What’s the fastest car in the world?
Bugatti Veyron seems to be the most common answer and to an extent, you’d probably be right. The road legal SuperSport did hit 267.8 mph, the fastest on record by any road car but when it arrives on your drive, it is limited to 258 mph.
This means that technically, anything which is road legal and can hit more than 258 mph, is faster than the Veyron. So bring on our first contender that you’ve probably never heard of…
The Hennessey Venom GT certainly has a suggestive name and its top speed is pretty venomous. The pictures indicate quite clearly that this is a Lotus Exige which has been “highly modified.” By this we mean 7.0 litre V8, 1,244 bhp and a top speed of 265.7 mph.
If you want one in Europe, you’ll need to shell out £670,000 and so far only four have been produced and sold since last year. Which would suggest their marketing tactics probably need a rethink.
Saleen is probably a name that some people might be familiar with, particularly the Americans. If not, the need-to-know figures are 750 bhp, 7.0 litre, V8, 2.8 seconds and 248 mph. Being American, it’s actually fairly low-tech and quite cheap compared to the rest of the bunch at only £300,000.
The other one of note from the American camp is the SSC Ultimate Aero, currently capable of 257mph but work is being done to get this up to 273 mph for the last variant in the series, which will definitely give Bugatti something to worry about.
Other competition at the highest end includes the Keating TKR which throws out 2,000bhp to get to 60mph in 2.0 seconds and has a recorded top speed of 260mph. In addition, you can get all of this power for the third of the price of a Veyron. A common theme appears to be emerging here: all of the above models come with a 7.0 litre V8, perhaps this is the key to unrivalled speed? Or becoming a car that nobody has ever heard of?
Most of the above are designed for speed as opposed to being designed for aesthetics, however, there are two in this groups that actually look quite appealing. The first is the Shayton Equilibrium, ‘the hypercar for the new millennium’ apparently which will hit 60 mph in 2.9 seconds and go on to nudge 250 mph.
The other particularly well designed car is the ST1 from Zenvo in Denmark (can you think of any other Danish manufacturers? Thought not). Yet again, the 7.0 litre V8 returns along with a price tag of £1.15 million which will buy you just over 230 mph.
Those that just miss out on the 250 mph mark include the Weber Faster One (appropriately
named) which has 900bhp to get it to 248mph and the Lotec Sirius from Germany, which can hit 242 mph at half the price of a Veyron. Another notable effort came from Dauer in 1993 with the 362 Le Mans which was a true bargain at only £150,000 and a top speed of 238 mph. And another Le Mans-inspire example comes from Wysstec, the Leblanc Mirabeau will get you to 230 mph.And just in case you haven’t heard of it, the Bloodhound SSC is aiming to hit 1,000 mph at some point this year or early next year when the full £15 million of sponsorship has been raised. And it will get there in an estimated 42 seconds. Unfortunately, not road legal, so put your chequebook away.
The future for road cars? We’re currently awaiting the TranStar Racing Dagger GT which has its sights set on 315 mph thanks to its 10.4 litre V8 chucking out 2,700 bhp. Somewhat ambitious, we feel.
So when you’re deciding which of the fastest cars in the world to buy, remember that there is more to life that McLaren and Bugatti, and very often at only a fraction of the price.
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