What do you get when you bolt a supercharged 1,000bhp engine, hitherto found under the bonnet of a four-wheel-drive monster truck, into a home-made motorbike chassis?
Most people would probably say “trouble” or possibly “a ride in an ambulance”. But for engineer Nick Argyle, it seemed the obvious thing to do when tinkering with some bits in his garage one day.
Argyle had built his own monster truck some years previously before selling the chassis but keeping the whopping 8.2-litre Mopar V8 engine. Lacking the space to build another truck, he decided that the ideal home for the supercharged powerplant would be a two-wheeler.
Called the Rapom V8, the result is the most powerful road legal motorbike in Britain, with between 1,000 and 1,200bhp depending on the boost from the Littlefield supercharger. That makes the Bugatti Veyron, the fastest car in the world with 987bhp, look rather tame.
And if you thought your neighbour’s SUV was a gas-guzzler, the Rapom consumes a gallon of pure alcohol ever four miles. Fortunately Argyle only uses it for the 10-mile trip to his local dragstrip in the Cotswolds and then only in the daytime as the bike lacks headlights. The frame, constructed from massive, 3cm thick steel tubing, is extra long to prevent the bike flipping over under hard acceleration and as it tips the scales at 1,000lb, a reverse gear is needed for manoeuvring.
With such a surfeit of power, just two forward gears are needed in the API racing transmission. Stopping power provided by racing brakes gripped by six-piston callipers.
The bike will be on display MCN London Motorcycle Show on the Harrison Billet stand (S71) at ExCeL on February 1-4 2007. Advanced tickets for the MCN London Motorcycle Show are on sale now for £13 via its web site www.londonmotorcycleshow.com
or via the ticket hotline 0870 730 0049.