Guy Martin aims to set 400mph+ speed record with a 1200bhp helicopter engine

A 1200bhp Rolls Royce 42 turbine engine will power Guy Martin to hopefully set the two-wheeled land speed record attempt. That’s a powerful motorcycle.

Guy Martin 400mph streamliner motorcycle

IN an endless pursuit of speed from Guy Martin, he will this time be aiming for the land-speed record for fastest two wheeled motorcycle, piloting the all-British Streamliner next year. The Streamliner is a 30 foot long machine powered by a 1200 bhp Westland Lynx helicopter engine, built in Derby 50 years ago.

In the pictures captured by Rob Kirkpatrick of F Stop Press, you can see the purpose-built streamliner in all it’s naked glory before carbon panels are fitted later this summer. Until then, the bare chassis exposes all of the machined, billet aluminium bulkheads and transfer cases, aircraft-grade steel tubing, riveted alloy sheet cockpit monocoque, and a surprisingly compact 50+ year old Rolls-Royce helicopter engine. 

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Man-of-speed Martin will be looking to climb in the 30 ft tube with sights set on anything over 400mph, and one of the first helicopter-engine derived machines since Don Vesco's 2001 helicopter turboshaft powered racer.

Behind all the madness is a team consisting of ex-racer and Project 100 team principal Alex Macfadzean, team manager Bernie Toleman (ex-endurance racer and BSB team owner), technical manager Dave Blundell, and design engineer Alastair Smith working from a team base in Essex.

Guy Martin will be piloting the Streamliner with a Channel 4 documentary already commissioned to televise the lot, and will be following Guy across the entire project as he prepares for the record.

What next for Guy Martin? 

Before heading to the Uyuni high salt desert of Bolivia in 2022 to attempt to break the current record; the Streamliner will hit the rolling road, wind tunnel and undergo CFD work to finalise the body aerodynamics - finally trialling ‘low-speed’ (sub 200mph) tests of all systems on UK RAF runways in June 2021. 

The standing 376 mph record was set in 2010 by American Rocky Robinson piloting Mike Akatiff’s 1,000 bhp, twin-Suzuki ‘Top 1 Ack Attack’ (with a best one-way run of over 394 mph). Guy Martin’s target is therefore to surpass 400 mph, and become the fastest two-wheeler known to man, adding to his number of speed-related accolades.

Naturally the one man to pilot such a machine would be Guy Martin, a man who is currently looking to get his heavily-customised Hayabusa to 300mph

"It is a great target – and just one of those things I have to do. I was asked recently where the line was between commitment and obsession. I laughed, because I couldn’t say – I guess I have always been too obsessed to have noticed" said Alex Macfadzean.

The Rolls Royce motor with Gem-42 turboshaft is from a Westland Lynx helicopter produces around 1200bhp, and was built in Derby around 50 years ago, making this an all-British affair.

We look forward to watching the Guy Martin documentary in the future! Just remember, Guy, keep it Visordown

Sorry, I’ll get my coat. 

All image credit to Rod Kirkpatrick, F Stop Press.