Hoonigans Gives Us Literal Crash Course on Stunt Driving

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Fiat 124 Spider Abarth, modified by Hoonigan, takes some beatings as they continue to put group of rookie drivers to the test.

Ah, the Fiat 124 Spider Abarth. It’s a car we know well, here at 6SpeedOnline. It’s tossable, diminutive and easy to park. Well, at least it was when we drove it. As The Hoonigans have shown, when you put some exuberant rookie drivers behind the wheel, all hell breaks loose.

In the last episode of their “Hoonigans Wanted” challenge, this group of aspiring Hoonigans got down and dirty, literally. They went dirt racing in these modified Fiat 124 Spider Abarths. From that challenge, a few drivers were eliminated, leaving a tight-knit group of would-be Hoonigans. That’s good news, because this latest challenge involves teamwork. It also involves an abandoned mall in Hawthorne, California, about 20 minutes away from Hoonigan HQ in Long Beach. If the locale seems familiar, it should, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift had several prominent scenes filmed here.

Hoonigans Wanted Challenge 6SpeedOnline.com

The first challenge is dubbed the “Buddy Handbrake Challenge,” and it is as delightful as the retro graphics suggest. In classic action TV show form, the would-be Hoonigans have to barrel head-first into a row of cardboard boxes. Right at the last second, the person riding passenger (the “buddy”) has to rip the handbrake as the driver countersteers the car against the boxes. Closest to the boxes without toppling them over, or smashing the Fiata, wins.

Credit where it’s due, some of the pairings do quite well. To clarify, some teams do well, together. There are top secret handshakes, silly team names and hilarity at all corners. The first team, comprised of Christian Faloppa and Micah Diaz, and sans nickname, does well at not clipping the boxes, but ultimately lacks proximity. The second team, dubbed “Moustache Mayhem” goes for broke, first getting excellent proximity and then later smashing through the boxes in mustachioed fashion. Our final team, “Team Rush Hour 2” garners maximum hilarity with references to the classic action flick. Their flicking on the car towards the boxes, however, goes less smoothly. Oh well, onto the next round!


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Next up is the aptly named “Stunt Gauntlet Challenge,” where the teams have to initiate a J-turn (a reverse 180), whip some donuts, or a figure eight around some cones, and then continue whipping the car around until it sends a ball into pinball-like score card. One point on the ends, three points inside that, five points inside that, and a whopping 10 points in the middle. Of course, this is a Hoonigan challenge, so much like Whose Line Is It Anyway? the points really don’t matter as long as the entertainment is there.

Hoonigans Wanted Challenge 6SpeedOnline.com

Of course, also because this is a Hoonigan challenge, it goes exactly about as well as you would expect. Namely, the Fiats take beatings from their drivers in the form of smashed barriers, even more smashed up barrels and a few door mirrors and fenders now looking a bit worse for the wear.

However, through the aptly named gauntlet, the Hoonigan judges are able to eliminate two drivers and carry on to the next round with their top four picks, which includes Team Micah Diaz and Jackie Ding, and Team Ashton Harrison and Christian Faloppa. Godspeed, young Hoonigans.

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Jake Stumph is a lifelong car enthusiast and racer, who has operated as the content editor for Internet Brands Automotive since 2015. He runs Corvette Forum, 6SpeedOnline, Honda-tech, and LS1tech, among other Internet Brands Automotive websites. His work has been featured by several other prominent automotive outlets, including Jalopnik and Autobytel.

He obtained a bachelor's degree in Political Science at the Ohio State University in 2013, then pivoted from covering politics and policy to writing about his automotive adventures, something that, he says, is a lot more fun. Since that time, he has established connections with most of the world's major automakers, as well as other key brands in the automotive industry.

He enjoys track days, drifting, and autocross, at least, when his cars are running right, which is uncommon. You can check out what he's up to on his YouTube channel, as well as his Jake Stumph Racing Instagram account. He can be reached via email at [email protected]

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