VW Beetle sets new land speed record at Bonneville Salt Flats by achieving average speed of 330 kmph; tuned by THR Manufacturing from California
Volkswagen wants us to remember the Beetle as the forefather that paved the way for an illustrious history the German manufacturer has been able to meet with. However, not all the Beetles fall under the same folklore with the antique design and an engine capable of reaching speeds in times we haven’t known of in retrospective way.
The officially fastest Volkswagen Beetle in the world has set a new land speed record at the World of Speed at the famous proving ground of Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, US recently. The record attempt happened on September 12th as the tuned Beetle had been able to achieve an average speed of 330 kmph as it mastered a stretch of one mile with the top speed recorded at 335 kmph.
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Except for the name, the beefed up Beetle is all new to reach the desirable performance it was anticipated to do. It gets powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engine which has been tuned massively to develop a maximum power output of 535.5 horsepower. The same engine which does job underneath the Turbo R-Line model only makes 207 hp – the performance was more than doubled.
The peak torque rated to produce was at 571 Nm which goes on to say that engine has completely been upgraded to achieve a phenomenal top speed. The record-setting model was named as Beetle LSR (Land Speed Record) and the tuning company responsible for the modifications was THR Manufacturing from California who used two brake parachutes to slow the Beetle down.
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Officially recorded at the event sponsored by the Utah Salt Flats Racing Association (USFRA), Automobile Magazine’s contributing editor behind the wheel was Preston Lerner. The Beetle LSR had uprated turbos and pistons, track-spec suspension lowered for aero efficiency and front air dams for airflow control. The rulebook said no external aerodynamics enhancing devices, so the car had relatively clean bodywork.
For driving on salt, the tyres had to be specially prepared with high-speed racing profile rubber bolted on to the Beetle LSR. For improving traction on the slippery salt surface, limited-slip differential technology was utilised. Additionally, to comply with the safety specs, necessary driver protection, bucket seat with five-point harness, fire extinguisher and a roll cage had been installed.
A limited-slip differential was also used to improve traction, while a safety package provided the necessary driver protection, including a roll cage, a new racing bucket seat with five-point harness and a fire extinguishing system.