Since its release in 2005, the Bugatti Veyron, and all of the subsequent models, have reigned supreme among supercars as the fastest production cars in the world, the most luxurious vehicles in the world, and generally as feats of engineering and perfection in car making.
The sheer level of excess that is evident in the production of the Veyron is clear as Bugatti loses money, a lot of money, on each one that they sell. The Veyron has become an icon car for all petrolheads around the world with a ridiculous amount of money to spend on their passion. Movie Stars, Formula 1 drivers, athletes and the like have all signed up for owning the pinnacle vehicle on the road. With the base model costing around 1.7 million USD, and the Veyron Super Sport costing another million on top of that, it seems as though you need some pretty deep pockets to experience the best production car in the world.
Having been the top dog for this long, is it time for the Veyron to be challenged? Are there any cars out there that have a realistic chance at taking the crown away from the Bugatti in top speed, luxury, performance, or price? This list is a collection of the top ten cars in production today that may just have a chance at toppling the mighty Bugatti’s reign.
10 Ascari A10 – Approx. $1,300,000
Produced since 2006 and still in production today, the Ascari always seems to appear on lists of the `Top Ten` of just about anything when it comes to supercars, but it still does not have that household name like Pagani or Ferrari just yet. Developed in the UK by a small company, the Ascari has a respectable BMW V8 5.0 Liter engine which produces 625 bhp and reaches a top speed of 220mph. Like most of the cars on this list, the Ascari goes from 0-60 in under three seconds and is able to handle corners pretty well as it proved on the Top Gear test track, until it was beaten by another car that crops up on this list later on – the Gumpert Apollo. The Ascari makes this list primarily for its exclusivity and the incredible work by the engineers at such a small company to produce such an incredible car. With a 1.3 million dollar price tag though, they expect you to pay for their hard work.
9 Caterham Seven620R - $49,995
The price for the Caterham looks like a mistake, but then again so does the picture. The little Seven620R, like all of Caterham`s cars is fully road legal, but is designed primarily for the track as a toy for those who enjoy a good track day. At around 50 thousand dollars, it seems like a pretty expensive toy, but after you realize that this little go-kart hauls from 0-60mph in just under 2.8 seconds – just shy of the Veyron at 2.46 – you start to take it a little more seriously. While the top speed is no better than a limited German saloon car at 155mph, the open air ride of the Cateram makes you feel like a racing driver and passing all of the track day 911`s and Lamborghinis in this thing makes you feel like a racing driver who actually knows what he`s doing.
The engine size on the Caterham seems like yet another mistake as it has just a 2 liter Ford engine but it has been tuned to produce 310bhp – that`s an awful lot for a car that weighs the same as a shopping cart. The Caterham makes the list because, like the Veyron, it is a little bit ridiculous but is incredibly good at what it does best.
8 Lamborghini Huracan – Approx. $300,000
The successor to the Gallardo certainly has a lot to live up to. The Huracan, which boasts a 5.2 liter V10 engine and a rather special 7 speed dual clutch gearbox, will be put into production in 2014. The fuel injected V10 produces over 600bhp and gets from 0-60 in just 3.2 seconds and on to 120mph in less than ten seconds. While this is a fair amount slower than the Veyron, the Huracan could certainly turn out to be the next great supercar and to have one of the first ones in production would make it something special indeed. What is more, the Huracan seems like a real bargain at 450 thousand dollars which is just a fraction of the cost of many of the cars on this list.
7 Noble M600 - $450,000
Another British Supercar makes its way on to the list at number 7. At less than half a million dollars, the Noble is extremely cheap as supercars go, and it has the stats and specs to back it up as a real contender for people who want something a little bit different. With a top speed of around 225mph, the Noble is off to a good start for a small company. It has a comparatively small – albeit twin turbocharged – 4.4 liter engine that produces 650bhp, although the driver can choose to set the engine to only use either 450 or 550bhp if they don`t want to go the whole nine yards. The Noble has a simple gearbox, and in essence, that`s what encapsulates the whole idea of the thing: simplicity. Taking it from 0-60 in 3.2 seconds and up to 200mph in less than thirty seconds was not quite enough, the Noble, when tested on Top Gear by the Stig, was quick enough to beat the time set in the Bugatti - Not bad when you`re saving about 1.3 million dollars.
