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Speed Matters? PH Blog

Harris is left cold by rumours of a new 290mph Bugatti and mystified by the Caparo T1 Evo - here's why

By Chris Harris / Friday, August 08, 2014

Those well-connected souls at Autocar have uncovered details of what might be

the Veyron's replacement

. I read the story and was overcome by a complete sense of ennui. And I'm someone who dearly loves the Veyron because of its sheer silliness.

This + 400hp and Harris isn't enthused?

This + 400hp and Harris isn't enthused?

Why the shrugged shoulders at a car aiming for a 290mph top speed? I'm trying to analyse my reaction and not deciphering anything obvious - maybe it's something simple like that top speed? I just couldn't give a sausage about 290mph in a Veyron Plus Plus. Which shows some rank inconsistencies on my part because I'm very excited about having a go in a Hennessey Venom some time soon. The whole Venom thing seems like madness, and if that's the underlying appeal, maybe the suspicion that VW's crack engineers will be able to rationalise nearly 300mph in a street car into something 'entirely useable' triggers some anti-technology gene in me. 300mph should scare the excrement out of any human being.

Of course in the year 2014 the business case for the fastest, most expensive supercar of the them all bearing a Bugatti badge writes itself. Yet we all know most of them will dawdle about at walking speed. But knowing that many McLaren P1s will suffer a similar fate doesn't stop me adoring the thing. How's that? Is it just that I like the aims of the P1, the way its technology is skewed towards a driving experience and a lap time and doesn't care about top speed? I suspect so.

To fast for the track, too comprimised for the road?

To fast for the track, too comprimised for the road?

The Veyron replacement isn't the only hyper-mega-car announcement that has me reaching for a copy of Cosmopolitan in the search for more interesting reading - there's

a new Caparo

coming. It will be called the Evolution T1 and have perhaps 700hp. Responding to that news puts me in a similar position to tackling my three-year-old when he demands pudding having barely touched his main course: "Finish that, and you can have some pudding boy!"

I'm sorry, but the whole Caparo T1 thing was a complete mess. The car never seemed to actually work. It was never finished. I'm sure they sold a few, but I've never seen one in the wild or spoken to an owner. I'm sure someone from Caparo will come on here and tell me otherwise, but nothing I've heard or seen suggests the T1 was ever remotely finished, but now we're going to get a faster version. The trouble is, it'll be as redundant a driving device as the last one.

And yet he can't wait to get in the Hennessey

And yet he can't wait to get in the Hennessey

Because try and actually use the T1 on the road and its suspension would have a few difficulties. And having watched my mate Phil Bennett give passenger rides in one at a track day, it's clear the thing struggles to share track space with anything less than an LMP2 car. Because it's silly fast. When it's working.

I know I should be delighted that both Bugatti and Caparo's announcements. But I'm much, much more excited about the Hennessey Venon F5, and anything with a Lotus badge on it. Or the next GT3 RS. Or that bonkers 707hp Dodge Hellcat thing.

Maybe my hormones are playing up. Anyone else feel the same?


[Sources: Autocar, Caparo]



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