Even though Hennessey encourages comparisons of their VENOM GT to the Shelby Cobra, in reality, the concept car is the combination of two other automotive icons: the Lotus Exige and Chevrolet Corvette. As you could probably guess, one provides the chassis and the other the powerplant. Compared to any car, the expected performance figures are pretty staggering.
Hennessey is well-known for his upgraded Camaro, Viper and Corvette vehicles, which makes interest in this concept car so elevated. John Hennessey fully recognizes, however, that he is not the first Texan to dream up shoving a huge, powerful American engine into a small, light British car. Hence the coincidental homage to Shelby with the concept vehicles “Venom” designation, a label present in one other Hennessey produced vehicle. Still if that weren’t enough indication about this car’s potential, the aggressive exterior design makes sure the message is fully delivered.
Unlike the Cobra, the VENOM GT is mid-engined to optimize weight distribution and handling. When the car is fully unveiled in March of 2010, it will produce over 1,000 (perhaps close to 1,200) horsepower via the substantially-tuned Corvette ZR1’s LS9 engine that also delivers 950 lb. feet of torque. A Twin Turbo System helps motivate the already nimble 2395 lb. VENOM GT via a six-speed manual transmission. Now that we’ve sufficiently built it up, estimates of acceleration are predicted to result in 0 to 60 mph times of 2.2 seconds, 0 to 100 mph in 4.9 seconds, and an unbelievable top speed of 262 mph. The equally substantial braking prowess is provided by 15 inch carbon rotors with 6-piston calipers up front and 14 inch carbon rotors with 4-piston calipers in the rear.
Those that question whether Hennessey can move into supercar territory after unleashing brutal Camaro, Vipers and Jeeps are reminded by the Texan that his Viper-based Venom 1000 Twin Turbo SRT previously bested the Bugatti Veyron in an independent test from 0-200 mph. Unlike the Veyron or the Venom 1000, the Venom GT is being touted as a more engaging sports car to drive by challenging the driver with 1000+ horses in a chassis that is nearly 1500 lbs lighter than the Bugatti
Venom 1000 Twin Turbo SRT Coupe
In the end, demand for the new vehicle will ultimately be the deciding factor in the concept’s viability in being made. The expected base price is given as $600,000 and if built will certainly be an extremely limited production model.