Kick it into high gear! Here is a fast-paced look at the swiftest production cars ever made!
In the race to build the fastest production car, manufacturers offer buyers the best of both worlds by incorporating (almost) unbridled speed in a sleek, street-legal package. Terms like supercar, hypercar and now megacar have come to be associated with these noteworthy speed demons. Invariably, however, they offer more than speed and an accompanying sense of status for those who can afford them. They are built to last, designed for curb appeal and easy to handle at everyday speeds. What's not to love?!
Automobile enthusiasts examine every detail of each new car's specifications, comparing one vehicle to the next to see how they match up on paper before they head out to the track to show the true power of what they have under the hood. The manufacturers get their bragging rights, while fans are treated to displays of raw speed, with the world-record fastest approaching 300 miles per hour!
Whether mass-produced or handmade, recent or decades old, each of these cars is already a classic—sought after and respected. You can show your appreciation of these speedy street-legal record breakers by steering clear of all the wrong answers as you race to ace this quiz. Come, show what you've got—start the quiz now!
Going by Guinness World Records standards, the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport became the fastest street-legal production car in the world on July 4, 2010. On that day, the Veyron Super Sport achieved an average top speed of 267.87 miles per hour. Units of the car which were sold to the public were electronically limited, however, to "just" 258 miles per hour.
According to the Guinness World Records, the fastest production car must be timed going both ways and have at least 30 produced units. Those two points keep the Hennessey Venom GT out of the record books to date, as its mind-blowing speed of 270.49 miles per hour in April 2013 was in one direction only and the company has not produced the required number of units of the car.
Just like its predecessor, the Bugatti Veyron, the Chiron has its engine in a W16 configuration, but its specifications say it's packed with much more power. The Super Sport variant of the Veyron currently holds the official speed record among production cars, but all indications are that the Chiron is set to break it!
The Koenigsegg Agera RS is one of the cars which puts the "hyper" in hypercar! Although not verified by the Guinness World Records, it has claimed the title of fastest ever production car since 2017. The Agera RS was independently tested going at 277.87 miles per hour, which is roughly 10 miles per hour above the 2010 record set by the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport.
In the late 1940s, the Healey Elliott saloon was successful in winning a number of rallies, proving itself to be one of the fastest cars at the time. It was timed going 104.7 miles per hour and pronounced to be the world's fastest production car, which, official or not, is a far cry away from the 12 miles per hour set by the Benz Velo in 1894, when it was one of the very first production cars in history.
Leicestershire-based Noble Automotive has been producing the Noble M600 since 2010. It's been featured on the British motoring show "Top Gear," where it hit a maximum speed of 215 miles per hour before running out of track. Also impressive is the M600’s ability to go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.9 seconds, thanks to its 650 horsepower engine.
According to Lamborghini, the Murciélago's top speed is 211 miles per hour. That made it one of the fastest sports cars on the road when it debuted in 2001. Its name may be Spanish for "bat," but the Murciélago was actually named after a fighting bull whose popularity soared along with that of the car's.
The Porsche 959 sports car featured 4-wheel drive and was one of the first by the company to have all-wheel drive incorporated into its design. The Sport variant of the 959 held the production car speed record at 198 miles per hour from 1986 to 1987, until it was dethroned by the Ruf CTR going 213 miles per hour.
The SSC Ultimate Aero TT hypercar is a top contender for production car speed record holder. It was theoretically proven capable of reaching 273 miles per hour, clocked going 257.41 miles per hour and averaged out at 254.16 miles per hour for the world record in 2007. That record is currently held by the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, which can go nearly 268 miles per hour, according to the Guinness World Records.
In the period immediately following WWII, the Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Super Sport made its mark on production cars speed records by clocking between 106 and 110 miles per hour, depending on the variation used. The 6C 2500 model holds the distinction of appearing in the movie "The Godfather" (1972).
As if the original Pagani Huayra hypercar wasn't performance focused enough, the manufacturers took things a step or two further with the Pagani Huayra’s BC variant. It's designed to reach a top speed of 230 miles per hour and is named in honor of Pagani's very first customer, the famous car collector Benny Caiola.
The McLaren F1 kicked off the company's famous Ultimate Series in fine style when its designers aimed to create the "finest road car." The company produced 106 units of the F1, of which only 64 were sold publicly. The F1 has a top speed just over 240 miles per hour and still ranks very highly among the fastest supercars of all time.
Only 139 of the exclusive mid-engine, 4-wheel drive Bugatti EB110 were produced. It features a V12 engine and maximum speed capability of up to 213 miles per hour, which was boosted to 217 miles per hour with the Super Sport trim. The car is named in honor of Ettore Bugatti and debuted on September 15, 1991 on the 110th anniversary of his birth.
Production of the Porsche 918 Spyder ran from October, 2013 to May, 2015, and as its name suggests, only 918 of them were made. The company's specifications for the 918 Spyder hypercar gave its top speed as 214 miles per hour, but figures just above that have been achieved independently.
The Jaguar XJ220S is a true supercar: rare, luxurious and powerful. 282 of the original Jaguar XJ220 were made from 1992 to 1994, and only 6 with the XJ220S variant made it off the production line. The lightweight and lightning fast Jaguar XJ220S holds the distinction of being one of the cars banned from entering the U.S.—although one of the 6 is already there!
The renowned American automobile manufacturer Studebaker was in operation from 1852 to 1967. Before the factory closed in 1963, the Studebaker Avanti was clocked by the company going at 168.24 miles per hour. Its performance figures say it can hit 171.1 miles per hour.
