my buddy. Funny how that happens.

                    Just shows you how times have changed since now he would have been lucky to be alive after that stop.

                • I live in a state where sales taxes and property taxes on cars are very high. When I bought a new car, one of the CHEAPEST new cars available, they wanted over $1000 to license it. I thought that I could beat that price by quite a lot if I made my own plates on my computer and printer. After A LOT of effort, I hada set of perfect-looking plates at a more reasonable cost- the price of a couple sheets of paper. I installed the plates behind a clear plastic frame and was set. The only problem was that I had a flat tire while driving through another state, and a AGW pulled up behind me and asked if I needed any ‘help’. I said no, but he ran my plates anyway. Then he wanted my registration. I didn’t have one. He then said that your state’s DMV says they haven’t issued that number yet. So I went to jail. In court, the judge told me that if I had made the plates from metal, the charge would have been a felony. Just a word to the wise.

                  • P.S.- but I DID drive for 5 years on those plates before getting caught.
                    It was STILL cost-effective even considering the fines, etc.

                • If I remember correctly, Cherry Bombs were a popular brand name of a glass-pack muffler, which was basically a double-walled straight pipe slightly swelled in the middle to have fiberglass packing in between the inner and outer pipe walls. The inner pipe walls had some baffling cuts, but you could still see straight though it end to end, so it wasn’t much for noise reduction. Glass packs mostly just gave a better tone-quality to the exhaust than straight pipes. Thrush made some excellent turbo-mufflers, but they were way more expense than stock mufflers. Now stock exhaust is outrageously priced as well. With the advent of “Cats” and high water output from exhaust, nearly all factory exhaust systems are stainless, and upwards of $350.00 without installation! Car fun has intentionally been destroyed since the late ’70s without a doubt.

                  • You remember correctly. There were tiny “vents” in the inside that led to the glass. The whole point was to not affect the backpressure. I commonly coasted by the cops or let off just enough to make it sound reasonable. For the most part, it didn’t work since glasspacks are just plain loud but not as loud as cut-out which have been declared illegal in most states even if you don’t open them.

                    But it sure was fun to run above what the speedo would show at night and see the light show. Maybe that’s where the undercar light bs got started, decades later.

                    I always thought it was a good idea since animals could hear you in time to flee. Wish I’d had a Jake Brake to go with them but wound up tight and back completely out wasn’t too far off.

  11. I rarely click on video links but this brought a smile to face, Eric – thanks! Lotta flatland in that part of Texas, great for that kind of car.

    Now I want to watch Smokey and the Bandit again.


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