The Fast & The Furious might be the most unlikely action series in film history, but its commitment to kinect action involving all manner of fantastic cars has been the series calling card from the very first entry. Sure, we all love watching Vin Diesel glare and growl, but the cars are just as much of a main attraction. And now that Furious 7 has finally hit theaters (and made record-breaking money in the process), we thought it would be fun to choose the coolest car from each film in the series. It’s a daunting task considering the number of amazing rides featured, but rest assured this list was thoroughly and thoughtfully considered.
The Fast & The Furious
1970 Dodge Charger
This has become, in many ways, the iconic car of the series. The films have always had a near-equal balance of import tuners, European exotics, supercars and good old American muscle, but this one holds a pretty special place. It’s the car that has come to define Dominic Torretto (Vin Diesel) as a character, but especially in the context of the first film it holds significant emotional resonance for him. This 900 horsepower beast of a car was built by Dom and his father, but was also the same car his father died in. Dom finally brushes aside his acknowledged fear of the car to drive it so he can rescue avenge the death of his friend Jesse, thus putting in place the thematic importance of family that would pervade the rest of the series.
2 Fast 2 Furious
1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R R34
In a lot of ways, 2Fast 2 Furious was a direct showdown between import tuners and American muscle cars, and since the villains drove muscle cars of course the tuners came out on top. But few cars in the series really stand out as much as Brian O’Connor’s penchant for driving a Nissan Skyline. (Which was in part because Paul Walker himself was an avid enthusiast for the vehicle.) Given that Nissan never brought the Skyline to American shores, few are familiar with the car outside of enthusiast circles but its fans are fervent, to say the least. This car came equipped with a 2.6 liter RB26 Twin turbocharger, pushing 290 horsepower. Brian would drive Skylines a couple more times throughout the series, but this remains one of the most memorable uses of the vehicle.
The Fast & The Furious: Tokyo Drift
2004 Volkswagen Touran
It takes something pretty unique to stand out among the muscle cars and exotic supercars of the Fast & Furious franchise. And while Twinkie’s (Bow Wow) Volkswagen couldn’t hope to stand up against the likes of a Skyline or Charger in a head-on race, it more than manages to hold its own visually. Twinkie, it seems, is quite a fan of the Incredible Hulk and has gone to great lengths to pay tribute to the iconic character with his ride. There’s still nothing else that looks like this thing in any movie.
Fast & Furious
1973 Chevrolet Camaro RS-Z28 F-Bomb
This entry is generally considered the black sheep of the franchise. It lacks the dopey charm of the previous films and it’s far too low-key unlike its sequels which go absurdly over-the-top with action scenes. Fast & Furious just ends up being a fairly small, overly dour entry. Somewhat fittingly then, perhaps, its selection of cars is a bit underwhelming as well. There are a couple nice ones in there. Brian gets behind the wheel of another shiny Skyline and this film probably marks the first time any major film has prominently featured a Buick Grand National, but overall there’s not much to get excited about here. Except, of course, for the 1973 Camaro F-Bomb. Though they didn’t use the real F-Bomb in the film, it is based on an actual car. David Freiburger, chief editor of Hotrod Magazine, owns the original and it’s an absolute beast of a vehicle, with a 406 cubic inch twin turbo V8 that produces 1540 horsepower and 1527 lb.ft. of torque. This is the vehicle Dom uses to take out one of the main bad guys in a glorious over-the-top fashion. (We couldn’t find a good clip of the car from the movie, so skip to about 1:49 on the video below for a behind the scenes look at the car.)
While it would be tempting to single out the Ford GT-40 or the 1963 Cheverolet Corvette Grand Sport, we have to go with one of the most distinct vehicles in the entire series: the Il Gurkha. Most of the cars do a pretty good job of matching up to their respective drivers, though perhaps none moreso than the Conquest Knight. Sporting a Ford 6.8L V10 engine, this sucker is built as an armored truck from the ground up, not built as a truck and then armored after the fact. Which means it is the perfect vehicular analog for the likes of Luke Hobbs, the perpetually sweating Defense Security Service agent played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. This sucker MSRPs at about $450,000, but there’s a civilian version available for a mere $150,000.
1970 Ford Escort RS1600
This pint-sized car may not look like much, but like Han Solo said of the Millennium Falcon, “she’s got it where it counts.” Paul Walker seemed to have a thing for driving cars that were never brought to America, as was the case with this version of the Escort. It was designed by Ford specifically for the European market and it was extremely common especially in London. But its small, light frame combined with powerful engine parts made it perfect for off-road rally races, an arena in which this car would go on to become something of a legend. (Skip to about 0:49 to watch Brian make a huge jump in the Escort to rescue his friend.)
This $3.4 million vehicle is the very definition of “exotic supercar.” There are only seven of them in the entire world. It goes 0-60 in 3 seconds. It’s the kind of car that a little boy would dream up conceptually in the back pages of his math notebook but given form by W Motors. It is, by far, the most expensive car ever featured in a Fast & Furious movie. It’s also part of one of the most ridiculous, over-the-top action sequences in the entire series, which is saying something. Check out a brief featurette on the car in the video below.