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'Mean Green' truck hits 236km/h

2012-05-04 09:48

With over 1565kW, a modified Volvo hybrid truck, aptly named "Mean Green", has set some mind-bogglng world speed records at Wendover airfield in Utah, USA.

The Mean Green truck set 236.577km/h (flying kilometre*) and 153.252km/h (standing km**). All this from a hybrid truck which usually weighs in at over six tons.

WEIGHT-SHEDDING

The record attempts were sanctioned by the United States Auto Club, an extension of the International Automobile Federation that governs Formula 1, and the figures are subject to FIA recognition, which will occur in a few months.

The truck has a tuned 16-litre diesel engine mated to a modified I-Shift auto. The engine, in combination with an electric motor (149kW/1200Nm) is capable of 1565kW and 6780Nm.

Weight reduction was crucial and the truck has extensive modifications to shed kilograms wherever possible. The front axle was tweaked to reduce from weight from 100 to 57kg and the gearbox was redesigned to shave another  seven kg. The wiring harness lost nearly six kg and even the driver shed 20.

Though "Mean Green's" modified design bears little resemblance to a freight-haulin' tractor unit, the truck is comprised almost entirely of production components from Volvo, including its cab and frame.

HOW IT WORKS

Driver and owner Boije Ovebrink said: “We're very pleased with ‘Mean Green’s performance, especially at such a high altitude. We knew Wendover would present challenges because it’s more than 1280m above sea level.”

The truck eclipsed its previous records of 218.78 km/h in the flying kilometre and 152.253km/h in the standing kilometre set in June 2011 at Hultsfred Airport in Sweden.

*Standing kilometre – The international speed record for the standing kilometre is all about reaching the highest average speed over a 1000m course from a standing start.

**Flying kilometre – Reaching the highest average speed over a 1000m course while the vehicle is in motion.

Watch the hybrid truck in action below: