Pilot Andy Green took the jet-powered vehicle on a relatively gentle 200mph (321kmh) test run on Monday. Bloodhound is in Northern Cape for high-speed trials as it works towards an assault on the land speed record in 2020. The 763mph (1,228kmh) land speed record was set 22 years ago, also by Andy Green, in the Thrust SSC car.
Thrust broke the sound barrier in the process – the only car to have ever achieved the feat.
Bloodhound will be run at progressively faster and faster speeds as engineers seek to be satisfied by its design and the proper working of each of its elements.
With a EuroFighter jet engine onboard, Bloodhound will is expected to eventually reach 600mph (965km/h) this year.
And the addition of a rocket motor in 2020 ought then to push Bloodhound over 800mph (1,290kmh).
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The hope is this flat lakebed can become a draw for other racers in the future.
Bloodhound’s 95kg aluminium wheels will be rotating at 10,200 RPM when it eventually hits full speed.
And the temperature in the rocket is expected to exceed 3,000C – twice as hot as the inside of a volcano.
The trials are only happening because due the intervention of Yorkshire businessman Ian Warhurst.
Mr Warhurst rescued Bloodhound from financial collapse earlier this year and is personally underwriting the four to six-week programme.
The businessman has refused to disclose precisely how much he has invested into the project, although the has been quoted as saying “seven figures”.
Mr Warhurst’s calculation is that once the world sees the car running at high-speed, sponsors will come forward to carry the effort through a land speed record attempt.