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When you’re hitting 193 mph on public roads, you come up with some creative ways to avoid cops.
Crossing the country in 27 hours and 25 minutes at an average 103 mph requires some creative law enforcement avoidance techniques. Given that Arne Toman headed up that coast-to-coast run—seeing 193 mph on public roads without a single ticket—he’s the man with the cross-country, cop-ghosting plan.
Of course, the speeds required to make such a run, like that 193 mph top speed noted above, are very dangerous and illegal to actually do anywhere on a public road in the U.S. So, as the saying goes, don’t try this at home.
In a new video from VINwiki, Toman expands on the police-avoidance equipment and tactics that he touched on in Road & Track’s article on the record run.
“I think, ultimately, what we built was probably the best-prepped Cannonball car that’s ever been built,” Toman told VINwiki.
From military-grade optics to a laser jamming system, the crew spared no expense to minimize police exposure.
But perhaps the most clever solution was a simple one. Seeking to avoid the unwanted attention that a flashy sports car would bring, Toman chose a silver Mercedes E63 AMG. He then wrapped all of the carbon bits in silver vinyl and painted the red brake calipers gray. It now looks like a normal sedan, not the 700-horsepower monster that it is.
That only helps with avoiding attention, though. Toman also wanted to avoid identification, so any noble citizens reporting a speeder to police would be left without much to go on. For that, he de-badged the Mercedes and cleverly blocked off parts of the tail lights, making it look more like a Honda Accord than a German super sedan.
Keen-eyed readers may have noticed the gigantic protruding sniper scope mounted on a gimbal attached to the E63’s roof. Don’t worry; the scope was stored during daylight hours to maintain discretion, only being brought out at night to spot police waiting in the dark. During the day, the team used a pair of gyro-stabilized binoculars.
Of course, radar detectors, the Waze app, a police scanner, and a CB radio hopefully would give Toman intel on any upcoming police long before they were in eyesight. His radar detectors of choice are the Escort Max 360 and the Uniden R7, while he recommends laser jammers from AL Priority or TMG. He also made sure it was properly mounted, as a poorly mounted jamming system isn’t going to protect you.
“I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen the [jamming] heads going this way, that way, going up and down,” he said. “They need to be level, and they need to be straight, and they need to be mounted properly in the right position to give full coverage in the front of the car.”
He also had a plan to foil aerial speed enforcement used by some states and counties, running an aircraft collision avoidance system to detect any police aircraft. Should they get lit up with radar despite all of this detection tech, Toman had a few more tricks up his sleeve.
First, he ran a brake light kill switch. That’s another simple mod that he calls “one of the most important things” to have on your car for a Cannonball Run. If he was over the speed limit but scrubbing speed without bright, red brake lights alerting cops, Toman says he’d be more likely to get away with it. If he was going way over the speed limit, he could get out of sight and hope the anonymous-looking sedan could blend back into traffic.
If they got his license plate information from his automated plate reader, though, that wouldn’t help. As one final countermeasure, he brought a backup plate. Toman had switched the registration of his E63 a few days before the run, giving him an extra set of plates registered to the E63. The legality of that is questionable, but it’d help him in a pinch. Either way, he never had to use it.