The presenters over at Top Gear have seen and driven just about every supercar that has been produced for the last decade, so it’s not surprising that the fastest lap times around their race track belong to the fastest and most powerful machines on the planet.
But as the course of history has shown us, once in a while, a modern day David arrives with a rock and a sling in hand to topple the mighty Goliaths in one fell swoop.
Weighing only 550 kg and powered by a 3.0-liter V8 engine that produces 500 horsepower, this David is by no means a pushover. It’s the Ariel Atom V8 500 and it sure made quite an impression on Top Gear.
Hit the jump for the record-breaking details!
gallery: Ariel Atom V8 500
Reviewed by Captain Slow himself, James May, the Atom V8 made the pedestrian presenter look like Michael Schumacher as it sped around the track like a black, red, and gold rocket burning up everything that stood in its way, including a Lexus LF-A , a Lamborghini Gallardo , and a BMW S1000 RR, considered to be the world’s most powerful road bike.
Thanks to a power-to-weight figure of around 900 horsepower per ton, the Atom V8 blistered all three vehicles put against it, and did so beyond conviction.
Knowing that they may have found a car that could potentially destroy the lap record set by the Veyron Super Sport, Clarkson and the boys went out and sought the help of a new (old) friend to take the Atom V8 out for a flying lap around the track: The Stig.
The faceless test driver drove the Atom at such blistering a pace that it clocked a lap time of 1:15.1, a full 1.17 seconds faster than the Super Sport’s 1:16.8 lap time, breaking – more like demonstrably shredding – the Top Gear track’s lap record.
Ladies and gentlemen, this little David with a 500 horsepower engine packs more than just a rock and a sling. Much, much more.