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Watch This Gordon Murray T.50 Prototype Get Tortured Within an Inch of Its Life

Road & Track logo Road & Track 2022-05-19 Brian Silvestro
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Airbag calibration testing is no joke. Aside from crash-testing, it's the most brutal line of tests a car needs to be put through before entering production. Seeing normal cars go through it is tough enough, but watching the Gordon Murray T.50 suffer through these tests? It's borderline torture.

The company recently shared a handful of clips filmed at Automotive Testing Papenburg, a testing facility in northwestern Germany. They show XP1, the first fully completed T.50 prototype, being put through a series of extreme driving scenarios to make sure the airbag sensors are calibrated correctly. Testers drive through cobblestone-lined roads, hit simulated potholes, slam speed bumps, and fly over train tracks to make sure the airbags don't inadvertently deploy.

Airbag calibration testing needs to be done on every new car, including Gordon Murray's F1 replacement. And it's brutal. © Gordon Murray Automotive - YouTube Airbag calibration testing needs to be done on every new car, including Gordon Murray's F1 replacement. And it's brutal.

A few of the more brutal tests involve the XP1 going over a jump at 44 mph and driving straight up a pile of rocks. There's even a test that involves the car hitting a simulated boar (a 176-pound sack) at speed. The only time something really important on the car broke was when it was slid straight into a fixed steel beam, which bent a tie rod. Not bad, all things considered.

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