Behind the world's first Burnout Symphony

By: Cobey Bartels

Presented by

Meat pies, Vegemite, burnouts – all integral parts of the Aussie DNA. But for burnout fanatics, it’s more than just a bit of smoke and shredded rubber: it’s a true motorsport


The epic Burnout Symphony! The smells, the sounds, the sights, this was one for the ages.

Whether it’s a subtle shed skid, a sneaky clutch kick, or an all-out tyre fryer... us Aussies love it!

Now look, everyone’s seen burnout cars – big HP V8s shoehorned into whatever you can get your hands on. Be it a Cortina, Corolla, Commodore, as long as it skids, it’s a go’er!

Well, over a beer or two during the planning of Mighty Machines, we had a crazy idea…. Why not go bigger? Why not find the biggest, angriest burnout machine Australia has to offer?

Cobey gears up to take the wheel of a 1,200hp XE Falcon Panelvan – a car built to do one thing and one thing only: shred rubber!

Well we set out to do just that. Some of you might remember a particularly sinister yellow White 4000, built to decimate rubber like nothing else.

How does this sound: 12 cylinders, two turbos bigger than your head and 900 angry horsepower ready to obliterate all eight drive tyres? Say hello...TO FILTHY.

Filthy started her life as a highway specialist, a workhorse built to get from A to B. Well, fast forward 30 years, the old girl’s had a facelift and a bit of a career change. It’s all bling and burnouts now!

Proud owner of the wild burnout truck Mick Lake was more than happy to drive the rig out and show us what it’s capable of, in exchange for some tyres of course!

If it ain’t blown, it ain’t goin’

The legends at Tyres4U hooked Mick up with eight Double Coin tyres, which proved to hold up well under immense punishment!

When chatting with Mick, we suggested we pit Filthy up against other (much smaller) burnout machines ... not sure how he’d react!

Well, he was keen and put us in touch with his mate Terry Skene, who happens to own Kingston Park Raceway in Brisbane.

If it’s got wheels, Terry is your man, and he was able to line up some mental burnout and drift cars for us, in what was shaping up to be the ultimate mechanical showdown.


The craziest of all the burnout guys! Did they stand up a chance against Filthy, though?

The aim, aside of course from absolute tyre torture, was to host a burnout competition between dedicated big horsepower burnout cars, drift cars and of course, Filthy.

But, beyond that, we also wanted to provide the general public with a better understanding of the sport of burnouts, covering its strong roots in drag racing and its now worldwide popularity as a legitimate motorsport.

After leaving it up to Terry to hook us up with the wildest burnout and drift cars on offer, we turned up on the day and admittedly our jaws dropped when we saw what Filthy would be up against.

Well-known burnout chariots Vicious and Gamble were warming up as we arrived, and their idle alone could be felt through the ground.

There’s something special about a car with 1,000+ methanol-fuelled horses, ready to be unleashed with one stab of the throttle.

Precision driving, the smell of E85, and plenty of smoke. Drifting is where it’s at!

Well, as many of you will have seen watching episode 1 of Mighty Machines, when Filthy lined up against the cars, pure carnage ensued.

For those who didn’t tune in, let’s paint the picture for you.

A mixture of smoke, methanol and diesel filled the air, as it snowed fine black tyre rubber. Oh, and let’s not forget the noise. Two blown V8s limiter-bashing for minutes on end, a sooty Cummins V12 on song and the sound of a screaming RB25 sliding its way around the action.

It was a symphony of sorts – a burnout symphony. Our hearing may never be the same again, and we’re just fine with that!

As the smoke and tyre rubber settled, we came to a realisation. Filthy just might be the ultimate burnout machine!

The aftermath, and to think Woolys banned single-use plastic bags?! Somebody hurry up and invent reusable burnout tyres!

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