And it'll likely happen on a public Texas highway.
Hennessey may have just revealed the track-focused Venom F5 Revolution yesterday, but the Texas-based tuner and automaker hasn't lost sight of its targeted 300 mph top-speed run, with founder John Hennessey claiming such a run may happen this year and on new Texas highways.
Speaking to Top Gear, Hennessey said, "The Department of Transportation in Texas has been very good to us to let us test cars. They've got some amazing new highways that are under construction, so we'll see where that intersects with our future calendar." Speaking of when such an attempt might occur, "at some point in the next 12 months" was the timeline the boss set.
Moreover, Hennessey will attempt its top speed record in a fashion that not even Bugatti managed with the Chiron Super Sport 300+ because Hennessey is aiming for a two-way average of 300 mph. Bugatti only managed the feat in one direction.
"We're still very intent on going out with F5 and doing a two-way average of over 300 mph. [There are] other cars that have gone out and done one run. Bugatti did 304 mph, and [there are] others that have done in the 290 mph to 300 mph range, but everyone has just done it in one direction, so we'd like to prove it up in a two-way direction," he said, claiming that the goal is "still very high on our list of priorities."
As for why the record attempt may happen on Texan highways and not on a stretch of road like the one in Nevada where Koenigsegg topped 285 mph a few years ago, Hennessey says that same stretch was considered but was decided against on safety grounds. "It's just such a narrow road. A bad gust of wind would make it tricky for the driver, so we want something a little wider and a little flatter," he told TG. "A shutdown public highway would be the best way to go," he says, going so far as to say, "We'd really like to do it close to home so that our customers and employees can witness it."
So far, the Venom F5 has hit 271 mph as recently as last year, but 300+ was always the goal for both the coupe and Roadster variants.
While Hennessey has previously set its records on airstrips, targeting 300 mph is a different kettle of fish. "Having done quite a bit of testing on runways last year, we made the decision that 3.2 miles is just not enough distance to deliver the absolute top speed of the F5."
So what is the ideal setting? "We'd like to have a five- or seven-mile stretch of flat, straight highway. At that point, we're not trying to do some sort of a drag race on a three-mile runway." Interestingly, Hennessey claims that 300 mph is nowhere near the Venom F5's top speed. Even though the automaker had "change [to spare]" at the end of the NASA runway where the 271 mph attempt was recorded, "300 mph [is] still not the absolute V-max of the car. And you're watching the speedo, and you're going as fast as you can, and you're having to jam on the brakes at the end of the runway."
His desire for safety is understandable, and it's the driving factor behind Bugatti and other OEMs ending their pursuit of top speed records. Even Koenigsegg won't chase top speed records forever, with Christian von Koenigsegg previously telling CarBuzz that while the Jesko Absolut can theoretically hit 330 mph, should the hypercar maker attempt that, it would be the last time it does aim for such.
The question remaining is how fast the Venom F5 will go when the planned run does take place. Will it eclipse Koenigsegg's claimed top speed, and if so, by how much? Time will tell, but 2023 is already looking exciting.