NSU Delphin III

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NSU Delphin III
NSU Delphin III - Deutsches Museum Verkehrszentrum.JPG
Delphin III in the Deutsches Museum in Munich
ManufacturerNSU Motorenwerke
Also calledDolphin III
PredecessorDelphin I/II
Engine499 cc, 4-cycle supercharged parallel twin[1]
Top speed210.64 mph (338.99 km/h)[2]
Power110 hp @ 8,500 RPM[1][3]
DimensionsL: 3.7 m (12 ft)[4]
H: 1.1 m (43 in)[4]

The NSU Delphin III streamliner motorcycle set the motorcycle land speed record in 1956. Wilhelm Herz rode the machine to 211.4 miles per hour (340.2 km/h) at Bonneville Speedway in Utah, to break 200 mph (320 km/h) for the first time.[5] Its fairing, designed in a wind tunnel at University of Stuttgart (then Stuttgart Technical College), gave it a drag coefficient of 0.19.[1] The same engine powered Herz to a 1951 world speed record, with a less efficient frame/fairing, the Delphin I.[3] The engine used an unusual rotary supercharger related to NSU's eventual development of the Wankel engine.[6][7] In the supercharger, both a trochoidal inner rotor and epitrochoidal outer rotor spun around a stationary shaft.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Walker, Mick (2000), Mick Walker's German Racing Motorcycles, Redline Books, pp. 200–203, ISBN 0953131122
  2. ^ "Over 210 m.p.h.". The Motor Cycle. London: Ilffe & Sons. 97 (2782): 169. 9 August 1956.
  3. ^ a b Schneider, Peter (1997), Die NSU-Story (in German), Stuttgart: Motorbuch Verlag, pp. 389–409, ISBN 3613018535
  4. ^ a b Collections: NSU Delphin III, Technikmuseum Speyer, retrieved 2013-09-16
  5. ^ Setright, L.J.K. (1979), The Guinness book of motorcycling facts and feats, Guinness Superlatives, ISBN 978-0-85112-200-7
  6. ^ Louise Ann Noeth (May 2002). Bonneville: The Fastest Place on Earth. MotorBooks International. p. 73. ISBN 978-0-7603-1372-5.
  7. ^ a b John B. Hege (2006), The Wankel Rotary Engine: A History, McFarland, p. 27, ISBN 0786486589

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