Sometimes just because you can do something, should you? Should there be sports cars so luxurious, so prestigious, so gut-grippingly powerful that even the rich cannot own them?
Oh God, of course there should.
These sports cars may be singularly unique; these sports cars may only be driven by an elite few, but these sports cars are works of art. Science may have perfected the technical genius that gives the distinctive torque raw of a turbo but it is an artist that shapes the smallest details, who etches its silhouette against a tarmac horizon.
For cars to become more efficient, more ergonomic and more desirable to every man, there needs to be someone stretching the imagination of what is possible. If all cars were designed and engineered to be average then we would still be twisting the front grill crankshaft. These most beautiful and inaccessible of cars extend what is possible with the humble cars we drive.
So, here are fifteen of the most amazing sports cars ever to be designed and built. You may debate whether the expending of resources really does advance technology, or maybe just ego, but your heart will know that these cars deserve to exist beyond someone’s imagination.
15. $1.85 million – Aston Martin One-77
This should be at the pinnacle of the list if design kudos is limited to sheer sexiness of lines and form. This is a young boy’s daydream. It is the car of movie stars and cool supermodels. Unlike some super cars, obsessed with weight and power ratio, the One-77 has an interior so indulgent it will give you heartburn. You sink into the reclined seats and feel part of luscious curves and ergonomic controls.
The name relates to the number of cars produced – 77 – which gives it the essential exclusivity of the absurdly rich. It has been described as the Savile Row of the car design playbook. With a carbon fibre chassis and a handcrafted aluminium body, it is on the heavy side. But, with a 7.3-litre V12 engine it is no slouch on the road either. The estimated top speed in a reasonable 322 KMH and it accelerates to 100 KPH in 3.5 seconds.
14. $2 million Lamborghini Revention
Classic Lamborghini shape but a sinister engine cover and front vents make this the Darth Vader of the super car world. This is only accentuated by the small rodent-like eyes of the headlamps. The look is so extreme, the spec so special, that the company have limited production to a mere 20. With such exclusivity comes a major bill, it seems.
The angle at the front, which gives it an evil glint, is to help improve the air intake that is needed to cool the 12 cylinder callipers and carbon disk brakes. It is also meant to massively improve the aerodynamics of the car. With a maximum speed of 340 KPH, the guys have done well at Lamborghini to offer extreme performance for the rather large price!
13. $2 million Koenigsegg One:1
This is a pretty special car – if the claims are to be believed. 0 – 400 KMH is achieved in a ridiculous 20 seconds… what would the G force of that experience be? Brilliant for the adrenalin track junky!
The name comes from the idea of the balance of power to weight: one metric horsepower to one kilogram of mass.
This is a car of clever tricks – the sort of thing that people get pay raises for – like the paper clip or the car cup holder maybe. There is the automatic raising of the ride height to deal with speed humps – then there is the ability of the car to learn the tracks you drive around and respond automatically to its needs – or maybe it is the stability control system that smooths the ride.
12. $2.2 Lamborghini Sesto Elemento
If I asked you to think of a Lamborghini, chances are, something very similar to the Sesto Elemento is what your brain will conjure – it is a classic design from the Italian car makers. The car name means “sixth element” this is a reference to the atomic number of carbon. Why? Well – we guess this is because the car is largely made of carbon fibre – including the chassis, body, driveshaft and suspension. This makes this beauty super-light at a mere 999 kg. It is the attention to detail of the car maker to get it that 1kg below the 1000 – so they can appear like they have shaved off every gram possible.
The lack of weight means that the insides are a little bare too – none of the luxurious extras of the modern mid-range saloon. It wouldn’t be too much of an exaggeration to say that there were just a couple of bits of foam stuck to the chassis pretending to be seats.
But… this is made up with a six-speed semi-automatic transmission with a paddle shift, 5.2 litre V10 engine – with air released through 10 hexagonal holes in the engine cover. This is a powerhouse of a car, with a 0-100 KM H acceleration time of just 2.5 seconds.
11. $2.4 million Bugatti Veyron Super Sport
Bugatti has certainly been busy shaping this new design language of theirs. This super sport range is a pumped-up version of the successful sports car range. The aim of the car, according to the manufacturer, is to expand the limits of possibility. Do they succeed? Well, it is a beautiful car, if you view it from the front, with lots of flat surfaces and matt finish. The back remains a little strange – with its slightly rounded butt. Yet, it boasts 1,200 horsepower and a not-too-shabby-2.5-seconds to reach 100 KPH. Top speed is limited to 415 KPH to prevent the tyres from disintegrating and the low ride height gives it good hold on the road. But, it is a bit of a mixed story from the Veyron.
10. $2.5 million Bugatti Chiron
Bugatti claim that this car is the most luxurious, most prestigious super car on the market. This is quite the claim considering the company they are keeping. It is a strange car – looking a little squat in shape and with some rather odd dents and dimples to help with the aero. It is claimed to represent the Bugatti new language of design that accentuated the performance of the car. This is code for: we wanted to make it look fast.
The Chiron comes with a new engine design too. There is a 4 turbocharger, 16 cylinder and 1,500 horse power monster giving “unbelievable acceleration”. The top speed is said to be somewhere close to 400 KMH. There is certainly some beastly power to this machine but arguably missing some of the beauty of other models.
9. $2.5 million Ferrari F60 America
Ferrari has an appropriate showing on this super car of super car lists – as you would imagine. However, none is more stunning than the F60 America. It is a car you would imagine James Dean driving coolly along a highway at sunset. It’s classic and masculine shape is enough to set any man’s chest on fire.
The idea of an open top supercar might sound insane – but it is certainly one way of making sure that you wake up in the morning. There are 730 horses underneath that sexy bonnet and they all ram you from the rear. It will take you a mere 3.1 seconds to make the 100 KPH and the top speed is sure to top 322 KPH. Those execs are certainly going to have to hold onto their rugs with that open top pace!
