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Cars and Speed

Vinit Singh is a computer science student pursuing his B.Tech degree in Bharath Institute of Higher Education and Research, Chennai, India.

The First Vehicle.

The first vehicle was made by Karl Benz and it was powered by a gas engine. The patent -number 37435- is known as the birth certificate of the Automobile. This patent was applied by Karl Benz on January 29, 1886. It was the first true, modern automobile which was known as the "Motorwagen- Model number 1". The Motorwagen was a three-wheel, horseless carriage which was driven by a gasoline-powered engine. This Benz patent Motorwagen had a single-cylinder 4-stroke engine that generated 0.55 kW and reached a top speed of 16 km/h. This car was first driven in public in Mannheim, Germany, on July 3, 1886. Karl Benz later made Model number 2 which generated 1 kW and had a top speed of 19 kmph.

Motorwagen-Model number 1(1886)

Motorwagen-Model number 1(1886)

The first car to reach 100 km/h(62.1mph)

La Jamais Contente (The Never Contended) was the first on-road vehicle that hit the mark of 100 km/h. This was a Belgian electric vehicle. La Jamais Contente was also called "The Never Satisfied". This car was 3.8 meters long, 1.56 meters wide and had a height of 1.46 meters. This had two direct-drive 25 kW motors of 200v drawing 124A each and had a horsepower of 68. This speed was recorded on May 1, 1899, near Paris, France. This vehicle was driven by a Belgian driver Cammile Jenatzy. He was the son of Constant Jenatz, a manufacturer of rubber products. Camille was also known as the "The Red Devil" (Le Diable Rouge) because of his record-breaking speed runs and for the colour of his beard. He was shot dead in 1913. Jenatzy reached the speed of 105.8 km/h in his La Jamais Contente and breaking the record of 92.7 km/h which was held by Count Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat.

La Jamais Contente(1899)

La Jamais Contente(1899)

The first car to reach 200km/h (124.2 mph)

"Blitzen-Benz" was a road-going car which was made by Benz & Cie Mannheim, Germany, in 1909. This was the first car to break the barrier of 200 km/h. Blitzen-Benz was a 21.5 litre, 147 kW producing a horsepower of 200 engine. on November 8, 1909, Victor Héméry reached the speed of 202.6 km/h at the Brooklands race track in England. Only six examples of Blitzen-Benz or also called the lightning Benz was made. Out of 6 Blitzen Benz, four had survived till date. One of these is in the Mercedes-Benz Museum. A second original vehicle and the only four-seater version is with a collector in the United States of America. The Blitzen-Benz is based on the World Grand Prix. This car was one of the reasons why people started car racing. Many were against car racing because they thought it was just merely for fun and costs money. This car was the fastest vehicle, faster than any train or any other automobile at that time.


Blitzen-Benz (Paris, Retromobile 2013)

Blitzen-Benz (Paris, Retromobile 2013)

The first car to reach 250 km/h (155 mph)

Iso Grifo GL 365, made by Italian automobile manufacturer Iso Autoveicoli s.p.A. This was the first car to cross the mark of 250 km/h. This is a grand tourer 2-door, front-engine, rear-wheel-drive limited production car. The first Grifo Gl appeared in 1965 which was powered by 5.4 litres, Chevrolet small-block 327 V8 engines which produced horsepower of 360. Iso Autoveicoli was already known for producing fast cars. This car could reach a top speed of 265 km/h and over 400 of these cars were built. This car was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro. Many variation Iso Griffo was made like the Iso Grifo A3/V by Bizzarrinni, Iso Grifo can am, Iso Grifo can am series 1. The Iso Grifo claimed that the 7 litres Grifo could attain a top speed of 300 km/h.

Iso Grifo GL 365

Iso Grifo GL 365

The first car to reach 300 km/h

The Ruf BTR was a German sports car that was built by Ruf Automobiles, Germany. This sports car is powered by 3.4 litre, flat 6 turbocharged, producing 274 kW; 369 hp at 6000 rpm. This car came standard with a 5 manual transmission and 2-door coupe. BTR sports car was based on the Porsche 911. This car could accelerate at a speed of 0-100 km/h in 4.8 seconds and had a top speed of 305 km/h. Ruf Btr has won the "worlds fastest car" contest held by American car magazine Road & Track. Many different variations of The Ruf Btr was made like the BTR 3.8, BTR2 and BTR 5. There is no clear record of the total number of cars produced.

RUF BTR

RUF BTR

The first car to reach 350 km/h.

Mclaren F1 was the first car to cross the barrier of 350 km/h. This is one of the finest sports car manufactured and designed by the British automobile manufacturer Mclaren cars. It is powered by 6.1 litres, BMW S70/2 V12 engine which produces 618 hp at 461 kW. This car is lighter and streamlined than any modern car and has one seat extra than any other sports car. A modified version of this car has won many races including the 1994 24 hours of Le Mans. In 1994, A British car magazine said that the Mclaren f1 is one of the finest driving machine yet built for the road. In 2005, channel4 placed this car at the top of the top 100 best cars and also said that this was one of the greatest achievements in the automobile industry. Total of 106 Mclaren F1's have been manufactured till date.

Mclaren F1

Mclaren F1

The first car to reach 400 km/h

Bugatti Veyron EB 16.4 is a sports car that first crossed the bar of 400 km/h. This is a mid-engine sports car made by Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S in Molsheim, France. This was first designed and developed in Germany by Bugatti Engineering GmbH. This sports car is powered by 8.0 litres quad-turbocharged W16 engine that produces 987 hp. There are many version of the Bugatti Veyron like the Bugatti Veyron super sport, Bugatti Veyron grand supersport, Bugatti Veyron supersport vitesse. The original version has a top speed of 408 km/h. The supersport is a roadster version that could reach a speed of 431 km/h. Bugatti Veyron first appeared in 2005. It was named the best car of the decade(2000-2009). Veyron reached a speed of 408 km/h during a test session at the Volkswagen private Ehra-Lessien test track on 19 April 2005.


Bugatti Veyron 16.4

Bugatti Veyron 16.4

The first car to reach 450 km/h.

Bugatti Chiron Super Sport was the first car to cross the mark of 450 km/h (280 mph) and also the first car to reach 300 mph (482 km/h) on August 2nd, 2019. This car is manufactured by Bugatti Automobiles, Molsheim, France. This is a two-seater sports car designed and developed in Germany by Bugatti Engineering GmbH. This car is powered by 8.0 litres quad-turbocharged engine which produces 1497 hp. The older version of the Chiron supersport, the Bugatti Chiron was first shown at the Geneve motor show in March 2016. Le Mans winner and Bugatti official test driver Andy Wallace reached the top speed of 490.4 Km/h (304 mph) on the Ehra-Lessein track in Germany.

Bugatti Chiron Super Sport at Blenheim palace

Bugatti Chiron Super Sport at Blenheim palace

The first car to reach 500km/h (310 mph)

SSC Tuatara 1750 is the first car to cross the mark of 500 km/h. On October 10, 2020, according to SSC, Tuatara reached a top speed of 531 km/h on a seven-mile stretch of close road in Nevada, USA. SSC Tuatara is a sports car designed and manufactured by the American automobile manufacturer SSC North America. This sports car is powered by 5.9 litres, twin-turbocharged SSC engine producing 1749 hp. The production of the car is limited to 100. The car was driven by British racing driver Oliver Webb.

SSC Tuatara

SSC Tuatara

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