What’s it like to drive a... Douglas Super Tug
What it feels like to drive something with twice the torque of a Bugatti Veyron
Posted: 22 Oct 2010
This will sound stupid, but as I'm sat in this Douglas TBL 600 aircraft tug towing a 150-tonne Airbus A300, seeing that huge aeroplane in my rear-view mirror comes as an almighty shock. There I am, happily cruising up a runway, massive open spaces as far as the eye can see, then a quick glance in the mirror and my vision is totally obliterated by the gigantic cargo plane towering over me.
It's easy to forget about the A300 because the Douglas is so powerful that it tows 150 tonnes without any strain. It'll pull the A300 just on tickover. The only time I really notice all that mass is when I try to brake and come to a standstill so I can hand the controls back to Nigel Lewis, my surprisingly relaxed instructor. I don't want to stamp on the pedal because I'm terrified of snapping the plane's nose wheel, but it needs more pressure than you'd think.