In Terminator Judgement Day (1991) (T2) there is a scene of where Arnold is riding the motorcycle to follow John Connor, who is being chased by Robert Patrick (T1000). When Arnold jumps off the ledge with the motorcycle and lands, why do the tires not pop? Why do all the vehicles that exist within the series not break down when a terminator is riding them and/or maneuvering them?

The reasoning of why I ask the above is based on the fact that these Terminators like Arnold's T-800 model must at least weigh in at a ton, if not more. I am sure the T-1000 and T-x also weigh a lot as well. So how can these vehicles that exist in the past be able to support them when a Terminator weighs way more than a human body frame or a vehicle that was made to support human weight?

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    Can we necessarily assume that they weigh a ton? They might be made of strong lightweight composites/alloys (polyalloy in the movie's parlance) Commented Feb 25, 2013 at 21:10
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    Arnold's Endoskeleton was supposed to be made of a titanium alloy, which would not weigh that much.
    – DavRob60
    Commented Feb 25, 2013 at 21:15
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    I agree with @DVK. Can you produce any info to base your assumption that they weigh that much?
    – Monty129
    Commented Feb 25, 2013 at 22:34
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    Omg, some movie med guy said "this guy weights a ton", and everyone of you guys have marked "t-800 weight = 1 t" in your terminator memos? I doubt that anyone of you can feel a difference between quarter ton and half ton weight, so med guy from T3 can't do it just like you. T-800 is pretty massive thing for sure, but it's not solid metal statue, so it have a reasonable weight compared to human with same physique stats, about 200-250 kg. This makes possible for termo to use big bikes and all the cars.
    – user48144
    Commented Jul 13, 2015 at 8:10

3 Answers 3


The terminators were designed for infiltration - to be able to sneak inside human enclaves and then terminate the people inside.

If a terminator weighed much more than a human of the same size/build, it would be a dead giveaway - and really easy for the resistance to spot.

Therefore, it seems reasonable to me that the terminators all weighed approximately the same as people.

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    No more than a human? Then why couldn't the burley Fireman lift the T-850 (Arnie) from the wreckage at the Veterinarian's office when he helped John Connor and Kate Brewster escape the T-X "Terminatrix" in 'T3 Rise of the Machines'?
    – Morgan
    Commented Sep 12, 2013 at 16:02
  • @Morgan It's possible that it's just a limitation with the oldest Terminators. In the original, Kyle says that "these are new, they look human" and later models are smaller. The 800/850 distinction is dubious as it seems to have come exclusively from a T3 bonus feature. Commented Aug 3, 2014 at 23:26
  • The T-850 is a T-800 with plasma-resistant skeleton, better joints and servos, better skin, and updated human psychology and behavior data. It also uses hydrogen fuel cells instead of the compact nuclear-energy Iridium cell used by the T-800. Commented Sep 22, 2014 at 17:25
  • Well the weight was also shown through the first part of Terminator 2 Judgement day. If the Terminator had human weight, there would be no way it would be able to bust through a wall of bricks. Essentially an object has to have a good amount of weight, unless it is thrown at a faster velocity, to break through a brick wall, as shown in the mall scene. Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 2:54
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    @lunchmeat317 Density is defined as mass/volume. So if a terminator is the same size (volume) as a man, but has higher density, it's mass is greater. That a terminator doesn't float and a person does proves the terminator is heavier than a person.
    – Mr. Boy
    Commented Jul 24, 2015 at 10:29

Josh Friedman said this during a chat with fans:

2:40AM – < ashman01> tantalum is actually very light, like titanium

2:40AM – < schmacky> LUcas@ T3 was stupid for making Terms so heavy.. how could they ever drive the cars if they were that heavy??

2:40AM – < ashman01> or just put a f&^**g scale outside of every resistance base

2:40AM – <~astropixie> So they just suck at swimming, then?

2:40AM – < talli> @ash Didn’t Josh once say Cam weighs about 30% than a human girl her size?

2:40AM – < ashman01> “john does my a$$ look fat?”

2:41AM – < jfhenry> terminators weight hte same as human counterparts

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    Who is Josh Friedman and why is his comment so valuable? Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 2:52
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    @Arvin Follow the link on the name. He is producer and writer of Terminator:TSCC...
    – user931
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 6:51
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    Density of titanium = 4.51 g/cm^3. Density of tantalum = 16.6 g/cm^3. So much for learning science from a TV showrunner.
    – Kyle Jones
    Commented Jun 13, 2017 at 16:21

It's a writing inconsistency. The only time I'm aware of where a Terminator's weight has been directly addressed in the movies is after the fight at Emery Animal Hospital in T3 between the T-850 and T-X. Here's a tongue-in-cheek running commentary of the T-850s weight discrepancy between movies.

While the T-850 fires at the T-X ineffectively, the right arm of the T-X undergoes a painfully slow transformation into its most powerful weapon--a plasma cannon capable of causing minor inconvenience to Terminators. Like the T-X, the T-850 doesn't have any basic dodge routines, so the T-X has no problems hitting the T-850 with the cannon. The impact sends the T-850 flying all the way across the parking lot and into a building. The shot also causes the sort of cartoon-styled electrical interference that acts like a temporary x-ray.

The T-850 is temporarily stunned, so the T-X converts the cannon back into a normal arm. As John Connor flees, emergency responders are seen travelling the opposite direction. They arrive at the scene of the explosion, and EMT's quickly locate the T-850. Discovering that the T-850 has no pulse, one of the EMT's attempts to move the T-850 while the other stands there doing nothing. The EMT is unable to move the T-850, because "this guy weighs a ton". Of course. Terminators need to blend in with humans, so naturally they should be built so heavy that they can shatter asphalt and concrete on impact, and react like a stone statue when manipulated by humans. Contrast this with T2, where a 10-year-old boy was able to help a Terminator to its feet. http://downfallofterminator.blogspot.com/2013/04/all-that-is-wrong-with-terminator-3.html

  • In T2, the extent of John's help is giving him an order to get up.
    – Mazura
    Commented Sep 17, 2014 at 10:15
  • @Mazura - No, he basically picks him up. youtu.be/pYj8CUA9FZc?t=3m3s
    – Wad Cheber
    Commented Jun 28, 2016 at 2:59

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