BAC Mono Unofficially Breaks Goodwood Road-Car Record
The Goodwood Festival of Speed hill climb is a pretty informal event — more celebration than competition. Most drivers showboat their way up the hill to please spectators. Donuts, drifting and bouncing engines off rev limiters are all acceptable forms of self-expression, but every once in while, someone will really go for it on Lord March’s 1.16-mile driveway.
That’s what Briggs Automotive Company (BAC) test driver Oliver Webb did at the 2015 event in the company’s 2016 BAC Mono track-day car, and in the process set an unofficial road-car record of 47.9 seconds, according to the BAC Mono’s onboard telemetry system. The Mono was running in the ‘First Glance’ class, for which times are not officially recorded, but it was much faster than the winning official time of 51.33 seconds set by Anthony Reid in a 2011 Noble M600. It was also faster than the overall road-car record set by Jann Mardenborough in a 2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo.
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The Mono is what Apple might come up with if it were asked to design a track day car. Developed and built at BAC’s factory in the Liverpool, England, the 2016 iteration is an engineering masterpiece with a few new upgrades.
While the Mono is street-legal in its home country, the same can’t be said about it in the U.S.
The engine now displaces 2.5 liters and produces 305 horsepower, a 25-horsepower improvement over the old 2.3-liter mill. It wasn’t exactly porky to begin with, but at a hair under 1,280 pounds, the updated version is also a bit light than the original.
It adds up to an extraordinary power-to-weight ratio of 526 horsepower per ton. All four corners get Kumho V70A street-legal competition tires, which were specially developed for the Mono and used during the record-setting run.
While the Mono is street-legal in its home country, the same can’t be said about it in the U.S. Sector111 in Temecula, California is the sole importer of BAC Monos in the country and will gladly sell you one for $200,000.
But you’re on your own after that. Officially, it’s sold for track use only, but depending on which state you live in and your tolerance for bureaucracy, you might be able to get one road registered on our shores.
Why it matters
In case you were wondering, the overall Goodwood Hill Climb record was set back in 1999 by German Formula 1 driver Nick Heidfeld in a McLaren MP4-13, and it’s unlikely to ever be broken. Event organizers have since disallowed timed runs for F1 cars on safety grounds, meaning runs these days consist mainly of crowd-pleasing burnouts rather than perfectly executed, apex-clipping turns.
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