10 Reasons Why The Hennessey Venom GT Is The Ultimate American Supercar
Like a Lotus on steroids, the Hennessey Venom GT boasts features that make this American Supercar a force to be reckoned with.
Based on the Lotus Elise, The Hennessey Venom GT started as more of a joke. The thought of a mid-engine, 1,200-horsepower Supercar that weighs under 3,000 pounds was just that, a thought - that is until the drawings and renderings began. Once John Hennessey (CEO of Hennessey Performance) realized that this could be accomplished, there was no looking back.
Today, we have the Hennessey Venom GT and the Hennessey Venom F5 available to the U.S. market, with both of these models featuring world-record-setting performance. Unlike other supercars, the Venom GT is focused strictly on going fast. Being an American brand, the Hennessey Venom GT has certain features that you would not necessarily expect from vehicles of this caliber - such as the LS2-based 7.0 liter twin-turbo engine.
Utilizing information from TopGear, we've put together a list of the 10 reasons why the Hennessey Venom GT is the ultimate American supercar.
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With a track record of building cars that are insanely fast, John Hennessey certainly kept that thought process when building this supercar. The Hennessey Venom GT performance is about as good as it gets - with this car setting the following records:
With luxury being on the back burner, this allows the performance of this American supercar to really shine. The engine is placed in the middle-rear of the car, providing amazing traction. The feather-like weight of the Hennessey Venom GT makes this supercar nothing short of scary. The sound is reminiscent of a turbocharged Corvette, and the aerodynamics provide incredible downforce as your speed rises.
With the aforementioned performance statistics, you're probably expecting some type of supercharged V-12 engine stuffed in this car. Unbeknownst to many, the Hennessey Venom GT stuck to its American roots with an LS2-based V-8 engine that is bored out to a whopping 7.0-liters and boosted with two ball-bearing turbochargers.
Here are some of the notable features of this engine:
If the idea of a Chevy V-8 in a supercar sounds strange to you, it's hard to deny how well this engine works when paired with a car like the Hennessey Venom GT. The combination of speed, power, and weight allow this supercar to surpass others like the Bugatti Veyron.
With the incredible amount of power that the Hennessey Venom GT possesses, it's only fair to expect the same quality to detail when it comes to the chassis of this car. Featuring a curb weight of less than 3,000 pounds and a weight distribution similar to that of a Lotus Elise, this is a supercar that is fast in more than just a straight line.
Here are the notable features of the Hennessey Venom GT chassis:
The incredible chassis characteristics allow the Hennessey Venom GT to handle speeds of 270 MPH, with Hennessey releasing an estimated top speed of 278 MPH. A weight distribution of roughly 44 to 56 means instead of spinning, you're launching.
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The Hennessey Venom GT looks like a Lotus with the rear end resembling something closer to a Pagani or Ferrari. An adjustable, deployable wing folds out after reaching a certain speed, further adding to the aesthetic as well as the downforce.
While being one of the best-performing supercars, it is also one of the best-looking. As an optional upgrade, the raw carbon fiber is available as a finish.
The drivetrain of the Hennessey Venom GT features a Ricardo 6-speed manual transmission. With a final drive ratio of 3:36:1, you're up to 69 MPH in first gear. At the top of the sixth gear, you'll be closer to 278 MPH.
Just to put these speeds into perspective, third gear in the Hennessey Venom GT is faster than the majority of most vehicles you'll see on the road. Ricardo transmissions have been featured in other high-powered cars such as the Ford GT making them great for handling the V8 power and torque.
As you'd likely imagine, the chances that you'll actually get to use the full 1,244 horsepower on a public street are slim to none. With this being said, Hennessey has implemented features that allow for usable power with any driver, making it easy to change the power settings from within the vehicle.
On top of these incredible horsepower numbers, the Hennessey Venom GT also features 1,155 pound-feet of torque which will surely force you to crack a smile (or break a sweat).
Related: The History Of American Supercars
With a supercar this fast and powerful, you need to make sure you're also able to stop on a dime. Hennessey took good care of the braking department with the following features:
These Brembo 6-piston calipers take up nearly half of the space within the wheel - the pictures simply do not do justice to the sheer size of these brakes. The lightweight wheels reduce the unsprung weight allowing the vehicle to accelerate and stop even quicker. The carbon-ceramic rotors provide a huge amount of weight savings compared to conventional rotors which adds to the braking capabilities of the Hennessey Venom GT.
Tires pair with the brakes to form one of the most crucial aspects of a vehicle when it comes to safety. The Hennessey Venom GT utilizes staggered-sized rims which allow for a bigger, wider tire in the rear, providing even more traction.
Michelin Pilot Super Sport
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is a 30,000-mile tire that was born from endurance racing. It provides precision handling, making the Hennessey Venom GT that much more of a driver's car. As an optional upgrade, you can opt for the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup ZP Tires which provide extreme dry grip, precision, and traction.
Starting in 1991, John Hennessey began his dream of building performance cars with a Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4. Limited aftermarket support was available at the time, and with John wanting to race this car in the Pike's Peak Challenge, he had no choice but to figure something out. John and his buddies were able to extract an estimated 450 horsepower from the 3000GT VR4 just by using their combined knowledge.
Two years later, John, driving the 3000GT, was able to finish in the top 10 at the Pike's Peak Challenge as well as set the fastest F-production/Supercharged class top speed record with an average of 176 MPH. Since then, Hennessey Performance has built over 10,000 vehicles, with these being the most notable:
While some of these models are modified and tuned versions of the stock vehicle, others, such as the Hennesey Venom F5 and Venom GT are complete American supercars built from the ground up. Hennessey Performace has an incredible track record when it comes to building extremely fast cars.
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As you now know, the Hennessey Venom GT was designed with the intention of going fast. However, Hennessey has provided some customizability if you'd like to have one of these incredible cars built:
While these upgrades will certainly add to the Hennessey Venom GT's price, this car already carries a quite hefty price tag, starting at $725,000.
Ryan has nearly a decade of experience in the automotive field. His love for speed started as a young motocross and flat track racer, transitioning from dirt bikes to cars once he acquired his driving license. While cars and dirt bikes tend to be the focus for Ryan, anything with an engine is usually enough to get his wheels spinning.Related:Guinness World Record for fastest road-legal car from 0 to 186 MPH at 13.63 secondsUnofficial record for 0 to 200 MPH at 14.51 seconds, beating the Koenigsegg Agera R270 MPH Speed Record:The Hennessey Venom GT 0-60 MPH is 2.7 secondsHere are some of the notable features of this engine:Here are the notable features of the Hennessey Venom GT chassis:Related:GearMax Speed1st2nd3rd4th5th6thSetting one:Setting two:Setting three:Front SizeRear SizeBrand