904kW Hennessey - Texas power play

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IOL mot pic sep7 Hennessey VR1200  1 . Hennessey VR1200 is based on the Cadillac CTS.

Hennesey say they have been making fast cars faster since 1991, but this time they have really outdone themselves. What you are looking at is the Hennessey VR1200 Twin Turbo Coupé, of which exactly 12 will be built during the course of 2013.

It's based on the Cadillac CTS luxury two-seater, but that's where any resemblance to sense and sanity ends.

Shoehorned into the engine bay is a seven-litre all-aluminium V8 with forged steel crank and con rods, forged alloy pistons, gas-flowed cylinder heads, a special Hennessey camshaft, upgraded fuel-injection system and not one but two hand-made turbochargers with twin ball-bearing impeller shafts and billet impellers.

Each has its own waste-gate and breathes out through a stainless-steel exhaust system.


Hennessey quotes peak power of 904kW (just over 1200 old-fashioned horsepower, hence the name) at 6400rpm and a mindboggling 1507Nm (that's enough to register on the Richter scale!) at 4000rpm.

IOL mot pic sep7 Hennessey VR1200 2 Other than that gynormous power-bulge on the bonnet, the body treatment is quite restrained by Texas standards.

All of which is delivered to the rear wheels via either a heavy-duty six-speed 'box with a dual-plate clutch or a beefed-up modification of the original Cadillac auto tranny, and a heavy-duty propshaft.

Hennessey estimates that the VR1200 will dispose of the 0-100km/h spring in less than three seconds. It should blast through the quarter-mile in just on 10 seconds at about 225km/h and top out, given a long enough run, at around 390km/h.

All of which is kept on the straight and narrow by lowered suspension (25mm shorter springs) beefier front and rear anti-roll bars, and revised valving on the factory magnetic ride-control dampers.


Braking is entrusted to 385mm carbon-ceramic discs all round with Brembo eight-piston callipers at front and six-pot grabbers at the back, running on 20” custom Hennessy rims shod with Michelin Pilot Super Sports in 275/30 front and 345/30 rear sizes.

The interior has been tricked out with special leather upholstery with contrasting stitching and the Hennessey logo embroidered on the head restraints, an alcantara headliner, carbon-fibre sill-plates and special floor-mats.

IOL mot pic sep7 Hennessey VR1200 3 Interior is tricked out in leather and alcantara, and no, Cyril, racing harnesses are by no means over the top on a car that hits close to 400kmh. .

By Texas standards (which is where Hennessey is based) the body treatment is quite restrained, starting with the biggest power-bulge we've seen this side of a Lamborghini LM-002, a futuristic, very angular front bumper with a road-kissing splitter (may the patron saint of performance protect the VR1200 from speed bumps!) flared rear wheel-arches and a full-width diffuser, all in carbon fibre.

The prototype car in the pictures is finished in satin black, all over; we think it would look better in gloss back with clear-coat on the light stuff. No doubt the guys at Hennessey will finish yours in any colour you want.


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