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A World War I Aircraft (18.5-liter Airplane Motor) On The Street With a 1915 Hispano Suiza

Jay shows us what it’s like to drive a World War I aircraft on the street with his 1915 Hispano Suiza that features an 18.5-liter airplane motor.Jay Leno is reviewing this 1915 Hispano Suiza, a giant car with a giant engine.If you wanted a fast car in the early 20th century, you bought a car with an airplane under the hood.

image credit: Jay Leno’s Garage 

This Hispano Suiza has a V8 engine with a capacity of 18.5 liters, well over 300 hp.The engine has an aluminum block with iron liners and a head with 2-valves per cylinder.

image credit: Jay Leno’s Garage 

It uses 8 gallons of oil.The engine is running at a maximum of 2,200 rpm, according to Jay, the engine must last for a lifetime.


If there is enough space, the Hispano Suiza must be able to reach a top speed of 225 kilometers per hour.Leno’s aero car is also equipped with a horn that must have been lifted from a locomotive, so Californians know when to get out of the way.

As usual, three quarters of the video consists of a technical analysis and some background information, only in the last five minutes of the video we see the car in action. For the lovers of pre-war monsters with aircraft engines , this is highly recommended.