MG revives record-breaking tradition

MG Rover Group has applied to the Guinness World Records organisation to claim the record for the 'World's Fastest Estate Car'. The UK manufacturer's purpose-built 'X-15' project, based on the MG ZT-T and involving 20 specialist motorsport companies, achieved 225.609mph (360.9kph) during America's 55th annual Bonneville Speed Week last month, on the Utah Salt Flats

MG revives record-breaking tradition

Last year Nick Stephenson, the deputy chairman of brand owner Phoenix Venture Holdings, and MG Rover design director Pete Stevens decided to build a 200mph estate derived from the forthcoming MG ZT-T V8. The car was built in California by So-Cal Speed Shop and equipped with a 6.0-litre V8 with electronic fuel-injection by another US company, Roush Performance.

The programme, sponsored by Exxon Mobil, involved Aldan (for the 'coilover' suspension dampers), Autometer (instruments), Chute Metal Race Products (deceleration parachute), DJ (harnesses and window nets), EFI (fuel-injection system), Flame Out (fire systems), Flaming River (steering system), Goodyear ('land speed' tyres), Jaz (race seats), John West Fabrications (headers), Jerico (transmission), K&N (air filters), Meziere (water pump), Mobil (fuel and lubricants), Morrison (ladder bars), Pi Systems (data-acquisition), Quartermaster (clutch and starter), Taylor Made (wheels), Weldon (fuel pump), and Wilwood Engineering (braking system).

"This is not just about setting world records, this is about testing MG's vehicles to their limits, in some of the most extreme conditions you can find in the world," Stevens said. "The added challenges of meeting strict technical and safety regulations (set by the Southern California Timing Association) make our achievement with a virtually 'stock' MG ZT-T all the more satisfying."

MG can trace its Land Speed Record roots back to the early 1930s and its Bonneville roots back to 1951, when Lt Col A.T. 'Goldie' Gardner famously ran a 'streamliner' powered by a crank-driven supercharged production 1250cc four-cylinder MG TD engine.

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