Supercar Sunday: Lamborghini Veneno Roadster Makes Debut; McLaren P1 Guns for Nurburgring Record
The Lamborghini Veneno was already something of a neon strobe light attached to a mortar that plays electronic dance music compared to the stoic stealth missiles that were the LaFerrari and McLaren P1 during the Geneva Motor Show this year. But while those cars were all about Formula 1 technology and lap times (more about that later), the Veneno was about the sizzle, about enthralling driver and passenger with the best irrationality conceived by humankind. Consider the Lamborghini Veneno Roadster more of the same, but amplified. Powered by the same 6.5-liter V-12 engine with 750 horsepower, the Roadster exposes its passengers to the elements, letting them experience more of the visceral thrill. Power is routed to the ground via a seven-speed automated transmission, and the car comes in at least 400 pounds beneath the Aventador on which it's based, now totaling 3,278 pounds without fuel or any other liquids. By comparison to the Veneno coupe, this car is practically mass production. Whereas the Veneno coupe will find four copies made--one prototype and three sold to U.S. and Middle East customers--Lamborghini says that nine Roadsters will find their way to production. The price? A cool 3.3 million euros, or about $4.5 million at today's exchange rates, not including taxes. But speaking of those stealth missiles--and certainly not to be outdone--the million-dollar McLaren P1 now has confirmed performance statistics that put it into another realm versus just about anything you will ever ride in. Zero to 62 mph? 2.8 seconds. Top speed? 217 mph--electronically limited as not to get too close to the 240-mph McLaren F1 from the 1990s. Fuel economy? 28 U.S. miles per gallon. Seriously. This 903-horsepower hybrid supercar elevates its performance on all levels and may just be the fastest car in the world. Porsche recently set a new record on the Nurburgring in Germany at 6 minutes and 57 seconds with its 918 Spyder. Before that, McLaren was bragging about a 7:04 Ring time. However, now that Porsche has laid out its record time, McLaren is likely to go back with its lighter, more powerful car to see what it can to do change up the pecking order. Production on the P1 has begun, with the first customer having just taken delivery. Buy one of the 375 being made while you still have a chance. Sources: Lamborghini, McLaren
A Texas-based startup says it's found a way to build a better electric motor. We went to go see for ourselves.