HENNESSEY VENOM F5 WORLD PREMIER
America’s Hypercar to Debut at the 2017 SEMA Show
Houston – March 1, 2018 – Hennessey Special Vehicles, Shell and Pennzoil have teamed up to bring the Hennessey Venom F5 to one of the biggest stages in the automotive industry – the 88th Geneva International Motor Show. The hypercar is designed and built by Hennessey with the goal of being the fastest road car on earth. The Venom F5 will make its worldwide debut at the motor show on Tuesday, March 6 and continue to be on display until the conclusion of the show on Sunday, March 18.
“Hennessey partnered with Shell and Pennzoil to defy all odds and to create a vehicle that will be the fastest. Period,” said John Hennessey. “The Venom F5 combines a very low coefficient of drag of 0.33 and a curb weight of fewer than 1,360 kg. Pennzoil Synthetics will be pulsing through the twin-turbo V8 engine that will deliver over 1,600 bhp. It’s no question of if we will break 300 mph but a question of when.”
- 1600 bhp Hennessey Twin Turbo V8 Engine
- Top speed: 301 mph
- 0-186 mph: < 10 sec.
- 0-249 mph-0: < 30 sec.
The brand-new look is very exciting indeed, and arrives as the product of a blank-sheet approach created exclusively by Hennessey and his team. That fresh start gives the F5 a leg up on its predecessor by allowing for more elegant aerodynamic solutions that simply weren’t possible with the Elise-bodied GT.To that end, Hennessey employed advanced computational fluid dynamic (CFD) calculations to make the Venom F5 cut through the air as easily as possible. Features like a flat underfloor and active wing elements work together to bless the speed slab with a Cd of 0.33, making it significantly more streamlined than the Venom GT. And although Hennessey didn’t say anything about downforce, rest assured it’s got the right stuff to stick at speed.The Venom F5’s cockpit is a significant departure from the GT and it’s quite spectacular to look at. Carbon-fiber is almost everywhere. The dashboard, the door panels, the floor, the center console, and even the pillars are made from this lightweight materials. Even the instrument cluster is surrounded by carbon, while the steering wheel has carbon spokes and upper and lower rim sections. I haven’t seen so much carbon-fiber is a production car since… well… since forever.
Hennessey choose an interesting yellow hue to contrast the matte carbon look. The trim starts from the dashboard, surrounding the entire unit, and extends into the upper door panels. From there, it descents toward the rear and then moves toward the dash by surrounding the carbon center sections of the doors. The panels also come with leather pull straps, a nice touch inspired by vintage race cars.
*** The race-spec steering wheel has the instrument cluster mounted in the center ***
Every other surfaces that’s not carbon-fiber is either aluminum, leather, and Alcantara. The latter can be seen on the steering wheel, as well as the incredibly thin (and mostly likely light) seats. Interestingly enough, the seats are very close to each other, separated by a very thin center console that includes only three knobs. A fairly large screen is mounted on the lower dash, probably offering access to the infotainment system. The instrument cluster is also a big screen, with no analogue dials. The rev counter is shown in the middle, with additional information displayed on each side.
Hennessey operates a 36,000-square foot workshop and showroom facility situated on 143 acres near Sealy, Texas (about 45 minutes west of Houston). Hennessey offers a wide variety of dyno-proven, track tested high-performance engine upgrade packages & parts for a variety of modern performance vehicles. Hennessey is also the only tuner in North America that operates its own test track-the Lonestar Motorsports Park 1/4-mile dragstrip facility which is adjacent to the Hennessey workshop & showroom.Hennessey will let you choose between two steering wheels. There’s a more conventional one with leather-covered center section and a racing version that has the instrument cluster placed in the middle, leaving the dashboard without the usual hood. Both steering wheels are equipped with a range of buttons and switches, including a boost button that could be an overboost function for increased performance. All told, the Venom F5 looks gorgeous on the inside and even though it’s not as luxurious as the Bugatti Chiron, it has that race car vibe to it.
