Theoretically, is Santa’s sleigh a powerhouse or an underpowered bore?
It’s the question that all the big kids are asking. How much horsepower is that sleigh making?
It’s getting awfully close to that time of year where Father Christmas himself visits each home to drop off the kids’ presents and the fact that he can travel the world in one night and make such a heavy sleigh, burdened with millions of gifts, take flight is rather impressive indeed.
We motor enthusiasts enjoy Santa’s generosity as much as the next person but his real legacy is his overpowered sleigh that seems to produce enough horsepower to travel at 650 mps (that’s miles per second for those unfamiliar with magical sleigh transportation). We’d never want to drag race him, that’s for sure.
Now, the thing about Santa is he’s a pretty secretive guy. Here at Motor-Vision, we don’t have any inside sources in the North Pole or know anyone that works for the guy. So, this means that we’ll have to do some calculations of our own and guess roughly how much horsepower this guy is making in his antique magical sleigh.
Now, if we are to simplify it as much as possible, a horse makes around 15 hp and reindeer are much smaller than horses, only coming up to around waist high. In a tug of war, one horse could probably outmatch two reindeer so let’s say that reindeer produce around 7 hp. This would mean that Santa’s sleigh produces around 56 horsepower, which is 14 horsepower less than a two-seat Smart car.
Although Santa’s sleigh is powered by eight reindeer, these are in fact magical reindeer and so cannot be assumed to have the same power as an ordinary reindeer. Also, we have to consider just how heavy the sleigh is, as it will be carrying enough toys for all of the children in the world.
Once you assume that the sleigh weighs more than the total weight of enough toys for the 660 million children that celebrate Christmas and needs enough lift force for it to take off then that means a lot of power has to be involved.
Drivetribe actually did all of the physics calculations needed to know how much horsepower Santa’s sleigh must produce if we assume the aforementioned is true. The mass of toys would be at least 23 million kg, and that’s only assuming each child receives a small toy car. They then assumed the sleigh had wings and was extremely aerodynamic and came to the conclusion that even with these generous assumptions, it would have to travel 13,000 mph just to take off.
The conclusion was that for this to be possible, the magical sleigh that delivers presents to the world would need to produce around 6.37 trillion brake horsepower. And it will still be more eco-friendly than a Tesla thanks to it running on carrots!
How much horsepower do you think Santa’s sleigh has? Let us know in the comments.
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Image Credit: Main photo created by kjpargeter – www.freepik.com
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