280mph-plus for latest Hennessey Venom GT

Latest iteration the fastest yet - but will soon make way for an even faster Venom F5

American tuning firm Hennessey has released details of its latest Venom hypercar, set to make its debut at the SEMA show in Las Vegas this week.

‘Being the fastest matters’ says company founder John Hennessey. As a result, the 2016 Venom GT has gained significant power over even its ludicrously potent predecessor and touts some spectacular acceleration and top speed figures.

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Total output has now climbed to 1451bhp at 7200rpm. That’s a gain of 207bhp over its predecessor – a full Peugeot 208 GTi 30th and some change – while Hennessey also claims an increase in torque from the 7-litre, twin-turbocharged V8 sitting amidships.

Some of those gains are down to the car’s newfound ability to run on fuel with heavy ethanol content – E85 Flexfuel. That in turn has allowed Hennessey to turn up the boost pressure from 19psi to 26psi.

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Combined with a set of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres and a GPS-based traction control system (not to mention a relatively light 1244kg kerb weight), the 60mph, 100mph and 200mph marks are passed in only 2.4, 4.4 and 12.8 seconds from rest.

Hennessey also lists a few other performance figures – the standing quarter mile is dispatched in 9.4sec at 167mph, the 300km/h barrier is passed in 10.9sec, and 0-400km/h takes 18.1sec.

And the top speed? ‘280+ mph’, says Hennessey – over 10mph faster than the 270.4mph the previous Venom GT achieved on the runway at Kennedy Space Center in 2014.

Just a ‘handful’ will be made as Hennessey is already developing the next-generation car, the Venom F5. John Hennessey promises ‘improved power and performance’ from that model, too.

Along similar lines, Hennessey will use SEMA to launch a new, 774bhp version of the Ford Mustang Convertible, and a 650bhp take on the Ford F-150 Raptor – VelociRaptor, in Hennessey-speak.

SEMA – for Specialty Equipment Market Association – is held each year at the Las Vegas Convention Center, and brings together tuning firms and parts suppliers from all over the world. This year's show runs from November 3-6.

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