Lifters shoot out one plunge with a balloon tied onto them that stick on the enemy chassis on contact. The opponent is then lifted until being destroyed by an oppenent's weapon (needs to touch balloon's center) or after 3-4 seconds by it's own. Lifters are deadly to ranged weapon machines, as the balloon will be harder to pop.
As some physics apply, the result depends on the sticking point as well as on the balance of the opponents car. Sticking at front and low position gives you maximum lever - but a drill catches it easily. Two balloons might be able to lift 3 weapons at front of car as they lift more/ faster - while the chances are higher that one balloon survives long enough to get your car under his.
You will unlock lifter at prestige 4 stage 0. They can be obtained in all gang boxes.
First, your car needs to be in position to shoot the plunge to the opponent - it fires same time like a rocket. As the opponent gets lifted, it would be ideal to get under the enemy before the balloon pops, so try using a harpoon or a booster. Try using fast wheels, such as bigfoot, tires, or sticky tires. Also, try using the shotgun with the lifter since shotguns deals knockback. With the lifter, it can just flip almost every opponents.
HOW TO COUNTER
You can counter a lifter by adding a spinning blades, drills, rocket launchers, or chainsaws to your body since they can pop the balloon that is lifting you up.