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A Record-Breaking 254MPH in an MG in 1959

Submitted by on April 5, 2015

1959 MG Speed Record

Phil Hill braves the Bonneville salt flats in this experimental, with the emphasis on mental, teardrop MG. In it, he beat the flying mile record for the time by spooling it up to a mighty 254 miles per hour.

In a 1.5-litre MG!

The car is MG’s experimental land speed record car – EX-181. In it, Stirling Moss had driven to a land speed record of 245 miles per hour in 1957. MG clearly thought that the car had more in it, so they took it back home and kept developing it.

In the years that followed EX-181’s little 1.5-litre twin-cam supercharged MG A motor was bumped up from 1489cc to 1506cc. This enabled it to put out more than 300 bhp at a feisty 7300 rpm, running on methanol laced with a cocktail of nitrobenzene, acetone and sulphuric ether.

It was Phil Hill’s turn in the machine in 1959, and this brilliant little clip chronicles the team’s efforts on the iconic salt flats. Check out the driver’s seating position all the way out front!

Enjoy this stunning vintage footage of the fastest MG ever built, then the fastest 1.5-litre car in the world, at the hands of Formula 1 World Champion and 24 Hours of Le Mans winner Phil Hill.

And for a little more classic footage going behind the scenes making the car, hit go on the second video!

EX181 info via MGA Guru

MORE MG: Rally Monster – MG Metro 6R4

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