On 4th October 1983 Thrust2, a jet propelled car, took the world land speed record.
The car was designed by John Ackroyd and driven by Richard Noble. It car reached a top speed of 650.88 mph (1,047.49 km/h) and broke the record at 633.468 mph (1,019.468 km/h) which was the average speed of two runs within one hour. The record breaking run took place on the Black Rock Desert in Nevada, USA.
Powered by a single Rolls-Royce Avon jet engine sourced from an English Electric Lightning, the car has a configuration somewhat resembling that of the mid-1960s-era J79 turbojet-powered land speed record cars of Art Arfons, collectively known as the "Green Monster" cars.
The car was unceremoniously stored under a tarp in the only automotive garage at Black Rock desert when it wasn't being worked on by the team. A propane torch was used to burn the line straight down the hard cracked dirt of the desert for the driver to follow. No other cars were allowed to approach the race track except on the perpendicular lest the driver accidentally follow those car tracks as a different path through the measured mile.
When the car was offered for sale at £90,000 in 1991, an extensive fundraising campaign was organised without government assistance to keep the car in Britain. The bid was successful, and the car is displayed today at the Coventry Transport Museum.
Thrust2's record was broken in 1997 – what was the new speed set?
Thrust SSC holds the world land speed record, set on 15 October 1997, when it achieved a speed of 1,228 km/h (763 mph) and became the first land vehicle to officially break the sound barrier.
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