Godfather of the outrageously quick, Hennessey Performance unveils the production version of the Venom F5 hypercar. And it is… well… apt.
Let’s not beat around the bush, 6.7l V8 with two turbos. 1,817HP at 8,000 RPM. Top speed is irrelevant. Mainly because you will be hard pressed to find a stretch of tarmac long enough to find it. Not really because of how long it would take to reach it, but because after 400 KPH you will be doing over 110 meters per second. And that takes you to the next town rather soon. And the truth is the makers don’t know it yet. It seems that it won’t be until 2021 when the NASA Kennedy Space Center will loan the 5.2km Shuttle Landing runway for Hennessey to try and max the Venom F5 out.
Combine the power with 1,385kg and you get power-to-weight ratios that are awfully close to F1 cars. The Hennessey designed carbon chassis features an intricate carbon weave in a herringbone pattern down the center line of the car. Molding the carbon fiber interior and exterior parts required more than 600 separate bespoke pieces of tooling. During the car’s three-year engineering development, significant time has been spent on perfecting the chassis and body of the car to achieve lightness and torsional rigidity. The exterior body panels are also carbon fiber. As well as part of the doors. Curiously, Hennessey has integrated the door sills into the doors, facilitating car access. Likely they realized that 2.1 million USD belong to tired bones and fragile joints far more often than to prime athletes and youtube stars…
Green through carbon… fiber
At 4,666mm (183.7 inches) long and 1,971mm (77.6 inches) wide, the F5 is only marginally larger than its spiritual predecessor, the Venom GT. Maintaining this compact, taught form, the bodywork wraps tightly around the forged aluminium wheels (19-inch front / 20-inch rear), accentuating the low, speed-optimised stance. The bodywork looks as though it is shrink-wrapped around the core components of the car – particularly when in its ‘low’ road setting – ride height can be adjusted at front (75 – 140mm / 3 – 5.5 inches) and rear (85 – 160mm / 3.3 – 6.3 inches) to raise the car over speed bumps, or for loading, etc).
At the rear the F5’s spoiler is subtle, a cut-out that sits just above the bodywork and the rear deck of the car, allowing air to flow above and underneath enhancing stability at high speed while boosting downforce for regular road driving. Customers will be able to order a ‘track pack’ that includes a more aggressive front splitter and a rear mounted wing, which replaces the rear spoiler to deliver greater downforce.
Once inside, you are greeted by a F1-style steering wheel. All the dials and displays are digital and most of the controls are on the steering wheel itself. Sport, Wet, Drag, Track, and F5 modes. However, I don’t know what to think of the person that would dream of controlling the F5 in the wet. I do hope that mode means rev limiter at 2,500 RPM and power to 150HP…
Hard to come by, but worth it
Hennessey will make just 24 units and they are to be bespoke to client’s demands. Priced at 2.1 million USD, the Venom is sure to stencil its name in history. There is, however, one more detail I would like to mention. And that is the gear ratio of reverse. At 2.875, with 8,000RPM of range, and 345 / 30 R20 tyres, you can go backwards at speeds upwards of 100 KPHwards… Seems high for a car with no rear-view mirror, and a rather tough rear visibility.
|Engine||6.5l - V8|
|Top Speed||500 KPH|