"This has been made for someone to behave like an absolute dick. And I love that." That's what Chris Harris said after lapping Travis Pastrana's Hoonigan Subaru Huckster on track a few times. And if you've seen last year's Gymkhana video, in which Pastrana jumped it at 165 mph, you'd know he's absolutely right. However, to make it capable of such absolutely terrifying, death-defying stunts, the Huckster was built with NASA-grade engineering, as you can see in Harris's new video.
The Huckster is built on a tubular chassis, designed with the latest rally technology, but it looks like a 1983 Subaru GL Wagon, even on the inside. OK, so it looks like a GL Wagon on steroids, with its massive fender flares, wider wheel track, and active aero. You can't tell at first glance but there are hidden active aero flaps and air brakes, that deploy when needed, making Pastrana (or Harris) look like Maverick trying to avoid some fifth generation fighter jets.
Such weapons-grade looks and technology belie its surprisingly '80s cabin, as it has a period-correct Subaru radio and digital gauges. So despite having a tubular frame, a fixed racing seat, and even an emergency air bottle—in case Pastrana crashed into the water while filming Gymkahana 2022—you can still crank Mötley Crüe while hooning around.
In the video, Harris talks to the Huckster's powertrain department manager, and one of the people responsible for making it as fabulously frightening as it is. Powering the Huckster is a purpose-built 2.3-liter engine, with just one monster turbocharger, that makes 862 horsepower and 680 lb-ft of torque, and revs to 8,500 rpm. That screaming engine is paired to a six-speed sequential Sadev gearbox and powers all four wheels.
Harris is an incredibly talented driver, and is often used as the example of car journalists that can really drive, but even he was apprehensive to push the Huckster. It's such a powerful, violent machine that he was hesitant to attempt big slides in it. If Chris Harris is hesitant to slide a car around, it's a scary car. Which makes Pastrana's ability to make it dance even more impressive.
Got tips? Send 'em to firstname.lastname@example.org