25,000 BHP

03Apr07

James May said of the Bugatti Veyron:

Getting the car to do 155mph, frankly, isn’t really very difficult. The Veyron needs just a piffling 270 horsepower to do that speed. But 253 (mph)? Crikey!

…The faster you go, the more mother nature tries to hold you back, so to do the next 100 mph, the 100 mph that takes you up to 255 mph needs another 730 bhp!

Those kind of figures sound impressive. They are impressive. The Veyron is, after all, the fastest production car in the world (And the most expensive at that, understandably.)

In terms of speed and power, the Veyron is very impressive, but it is only in reach of the elite. The rich of the rich.

Today however, the French TGV train laughed at the Veyron and brought speed to the masses, smashing the world speed record for a train on rails in the process, reaching 356mph (574.8km/h). That is only 5 mph slower than the experimental Japanese MLX01 maglev train. The attempt was made using a modified version of the modern TGV train, with bigger wheels, and with more power (6000 volts more) being pumped to the train via overhead lines.

The train only requires a mere 23,999 horsepower more than the Bugatti Veyron to reach its top speed and it cost ????22 million. Now when you consider the number of people it can carry, and the distance it can cover that’s not bad value compared to the Bugatti.

A 350 mph train is all very well and good, I would have thought you might feel at least a little disorientated if you looked out the window at those speeds!

A video is available on the BBC Website so you can get a feel for just how fast the world flies by at that speed!


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