If you love roller coasters and want to ride lots of them, Six Flags Magic Mountain is the place to be. It is the park with the most number of coasters in the world. And in 2013, it will get one more. So, what will make coaster number 18, Full Throttle, different from the rest? Plenty.
- Type of coaster: Steel launched
- Height: 160 feet
- Top speed: 70 mph
- Train configuration: 3 cars, each with 6 riders sitting two abreast, for a total of 18 passengers.
- Ride manufacturer: Premier Rides
See the Ride
Here We Go Loopty LoopA most unconventional coaster, Full Throttle will forego a traditional lift hill in favor of an LSM magnetic launch system. It will ditch the typical first drop as well and instead catapult riders immediately into a humongous loop. How humongous? At 160 feet, it will be the world's tallest loop on a coaster.
In fact, the ride's ginormous loop is its focal point and main feature. After tackling the inversion at a breathtaking 70 mph, the trains will navigate two highly banked curves and soar through a dive loop that will take it into a fog-filled tunnel where it will come to a stop. (The stall-out-in-a-tunnel trick sounds similar to Cedar Point's wonderful coaster, Maverick.)
With barely enough time to catch their breath, passengers will be launched a second time -- backwards -- into the dive loop they just survived. A third launch will then reverse the direction of the trains and throttle them forward, again at a breakneck speed, through the tunnel. Here is where the ride gets interesting. (Not that three launches and a record-breaking loop isn't sufficiently interesting.)
Riders will soar, right-side-up, on the outside of the 160-foot loop into what Six Flags is describing as the first-ever top-hat element. I don't think that's quite right. Launched rocket coasters such as Kingda Ka at Six Flags Great Adventure offer top hat hills -- so named because their 90-degree ascent, brief crest, and 90-degree descent resemble the hats that folks like Honest Abe and Fred Astaire favored. But Full Throttle will mark the first time that a top hat element will be fashioned by using the outside of a loop. It's hard to tell from the preview info, but it appears that the hill has the potential to impart a nice pop of airtime.
The top hat also has the potential to give Magic Mountain visitors the highly unique sight of two trains simultaneously navigating the 160-foot loop, one on the inside and another on the outside. That's crazy! Throttling up and over the loop with a trainload of screaming, upside-down passengers hurtling directly beneath on the same loop (and vice-versa) should be a thrilling, wacky experience. Here's hoping that Six Flags and Premier Rides will design the ride to include midair full-throttle train meet-ups.