8. $2.6 million Pagani Huayra BC
Everything about this car is lighter than its predecessors, as Pagani has worked at the small details to make sure the performance of the Huayra is better than the past. This drive for a 40% lighter car is matched with impressive power – with a 6 litre V12 bi-turbo with 789 horsepower. The company has also worked on the transmission, meaning the shift times are 50% quicker. Let’s cut this story short – everything about this car is better than anything Pagani has produced before.
7. $2.7 million LaFerrari FXX K
This is a Ferrari through and through – especially when painted in the traditional red of the Italian supercar company. The profile of the car projects you forward, as if moving when stationary. It is a beautiful car, with more than a hint of its Formula One big brother.
With 1036 prancing horses beneath the bonnet and the K in the title standing for KERS – this is Ferrari’s most powerful super car to date. Sitting in the driving seat makes it clear that this is a track car and the aggressive power settings allow for a recharge of the system within a lap.
6. $3 million Ferrari Pininfarina Sergio
Is there a more fitting tribute to a great car designer than a concept design built in their honour? Sergio Pininfarina died in 2012 at the age of 85. This car uses some of the style that Pininfarina championed in the design of the Ferrari Spider. This is a beautiful car, with all the style you would hope from the Ferrari stable. A rich, sweeping curve to a sleek front spoiler, with the classic horse rearing at the point.
Ferrari chose to innovate in this tribute car with some of the interior features, such as the headrests, forming part of the exterior aerodynamics rather than disappearing into the innards of the car.
The designers have optimised the aerodynamics of this roadster and used full carbon in the body work – making this a super light arrow on the road. The Italians have shown why emotion should be central to the emergence of the art of car design.
5. $3.4 million Limited Edition Bugatti Veyron
This is a beautiful super sports car that does not sacrifice its sleek lines and curves to aerodynamics. Despite its road car cover, this machine has extreme power. With more than 1,000 bhp to call upon, it is the quickest road car to 100 KPH and despite its weight, it can certainly win out on the track.
The secret to the Veyron’s speed comes with a special key. This key lowers the car to just a few inches off the ground and a hydraulic spoiler extends at speed and serves as an air brake. This is a car that literally transforms itself from a road car to a powerhouse on the track.
The car has many fans, among them Jeremy Clarkson. On hearing that it would weigh over 4000 lbs, he declared that it should never be built. Upon driving the finished car, he went on to say it was the best car he had ever driven.
4. $3.4 million Lykan Hypersport
Obviously, this car is already a superstar on the big screen. Featured in the film Furious 7 and in a range of car racing games, the Lykan has all the sharp lines and menace of a true hyper sports car. In fact, its infamy was guaranteed from its conception, as it is the first super car to come out of the Middle East. Its makers are primarily Lebanese, with the support of French and Italian engineering.
The massive price tag is thanks to the limited edition build of only seven cars in the whole world – though the 3.7-litre twin turbocharged engine with a top speed of 395 KMH is also likely to bump up the bill! Such is the power of performance, one of the seven cars has been bought by the police in Abu Dhabi – clearly loving the idea of the acceleration of 0 to 100 KMH in 2.8 seconds. It would make the police chase in this affluent area of the Middle East pretty futile.
3. $4.5 million Lamborghini Veneno
Billed as being another step towards perfection, the Lamborghini Veneno is a crazy alien of a car, with its elaborate wings and arrow profile. Rather than just brute force power, the Veneno’s super speed is thanks to its lightness and its optimal aerodynamics. Some equate the experience of driving this sports car as being the closest to flying without leaving the ground.
The designers brag that this is a car that is meant to be driven on the road and not be kept merely for track days. The downforce pushes the car into corners with speed and stability, allowing you to grip the curve with ultimate confidence. And you will need confidence… the top speed of the car is 355 KMH. There is a lot of grunt under the steep, sloped bonnet, with a 6.5 litre aspirated V12 engine.
2. $4.8 million Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita
Who pays such a huge amount for a car? Well, it seems you have to go a few rounds in Las Vegas to earn this right. The Trevita has recently been purchased by Floyd Mayweather, who added it to his extravagant armada of supercars.
This car has Koenigsegg limited edition diamond weave carbon fibre finish. The car has the normal makers style of leaving the carbon weave on show, to give it a cool looking finish.
The car might look the dream but it is packed with sporting features such as the front and rear suspension with double wishbone, two-way adjustable VPS gas-hydraulic shock absorbers – and the electronically adjustable ride height – and the hollow, gun drilled driveshafts. This is a car with precision engineering at its heart and is not some flimsy show model.
1. $8 million Maybach Exelero
The purest amongst you might demand a rethink on the number one most expensive sports car… The Maybach has something of the look of a saloon about the front. It is hardly the pin-thin aerodynamics of a formula one car – more the 1930s splatter gun of Bugsy Malone. The car was actually built as a way of testing wide tyres – the design requested by the German company Fulda- a division of Goodyear.
The toothy grin of the front belies a mighty 2.6 tonne of brutish car. Its job is to put some tyres to serious test at speeds of up to 351 KPH – so the heft is not just for show. How can such a heavy car hit such a stunning top speed? Well, the V12 5.9-litre engine with two mighty turbochargers delivering up to 691 bhp might have something to do with this.
The car was designed to live only for one mission – that of delivering high-performance laps to test its tyres and then retire to be merely admired for its beauty (as some would see it). Since then the Maybach Exelero has become something of an urban myth… Did Birdman the rapper purchase the car for $8 million? Did the hip-hop mogul spray it red? Who knows… but it does add to the legend of the most expensive and arguably pointless car in the world.