2017 Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition
The last of the Venom GTs leaves a lasting legacyby Kirby Garlitos, on
If I told you that a company that’s best known in aftermarket circles was able to build a car that not only challenged the supercar establishment, but outright made everyone tremble in fear, would you believe me? The narrative certainly fits into something you’re more likely to trace back to a Hollywood screenwriter, but let me tell you something. It actually happened, and it happened as recently as 2011 when Hennessey announced plans to build a Lotus Elise-based, limited-run supercar. The tuner decided to call it the Venom GT and the rest, as they say, is history.
Fast forward to this year and it’s hard to imagine that the Hennessey Venom GT, one of the greatest supercars of the decade, is now prepared to make its final curtain call. No one’s going to say that the Venom GT was a commercial success – each model did cost in excess of $1 million – but where it lacked in volume, it more than made up for by setting one world record after another, including the fastest production car in the world, at least depending on who you ask.
Whatever the controversies surrounding the Venom GT were, nobody will deny that the supercar irrevocably changed the landscape of that segment in more ways than one. It proved that an aftermarket tuner like Hennessey was more than capable of staring down the Bugattis and Koenigseggs of the world without blinking. It proved that a car that was based on a separate car could write its own history. Most importantly, the Venom GT proved that it’s a car that will be remembered long after Hennessey sends it off into the sunset.
So here we are with Hennessey about to send off the Venom with its very own Final Edition model. The company only plans to build one model, and to no one’s surprise, it already has an owner. Seems fitting then that for a car whose legacy was always about leaving everything in its wake, the Venom GT Final Edition is now gone even before we knew anything about it.
Continue reading to learn more about the Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition.
2017 Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition
What makes the Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition special
There are different levels of “special” in the auto industry and the Venom GT Final Edition belongs in the top level of special. Not only is it limited, it’s actually a one-off. That means that from here until eternity, there will always be just one Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition. That in itself is reason to celebrate the car’s status.
Beyond that, there are a number of things about the Venom GT Final Edition that justifies its one-piece status. It’s the only Venom GT to sport a “Glacier Blue” paint finish with white racing stripes that run from the tip of the nose and extends all the way to the rear spoiler. And that’s about it. Yep.
I know the lack of exclusive items on the Venom GT Final Edition runs counter to the whole point of a car with a “one-off” label, but as was established earlier, the Venom GT is already exclusive enough in its own right. Besides, when the car that’s in the spotlight comes with a Chevrolet Corvette-sourced 7.0-liter V-8 engine with a twin-turbo setup that produces a stomach-churning 1,451 horsepower and more than 1,155 pound-feet of torque, it can afford to have little to no exclusive features and it’ll still be categorized as a special piece.
Speaking of which, it is notable that the Venom GT Final Edition is based on the 2016 Venom GT since the latter already comes with an extra 207 horsepower over the previous model-year. In fact, the one-off Venom GT’s power figures are more than enough to propel it from a standstill position to 60 mph in just 2.4 seconds to go with a “claimed” top speed that’s in excess of 280 mph. Imagine that. The 2016 Venom GT Final Edition has a higher top speed than the version of the same car that posted 270.4 mph on the Shuttle Landing Runway at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center back in February 2014.
For a better idea on how capable the Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition is, check out the table below to see how it stacks up against two cars that are also making their respective cases as the fastest and most mental production car in the world today.
|Model||Power||Torque||0 to 60 MPH||Top Speed|
|Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition||1,451 horsepower||over 1,155 pound-feet||2.4 seconds||280 mph|
|Bugatti Chiron||1,500 horsepower||1,100 pound-feet||2.4 seconds||286 mph|
|Koenigsegg One:1||1,341 horsepower||1,011 pound-feet||2.5 seconds||273 mph|
Sure, the Venom GT doesn’t have the numbers of the Bugatti Chiron, but look past those numbers and read between those lines. Bugatti and Koenigsegg are established automakers with a history of building its own supercars and hypercars. Hennessey, on the other hand, is largely known for being a tuner of all things American-made, be it the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Viper. The mere fact that Hennessey was able to build and develop the Venom GT with little assistance and received a six-year run out of it is remarkable beyond belief.
Note: photos of the Bugatti Chiron and the Koenigsegg One:1
It figures that for a car as capable as the Bugatti Chiron and the Koenigsegg One, the Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition costs around the same as its peers. Sure, the one and only Venom GT Final Edition model is already spoken for, but the person who ended up buying the car had to pay $1.2 million for the sheer honor and privilege of owning the one-off model.
What does Hennessey have in store for the future?
The end of the Venom GT’s life means that Hennessey doesn’t have its own car to compete against the new wave of exotics that are entering the market today. The 2016 Venom GT can still do that for the most part, but the model’s production end will leave a gaping hole in that segment. The good news is that Hennessey isn’t done building its own supercars. Nope. Not by a long shot.
A new model, the Venom F5 is expected to arrive within the year that will officially serve as the Venom GT’s successor. Hennessey has yet to divulge specific details about the Venom F5, except for a few notable goals. Two of those goals is to get a power output of 1,400 horsepower and a top speed of 290 mph, which would technically surpass Bugatti’s 286-mph top speed claim for the Chiron.
A few more important details about the Venom F5 include Hennessey’s plant to give it a new exterior that will be made exclusively out of carbon fiber to go with a bespoke all-American chassis. Put all these things together and you have a car that we all have ridiculously high expectations for. Whether Hennessey can achieve the same level of success with the Venom F5 as it did with the Venom GT is a question that can only be answered by time. It is fitting though, if not a little foreboding, that the “F5” name the American company is using for the car is inspired by the classification that’s given to the most devastating of tornadoes. Talk about high expectations.
The Venom GT leaves behind a lasting legacy
In the meantime, all eyes should be on the Venom GT Final Edition and rightfully so. It’s the last of a model that started off with little fanfare and expectations and is about to end with the whole supercar world at its feet. The Hennessey Venom GT will go down as one of the unlikeliest all-time great supercars in history, and exactly like the reputation it created, the Venom GT Final Edition managed to leave everyone in the dust without us even knowing it was there in the fast place.
So to whoever ended up buying the Hennessey Venom GT Final Edition for $1.2 million, let me say this: You sir, are one lucky man.