The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is one of the scariest races still run today, owing to its lack of guard rails and sheer vertical drops. Even Greg Tracy, a driver assaulting the mountain this weekend, will admit it. If you really want to taunt the icy grip of Death, however, you should do it in a Corvair.
The Chevrolet Corvair was infamous for its handling characteristics. It was rear-engined when few other cars made for the American market were, and a series of accidents led to lawsuits against GM for manufacturing such a lethal car. Never mind the fact that independent tests actually found it had surprisingly good handling and its fatal reputation was undeserved.
In what was perhaps a bid to counter all the negativity, Chevy staged this run up Pikes Peak in a Corvair – all without chains or even snow tires. Somehow, it makes it to the top. Though I don't think GM would run an ad that ended with its driver plummeting off the edge of a cliff.
Truth be told, I am pants-wettingly afraid of heights, so I'm not sure you could convince me to make the hill climb in any sort of car at speed. Then again, the driver in this video seems to actually be maxing out at five miles per hour, so I suppose he had the same concern.