It’s safe to say that even most automotive enthusiasts aren’t aware that the Guinness Book of World Records has a category for “fastest motorized log,” but it does. The Cedar Rocket, brainchild of log house builder Bryan Reid, Sr and two of his buddies, holds that title and it isn’t likely to have competition any time soon. The body of this unique single-passenger car is a gift straight from Mother Nature, except of course for its all-electric engine.
Reid and two of his friends hatched the idea for a log-borne electric vehicle. Luckily, one of three – Gerald Overton – is a mechanic. He started with the guts of a Mazda RX-8 and retooled the disc brakes, axles, frame, differential, and suspension into something that will make anyone with a scouting background look twice, as the Cedar Rocket bears a strong resemblance to an oversized Pinewood Derby car. The project took nearly two years to build.
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“It started out, not as a joke, but as something very light,” Reid said. “You put a log on a couple of axles and ‘ha ha.’ It ended up taking many thousands of hours. We don’t do anything halfway.”
In order to nab the world record, the Cedar Rocket had to make two runs of 55 miles per hour within 30 minutes at the Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Chandler, Arizona. That’s all Guinness required. However, the team says they think it may have the ability to travel much faster, as much as 120-130 mph under the right conditions. Aside from its fame as a world record holder, the Cedar Rocket gets a lot of attention for its unique appearance. Reid says the decision to use an all-electric powertrain was a bit of a no brainer. After briefly toying with the question of where they might locate a fuel tank on a log car, the team had a lightbulb moment. “We starting thinking, man, this is 2016, and that’s why we went totally electric,” he said. “We’re glad we did. It worked out great.”
Images via Bryan Reid Sr