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Low Flying Comet

July 8th, 2006
Marketing Advertising Blog — VuManhThang.Com

St_38_obsessed1_fI’m a former Beetle owner, and gave it up only because of persistent problems with the airbag system, but…I do miss "Blue Thunder" as I called mine. I did a few modifications to mine, very minor. Some people do modifications that are a bit more costly. Here’s the video, in case you think this is a product of PhotoShop. Kids, don’t try this at home. "Most people are content to modify their rides with
chrome spinners and a turbo kit. Not Ron Patrick. He wanted something
unique for his 2000 VW Beetle. So he mounted a $270,000, 26,000-rpm,
1,350-horsepower, Navy-surplus helicopter jet turbine in the trunk.

The Stanford PhD and car computer designer spent four years making
the vehicle safe to drive, but now, when he needs a boost, he just
switches on an afterburner (which shoots an 8-foot-long flame out the
back). The intake draws air through the windows and sunroof, creating
cabin noise that sounds, as Patrick puts it, “like Iraq.” And once it
kicks in, “it feels like the finger of God is pushing the car.” The jet
jumps the Bug’s speed from 80 to 140 mph in less than four seconds, at
which point Patrick eases up on the throttle. He estimates that at 160,
“the rear end would probably start to go airborne.”

Despite all the muscle, Patrick doesn’t race. “I’m 49, so frying some 16-year-old who just saw The Fast and the Furious
doesn’t do anything for me,” he says. But he has been known to light up
Northern California’s freeways on weekdays between 2 and 3 am. “More
than one late-night truck driver on I-5 has been passed by a low-flying
comet.” If you don’t see Patrick’s ride there, you may be out of luck –
his hot rod is just too much for car shows. When he entered it in the
Los Angeles Grand National Roadster Show in January, he was greeted
with disparaging looks and scoffs from the gearhead elite. So when the
winners started revving their V-8s, Patrick responded by firing up the
jet and blasting out a 6-foot-long flame. Officials screamed at him to
shut it down, and then banned him for life. Luckily, he’d already
received a special prize for Best Compact Custom."

- Brian Lam

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. July 8th, 2006 at 09:32 | #1

    When I first started reading this post and saw the figure of $270,000 I was ready to launch into a speech about better places to utilize his extra cash, but by the end of the post I was laughing out loud! There’s a fine line between enjoying life and being responsible with resources. I love this: “More than one late-night truck driver on I-5 has been passed by a low-flying comet.” $270,000 to bring some joy to people’s lives is, perhaps, a bargain or at least money well-spent. I’m sure some other blogger can shoot down my argument.

  2. July 8th, 2006 at 09:44 | #2

    Gears are turning…. I wonder if I could do this with my old geo metro….

  3. kenneth klammer
    July 10th, 2006 at 22:09 | #3

    Interesting. Now if we can get it to run green: Soybean oil with a little Ethanol for a thinner.

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