Volkswagen Beetle turned into 1,350hp flame-throwing dragster

'The wildest street-legal ride possible.'

by | Published on 15th Oct 2022

Feast your eyes on the Jet Beetle, a Volkswagen with a massive jet engine strapped to the back of it.

And it’s street-legal. Yep, you read that right. 

This bonkers creation was built by California man Ron Patrick “for a bit of fun” and it produces 1,350 hp.

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Patrick, who has a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering, said he wanted to build “the wildest street-legal ride possible”. 

And that he did.


The flame-throwing VW has two engines – the production gasoline engine at the front and the jet engine at the back. 

“The idea is that you drive around legally on the gasoline engine and when you want to have some fun, you spin up the jet and get on the burner,” Patrick said.

He said the jet could actually be started while driving on the normal gas engine. 

“To light big-fire or the afterburner, you hold a button down and half a second later press the hot-streak button on the floor. Then things happen!” he said. 

To transform the Beetle into a flame thrower, the Californian first needed to source a jet engine. 

That’s where the General Electric T58-8F comes in. 

It’s actually a helicopter turboshaft motor that Patrick converted into a jet engine. 

Converting the motor was one thing,  but attaching it to the tiny VW was another thing altogether. 

“The hole was tricky because it goes through three layers, the bumper and two layers of metal,” he said.

With the jet engine attached, the little Beetle could now spin up to 26,000 RPM and churn out a massive 1,350 hp.

Patrick said he has never actually punched it because “the car was built to thrill me, not kill me”. 

“That doesn’t stop me from the occasional blast on the highway though,” he said. 

Patrick, who has his own site dedicated to the build, admitted his jet beetle attracted a lot of wanted and unwanted attention on the road. 

He actually captured this photo after the police pulled him over, saying the officer was “trying to figure out what to charge me with”. 

“Notice the hopeful anticipation of us on the right,” he said. 

Patrick said the California Department of Motor Vehicles actually questioned whether his car constituted a threat to national security. 

“You have to give the California DMV credit for creativity on this one,” he said.



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Kate Bain is the Page Editor at supercarblondie.com. She is based in Dubai and coordinates coverage of the latest news across automotive, technology, and lifestyle. Kate has a bachelor's degree in business and post graduate in journalism. She is an experienced editor and journalist who has worked for News Corp, Daily Mail Australia, and Sky News. When she's not at work, you'll find her attached at the hip to her dog, Thor.

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