Your intuition tells you 80-0 need to take around 33 percent longer than 60-0. However your intuition is dead wrong.

You are watching: How many feet will it take you to stop from 60 mph


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Let"s do a assumed experiment. Imagine you"re reading around a new sports car, the Gorgonzola MVS-400istxC black Edition. This stellar performance car has the world"s ideal brakes: A 60-0 panic prevent takes just 60 feet. Pop quiz: how much street does it take to stop from 80 mph?

If girlfriend guessed 80 feet, you"re dead wrong. It all needs to do v a tricky small aspect of physics—one that most vehicle enthusiasts recognize nothing about.

See, if you gained this brain-teaser wrong, it"s probably since you assumed the avoiding distance increases proportional to speed. Eighty mph is one-third quicker than 60 mph; therefore, friend may have actually told yourself, the stopping distance from 80 need to be one-third longer.

But that"s never ever the case. Take a look at the braking data top top the McLaren 720S, our 2018 Performance car of the Year: protecting against from 60 mph bring away 108 feet, while from 80 mph the takes a complete 178 feet. That"s practically 65 percent much more distance, far greater than the 33.3-percent boost in speed.

Look increase the braking distances of any car, new or old, rapid or slow. The doesn"t matter if it"s got giant carbon-ceramic brakes, the world"s most progressed ABS, and also the stickiest tires known to man. Every car"s 80-0 braking distance will be fine over 50 percent longer than that 60-0.

Why? the all needs to do v physics. See, braking street measures how a car turns kinetic energy (forward motion) right into thermal energy (the heat provided off through the brakes). And also as a car"s speed increases, its energy increases even faster. To calculation a relocating car"s energy, girlfriend square the speed.

To see specifically how this calculation works, examine out this explanation by YouTube"s Numberphile. Using nothing an ext than a sheet of blank paper and a doodle of 2 cars going different speeds, Numberphile shows you why a small increase in speed leads to a big increase in preventing distance.

Think about this the following time you"re ~ above the gyeongju track, or hurtling down your favorite abandoned road. Together your speed increases, your stopping distance boosts by the square of her speed. The adds up to a lot when you"re barreling toward some sort of immovable object.

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