Mounted in the middle is a brand-spanking-new 7.4-liter V-8 engine, which once again utilizes two turbochargers for adding on the power. In an interview with Top Gear, Hennessey confirmed that he and his team thought about incorporating a hybrid set-up, a popular choice these days, and possibly even a quad-turbo set-up like the F5’s primary competition, the Buggati Chiron. However, in the end, both ideas got the axe over concerns of adding too much complexity, and more importantly, too much weight.
The Venom F5 has oodles of output to its name – up to 1,600 horsepower and 1,300 pound-feet of torque.
Makes sense to us. And in all honesty, it’s a refreshing approach in a world where it’s usually assumed more technology is always a good thing.
Despite its somewhat simple approach to making the go, the Venom F5 has oodles of output to its name – up to 1,600 horsepower and 1,300 pound-feet of torque.
Impressive, no doubt, but here’s the really important number – 300 mph. Plus. That’s right, the Hennessey says the F5 will be able to eclipse the elusive 300-mph mark. Truly incredible times, indeed.
Compare those figures to the preceding GT’s 1,245 horsepower and 270 mph top speed, and you can see why the F5 took four years to create.
Here’s the really important number – 300 mph. Plus. Truly incredible times, indeed
Routing the power exclusively to the rear wheels is a seven-speed single-clutch paddle-shift transmission, which we think is the right replacement for the GT’s Ricardo six-speed manual. “Why no double-clutch?” you might ask. Once again, simplicity seems to be the name of the game. Of course, if you absolutely must row your own, word has it a third-pedal option is on the way.
Let’s get back to those performance numbers. Hennessey says the Venom F5 will go from 0 to 186 mph (300 km/h) in less than 10 seconds, which makes it quicker than the current crop of Formula 1 cars. What’s more, going from a dig to 249 mph (400 km/h) and back down to 0 takes less than 30 seconds, making the Venom F5 a better performer than the Koenigsegg Agera RS and Bugatti Chiron.
Of course, it bears mentioning that Hennessey has yet to perform the real-world testing required to prove these numbers, but based on the firm’s track record, it’s safe to bet the F5 will hit the mark.
The Venom F5 was built around a carbon fiber chassis. Curb weight is rated at 2,950 pounds, which means there’s less than 2 pounds for each horsepower to motivate.Interestingly, that makes the Venom F5 heavier than the preceding GT by a little over 200 pounds. Culprits for this increase include the bespoke body, the automatic transmission, and the larger engine. That said, tipping the scales at less than 3,000 pounds is still an impressive feat, especially against such heavyweights as the 4,400-pound Bugatti Chiron.
The lower weight also means the Venom F5 doesn’t need tires made from unobtanium to test the upper limits of speed, unlike its Buggy competition. Michelin’s Pilot Sport Cup 2 compound provides the traction for the F5.Finally, carbon-ceramic brakes haul it all down, while also adding a little lightness along the way.
So what’s this bleeding edge of American-bred performance cost? Pricing starts at $1.6 million, and it’s rumored that there will be a variety options on the table for customization. We’re imagining a nicer interior spec and a race-ready spec as just a few examples.
Just 24 individual units are slated for production, with deliveries scheduled for early 2019. Production will take place at Hennessey headquarters in Sealy, Texas.
If you want one, placing an order isn’t a simple matter of filling out a form and sending a check. According to Top Gear, you’ve actually gotta apply for the privilege of owning a Venom F5, and John Hennessey himself is responsible for ultimately choosing who will see one in their garage.
However, Hennessey also likes to characterize itself as an underdog, and while it’s certainly a smaller operation than Bugatti and the VolkswagenGroup (according to the company’s LinkedIn page, the employee head count at HPE is between 11 and 50 individuals), Hennessey did partner with big names like Shell and Pennzoil to develop the Venom F5. In reality, we think the firm is a little closer to a Texas-style version of the sub-100 employee Koenigsegg Automotive.