A car took out a lamppost in a collision which has left the BMW with serious damage outside Sunderland's Academy of Light.
The smash happened at 12.20pm on the A1018 Sunderland Road, between Cleadon and Fulwell, with the impact leaving the engine of the Black BMW 3 Series torn from the car according to one witness.
The driver of the car was left with minor injuries.
Police diverted traffic around the site while the scene was cleared.
The car collided with a post in the central reservation of the busy road, which has a 40mph speed limit.
A 41-year-old man from South Shields, who came across the scene moments after the crash, said: "I could see the engine out of the car.
"The whole front of the car had come off.
"It's been quite a big crash because you can see the air bags and all the windows are out.
"The car was spun right around."
Anyone who witnessed the collision can call Northumbria Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.