1965: Goldenrod driven by Bob Summers

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Quad Hemi V8
2400 bhp
Top Speed:

576.553 mph


Developed by brothers Bill and Bob Summers, the Goldenrod was powered by four wheel-driven fuel injected Chrysler Hemi engines, mounted inline, which created a total output of 2400bhp.

The car was originally built in Southern California and the team included James Crosby.

Before finding their final success, the brothers contacted a fuel specialist and racing equipment pioneer and inventor, Tony Capanna, owner of Wilcap Co. (at that time in Torrance California).

They were having trouble getting the speed they wanted with the 4 engines set in 2 rows of 2 side by side.

Tony suggested they put the engines in one long row and have it streamlined. It was this iteration of the vehicle that became known as the “Goldenrod”. Tony advised them to get advice from a Northrop engineer who worked with aerodynamic design.

The brothers heeded the advice and found success on November 12, 1965, when the Goldenrod set the land speed record at 409.277 mph (658.64 km/h), in one mile for an FIA record which was held for 27 years until it was broken in 1991 by Al Teague with his supercharged Hemi powered Spirit of ’76 that went 409.986 mph (659.81 km/h).

The Goldenrod was not supercharged like the Spirit of '76 so it actually still holds the record to this day in its class.

The car went on tour for many years all across the US, then first ventured outside the country in 2000, when it was placed at where the cricket pitch is, in the Goodwood Festival of Speed, with the other land speed record cars.


Also See:

Land Speed Record Drivers
Herbert Austin LSR Attempt
History Of The Land Speed Record
Unique Cars and Parts USA - The Ultimate Classic Car Resource