Indian Motorcycle set three land speed records while just practicing

Here’s the way to prepare for a land speed record celebration — set some records of your own! While getting ready for the 50th anniversary commemorative run of Burt Munro’s still-standing 1967 achievement, Indian Motorcycle set three land speed records on July 16, 2017, at El Mirage Dry Lakebed, California.

On August 26, 1967,  Munro set a record that still stands. He had an average speed for two runs of 183.586 miles per hour (later corrected to 184.087 mph). Munro, who was 68 at the time, set the record on a 1920 Indian Scout he bought when it was new. His feat is the subject of the film The World’s Fastest Indian.

Indian Motorcycle sets three land speed records
Burt Munro’s 1967 Land Speed Record Certificate

On August 13, 2017, Lee Munro, Munro’s great grandnephew, is going to run a specially prepared 2017 Indian Scout at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah during Speed Week. The younger Munro will be riding a modified 2017 Indian Scout. The new bike has an 1,133cc engine and therefore will not be competing to break the original record, which was for motorcycles 1,000cc and under.

In preparation for the event at the Bonneville Salt Flats on August 13, the Indian team set three new land speed records. As Indian Vice President for Product Development Gary Gray said, “When you’re breaking records during test runs, you know your machine is on point. Our team of engineers has done an incredible job on the Spirit of Munro commemorative Scout.”

Indian engine calibration technician Chet Michaelson set a new record in the M-PG (Modified-Pushrod Gasoline) 2,000cc class on a 2015 Indian Chief Classic. Michaelson had an average speed of 154.132 mph, breaking the previous 151 mph record.

Lee Munro was aboard the Spirit of Munro 50th anniversary 2017 Indian Scout. This bike and the streamliner shell were designed and tweaked by Indian engineers working on their own time. Munro was competing in the MPS-G (Modified Partial Streamliner) 1,350cc class. With a speed of 186.681 mph, Munro shattered the previous record, which was 167 mph.

Dan Gervais, a senior engine calibration technician at Indian Motorcycle, nailed the third land speed record for the company. Gervais rode a lightly modified 2015 Indian Scout in the M-G (Modified-Gasoline) 1,350cc class. With his time of 154.354 mph, Gervais bested the 153 mph previous record.

The excitement levels for the younger Munro and the Indian team from setting new records while prepping for Bonneville couldn’t be higher. “It’s an incredible feat to join my great uncle Burt within the land speed record book.” said Lee Munro. “Indian has been a great partner in not only providing me with an incredible machine, but providing me with an opportunity to recognize and honor all Burt Munro did for motorcycling.”

More information on the Spirit of Munro commemorative run is available on the Indian Motorcycle website. Digital Trends is going to be at Bonneville to observe Indian’s next land speed record attempt.

Social Media

‘YouTube Rewind 2018’ is about to become its most disliked video ever

YouTube is about to achieve a record it really doesn't want — that of "most-disliked video." Yes, its annual recap of featuring popular YouTubers has gone down really badly this year.

Bloodhound’s plan to build a 1,000-mph car has run out of gas

The Bloodhound supersonic car (SSC) project has officially shut down. The upside is you can now buy a 135,000-horsepower car powered by a jet engine and a cluster of rockets for $319,000.

World’s fastest electric race car to display at Petersen Museum

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak race car smashed the all-time record at the hill climb for which it was named. The all-electric VW record-holder will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles until February 1, 2019.

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.

The Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake is the sexiest wagon ever

Aston Martin has revealed new photos of the limited-production Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake. The Vanquish Zagato line now includes the Shooting Brake, Coupe, Volante, and Speedster, each with bespoke styling.

Nissan and Italdesign’s GT-R50 concept will become a $1.1 million reality

The Nissan GT-R50 is a customized sports car built to celebrate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and design firm Italdesign. Underneath the sleek bodywork sits a 710-horsepower engine fortified with race car components.

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.

Ford’s new Shelby GT500 Mustang will have 3D-printed brake parts

Ford's new $45 million Advanced Manufacturing Center will focus on emerging technologies, including 3D printing. One of the staff's first jobs is to print parts for the 700-horsepower Shelby GT500 Mustang.
Product Review

Audi built an electric SUV for buyers who want gasoline-free to mean stress-free

We finally got to spend time behind the wheel of the electric 2019 Audi E-Tron bustling cities and arid desert of the United Arab Emirates to see how it compares with Jaguar and Tesla's competitors.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Folding canoes and ultra-fast water filters

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

This freewheeling Army truck-turned-tiny home is a labor of love

Most tiny homes are models of efficiency but one British metal worker has redefined the idea, converting an old Army truck into a mobile tiny home that comes with a bed, a sofa, a shower, and a beer garden.

Take a friend stargazing at 202 mph in the 2019 McLaren 720S Spider

McLaren has introduced the 2019 720S Spider. As its name implies, it's a convertible variant of the 720S coupe. The company promises the Spider retains the coupe's dynamism and agility thanks in part to the widespread use of carbon fiber.

Gateway’s born-again Ford Bronco boasts classic style, 2018 muscle car power

Illinois-based Gateway Bronco has received a license from Ford to make brand-new examples of the first-generation Bronco. Every build starts with a Ford VIN and a donor vehicle, but Gateway upgrades every part of the car.
Product Review

The 2019 Porsche Macan S is a luxurious and quick SUV, but it's no road tripper

The roster of models challenging the Porsche Macan grows annually. The German firm updated its smallest, most affordable SUV with a new engine, more tech features, and subtle design tweaks to keep it looking fresh.