MANILA: Speed has always been the ultimate criteria to measure automobile excellence. Even when Karl Benz invented the first gasoline powered car, regardless, the fact that the car was even slower than a bicycle, the race was on to push the envelope when it comes to speed. Since ages, automakers have constantly experimented with and innovated the technologies to craft a car that flies like the wind on the road. Car lovers are obsessed with speed, so much so that some have even made it their ultimate mission to conquer this iconic title.
These speed junkies have made out a living by pursuing speed and supersonic speed. The speed land records isn't a current phenomenon, instead it is prevailing since the early 90s when Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat registered the first land speed record on November 20, 1903, wherein his electric car Jeantaud Duc, was able to reach the mark of 92.78 Km/H. Since then thousands of speed addicts have tried their hand in the ultimate speed challenge and conquer it. We at CarBay, present a list of top 5 land speed records, in various categories of automobiles.
In the Jet and Rocker Propulsion division, the land speed record is held by the British engineering marvel - Thrust Supersonic car or Thrust SSC. The car is crafted by a team of British engineers Richard Noble, Glynne Bowsher, Ron Ayers and Jeremy Bliss. During its test run at the Black Rock Desert in the state of Nevada, the Thrust SSC was driven by Royal Air Force fighter pilot, Andy Green and was able to achieve an astounding speed of 1,228 km/h and also becoming the first car to officially break the sound barrier.
The car is powered by two afterburning, Roll Royce Spey turbofan engines, the same engines used in an F-4 Phantom II fighter jet. These jet engines deliver a colossal power of 110,000 bhp and 223 kN of thrust.
The British multinational equipment firm – JCB, specially created this magnificent car with the sole purpose of breaking speed records. Known as JCB Diesel Max, this superfast car attained the max speed of 563.995 km/h, under the supervision of wing commander, Andy Green, becoming the fastest diesel powered car in the world. Though, this was its second attempt, in the JCB Diesel Max's first attempt it achieved the speed of 529.009 Km/h at the Bonneville Salt Flats. However, Andy Green was able to break his own record, in the next attempt.
Under the hood, the JCB Diesel Max sports two specially tuned versions of the JCB444 engine which produce 750 BHP each, with a rev-limited to 3800 rpm.
The Buckeye Bullet 2.5 has claimed the battery electric vehicle world land speed record, by attaining the speed of 495.140 Km/hr. This electric car is crafted by Bullet Buckeye team of the Ohio State University. The Buckeye Bullet 2.5 is powered by a 600+ kW A123 lithium ion battery and hydrogen fuel cell. It borrows the same body chassis and electric traction system from its ancestor - Buckeye Bullet 2.
In the steam-powered category, the world land speed record is held by Inspiration. Inspiration is designed by Glynne Bowsher and developed by the BSCC (British Steam Car Challenge). During the record setting, the car was driven by Charles Burnett III, when it achieved a speed of 225.06 Km/hr at the Edwards Air Force Base in California, United States.
The Inspiration's powering system consists of two-stage turbine driven by superheated steam from 12 boilers having distilled water. The boilers are heated by burning Liquid Petroleum Gas in burners which produce 3 Megawatts of heat. The steam produced is at 400 °C and a pressure of 4000 kN/m2. The engine develops 360 hp and consumes around 40 litres of water every minute.
The fastest wind-powered vehicle, the Ecotricity Greenbird, is created by British engineer Richard Jenkins. Greenbird's body is strategically created using carbon composite materials, except the wing bearing and wheels that are made of metal. The light weight of mere 600Kg and aerodynamic shape of the vehicle allows it to attain speeds three to five times faster than the speed of the wind. During the run, the Ecotricity Greenbird was able to record 203.09 Km/hr, in the Dry Ivanpah Lake. Weighing a mere 600Kg, the Ecotricity Greenbird uses a rigid vertical wing to generate thrust.
Apart from these, many speed addicts have tried to break the record in different categories. If you have any favorites, just write to us in the comment section below