Top Fuel dragsters accelerate the quickest of all racing vehicles the world over. The fastest sanctioned category of drag racers’, fastest competitors will reach speeds of 539 km/h. They finish the 305m race runs in 3.7 seconds.
7 Fast Facts to put in Perspective the Acceleration of Top Fuel Cars and Dragsters
- Dragsters can reach over 300 MPH before you can finish reading this sentence.
- One Top Fuel dragster with a 500 cubic-inch engine makes more horsepower than the 4 front rows of cars at the Daytona 500 race.
- 11.2 gallons of Nitro Methane per second are consumed by a Dragster engine under full throttle. A 747 Boeing, fully loaded, consumes jet fuel at the same rate, but 25% less energy is produced.
- A V8 engine cannot produce enough power to even drive the Dragster’s supercharger.
- With the supercharger on overdrive, 3000 CFM of air is being rammed into the engine, and the fuel mixture is compressed to a near solid form before ignition. At full throttle the cylinders will run on the verge of Hydraulic lockdown.
- 44 amps are supplied to each spark plug by dual magnetos. This is similar to the output of an arc welder, produced in each cylinder.
- Spark plug electrodes will be totally consumed during one pass.
A Top Fuel dragster accelerates, in as little as 0.8 seconds, from standstill to 160 km/h, and can exceed 450 km/h over just 400 metres. Because of the high speeds this class of racing cars reach, the distance almost exclusively stays at 305 metres in length. Cutting the flow of fuel is the only way of shutting down the engine. And then you still need to deploy a parachute to help the car slow down.