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Sikorsky X2 Breaks Helicopter Speed Record, Hits 258 MPH

Illustration for article titled Sikorsky X2 Breaks Helicopter Speed Record, Hits 258 MPH

The futuristic-looking triple-bladed Sikorsky X2 helicopter just "unofficially" broke the helicopter speed record of 249 mph set in the 1980s by 9 mph — and they're trying to go faster.

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The Sikorsky X2 Helicopter is an experimental aircraft designed as a flying testbed of the latest technology — including the trick co-axial tri-blade — designed to offer all the handling and landing advantages of existing helicopters with the ability to travel long distances at high speeds.

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Earlier this week, pilot Kevn Bredenbeck eclipsed the rotorcraft (helicopter) speed record of 249 mph — set by the Westfield LYNX ZBX-500 in 1986 — with a scorching pass of 258 mph at the company's Florida test facility. By comparison, an Apache AH-64 attack helicopter only does 175 mph. The Lynx run was an official average speed, and in the 24 years since no one has bested the run.

The goal of the X2 project is to hit a ridiculous cruising speed of 287.5 mph, which is when we suspect they'll make the top speed official. Them's Bugatti Veyron-besting numbers!

[Sikorsky]

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DISCUSSION

Awesome helilopnik. Glad to see that Sikorsky didn't give up on the S-69 tech — coaxial-rotor helicopters are just about the coolest things in the world, in my (silly) opinion.