On Saturday, March 26 the Hennessey Venom GT became the fastest open top sports car by running 265.6 mph. But was it easy? Check out the back story of man and machine and what it took for the Hennessey team to improvise, adapt and overcome in order to achieve their goal of making the Venom GT Spyder the fastest open top car in the world.
World’s Fastest Hypercar from 0 – 300 km/h
On January 10, 2013 John Kiewicz drove the Hennessey Venom GT to a new Guinness WORLD RECORD for a two-seat hypercar from 0 – 300 km/h in 13.63 seconds at Ellington Airport in Houston, Texas, USA.
For immediate release
January 21, 2013
Hennessey® Venom GT® Sets New Guinness® WORLD RECORD
Texas Supercar Becomes World’s Quickest Hypercar from 0-300 km/h
HOUSTON, Texas – Hennessey® Performance (HPE) today announced that on January 10, 2013 its street-legal Venom GT® supercar accelerated from 0-300 km/h in just 13.63 seconds, thus establishing the vehicle as a new record holder according to Guinness® WORLD RECORDS (GWR). The acceleration time was an average of two runs made in opposite directions within one hour and validated by a VBox 3i GPS-based data logging system. VBox officials were on hand to certify the numbers as required by Guinness® rules. The first run was completed in 13.18 seconds with a 4 mph tailwind. The second run was made in 14.08 seconds while encountering a 6 mph headwind. The resulting two-way 0-300 km/h average was 13.63 seconds.
“We are exceptionally proud of our team at HPE who helped to make this new Guinness® World Record possible,” said company founder and president, John Hennessey. “This is just the first of several validation tests designed to show the world what our special car is all about – being the fastest. Period.”
A Guinness® representative was on hand to witness the testing as well as to personally inspect the Venom GT® before making any acceleration attempts. After the record runs were made (and officially validated) the representative was given a ride in a Venom GT® to personally experience the performance. “I have never ridden in anything this fast,” said Guinness® WORLD RECORD adjudicator Philip Robertson. “The acceleration is absolutely amazing.”
The acceleration runs were conducted at Ellington Airport (also used by NASA) located southeast of Houston, Texas, using the seventh production Venom GT® — a street-legal car that makes use of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup DOT-approved radial tires, 93-octane pump fuel, and a full interior replete with high-end stereo, air conditioning, and bespoke leather / Alcantara seats. Powered by a 7.0-liter (427 cubic inch) V-8 engine fed by twin Precision turbochargers, the Venom GT® produces 1,244 horsepower and 1,155 lb-ft of torque. Weighing just 1,244 kg (2,743 lbs) the rear-wheel-drive Venom GT® delivers a power-to-weight ratio of 1 horsepower per each kilogram of vehicle curb weight.
“We are especially grateful to the City of Houston and the staff at Ellington Airport for allowing to conduct this World Record attempt on their perfectly paved 8,000 ft. runway,” said Hennessey Performance CEO Don Goldman.
Although Guinness® only recognizes runs made in kilometers per hour (km/h), the Venom GT® also set a new unofficial acceleration record of 0-200 miles per hour (mph) in 14.51 seconds as verified by VBox GPS. The 0-200 mph record was previous held by the Koenigsegg Agera R that required 17.68 seconds time— 3.17 seconds slower than the Venom GT®. By comparison, the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport (powered by a 1,200 horsepower 8.0-liter, quad-turbocharged 16-cylinder engine channeling power through an all-wheel-drive system) ran 0-200 mph in 22.2 seconds— 7.7 seconds slower than the Venom GT®.
While conducting the Guinness® World Record runs, despite marginal traction (due to three days of previous rainfall), the Venom GT® accelerated from 0-60 mph in 3.05 seconds, 0-100 mph in 5.88 seconds, ran the standing quarter-mile in 10.29 seconds at 158.83 mph, and ran the standing half-mile at 205.65 mph. During testing done at Ellington Airport a few weeks prior to the Guinness® record runs, the Venom GT® accelerated to 300 km/h in 13.48 seconds while on its way to 370 km/h run (229.9 mph) in just 19.96 seconds.
Hennessey® only plans to build a total of 29 Venom GTs, with one-third of the production run already being sold. Thus, the Venom GT® is not only the fastest accelerating hypercar in the world, it’s also one of the most exclusive. The Venom GT® costs $1.2 million US Dollars plus shipping and not including options. Each vehicle is custom built to order and requires six months for completion.
About Hennessey® Performance
Established in 1991, Hennessey® Performance (HPE) now operates from a new facility comprised of a 36,000 square foot building that is located adjacent to Lonestar Motorsports Park, the company’s test track and IHRA sanctioned ¼ mile dragstrip. The 143-acre complex is located about 45 minutes west of Houston, Texas along Interstate 10. Hennessey® offer a wide variety of dyno-proven, track-tested parts for modern performance vehicles. In addition, Hennessey® operates Tuner School, the world’s first (fully state accredited) school dedicated to teaching and training future performance vehicle tuners.
In 2010, Hennessey® Performance opened a new 12,500 square foot facility in Lake Forest, California, to better serve clients in Southern California. For more information, contact John Hennessey at Hennessey® Performance at 979.885.1300 or visit www.venomgt.com or www.hennesseyperformance.com.
The February, 2011 issue of Road & Track may still be a few weeks from newsstands, but you can already catch their lead article featuring the Hennessey Venom GT online.
In the article, the editors join John Hennessey and GM veteran John Heinricy at Spring Mountain Motorsports Ranch where they take the Venom GT through its paces.
You can read the full Venom GT road test article online here, and check out video of the 1,200 horsepower supercar in action below: