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Test Drive a car in Epcot
Have you ever wondered what a newly constructed car must go through before it hits the road? Well now you can experience this first hand on one of the best rides at Epcot. ‘Test Track’ in association with General Motors (GM) is the fastest of all the rides in the Disney World community, reaching an incredible 65mph!
As you enter the ride you are treated to scale models of a huge variety of testing equipment, all of which are used in GM testing facilities all over the world. Some of these include suspension, steering, front and side impact, and also the effect it has on the passenger…i. e. us, the unsuspecting test crew! !
As with many Disney rides a video demonstration of what the ride entails is viewed before boarding your test vehicle. The test schedule is outlined by ‘Bill McKill’ who explains each test individually, beginning with a hill climb test to asses the impact on the car’s engine and transmission. The second being a suspension test, followed by brake tests, environmental tests, high speed cornering, and finally a surprise test, which ‘Bill’s’ assistant chooses…. the crash barrier test, which shows a vehicle being smashed into a wall!
‘Bill’ talks you through the test from start to finish so you know what is coming each time.
The hill test is at an angle of 26. 8 degrees and the car simply powers you to the top of the hill, before braking at the top and steering around to the right in preparation for the suspension test.
The car is subjected to a Belgian and German block test where the car is driven over bumps making the ride a little bouncy for about 20 seconds.
A brake test is then, completed both without ABS and then with ABS present, which gives passengers a feeling of what it feels like in both situations.
In the environmental chambers a high heat is exposed on the car with the temperature reaching 119 Fahrenheit, and reducing as low as 25 Fahrenheit in the next chamber.
The final chamber is a ‘corrosive’ chamber which provides a slightly unpleasant smell for a very short time! After leaving the environmental sections, a few cornering tests are completed at varying degrees of speed with the final corner of the section seeing you nearly plough straight into an oncoming truck!
The final part of the ride sees you perform the crash barrier test where you power towards a wall which at the last minute parts in the middle allowing you to exit the test centre and perform the high speed ring where the maximum speed is achieved.
This is one of the best rides at any of the Disney parks and would be highly recommended. By the way don’t forget to check your ride photo at the end of the ride! !
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