Have you ever wondered how fast your car can go in reverse? You may be surprised to find out that it’s not as fast as you may think.
Most cars can only drive a maximum speed of 60 mph in reverse for safety reasons. The current top speed driven in reverse is 48 miles per hour, and the top reverse speed achieved in a modified car is 130.3 miles per hour.
The reverse speed of a car can greatly vary based on its manufacturer, design, and safety features.
How Fast Can a Car Go in Reverse?
Testing the reverse speed of a car is a daring maneuver. You need to ensure that you have enough space, a safe environment, and the driving skills to pull it off.
However, even if you were to get up to speed, you would likely be disappointed by what you’d find. On average, most cars cannot go faster than 60 mph per hour in reverse.
Unless your car has been modified and customized, factory-made vehicles built by big-name automotive manufacturers are designed to max out at a certain reverse speed. The reverse speed of each vehicle is slightly different, so it’s next to impossible to offer a generalized figure that can be applied to all cars.
Some cars have a much slower reverse speed, with many being locked into the max first gear speed of their vehicle. In some cases, this can be as low as 20 miles per hour or even less, whereas many modern electric cars, such as Teslas, are designed to have a maximum reverse speed of just 15 to 17 miles per hour.
How Fast Can a Modified Car Go in Reverse?
Given that virtually all cars are designed to have a maximum reverse speed that is fairly low, the only real way to go faster while going backward is with a modified vehicle.
Reverse car racing has not taken off yet as a sport, but that has not stopped some drivers from trying their hand at it. Cars can be customized and modified to drive in reverse without the same restrictions as standard vehicles, which greatly impacts how fast they can go.
Currently, the fastest speed a car was able to achieve in reverse is 130.3 mph. The new record was set by Daniel Abt in an Audi RS 3, which is an all-electric 4-door sedan vehicle.
Keep in mind that this is not a standard Audi RS 3. This vehicle has been modified by a professional race team and features enhanced horsepower as well as other customizations that enable it to drive faster in reverse than a standard car.
What is the Fastest Mile Driven in Reverse?
Believe it or not, there are some people out there obsessed with driving vehicles in reverse. This is an unofficial sport, with a surprisingly loyal base of fans and participants.
A Tenessee man named Scot Burner is on a mission to push the boundary of how fast cars can drive in reverse. He set out to be a world record holder and succeeded when he drove the fastest mile ever driven in reverse at 48 miles per hour.
At one point, Burner hit 54 miles per (the actual reverse speed of his Corvette), but the clocked speed overall was 48 miles per hour.
Why Are Cars Designed With a Limited Reverse Speed?
The bottom line is that driving a car in reverse is dangerous, especially when you are going at high speeds. Manufacturers intentionally design cars with this safety feature to prevent accidents and injuries. Furthermore, driving a car in reverse is unnatural for the design of the vehicle.
Continuing to drive in reverse at high speeds for prolonged periods can have damaging effects on the mechanics of the car. Although this can easily result in personal injury or even death, driving in reverse can also harm the car. These are some of the most common risks of driving a car in reverse at high speeds.
The windshield of your car is in front of you when you normally drive so that you have optimum visibility of the road. Driving in reverse implies that you have to look through your rear windshield, which has considerably worse visibility and more blindspots.
When your car is in motion, it uses the air that passes through the engine to stay cool. This is an essential design feature of every car, as it enables your vehicle to stay at a stable temperature without overheating or being overly dependent on the engine’s fan.
If you are driving your car in reverse, your engine’s fan will be working overtime to cool itself down, which puts excessive strain on your vehicle.
Professional race car drivers train to drive in a variety of different types of conditions, which can include going in reverse. To operate a car in reverse at high speeds, you need to adapt to the changes in steering.
Unlike driving a normal car going forward, your steering is not nearly as precise and reliable when going in reverse. The slightest change to the angle of the wheels can result in the car spinning out when going at high speeds, resulting in unpredictable steering.
Key Takeaways to How Fast You Can Drive in Reverse
Most cars can only drive a maximum speed of 60 mph in reverse.
Cars are designed to have a slower maximum reverse speed due to safety reasons.
The current top mile speed driven in reverse is 48 miles per hour.
The top reverse speed achieved in a modified car is 130.3 miles per hour.