After the first iteration of this video garnered a whopping 8.4 million views, it was time to do a follow up. $1,545,000 in high powered motor vehicles (including a Lamborghini Aventador, Chevy Camaro ZL1, Ferrari 458 Italia, Lexus LF-A, and Nissan GT-R) assembled once again for full on wheel-vs-pavement assault. Take a guess at who finishes ahead of the pack?
Our ace test crew consists of road test editor Scott Mortara, associate road test editor and Motor Trend YouTube star Carlos Lago, testing director Kim Reynolds, and technical director Frank Markus. In any given year they’ll gather instrumented data on hundreds of new rides, from the tiniest Fiat to the beastliest Lamborghini. More often than not, they’re the ones who teach the rest of us how to properly launch a vehicle. Cars can be finicky, especially in multi-launch “World’s Greatest Drag Race” situations.
I pinned down Mortara for a quick Q&A session after the BDC dust settled.
NM: Which of the contenders was the trickiest to launch?
SM: Well, all but the Subaru BRZ and Jaguar XKR-S had some sort of launch control system, which basically takes the driver out of the launching equation. But of the pair, the Jaguar was definitely trickier.
NM: Easiest to launch?
SM: Without a question that had to be the Porsche. It had the quickest and easiest launch control of the group.
NM: How many sets of tires did we burn through during the filming of “WGDR 2″?
SM: We burned through a set in the Shelby GT500 — that was a cinch. It went through its tires more aggressively during the drag race than during our hot laps at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, which is understandable. But the real tire terror was the Mercedes-Benz Black Series. We killed two sets of tires in that one. It’s a monster.
What the man behind the camera says
Lead videographer Jim Gleason wanted to be careful not to tinker too much with the formula that made last year’s drag race so successful. We talked with him about what went into this year’s production.
NM: How did you and the team want to build upon the success of last year’s “WGDR”?
JG: For this year’s race we wanted to keep things pretty much in line with what we did last year. Other than some new and improved equipment, we felt that there was simply no need to mess with the tried and tested formula. Drag racing on a runway filled with exotic cars is just plain cool.
NM: What did you learn during the filming of 2011′s “WGDR” that you applied in 2012?
JG: For me, the biggest takeaway from last year’s race was how poor of a job we did at capturing the sound of 11 super cars running at full song down a runway. In person, the sound was absolutely breathtaking. This year we purchased better sound gear. We’ve also been toying with the idea of releasing a second version of the “World’s Greatest Drag Race” with no music so you can hear the cars better — an unplugged version, if you will.
NM: How much footage did your team capture during “WGDR 2″?
JG: Hard to say how many minutes we captured, but my best guess has our total workload at about half a terabyte of data. That’s just for the drag race portion of BDC.
NM: How many camera angles were shot during “WGDR 2″?
JG: Including our POVs, I’d say we shot at least 40 different angles.
NM: What the most difficult part of shooting such an event?
JG: The start! Getting all of the cars to leave the line at the exact same moment is surprisingly difficult. It’s a simple task with two cars or even four, but with 9 or 10, it’s a whole other animal.
NM: The easiest part?
JG: Getting volunteers from our staff to drive the cars. They came running