Words: Elliott Hughes | Photography: Bloodhound LSR
Land Speed record-attempt car Bloodhound LSR is now on show alongside its two Land Speed Record-holding predecessors, Thrust SSC and Thrust 2, at the UK’s Coventry Transport Museum.
The Bloodhound project has entered a dormant state since the COVID-19 crisis took hold, and the team is once again trying to secure funding after the project was put up for a “last chance” sale in late January.
Back in 2019, Bloodhound LSR achieved 628mph on a successful high-speed run at the Haskeen Pan in the Kalahari Desert, South Africa. Bloodhound’s presence at the Coventry Transport Museum gives attendees the unique opportunity to see the car before it attempts to break the 800mph barrier, should additional sponsorship for the project be secured.
Before Bloodhound’s last outing in South Africa, the project had hit financial difficulties but was saved by its current owner, Ian Warhurst, in 2018. Warhurst is handing the reins over to Stuart Edmondson, Bloodhound’s head of engineering operations, who will lead negotiations with potential investors as the global economy starts to recover from the virus’ impact.
“Following the impressive trials we conducted in South Africa, Bloodhound has proven that it is a credible contender to become the next World Land Speed Record holder. As we emerge from the pandemic, I’m confident we can find an equally passionate partner to complete the final step in our journey to achieving a new world record,” Edmondson said.
The Bloodhound team estimates that the car’s final record-breaking run will cost around £8million. This figure includes the final piece of the engineering puzzle: installing a Nammo monopropellant thruster with a battery-powered fuel system.
The Nammo rocket is a “next-generation environmentally friendly rocket motor”, capable of launching Bloodhound from 400mph to 800mph in 20 seconds. The rocket is paired with a Rolls-Royce EJ200 jet engine usually found fitted to Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets, and has the equivalent power output of 360 family cars.
If funding is secured and the record-breaking car makes the planned journey to South Africa, Bloodhound is expected to garner extensive media coverage as it aims to beat Thrust SSC’s record of 763mph, which has stood since 1997.
In the meantime, Bloodhound looks to be the current jewel in the crown of the Coventry Transport Museum, which boasts the world’s largest collection of British cars.
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