Jay Leno drove a number of incredible cars. He owns hundreds of them, but the latest he drove for his Jay Leno’s Garage show is the 1939 Plymouth Radial Air. This car is amazing, to say the least. What we have here is a specially built car using a Cessna Radial engine and the thing works. It works like a clock. What is even more impressive is the fact that the car is actually usable and it can run on streets. However, many problems had to be addressed to make all of this work.
Even now, when it is all finished and ready, the engine is not exactly fully suited for street use, come to think about it. When in an airplane which hurdles through the air at 150 mph it is fairly easy to keep the thing cool, however, at low speeds it isn’t. That is why the engine can run for 10 to 15 minutes tops. Interestingly, the biggest overheating issue the builder had is with one of the cylinders. Now, the thought that went into all this is simply astonishing. What is even more awesome about it is the rocket booster at the back. It really has one and it works. The best way to use the car’s potential is at long straights where it can pick up some serious speeds. Then, the air cooled engine could stay cool for a bit more time. As you may know, cooling the engine at high speeds is the only proper way to do it. After all, it is an airplane Jacobs Cessna engine.
The thing also has an all airplane inspired interior. Two steering wheels are inside, the throttle is at the central console, while the only pedal in the middle is the one for brakes. Not that we have seen much of airplane inspired cars, but this one is certainly the most accurate representation of the air industry. Simply awesome.