gif: Jaguar/YouTube (screengrabs)

Jaguar literally launched its 2018 E-Pace compact crossover earlier this month in London, conducting the Guinness Book of World Records’ farthest production vehicle barrel roll. Lest you think the whole thing was somehow faked, here’s a video showing the lengths Jaguar went to pull it off. And yes, there’s a roofless bouncy castle involved.

Jaguar really put some engineering effort into getting its new compact crossover to, you know, not crash in front of hundreds of spectators—because introducing a new compact crossover as it lies upside down with glass shattered and roof caved-in would probably be awkward.

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One of the first steps to pulling this whole thing off, according to Jag’s “behind-the-scenes” video, involved running a bunch of exciting physics and math through computer-based simulations:

gif: Jaguar/YouTube (screengrabs)

From there, Jaguar went to Santa Pod Raceway in England, and had an E-Pace wearing what looks like Land Rover Evoque sheetmetal beat the crap out of itself as it autonomously launched over and over into a huge airbag.

Once computer simulations and robot-driven test runs were completed, stunt driver Terry Grant got behind the wheel. Here’s a look at how it all went down:

Sure, this launch is the very definition of a publicity “stunt,” but figuring out how to land a 3,500 pound SUV after a 270-degree barrel roll is the kind of nerdiness that’s hard not to love.

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Plus, just look at that gigantic bouncy castle. That’s even harder not to love.

Sr. Technical Editor, Jalopnik. Always interested in hearing from auto engineers—email me. Cars: Willys CJ-2A ('48), Jeep J10 ('85), Jeep Cherokee ('79, '91, '92, '00), Jeep Grand Cherokee 5spd ('94).

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