Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The Y2K jet bike.


MTT Turbine SUPERBIKE, also known as Y2K Turbine SUPERBIKE, is the world's second wheel driven motorcycle powered by a turbine engine, created by Ted McIntyre of Marine Turbine Technologies Inc. Reports of the MTT Turbine SUPERBIKE appeared as early as 1999 in a May issue of Cafe Racer magazine, but the production model was introduced in 2000.

Powered by a Rolls Royce Allison 250 series turboshaft engine, producing 238kW (320hp), this motorcycle has a recorded top speed of 227 mph (365 km/h), with a price tag of US$150,000 (US$185,000 in 2004). It is recognized by Guinness World Records as the "Most powerful production motorcycle" and the "Most expensive production motorcycle". Unlike some earlier jet-powered motorcycles, where a massive jet engine provided thrust to push the motorcycle, the turboshaft engine on this model drives the rear wheel via a two-speed gearbox. Riding the motorcycle is said to be somewhat tricky due to the inherent throttle lag in the engine, acceleration when letting off the throttle, and extreme length.

The engines used in the motorcycles are second-hand, having reached the FAA running time limit, after which they have to be rebuilt, regardless of condition. MTT can buy these engines for a much lower price than new engines and use them on surface vehicles without requiring FAA approval. One of the engine's more usual applications is powering Bell 206 JetRanger helicopters, a 1.5 ton aircraft. To get around the problem of procuring the kerosene usually used in turbine engines, the engine of the bike has been modified to use diesel fuel.

In addition to the engine, there are other innovations incorporated into this bike, such as radar detector with laser scrambler, rear mounted camera with LCD display, and an optional passenger seat. Unlike other contemporary motorcycles (such as the Hayabusa), the 2001 and later models of the MTT Turbine SUPERBIKE do not have the 300 km/h speed limiting governors self-imposed by Japanese manufacturers."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Any idea what the name of the original broadcast program for this was? It looks like it aired on Discover. I'd really like to see what they picked for the top 3.