Hennessey Sets Road Car Lap Record at COTA

The Venom F5 beat out the McLaren P1 by more than 7 seconds...

Hennessey Special Vehicles has set a new road car lap record at the Circuit of The Americas (COTA) with a 2:10.90 lap of the 3.41-mile-long racetrack.

“Racing, and life, is often more about the journey than the destination. Seeing the Venom F5 take the production car lap record at our home circuit has been an important part of our journey with the F5. We don’t do these things because they are easy, we do them because they are hard. The process of pushing our American hypercar to the limits makes our team of engineers, designers, and technicians better while also delivering an enhanced product and experience to our clients. We look forward to continuing the journey and pushing the Venom F5 to set new speed records in the future,” said John Hennessey, company founder and CEO.

Hennessey Sets Road Car Lap Record at COTA | THE SHOP

Breaking the previous COTA road car lap record by 0.43 seconds makes the track-focused Hennessey Venom F5 Revolution the fastest ever road-going hypercar around the Texan circuit. The flying lap surpassed the 2:11.33 time, recorded by a Czinger C21, plus outpaced the previous McLaren P1 record (2:17.12) by almost seven seconds, according to the company.

“America’s Hypercar” also hit exceptional speeds on the 1,016 meter-long back straight, achieving 193.10 mph.

Hennessey set out to build “the Decathlete of Hypercars.” The objective for the 1,817 bhp twin-turbocharged 6.6-liter V8 hypercar was not only to surpass 300 mph, but to also be a highly capable track car.

Driven by the manufacturer’s in-house test driver, David Donohue, the Venom F5 demonstrated the extent of its capability pulling up to +1.59 G in the corners and -1.61 G under braking. This extreme performance was achieved on street-legal MICHELIN Pilot Sport Cup 2 R tires and utilized Brembo brakes, carbon ceramic discs, and the latest Bosch ABS technology to brake from almost 200 mph safely and under control.

Donohue’s racing skills, combined with the car’s 2,998-pound (1,360 kg) lightweight construction, saw the hypercar aggressively tackle the undulating track and technical corners. Where the circuit straightened, the immense power from Hennessey’s Fury engine enabled the record-breaking time – the Venom F5 can accelerate from 0-200 kph (0-124 mph) in just 4.7 seconds.

Engineering of the track-focused Revolution variant of the Venom F5 was led by Hennessey’s VP of Engineering, Brian Jones, who joined the company in 2023 from his prior posting as chief engineer for the AMG ONE. Brian and the Hennessey engineering team worked to optimize the setup of the Venom F5 to tackle the full 3.41-mile long Grand Prix Circuit.

Compared to the coupe, the lighter and track-honed Revolution features a full-width rear-mounted carbon fiber wing, a significantly larger front splitter and rear diffuser, plus reworked, suspension, engine cooling, and digital telemetry. It also features dive planes ahead of each front wheel that channel air to improve grip at turn-in. Plus, the Revolution has a roof-mounted central air scoop, which delivers cool air to the F5’s engine bay.

“Having been part of developing the Venom F5 Revolution, I knew it was capable of a quick time, but when it came to pushing the car hard, I was blown away by its phenomenal power and exceptional handling. There is no other car in the world that delivers such a visceral and engaging driving experience,” said Donohue.

Hennessey Sets Road Car Lap Record at COTA | THE SHOP

American racing champion Donohue joined Hennessey in 2023 as its hypercar test driver. The 2023 Pikes Peak record-setter has more than three decades of racing experience, including first place wins at 24 Hours of Le Mans, the North American Touring Car Championship, and the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

For the record-setting lap, independent, third-party timing was conducted by RACELOGIC using its VBOX satellite telemetry and data logging systems. Further verifying the run, the RACELOGIC team captured unbroken video footage of the record lap – the complete video is viewable on the Hennessey YouTube channel.

The Venom F5 Revolution that completed the fastest road car lap ran on street legal tires, used regular Shell pump ethanol, and was filled with standard Pennzoil fluids.

Having established the track-based credentials, the company is set to push toward the car’s 300-plus-mph V-max. In development, the Venom F5 achieved more than 270 mph at the former NASA Shuttle Landing Facility at Cape Canaveral in Florida. The search is now on for a runway or public road with a sufficiently long strait to allow the 1,817 bhp twin-turbo V8 monster to accelerate beyond 300 mph and return to zero safely.

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