1,000 MPH Bloodhound SSC Will Begin Testing In October

The quest for a new land speed benchmark will pick up this fall.

The Bloodhound SSC crew has two missions in mind with their upcoming land speed machine—break the standing land speed record of 763.035 miles per hour, then go onto beat that by eclipsing 1,000 mph. That’s easier said than done, but if anyone can do it, it’s wing commander Andy Green and his team of engineers. According to Autocar, initial speed testing of the Bloodhound will begin in October in preparation for their coming record attempts, each one faster than the last.

One month prior to these speed tests, the car will reportedly undergo a variety of checks to make sure everything is in order. This includes brakes, electronics, and engine parameters that will be vital to both a safe acceleration and deceleration from these world-beating speeds.

Testing will be conducted in the United Kingdom, at Newquay’s 1.7-mile airstrip. Speed runs will start at 200 mph and gradually increase from there; if all goes well through these trials, the Bloodhound will be packed up and moved to South Africa. The nation plays host to an 11-mile track that should allow the machine enough room to hit its initial goal of 800 mph.

Bloodhound SSC and Geely

Once Bloodhound hits its target, the car will be fitted with additional EJ220 Eurofighter engines to propel it even further. With 1,000 mph in mind, there won’t be much room for error. 

“Our first target at Newquay will be first to make sure all systems are working properly,” chief engineer Mark Chapman said to Autocar, “and then to run tests to decide the speed at which we can apply full throttle. Jet engine intakes are designed to work best at speed, and there’s a threshold at which they can accept full throttle. It’s important to know it because it affects how much track you use up before the car can start accelerating in earnest.”

Bloodhound has partnered with Geely, owner of both Volvo and Lotus, to finance this insane build. Project manager and former land speed champion Richard Noble claims it to be “the biggest milestone in the history of the project so far,” putting it far ahead of their still-standing world record run in 1997, performed by the Thrust SSC.

When the car reaches full power and traction, it’s expected to hit 0-60 in under one second. After that, engineers project it to eclipse 1,000 mph in just 55 seconds—given it has enough fuel to last that long. At-speed testing will cause the tires to turn at 10,200 rpm, or about 170 times a second. It’s all made possible by the power of more than 180 Formula 1 cars combined