6 Pagani Zonda F Roadster – Approx. $850,000
The Zonda F is one of the slightly older cars on the list and seems like it should not be compared to the Veyron. The thing that all Zondas have over the Veyron, though, is the look of a true supercar. As with the Pagani that features later in the list, the engine in the Zonda Roadster F is fighting to be just as incredible as the way the car looks and the way it makes the driver feel. The 650bhp 7.3 Liter Mercedes AMG V12 engine produces just about the same power per ton as the Veyron and it manages to do it in a car that looks about as dangerous as the Batmobile. What is more, the Zonda F Roadster was very limited in production so getting your hands on one will be anything but easy. For those people with the determination to stick it out until you find one, this Pagani is certainly going to turn a few heads.
5 Ferrari 599 SA Aperta Novitec Rosso – Approx. $400,000
It’s about time that there was a Ferarri on this list. This version of the 599 is particularly exclusive, as there were only 80 ever made. With an impressive 6 liter V12 engine that produces 670bhp, one would hope it was producing supercar stats, and it does. While the top speed is modest for this list at 211mph, it gets to 60 from stopped in 3.1 seconds. What is more, this car has the Ferarri factor that none of the other cars on this list have. Whether the other carmakers like it or not, Ferarri is still the name that jumps to mind when someone asks about the best performing, best looking, or fastest cars on the market. While the price tag sits modestly below the half a million mark, the hardest thing is going to be snagging one of the only 80 that have been made in the world. It seems likely that it would cost a great deal more than the sticker price to get your hands on one of these.
4 Hennessey Venom GT – Approx. $1,000,000
The Hennessey Venom, whose body is based closely on a modified chassis of the Lotus Exige, makes this list with an asterisk next to its name. This car, as it stands, is not available as a production vehicle for the street although it can be purchased for use on the track under certain circumstances, if you find that you have some serious money that you aren't using. As one of the fastest accelerating cars in the world, the Venom reaches 200mph from a standstill in just about 14 seconds. The twin turbocharged, 7 liter, V8 engine produces 1244bhp which is starting to sound like a number that may rival the mighty Bugatti. If this car gets put into production properly (as of yet less than 20 have been made), it could pose a threat to the Veyron.
As it stands the Venom GT gets more of an honorary place on the list of contenders as it has no place on the road. It is, however, hard to ignore the incredible top speed of 267.5mph!
3 Gumpert Apollo - $500-950 Thousand Dollars
The Apollo, although beaten around the Top Gear Test Track by the Veyron some years ago, is one of the supercars that most people leave off of the regular list of Ferarris, Lamborghinis, and Paganis. With just a V8 engine it would seem as though the Gumpert would have no chance in keeping up with the Veyron in raw speed as the 16.4 version of the Bugatti is named as such for its 16 cylinder engine and its 4 turbochargers.
The Gumpert does, however, produce an incredible 780bhp which gets it from 0-60mph in 2.9 seconds and all the way to 124mph in under 9 seconds. The styling of the Gumpert is also very similar to the Veyron as it has similar lines and facial features designed to keep the car close to the road – it does however, still have the “Back to the Future” style wing doors of supercars from years gone by.
As a competitor for top speed, it does not stand a chance against the Veyron, but the Gumpert’s exclusivity and the fact that it costs about a million dollars less makes it something of a viable option if you are in the market for your next supercar.
2 Pagani Huayra – Approx. $1,400,000
Although Pagani is a well known name in the supercar world, the Huayra likely will not become so well known simply because of how hard it is to pronounce. The Huayra is super light, super luxurious, and super expensive in just about every way. The engineers at Pagani were able to squeeze in a Mercedes Turbocharged V12 engine that produces 720bhp and gets the Huayra all the way to 231 miles per hour. Those kind of numbers are pushing awfully close to the top speed achieved by the Veyron, and when you`re saving a few hundred thousand dollars, maybe those last few mph don't mean quite as much. What is more, the styling on the Pagani, as with all Paganis in the past, is exactly how a supercar should be. It looks as though it is a spaceship designed for the road and designed for calendars and posters everywhere. The front grill gives a bit of a smile because it knows that its engine is designed to terrify all who drive it.
1 Koenigsegg CCXR – $2.9-4.5 Million Dollars
The Koenigsegg makes the list essentially for its top speed. It reaches an incredible 249mph which is just a few short of the Bugatti Veyron. What is more, the Koenigsegg, a name fairly well known in the supercar world, is a bit of a looker as it was named as one of the most beautiful cars of all time by Forbes in 2009. It is hard to say however, that the CCXR is a contender for the Veyron as it was only in production from 2006-2010, but it is still available for those who have deep pockets and good coercive skills to talk someone into selling theirs.
The Koenigsegg`s ridiculous price tag of over 4 million dollars for the Trevita edition is something that attracts those who have the money to make the kind of statement that they would rather have a car that costs 3 times as much as a Veyron but is not as fast as the Veyron itself.