They're not comparing it to a man, they're comparing it to other vehicles. Most cars would struggle towing a medium boat on a trailor. My own Polo has a max braked towing weight of something pittyfull.
And when you run out of petrol, and have to push your car along a road (been there way too many times) You'll appreciate that effectively tugging 245 Polos in a row is pretty hard requirement for engine, clutch and transmission.
The plane used for the stunt was a decommissioned Boeing 747-200 that weighs 155 tons. VW had initially calculated the Touareg could successfully pull 200 tons, and had even done a dry run with a 190-ton Boeing 747-400. Unfortunately, the only plane that could be acquired for the PR stunt was this one that is usually used as a giant prop in films
once momentum starts going, you just apply the a little tiny bit of force to keep it going, or even pickup speed.
I used to do floor covering. One day the truck's clutch went. Lost first gear. It was a 16 ton (loaded) box truck. We were on a dead flat highway pulled off to the shoulder. I had to get out and push it. When it got up to enough speed (just applying a gradual incline of force) my uncle popped it into second gear and I had to run to jump onto the back before I was left on the highway haha. I think we blew every red light on the way home.
Seems like a lot of weight, but on a flat surface, rolling on wheels, there isn't much preventing it from moving.
A tiny incline vs. flat terrain still makes a world of difference. You've probably pushed a medium sized car across flat land before...remember how surprisingly easy it was to push 2000 lbs?
As long as its on flat land, you can just about push anything as long as the tires are round.
Um, I don't think a stripped 747 works like a stripped Civic, if that's what you mean weight:weight. That thing still weights over 40 tons and it's being pulled by a V10 SUV! That shit is impressive and while the laws of physics are still at work! Why not try to pull a 757?! ;D