With its high-flying, high-power action, monster truck racing has emerged as one of the more exciting levels of motorsports, and videos of these 12,000-pound, 1,500-horsepower behemoths in action are simply amazing.
Like most racecars, today's' monster truck is far different from those used in the early days of the sport.
Modern trucks have somewhere in the neighborhood of 1,500 horsepower to help the 12,000-pound truck soar through the air.
It's been almost 40 years since monster truck racing really took off, and we tracked down eight of the best monster truck videos of all time. Scroll on through to view each video.
Bigfoot is often credited with popularizing the monster truck. This big, blue Ford certainly wasn't the first lifted pickup truck ever to exist and it probably wasn't even the first to fit the description of a monster truck, but it was the first to be recorded driving over cars.
Compared to today's trucks, the original Bigfoot car crush is far from exciting, but it was enough to spark an entirely new segment of motorsports. As an added bonus, here's a video from 2015 showing all 12 generations of Bigfoot on parade at an event.
Along with Bigfoot, Grave Digger is another one of the key monster trucks that helped define the sport. This truck, a 1951 Ford Panel Truck, has been around since the early 1980s, and has become a real fan favorite. With so much time on the monster truck circuit, Grave Digger has had plenty of highlights over the years, and here is a great compilation showing about four minutes' worth.
As fun as it was to watch these early trucks drive over and crush cars, it didn't take long for the sport to evolve to add even more excitement. One of the relative newcomers, Maximum Destruction - or Max-D - has helped in this area by pushing the boundaries of the stunts.
This includes being the first to land a back flip and later a double back flip, although neither occurred during competition.
The first successful back flip during competition is credited to the Nitro Circus Monster Truck in 2010 in Jacksonville, Florida. Following the ground-breaking stunt, the crowd at 2010 Monster Jam erupted with applause. Many drivers have since performed a back flip, and it continues to excite the crowd.
With back flips becoming somewhat common, monster truck teams looked at new ways to push the limits for crowd entertainment.
Earlier this year, the Mad Scientist Monster Truck performed a successful front flip by completing a full rotation in the air. Before this, other front flip attempts consisted of a controlled forward rollover that caused significant body damage. Unfortunately for Mad Scientist, the front flip was followed up by an unsuccessful back flip.
In any area of motorsports, bragging rights are the best way to show off, and the Bad Habit monster truck definitely has this with a Guinness World Record under its belt for the longest ramp jump by a monster truck.
In 2013, this truck managed to jump an official distance of 237 feet, 6 inches to smash the previous record of 214 feet, 8 inches. A special ramp was built for the jump, and the 10,000-pound truck had to hit a speed of 85 mph in order to clear the massive gap!
It's hard to say where the future of monster trucks will go, but Bigfoot is showing there might be a greener side for this sport. In 2012, Bigfoot received a special EV model that replaced the powerful engine with electric motors and batteries. Although this monster truck lacked the deafening roar of all Bigfoot trucks that preceded it, this green giant had no problem running over a pair of cars just like the original.
Like the back flip, most jaw-dropping monster truck stunts originate from accidental crashes, and there have been plenty of spectacular crashes over the years. With almost 40 years of jumping and crushing cars, there are plenty of videos showing utter destruction to the six-figure beasts. This video is a testament to the amazing safety of these rigs.
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