A few weeks ago, the Guinness Book of World Records stripped Bugatti of their title of the World’s Fastest Production Car. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport that was used for the record attempt had been modified in a way that would be unavailable to the public.
Bugatti had put a speed limiter for 258 mph for customers on the grounds of safety (I don’t know how THAT logic works!), but the Veyron Super Sport that broke the record went 267.883, in other words, 268 mph.
Bugatti never kept the fact that ALL Veyron Super Sports came with a 258 mph speed limiter. In fact, they’d even told the Guinness Book of World Records in 2010, when they were about to attempt the record.
Doubts of the legality of the record started when Hennessey Performance Engineering got their Venom GT super car up to 265.7 mph and claimed that it was the fastest production car ‘actually’ available to the public.
Fast forward three years to April 15, 2013. Guinness Book of World Records officials reinstated the Veyron Super Sport as the fastest production car on the grounds that a change to the speed limiter does not affect the car or its engine.
The full statement, first sent to the Sunday Times, states: Following a thorough review conducted with a number of external experts, Guinness World Records is pleased to announce the confirmation of Bugatti’s record of Fastest production car achieved by the Veyron 16.4 Super Sport. The focus of the review was with respect to what may constitute a modification to a car’s standard specification. Having evaluated all the necessary information, Guinness World Records is now satisfied that a change to the speed limiter does not alter the fundamental design of the car or its engine.”
The fact that the Hennessey Venom GT came within 3 mph of the Veyron Super Sport makes me wonder how long it will be before the record is broken. Of course, the record could be broken by an even faster Veyron! Bugatti’s 2013 Veyron Grand Vitesse got the title of the World’s Fastest Convertible at 254 mph! There’s also talk from Bugatti of an even-faster, more-powerful Veyron in the works. This ultra-Veyron would have about 1,600 horsepower and go about 280 mph. That math was done by somebody other than me! This Veyron-in-the-works would need about 400 more horsepower than the Super Sport to go faster. It would also need tires that can handle the high speeds. The tires used for the Veyron Super Sport cost almost $3,000 a piece to make. They only last 12 minutes at full throttle or 1 mile at 268 mph. They wouldn’t be able to handle going 280 mph for more than a second or two. Currently, the only tires that can handle these speeds are stock cars, INDY cars, and F1 tires. Guinness Book of World Records requires that the tires used for the land-speed record attempt are street-legal, and used on the vehicles sold to the public.