Bugatti Veyron Super Sport (France)
The Bugatti Veyron line has been widely accepted as one of the fastest street-legal cars in the world since 2005 when they first went in production. But Bugatti hasn’t stopped, producing newer and faster models of the Veyron every year or so. All of their tinkering over the past eight years has accumulated to the pantie-dropping-ly beautiful, aneurysm-inducing-ly fast Veyron Super Sport, the current first place holder.
Hennessey Venom GT (USA)
Though it has only reached one (only one) mile per hour of velocity under that of the Veyron Super Sport, American hyper-car brand Hennessey claims that given enough space, the Venom GT can reach a top speed of a staggering 275 mph. Because its claimed ability is so much more than that of the Veyron, and because the tested speed came so close to it, we had to implement a tie for first place.
Koenigsegg Agera R (Sweden)
The Swedish brand has always been a bit of an enigma in the car world, with unverified rumors of speed records and controversies over street-legality. Fortunately, this model has been officially clocked at 260 mph and, luckily enough, it is one of few Koenigseggs that are street-legal in the United States. Unfortunately, you still can’t afford it.
SSC (Shelby Super Cars) Ultimate Aero (USA)
Shelby is the closest thing to a turf rival that Hennessey has, as they both produce only limited-edition hyper-cars and souped-up versions of domestic brands’ sportier vehicles such as Ford Mustangs, Cadillac CT-Vs, Dodge SRTs, and the like. The Ultimate Aero held the title of the fastest car in the world for three years from 2007 to 2010, until the contenders above surpassed its performance and pushed it to third. Maybe SSC’s upcoming Tuatura can claim it back.
9ff GT9-R (Germany)
The 9ff is a German tuning company (similar to Hennessey and Shelby) operating out of Dortmund, and the GT9-R is its revision of the Porsche Carrera. Keeping consistent with Porsche’s ability to be quick, the GT9-R can hit 60 mph in under three seconds. So if you ever take it off the track, remember to put a stopper in your coffee.
Saleen S7 Twin-Turbo (USA)
One of the older cars on the list, the S7 came into production in 2000. As the first true (and prevailing) contender to the likes of the McLaren F1, the S7 gained praise for its 8-mile-per-hour dominance as well as its innovative styling, mixing a cutely bug-eyed face with a mean vent-covered body.
Koenigsegg CCX (Sweden)
A predecessor of the Agera R, the CCX first appeared in American markets in 2006. Again, this Koenigsegg is in fact USA-approved, but you’d have to sell your house to afford it.
McLaren F1 (Great Britain)
The McLaren F1, first on production in 1992, is a legend in the racing world, far surpassing the abilities of other track contenders of the nineties and even of opponents today. It’s really more suitable in a museum than in a garage.
Zenvo ST1 (Denmark)
You read that right – number seven hails from Denmark. Only 15 cars are made, and Zenvo guarantees pan-continental house calls if your ST1 needs maintenance.
Pagani Huayra (Italy)
Paganis are crazy fast and crazy cool. Any preteen who knows his cars will tell you a Pagani is the first thing on his lottery money wish list, right before the trophy wife that comes with it. Unfortunately for them, Paganis aren’t street-legal in the U.S. so for now expect to find them on the streets of Monaco and in the driveways of eccentric Russian mobsters and Arab sheikhs.
Gumpert Apollo (Germany)
A bit clunky, but it gets the job done. That is, of course, if the job is to give whiplash to unsuspecting passengers. It definitely looks menacing and its counterpart the Apollo R (though not as fast) looks even meaner.
Noble M600 (Great Britain)
It’s quite vanilla. But despite the M600 being both the most simply styled and the least expensive on the list (though neither are saying much), it hauls ass. It’s discrete when you need it to be and an eye-catcher when you want it to be.
Lamborghini Veneno (Italy)
Hint: Paint matte black to feel more like Batman. Of course, only Bruce Wayne has the money and connections to obtain a Veneno, as not only does the price tag rest just under $4 million, but only three of the Italian bulls (as all Lambos are named after fighting bulls) were made worldwide. Not even the pope could get one.
Ferrari LaFerrari (Italy)
The only hybrid on the list, the upcoming LaFerrari is a reincarnation of the legendary Enzo. Hopefully there won’t be as many LaFerrari crashes as was the case with its forefather (consult YouTube if you don’t understand the reference), as it is one of the leanest, most beautiful Ferraris of the 21st century. With edges so sharp and fine, you can cut yourself just by glancing by it too quickly.
Aston Martin One-77 (Great Britain)
The next logical trade-in for James Bond, the One-77 is as sexy as, and faster than, any Aston; and it’s easy to imagine rocket launchers popping out of the long hood or huge grill. Plus, much like Mr. Bond’s female acquaintances, the One-77 seems like something we’d like to wake up to in the morning.