A quick 180 degree moving turn in a car. With skill it can be done on a two-lane road. Bootlegger turns are easiest if done with an automatic transmission and a hand emergency brake. Make sure the tires are fully inflated, and realize you'll be scraping a fair amount of tire life away - a rental car is a good way to practice this. If you have hubcaps, they probably won't stay on. Preparations aside, the actual steps are fairly easy.

  1. Keep the car straight and at around 30-40 mph
  2. Taking your foot off the gas pedal, start frantically turning the steering wheel for about a quarter to a half of a complete turn while using the emergency brake hard. (Manual transmission drivers: Depress the clutch at the same time.)
  3. When the car rotates about 90 degrees, release the emergency brake, hit the gas and then turn the remainder of the way. (Manual drivers: Let the clutch out as you take off)

The turn was originally perfected by moonshiners fleeing liquor revenue agents, hence the name "bootlegger turn." It's perfect for evading pursuit or escaping from roadblocks. It's possible to do this in reverse. This is called a moonshiner turn, and the steps are essentially the same.

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