gamby
gamby SuperDork
2/19/11 5:11 p.m.

(I don't think this is a repost)

So I finally got around to watching one of the two Top Gears (UK) that aired on Monday (BTW--I hate that they're doubling them up like this--I'd rather savor it). Good stuff to pass away a decent stint on my mag trainer.

Anyway--it was the UK vs. Aussie Top Gear episode and there was the commercial vehicle drag race. I'm sitting there thinking "the wheels on that Transit van look a lot like they're from an XJ220--but that's impossible". Then it launched.

This has to be one of the most deviant, perverse, ingenious engine swaps ever. Just amazing and delightful. What a test mule!!!

Here's a backstory from google (from the pages of Octane)

We look after seven of the pre-production cars,’ says Don, proudly. ‘The first two were nothing like a 220 and had scissor doors. The third was the first one to look like a 220.’ And what’s this? It’s a Ford Transit. Don explains. ‘We went to TWR to buy the last engine and some spares. “Is there anything else?” we asked. “Only the secondhand engine in a van,” they said. I thought they meant an engine on a pallet that happened to be in the back of a van, but it’s a complete XJ220 under the Transit shell.‘It was an XJ220 mule. They were going to scrap it when TWR was liquidated but I rescued it. It looks just like a twin-wheel Transit apart from the XJ220 wheels, and it’s road registered.’ The Transit XJ220 once did 179mph around the Millbrook test track’s bowl, and it made an appearance at last year’s Festival of Speed in the livery of Goodwood’s usual Transit fleet.

aussiesmg
aussiesmg SuperDork
2/19/11 5:42 p.m.

Epic, but now I have to search for pics

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNvpoy6gO-4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFCs2ZrrlqY&feature=related

pigeon
pigeon Dork
2/19/11 6:43 p.m.

I saw that run on one of the televised Goodwood shows in Speed. I was very impressed but have to admit I didn't notice the XJ220 wheels and the announcers didn't give the secret away.

fastEddie
fastEddie SuperDork
2/19/11 7:30 p.m.

T.J.
T.J. SuperDork
2/19/11 7:53 p.m.

link from August 2010

That is one bad van.

Gearheadotaku
Gearheadotaku Dork
2/20/11 8:54 a.m.

Yes, I caught that on speed as well. Didn't know what was under it, very cool. Love the ladder on the roof!!

Chebbie_SB
Chebbie_SB HalfDork
2/20/11 10:57 a.m.

Poor Hammond nearly E36 M3 his pants when he stomped on the skinny pedal...

gamby
gamby SuperDork
2/20/11 1:16 p.m.
Chebbie_SB wrote: Poor Hammond nearly E36 M3 his pants when he stomped on the skinny pedal...

I'd like to believe that he didn't know what was up, but those wheels are hard to mistake.

If they did catch him by surprise, it's pretty epic.

gamby
gamby SuperDork
2/20/11 1:18 p.m.
T.J. wrote: link from August 2010 That is one bad van.

Seriously--it has to be the sweetest test mule ever. So much better than that silly camo/bra crap they put on prototypes.

I wonder how stoned/drunk the guy was who had the original idea to do it.

phaze1todd
phaze1todd Reader
2/20/11 1:24 p.m.

Wrong! Wrong! Very wrong!

I like it, but it's still very wrong!

carguy123
carguy123 SuperDork
2/20/11 2:20 p.m.

I really think Hammond was caught off guard. I think he knew he was in a breathed over van, but not what it truly was or how fast it would be.

yamaha
yamaha New Reader
2/21/11 9:18 a.m.

ahh, the beauty of a car designed for a type of racing that never was, and parts used otherwise

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH SuperDork
2/21/11 11:44 a.m.

ULTIMATE SLEEPER

gamby
gamby SuperDork
2/21/11 5:35 p.m.
phaze1todd wrote: Wrong! Wrong! Very wrong! I like it, but it's still very wrong!

Among us, I'm not sure if there's something that could be more "right". I still can't get over just how awesome an idea this was. lol

NickF40
NickF40 Reader
2/21/11 5:40 p.m.
gamby wrote: Seriously--it has to be the sweetest test mule ever. So much better than that silly camo/bra crap they put on prototypes. I wonder how stoned/drunk the guy was who had the original idea to do it.

What are you talking about....that's us!! hahaha Yeah loved that thing at the hillclimb and I had a chuckle then when I saw it on the episode and like said above, so so so wrong.....but so so right!!

Gearheadotaku
Gearheadotaku Dork
2/21/11 5:52 p.m.

the fast food on the dash is the icing on the cake...

NickF40
NickF40 Reader
2/21/11 5:56 p.m.

Oh noice!! I didn't notice that LMAO

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