Ken Block, rally and gymkhana driver and co-founder of Hoonigan, has passed away


We are saddened by the news that Ken Block passed away today. He was 55. Confirmation of his death comes from Hoonigan’s Instagram account on January 2, which announced that Block was involved in a snowmobile accident. The post reads:

“It is with our deepest regrets that we can confirm that Ken Block passed away in a snowmobile accident today.

Ken was a visionary, a pioneer and an icon. And most importantly, a father and husband.

He will be incredibly missed.

Please respect the family’s privacy at this time while they grieve.”


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Block was a co-founder of DC Shoes and raced in Rally America starting in 2005, most notably behind the wheel of Subaru’s WRX STI. He co-founded Hoonigan with Brian Scotto and continued his rally racing career in the World Rally Championship and also competed in FIA World Rallycross.

The car world at large took notice of Block after his Gymkhana videos became viral smash hits starting in 2008. His gymkhana-style driving, seemingly always on the edge, was a contrast to his calm demeanor and poise behind the wheel.

AudiS1 e-tron quattro Hoonitron concept 2

In 2010, Block began partnering with Ford Performance—a relationship that would last 11 years and involve a wide range of outrageous Mustang, Focus, Fiesta, and F-150 builds. Most recently Block worked with Audi, including the all-electric “S1 Hoonitron.”

In addition to his automotive exploits, Block competed in skateboarding, motocross, and snowboarding events.

An entire generation has been inspired by Block’s incredible driving and positive attitude. Our thoughts are with Block’s family and friends at this time.

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    Motorsport hasn’t experienced such a unique loss of talent since the death of Tazio Nuvolari. Ken left most in awe while empowering others to sharpen their skills. RIP KB.

    Not to throw any shade on his tragic & early death, but when did the term “Passed Away” become the new-age PC term for the old tried and true, reliable word “Died”? Has society become so touchy/feely and fearful of it’s own mortality that even the word “Died” or any of its derivatives can no longer be uttered or printed? Strange (and sad) times that we live in now…

    I first saw Ken Block in a YouTube video for the Focus ST. He was in a parking garage and sliding around like a champion. I bought the car in 2014 and I’m still loving it. BTW, I’m 80.

    A lot of impressive people (for example, I just read Jeremy McGrath’s Instagram post) are posting that he was a personal mentor, in addition to being a driver. Hagerty, I think a future article about who he was as a person, in addition to his car driving, would be of interest to your readers. Maybe interview someone who personally knew him? Thanks for considering it!

    As we opened up the doors here at Street Rod News and MotorSports News Publications it still seems like a bad nightmare. Ken was one of the best drivers we have seen. He will be missed.

    Very sorry to hear of Ken Block’s passing. He was a very special talent in the motorsports world and will be deeply missed.

    Even an old guy like me knew about Ken Block. I sent many of his videos to friends and relatives to show that some people choose to exercise their talent rather than stare at a cell phone all day. Ken’s videos were the best. My son is not into cars but he loves the videos. In fact, my son is the one who contacted me to tell me that Ken had died.

    I’m so sorry to the family and friends on Ken Block’s passing.
    I’m an 81 year old car guy and truly admired.Ken’s skill set behind the wheel. May his soul Rest In Peace in the arms of the Lord.

    Ken was an inspiration to so many people, and all he was doing was loving life. Some great stories have been told about the wonderful man behind the wheel, especially when he wasn’t behind the wheel. His family and friends will surely miss him for the rest of their lives. Gone way too soon.

    Re: Shumacher: Both knew what very tire contact patch was doing at all times. I always knew I had as much chance driving like Block as I did Schumacher – not a whiff.

    I will always remember Ken Block and Travis Pastrana vying for first place at the Sno-Drift events in the Lewiston Atlanta area years ago. Good times.
    Rest in Peace Ken.

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