In many parts of the world, tuk tuks are a crucial method of transportation. They are compact, cost-friendly and can give passengers an open-air experience that a traditional car cannot. And sometimes they’re used to set a Guinness World Record.
You wouldn’t generally think of a tuk tuk as a very speedy vehicle, but a guy named Matt Everard clearly wanted to change that perception. With a three-wheeled tuk tuk named Apinya that he bought on eBay in 2017, Everard spent £20,000 (about $25,000) over the course of five months to prepare it for the record run, according to a YouTube video. His modifications included a bigger engine and bigger rear wheels, presumably for grip.
The Guinness World Records required him to achieve a speed of over 68 mph with a passenger in order to set a new record, so Everard chose his cousin, Russell. It’s unclear if Russell volunteered for the job or if nobody else was available.
Anyway, to set a record speed run, your speed is measured over two consecutive runs in opposite directions. Everard’s final speed was an impressive 74.306 mph—a new record for fastest rickshaw, a GWR rep announced while presenting him with his award.
That’s quite fast, especially for a tuk tuk! In a car that’s all closed up and is rated for that speed with good brakes, it’s fine. But it has to be far sketchier in a tuk tuk. Russell is a braver person than I am for being willing to ride as a passenger, but I am curious if the speed would have been higher had Everard had used a more petite friend to ride along.
There is also a charitable aspect to all of this: Everard said that he did this whole thing to raise money for Haven Hospices in Essex, England. You can see his record run in the video below.