Why do cars in movies from the 60’s and 70’s seem so bouncy? The suspension seems really loose, was there a reason for this?


Edit: Wow thanks for all of the great responses, I was watching Goodfellas and was looking at the cars bouncing all over the place and thinking why was that. I’d love to drive in one to experience it someday.

In: 3156

– Cars used for stunts typically have custom suspensions.
– USA cars in general were shit until the Japanese showed the USA how to do it. People used to wedge rubber into the suspension springs on brand new cars because the suspensions were too loose and made creaking noises when driven off the dealer’s lot. As another example, the USA couldn’t even paint cars correctly. Only one side of the metal was painted, and the chemistry of the paint was inferior.
– USA consumers wanted to drive boats on the roads.

There was a famous “Car & Driver” article from the early 90s that concluded by saying, “The variation in body panel separation on the North American car exceeds the total separation on the Honda.”

USA domestic manufacturers lost more than 50% of USA market share, and they deserved to.

Most movies car are actually in studio on some electronic trailer, like a rodeo mechanical horse, to simulate the car rolling on street while actor can say their line without wirrying on the road. The bounciness is mostly a special effect to add more realistic effect to the stationnary car. Kinda similar to the way actor always seem to use the steering loosely

Are you talking about shots where the actors are sitting in the seats driving/talking? If so they aren’t actually driving then, the cars were stationary in a studio. They most likely added the bouncy movement to make it look more like they were driving.

Not even just movies, but actual cars from the 70s WERE bouncy.

They were VERY heavy and VERY large. That much size and weight was simply too much for the suspension of the time. It’s hard to dampen movement on a huge boat of a car.

The cars were heavier and the suspension was softer. The suspension tech was limited in the day so manufacturers prioritised affordability and comfort over quality and stability.