Automotive company 9ff, which is based in Dortmund, Germany, produced just 20 units of the 9ff GT9-R. This car wasn't just built for speed; it was built to max out at 260 miles per hour and take the record for fastest street legal car. While the 9ff GT9-R did blow away most of the competition, it only managed (a very impressive) 254 miles per hour run in 2008.
Zenvo Automotive was the creator on the Zenvo ST1, which was rolled out in 2009. Up to 2016 only 15 of these supercars were produced, making them as exclusive as they are powerful.
The McLaren P1 hypercar is a part of the McLaren Ultimate series, which began with the highly acclaimed McLaren F1. Many persons view the P1 as the natural, though unofficial, successor to the F1. It can be referred to as a modern hybrid version built with the same emphasis on power and speed.
Ferrari's limited edition LaFerrari featured decreased fuel consumption coupled with increased power output, making it an attractive high-end option. The company rates this hypercar at 217 miles per hour, but independent tests have it pushing past 220 miles per hour with ease.
According to the company, along with a maximum speed of 255 miles per hour, the Koenigsegg Regera needs just under 11 seconds to go from 0 to 186 miles per hour. Taking all of its extreme high-performance design features and cost into consideration, the Koenigsegg Regera is one of those cars which truly qualifies for megacar status.
Officially called the Ferrari 365 GTB/4, the Daytona held the production car record in 1968 when its performance figures stated it could achieve a top speed of 174 miles per hour. The car earned its nickname, Daytona, thanks to Ferrari's 1-2-3 finish in the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1967.
220 miles per hour was the top speed of the 2010 Pagani Zonda Tricolore, making it, by far, the most performance focused of the Zonda line. The sleek and powerful Tricolore was designed as a true supercar, with only 3 units ever produced, making it one of the rarest cars, indeed.
Only 7 units of the One:1 were built by Swedish manufacturer Koenigsegg. It was released as a powerful variant of the already powerful Koenigsegg Agera hypercar and ushered in a new term for high-performance car enthusiasts to embrace: megacar! The Koenigsegg One:1 was clocked going at an amazing 240 miles per hour in 2016.
The Ferrari Enzo is named after the company's founder Enzo Ferrari (which is actually the official name of the car). It was clocked completing the quarter mile in 11 seconds thanks, in part, to the 650 horsepower output of its engine. Ferrari produced a total of 400 units of the Enzo during its 2002 to 2004 run.
Lamborghini may have rated the top speed of its Aventador at 217 miles per hour, but there are unofficial speed tests which show one variant of this mid-engine sports car going at a very impressive 230 miles per hour. The Aventador is named after a famous fighting bull, just like its predecessor, the Lamborghini Murciélago.
Performance figures for the Dauer 962 Le Mans reveal that it can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.8 seconds. An independent test of the 962 Le Mans in 1998 got it going at a top speed of 251.4 miles per hour in the 1990s. Even if that was an official record, it would be broken in 2007 by the Bugatti Veyron EB.
The Aston Martin brand features prominently in the James Bond films as the cars of choice for the British Secret Service agent. The super-exclusive Aston Martin One-77 is not one of them, however, although with a top speed of 220 miles per hour, it was definitely 007-worthy.
Twin turbochargers and a promise of hitting 248 miles per hour at top speed helped the Saleen S7 Twin Turbo live up to its supercar status. Performance figures on the Twin Turbo—which was assembled in Irvine, California and produced between 2005 and 2007—included going from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.8 seconds and completing the quarter mile in 10.5 seconds.
Production of the Lamborghini Veneno ran from 2013 to 2014 in honor of the company's 50th anniversary. A total of 14 Venenos were made, of which 2 were not offered for sale and 9 were the Roadster variant. The car's impressive specifications included a top speed of 221 miles per hour and the ability to go from 0 to 62 miles per hour in just 2.8 seconds.
Koenigsegg only built 14 of its CCR sports car and released performance figures showing that it takes just 2.1 seconds to go from 0 to 60 miles per hour and can achieve speeds topping 245 miles per hour (in theory). In reality, it was recorded doing an impressive 241 miles per hour in 2005, giving it the speed record for production cars before that record was broken by the indomitable Bugatti Veyron.
With terms like "Aeromotive Engineering" referring to its design and the use of high-tech aerospace materials in the 22 units which were manufactured, you could expect the Vector W8 to be both aerodynamically advanced and fast—and it was! It was clocked doing 0 to 60 miles per hour in 4.2 seconds and independently estimated to be capable of 218 miles per hour, just under the company's performance figures for the W8 of 242 miles per hour.
197, 199 and 203 miles per hour were some of the test speeds achieved by the Ferrari F40. Those figures were just about in keeping with the company's specification that the F40 could max out at 201 miles per hour. Over 1,300 of this supercar were produced in celebration of Ferrari's 40th anniversary.
The Sport version of the Porsche 959 had set the speed record for production cars at 198 miles per hour in 1986, and then along came the Ruf CTR! In 1987, it bettered the 959's speed and set the record at 213 miles per hour. The celebration lasted until 1993, when legendary McLaren F1 put the record at just over 240 miles per hour, and there it stayed for 11 years!
Between 1984 and 1987, Ferrari produced 272 of its 288 GTO. The 288 GTO is said to achieve speeds of 179 to 189 miles per hour and go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in about 5 seconds. It never held the record for fastest production car, but it was certainly one those to attain supercar status, thanks to its high performance, luxury and price tag.