We present a dynamic stability and agility study of a pendulum-turn aggressive vehicle maneuver. Instead of optimizing the controlled inputs to mimic the human performance profile during a pendulum-turn agile maneuver, we focus on studying the stability regions and agility performance of the vehicle motion using professional racing car driver testing data. A hybrid physical/dynamic tire/road friction model is used to capture the dynamic friction force characteristics in analysis and simulation and to compare with testing data. We also introduce the use of vehicle lateral jerk information as the agility metric to compare vehicle maneuvering performance. The analysis and testing results show that during the pendulum-turn maneuvers, the professional driver operates the vehicle outside the stable regions of the vehicle dynamics to achieve superior agility performance than that under a typical human driver model. Comparison results with a typical human driver model also show that the racing car driver outperforms in both the traveling time and the newly defined agility metric. Designing a control strategy for autonomous pendulum-turn-like safe vehicle agile maneuvers is ongoing work.

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