Since cars were first invented we’ve obsessed over making them faster. At one time, 50mph must have felt fast and 100mph completely unachievable; now the quickest cars can reach speeds in excess of 250mph without breaking a sweat.
To put 250mph into perspective, here are some facts and stats for you:
• A 747 passenger jet takes off at 150-180mph
• And lands at 190mph
• The fastest member of the animal kingdom, the Peregrine Falcon, can hit 200mph
• The Apache attack helicopter has a top speed of 175mph
• Formula 1 cars have a top speed of 240mph
Now that you’ve got a head for just how quick 250mph is, it’s time to look at which road-going cars can actually hit these eye-watering speeds. Remember, these cars have all the luxuries of a normal car (minus a big boot and four seats) with the added bonus of getting you from A to B very quickly indeed (within the limits of the law, obviously)
Koenigsegg Agera R
Swedish car brand Koenigsegg may not be a household name like Ferrari or Porsche, but they sure know how to make a quick supercar. Since launching in 1994, Koenigsegg have smashed speed records with various cars, including the CC, CCX and CCXR. Their latest model, the Agera R, holds the record for a 0-300km/h sprint, and is capable of hitting speeds of 273mph, making it the fastest production car in existence. The Agera R owes this ridiculous speed to its 5-litre Turbocharged V8 engine, which produces 1140bhp.
Hennessey Venom GT
It may be built in Texas and based on a Lotus Exige, but don’t let that fool you — the Hennessey Venom GT is lightning fast. Until the Agera R stole its thunder, the Venom GT was the fastest car in the world, clocking a top speed of 270mph. Under its sleek shell the Venom GT houses a 7.0 litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine producing 1,244bhp. All that power means it’s rather quick off the line, reaching 200mph in just 14 seconds — that’s faster than the 0-60mph speed of a Nissan Micra.
Bugatti Veyron Super Sport
Many people might assume the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport is still the fastest car in the world, on account of it being the first production car to breach the 250mph mark. Despite being knocked off the top spot by the aforementioned cars, the Veyron remains one of the most impressive cars ever built — developed from the chassis up to be fast but at the same time, luxurious. As well as an 8-litre quad-turbo engine, Veyron buyers will get the luxury feel and comfort of a Range Rover, despite being sat in a hilariously quick hyper car.
One look at the 9FF GT9-R tells you that, rather than being a completely brand new car design, the GT9-R is modelled on an iconic sports car — the Porsche 911. In fact without the GT9-R embellishments, the 9FF would look identical to its legendary predecessor, until you get under the bonnet that is. Here you’ll find a 4.0 litre flat 6 engine boasting 1,120bhp and 910 lb-ft of torque — more than enough to get you from 0-257mph in a face-shifting time.
SSC Ultimate Aero
The SSC Ultimate Aero not only looks and sounds like a fighter jet, it’s almost as fast as one. Holding the Guinness World Record for fastest production car from 2007-2010, the Aero is propelled along by a 6.3 litre twin-turbo engine generating 1,287bhp. All that power gives the Aero a top speed of 256mph, and a 0-200mph time of under 16 seconds. And that’s not even the most impressive thing about the Ultimate Aero; it’s available for just over £350,000, making it the cheapest hyper car on the market.
Taking its name from the Italian word for wind, the Pagani Huayra is a masterstroke of beautiful car design and unbridled raw power. Beneath the incredible bodywork lurks a 720bhp twin-turbo Mercedes V12 engine with enough oomph to push the Pagani to a cool 230mph. While it may not have the fastest top speed the Huayra could be the quickest off the line thanks to its lightweight frame and whopping 738 lb-ft of torque.
After honing their speed credentials in Formula 1, McLaren has since developed a number of superfast road-going cars that are as bonkers as their racetrack counterparts. The British born car firm’s latest offering is the P1, an eye-catching supercar that’s also a hybrid. That’s right, after hitting its top speed of 217mph, the P1 can be driven in all electric-mode to conserve fuel before doing it all over again. And who said eco-friendly cars were boring?
Your car may not be a fiercely fast supercar you want to pin up on your bedroom wall, but it needs looking after all the same. At Prestone, our car maintenance products are developed to work whether you’re driving at 20 or 200mph. To find out more, visit our homepage.
Photo Credits : Drew Philip / Auto Trader Classics / Dan DeChiaro / Richard Le Photography & Design / Pagani Huayra / koenigsegg.com