On March 21, a 2008 Bugatti Veyron will get on the tarmac of runway 21 at the Luke Air Force Base, right alongside a Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II. From a dead start, each will accelerate to the best of their abilities, trying to prove, once again, who’s fastest, a car or an airplane.
The F-35 will be piloted by Major Justin “Fuego” Miller. He will have to accelerate to climb speed (400 knots, or 460 mph), pull the plane straight up into the sky, make a high-G turn at 8,000 feet and then head back to the finish line.
At the same time, the Veyron, driven by Barrett-Jackson’s own Craig Jackson, will race down the runway and then back again to the start line (the organizers do not mention the distance the Bugatti will have to race before heading back). The first machine to be back where it all started will be declared the winner.
You might be inclined to say the airplane has a lot more on its plate than the supercar. But before you do that, you must take into account the bird is powered by a single Pratt & Whitney F135 with afterburner that develops 43,000 pounds of thrust and can push the plane to speeds of 1,227 mph (1975 kph).
On the other hand, the Bugatti relies only on a W16 8.0-liter, quad-turbocharged engine that develops 1,001 hp. Despite a 0 to 62 mph (100 kph) acceleration time of 2.5 seconds, the top speed is of just 250 mph (402 kph).
“Racing the Veyron against Major Miller and his F-35A Lightning will be a thrill of a lifetime,” said in a statement Craig Jackson, CEO of Barrett-Jackson.
“This will be the first time in history that a Bugatti Veyron has ever raced an F-35 Lightning. This will be a can’t-miss event for automotive and aviation enthusiasts alike.”
Speaking of challenges between cars and planes, the event that involved the Ferrari F2003 GA driven by Michael Schumacher against a Eurofighter Typhoon signed Alenia Aermacchi (Finmeccanica) and piloted by the astronaut and aviator Maurizio Cheli was very famous all over the world.
The Eurofighter Typhoon managed to get the better of the German Ferrari 7 times F1 World Champion only by winning 2 of the 3 scheduled races.