When you are a man like John Hennessey, any car can be made into a turbocharged psycho machine. Known internationally as the guy that puts more Venom in V10 Vipers, he has also breathed his mentalist magic on Cadillacs, F150 Raptors, and Ford GT supercars, among others. He is also behind the completely mad Venom GT, the forbidden love child of an engorged Lotus Elise and a twin-turbo LS9-based Chevy small-block, pumping out 1200hp to the rear wheels.
The man is a certified speed freak. In 1991, he started a mad motorsports adventure, climbing the Pikes Peak hillclimb, joining an open highway race in Nevada, and blasting though the Bonneville salt flats with his self-modified, daily-driven Mitsubishi 3000GT. He subsequently founded Hennessey Performance to sell speed parts for Japanese cars. When a customer dropped a Dodge Viper to his Sealy, Nevada workshop one fine day, he turned it into the first of many Hennessey-modified Vipers, the Venom 500.
Another customer dropped a Ford GT off to make it suck Ferraris off the Mulsanne straight with a turbocharged straw. The customer, Don Goldman, was so impressed he eventually joined the company as a partner in (boost-fed) crime, managing the operations side, while freeing Hennessey to handle R&D work. Like figuring out how to add an extra 200 horses to Mclaren’s highly-strung 3.8L V8.
The menu of modifications to the MP4-12C include bigger turbochargers, external wastegates and “whapishhh!” blow-off valves, a Hennessey-specific titanium exhaust, upgrades to the cooling system, a new engine computer box with custom tuning, uprated clutch, carbon fiber wide body kit, and swanky interior bits. Oddly, Hennessey has decided not to play around with the suspension and brakes, stating that “the factory systems will be difficult to improve upon.” Well, isn’t the stock 600hp enough to begin with?
How much is this package from Hennessey? They state no pricing. But it’s probably at the range of “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it.” Guess we’ll just stick to 1:18 scale model Mclarens, then.