Aside from modified, one-off, race and custom cars, the list below presentsthe four fastest production automobiles in the world at the time of writing. These are cars that you could (if you had the money) buy and drive away in—very, very quickly.
The fastest cars in the world are:
- KoenigseggAgera RS (278 mph)
- Bugatti Veyron Super Sport (268 mph)
- Bugatti Chiron (261 mph)
- SCC Ultimate Aero (256 mph)
So, how is “fastest” determined?
Speed Test Criteria
Speed tests are usually conducted somewhere long, flat, straight and dry; no one is measuring for how fast under normal conditions, like going to the grocery store and back. Flat-out, full-tilt, pedal-to-the-metal speed only—and it must be verified, usually by the venerable people at the Guinness Book of World Records. Verification of speed attained is normally taken from two trips in opposing directions, to allow for wind resistance. The speeds are then averaged.
Koenigsegg Agera RS
You can watch the speed tests on this one here.On a highway in the Nevada desert outside of Las Vegas, the Koenigsegg Agera RS got up to 284 (and a bit) miles per hour in one direction. Then it hit nearly 271 (and a bit) miles per hour in the other. Average speed: nearly 278 mph.
According to the Koenigsegg, the Agera RS is the “ultimate in road and track versatility” and “offer[s] the most extreme performance available” and yet is also “fully road legal.” Which means, the twin turbo aluminum 5.0L V8 engine that pumps out 1,160 horsepower; the super light hollow carbon fiber wheels; the stock MichelinPilot Sport Cup 2, or optional Michelin Pilot Super Sport“for everyday use”; the 7-speed paddle-shift with auto shift mode and electronic differential; and more, make up one mean street machine. This car costs more than $2,000,000 in the US.
Bugatti Veyron Super Sport
The former speed king, the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, clocks in at 268 mph in its own two-way average speed test, conducted on the Volkswagen’s test track near Wolfsburg, Germany—though the car was somewhat modified from its stock look that tops out at a mere 258 mph.
The 16-cylinder stock engine generates an impressive 1,200 horespower, with a 7-speed gearbox controlling all-wheel drive. Check out the whole thing on the Bugatti website, including all the specs. However, make note of one thing: this car is no longer made and is sold out.
This is the car that replaced the Veyron Super Sport. The Chiron will set you back more than $2,500,000 in the U.S. It can reach speeds of up to 261 mph.
The 16-cylinder, 8.0L 4 turbocharged engine puts out an awesome 1,500 horsepower. You can read all about the dynamics and aerodynamics of the Bugatti Chironon the manufacturer’s website. While video for the true speed test for this vehicle has proven elusive, check out this video of Chris Harris getting to enjoy a day with this car in some pretty spectacular driving conditions.
SCC Ultimate Aero
Only on a list like this can a car be called slow for “only” hitting 256 mph. Eight years ago it was the fastest production car on the road.This videoshowing off a speed test doesn’t show it making its top speed, but it’s still going really, really fast.
This thing has a “supercharged” 377.6 cu in V8 engine that pumps out over 1,000 horsepower in its basic configuration. There’s also a TT and XT version that pumps out more horsepower and goes faster—up to the 256 miles per hour mark. One of these will take about $3,000,000 to own.
Can Cars Be “Runners Up”?
H3: SSC Tuatara
Contesting the crown of speed king is the SSC Tuatarareportedly hit 300 mph. It packs a 5.9L “supercharged” V8 engine with seven-speed transmission which puts out up to a monster 1,750 HP. However, at this writing, this result is unofficial. Will it unseat the Koenigsegg Agera RS? We’ll likely know soon enough.
H3:Hennessey Venom F5
Edging out even the SSC Tuatara is the Hennessey Venom F5. Taking the lead in speed, this machine reputedly hit 301 mph. While that speed is as yet unofficial, what is definite is the 1,600 horsepower, 7.4L twin-turbo V8 engine that might make this the fastest production car on the planet. Meanwhile, as if that weren’t enough, this powerhouse reportedly goes from 0 mph to 249 mph back to 0 mph inside of 30 seconds.