The McMurtry Speirling fan car broke the Goodwood Festival of Speed hillclimb record on the weekend with a ridiculously quick 39.08 second run. It has dethroned the Volkswagen ID.R which had itself beaten a 20-year-old record with a 39.9-second run in 2019. Ex-Formula 1 driver Max Chilton was at the helm of the McMurtry Speirling when it set its record-breaking time.
Watch Chilton set the record in the video below and you’ll be forgiven for thinking you’re watching it in fast-forward. The combination of the McMurtry’s awesome power, light weight, superhuman reaction speeds of its ex-Formula 1 driver, not to mention the other-worldly sounds coming from the fan car make the run one of the most exciting yet.
The tiny McMurtry Speirling has been specifically designed for hillclimb conditions and uses a 60kWh battery and two electric motors to send up to 1000bhp to the rear wheels. Despite its hefty power pack, its carbonfibre monocoque chassis helps it come in at just under 1000kg, for a near 1:1 power-to-weight ratio.
The real star of the show, however, is the McMurtry’s twin fan downforce system, which supplies the car with over 2000kg of downforce from a standstill. While the 150mph top speed may sound slow, this allows for shorter gearing which makes it the perfect hillclimb monster, given it can go from 0-60mph in just 1.5 seconds. So strong is the force sucking the Speirling to the road that a rooster tail of dust made its Goodwood runs even more spectacular for the Festival of Speed’s stunned crowds.
The McMurtry car is fittingly called the ‘Speirling’, meaning thunderstorm in Irish Gaelic. With its powerful fan system that could probably pull clouds in from all directions, and the awe-inspiring boom it makes as it thunders past, there’s no question as to how it got the name. It sounds unlike any other electric car, or electric supercar for that matter, that we’ve ever heard.
It looks fairly unusual, with striking jagged, aggressive shapes reminiscent of a pint-sized Batmobile and wheels so big by contrast they make the Speirling look like a Hot Wheels car. Regardless of its size, though, the McMurtry Speirling fan car has left an undeniably huge mark on automotive history at Goodwood 2022.