‘Top Gun: Maverick’ Star Tom Cruise Shows Off His Personal P51 Mustang: WATCH

by Shelby Scott

Tom Cruise’s massively successful film career has its roots in the 1986 classic Top Gun. Since making his debut as Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, the 60-year-old actor’s reputation has, quite literally, soared. It’s seen a resurgence in popularity especially following the premiere of the Top Gun sequel, Top Gun: Maverick.

Top Gun: Maverick received rave reviews from critics after its premiere. And part of that is because Cruise and his costars committed to intense aerial training, emphasizing its overall authenticity. Together, Cruise, Miles Teller, and the rest of the onscreen pilots took to the skies in the Navy’s F/A-18 Super Hornets. However, in a new feature, Tom Cruise is showing off his aerial skill in an entirely different aircraft, taking off in his personal P51 Mustang. Check out the tell-all clip below.

“Even the Top Gun pilots kind of geek out over [Tom Cruise’s] P51,” Top Gun: Maverick star Monica Barbaro said of the iconic aircraft.

More humorously, Barbaro and Cruise’s costar, Charles Parnell (Warlock), shared his first reaction upon seeing Tom Cruise flying the P51.

“I look up and I say, ‘Oh, well that’s a cool-looking plane,'” the actor began. “They go, ‘Oh, that’s Tom’s.’ I said, ‘Oh, well who’s borrowing it?’ They said, ‘No, that’s him—flying it.’ I’m like, ‘Okay, he’s that dude for real.'”

What Makes Tom Cruise’s P51 Mustang So Eye-catching?

Several of Tom Cruise’s Top Gun costars had some hysterical reactions to seeing the 60-year-old actor pioneer the vintage plane. However, the sequel’s instructor and technical advisor, Steve Hinton, spoke a little bit about the difference between seeing Tom Cruise navigate the P51 Mustang versus seeing him in the back seat of an F/A-18.

“There’s still a lot of that pioneering spirit of aviation when you’re flying a P51,” Hinton said. “You know, if Top Gun was made in the 1940s, guess what, this airplane’s the star of the show.”

Hinton also spoke about the massively different levels of technology involved in flying a P51 versus the F/A-18s.

“The airplanes today are very computer-oriented,” he continued, “and the P51 is all push/pull cables, nothing’s automatic.”

Another of Tom Cruise’s costars, Jennifer Connely, actually saw the opportunity to board Cruise’s P51. And, following the film’s debut, she spoke out about her experience. Above all else, she noted that upon firing the engine, flames shot out of its exhaust system. As we well know, that differs drastically from the efficiency of the Super Hornet.

“It was an incredible experience, certainly like nothing I’ve ever done before,” she said.

As expected, after two Top Gun projects, she added Tom Cruise is also an “amazing pilot.”

Top Gun: Maverick made its U.S. debut over the Memorial Day Weekend and since its premiere, has surpassed $1 billion in earnings. Even more noteworthy, however, the film’s success has seen it surpass that of Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War.

After months of waiting and resistance from Tom Cruise, Top Gun: Maverick is officially available for streaming.