Intimidator & Fury 325: Differences & Similarities

Carowinds new roller coaster, Fury 325, will be immediately compared to the park’s former marquee ride, Intimidator. It’s a fair comparison as they have the same designer (Bolliger & Mabillard), similar train designs, and are both sky-scraping steel rides visible from miles around. While they are similar, the ride’s differences are in their layouts and the experiences that they aim to give riders.

Intimidator – It’s All About Airtime

Intimidator opened in 2010. It’s Dale Earnhardt theme is perfect for a ride in the Carolinas, the birthplace of NASCAR. It boasts a 232 foot tall lift hill with a 70-degree drop. The ride is 5,316 feet long with a top speed of 75 mph. Intimidator’s key elements are its camel back hills. These hump-shaped hills are built to lift riders out of their seats providing joyful (or terrifying) moments of airtime. Aside from the fun right turn on the second hill, the high, banked turnaround and the helix at the end, Intimidator is really all about those numerous airtime hills. Read my full review of Intimidator.
Intimidator Layout - CarowindsHere’s a POV video of Intimidator:

Fury 325 – Expect Speed + Wild Elements

Opening in March of this year, Fury 325 will up the ante. Its lift hill will reach 325 feet into the Carolina air, with a steeper 81-degree drop. At 6,602 feet long, Fury 325 will have a blistering top speed of 95 mph. This monster will be among the largest roller coasters in the World. At the time of this writing, it will open as: 5th Tallest, 5th Longest, 6th Fastest and the 4th Longest Drop (Source – RCDB)

Again, while they’re the same type of ride, Fury 325 looks to bring something different. There’s more variety to the elements that riders will experience. In addition to a few camel back hills, the ride will use the speed generated by that insane drop to take you through a variety of wild curves, smaller hills, and an underground dive beneath a bridge. We’ll see how the specifics of each element delivers, but from the ride’s layout, it looks like we’re in for an adventure. And in my experience, adventurous rides make the best kind of rides.
Fury 325 Layout - CarowindsHere’s a POV video of a Fury 325 Test Run:

Another Successful One-Two Punch?

Similar to sister park Canada’s Wonderland, Carowinds will have its own one-two punch of massive steel coasters. It seemed to work well for the Toronto-area park’s tandem of Behemoth (230 feet tall) and Leviathan (306 feet tall). With this designer’s track record of producing exciting, but smooth thrill machines, I have no doubt that Carowinds will have two strong rides for many years to come.

About The Author

Founder of My favorite coasters are B&M hypers and gigas. I'm also a huge fan of terrain roller coasters.

18 Responses

  1. DRU

    OH BOY! It looks awesome, I guess I’ll have to make the 8 hour drive to Carowinds again. So happy for you to have a new GIGA at your home park.
    We miss you!

    • Joel

      Thanks DRU. I definitely picked the right area to move to. Carowinds has grown so much since I got here in 2007.

      And I’ll be posting occasionally. Not like I used to, but everyone once in a while when I’ve got something theme park related to cover. I’ll also be sharing my new site when it’s launched. It’s a fun topic. More to come.

    • Judy P in Pgh

      Keep me posted as to when you are going. That might help me pick a date!

      • Joel

        Hi Judy! I’ll be going to the media day a few days before the park opens. I hope to have a review up right away. I’m not sure when I’ll make it back later this season.

  2. Bobbie Butterfield

    Well, well, well – The Coaster Critic is risen from the ashes. I’m glad that you posted this piece b/c it helped me to make up my mind. I was considering 2 options for a trip this spring: Six Flags Over Texas (which I’ve never visited) or Holiday World (which I’ve visited) to cover the opening of Thunderbird for a heavily trafficked website to which I am a contributor. Forgot about Carowinds (never been there) and the best airfare I could find to any of the parks under consideration was on Frontier to Charlotte, so I think it’s going to be Carowinds. Fury 325 looks pretty exciting! And sure, I’d like to go to SFOT but the only nonstop is on Spirit and the flight doesn’t get into Dallas until 2:42 pm and that flight has a very poor ontime performance. On to Charlotte!

    • Joel

      Hey Bobbie. Glad I could help your decision. Carowinds has a pretty strong lineup, especially now with Fury. Also, you could cover the new park enhancements like the new entrance plaza that Fury will dive under. Let us know about your experience. Feel free to post a link.

      • Makarena

        I305 is a better cotsaer. The list seems to perpetuate the American mentality that the best cotsaers are the ones that are the biggest and tallest. I agree there are some loopers like Alpengeist that deserve to crack the top 10.

  3. Judy P in Pgh

    I love the Leviathan/Behemoth combination, so I plan to make at least one trip to Carowinds to see if Fury can compete with Leviathan (in my top 10!). The statistics are fairly similar, so I will be looking for those little differences that set the coasters apart. One added benefit for me is that I anticipate shorter lines for Afterburn, my favorite inverted coaster, especially because Fury is located on the opposite side of the park. While you are saying “1-2 punch,” I’m thinking “Triple Crown!” So good to hear from you again, Joel!

  4. Albert Myles

    Great Article! I find it funny how many folks are commenting on facebook about how Fury is just a taller Intimidator. I love that they are 2 different beasts. When its ejector seat time we head for Intimidator. When its time for some grace and poise, we are off to Fury. 🙂 2 great tastes that taste great together.

  5. Albert Myles

    Glad to see you posting again by the way!!!! Are you heading out to Carowinds for the Season Pass Preview or Open Day?

    • Joel

      Albert, I’ll be at the media event. We haven’t gotten season passes yet. Stay tuned for my review.

  6. Bobbie Butterfield

    Interesting that Judy P commented on Leviathan. I have a strong bias toward Intamin rides – and lately RMC – but of all the coasters I rode last year, Leviathan was the best so I have to hand it to B&W for what they did with this behemoth (pun intended) and am hoping that Fury 325 will be even better.

    • Joel

      Bobbie, do you have a Leviathan review that I could check out? I want to my homework on it since it’s a similar ride. Thanks.

  7. Judy P in Pgh

    I really like that Leviathan crosses the entryway at the front gate. It really helps to build anticipation. It actually does its turnaround through the trees directly in front of the gate. Canada’s Wonderland does a great job of people-moving … keeping the line moving by filling all empty seats, although I’ve never had them deny a seat request. The initial drop into a head-chopper tunnel is fast, but smooth. A hard banked turn to the right followed by the next two hills give good airtime, leading into the hammerhead turn. After that, it just keeps moving. Nothing fancy, just a good, clean, fast ride! It is currently sitting at #7 on my list of 328 coasters and is well worth getting my passport renewed this summer!

    • Dany

      Wow! You’re brave. Good luck and let us know how it runs. If you can leave a comment on the Skyrush reveiw of how it’s running ‘these days’ that’d be awesome. I wanted to get up to Hershey before the end of the season, but I doubt I’ll make it.

  8. Ethan

    I found Intimidator to be stronger in positive g force while I found Fury to be stronger in negative and lateral g forces. While Intimidator is well paced and generally feels fast, Fury seems to never slow down (until the trim). I think Fury325 is the better ride, because it has a good mix of elements. If back to back airtime is your thing, you’ll like Intimidator better (especially in the front seat).

  9. Dave B

    I love Fury!! One of my favorites. If it wasn’t for the trim brake it would be tough not to put it at number one. Do they ever run it without the trim?


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