The American coach-builder Hennessey Performance Engineering will reveal its badass 2010 Hennessey HPE700 Camaro supercar on Tuesday, November 3 at the upcoming Specialty Equipment Market Association Show, 2009 (and usually mostly referred to simply as SEMA) in Las Vegas, Nevada. Judging by its exterior, the new customized vehicle is built around a recently presented 2010 Camaro SS two-door sports coupe, which basically means that it was especially easy for the tuning specialist to match powerful engine with deliciously retro-styled, yet muscular exterior.
Inspired by the Corvette ZR1 (another supercar by GM that immediately became a living legend) and based on the much-adored Chevrolet Camaro retro-styled muscle car, the new super-coupe looks so terrific that the American tuning specialist didn’t even need to invest heavily into creating a complete new body kit for the model: there are just minor adjustments here and there designed to improve the car’s aerodynamics and make it stick better to the road.
According to HPE’s press release, the new vehicle will be motivated by a supercharged LS9 6.2-liter small-block engine. Featuring a powerful Eaton four-lobe Roots type supercharger and originally created to power the aforementioned Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, the engine probably delivers one of the best combination of performance and efficiency currently available to American sports cars. Yes, it may not be as refined and technologically advanced as twinturbo-charged mills that power German sport coupes and performance SUVs, but who needs refined when you get so much grunt, right?
And while we are speaking about grunt. Tweaked by Hennessey’s engineers, GM’s powerplant gets its power output increased from 705 hp to 725 hp and its available torque has also climbed from 717 lb-ft (971 Nm) to even more impressive 741 lb-ft (1003 Nm). Of course, the numbers are not as jaw-dropping as those demonstrated by Bugatti Veyron, but you still get plenty of power under your feet that, with some driving skills, can be converted into loads of 99.9-percent pure fun. Also I am sure that, having literally decades of engine upgrade experience under their collective belt, the guys probably delivered an engine that not only churns out more power and torque, but also does that without a risk of getting its head gaskets blown after the first quarter mile run.
With these enhancements, the gasoline-powered warp-drive takes only 3.5 seconds to accelerate the HPE700 from zero to 60 mph. To put things in perspective, the new sports coupe plays in the same ballpark as the new stock Ferrari California (same 3.5 seconds 0-60mph) or the 2009 Ferrari F430 Scuderia Spider 16M, which is slower by 0.1 second. That says something right?
The limited edition Camaro-based supercar has also received new 15-inch Brembo brakes sporting 6-piston and 4-piston calipers in front and rear respectively. Of course, the American tuner has also replaced stock suspension with KW Variant 3 coil-overs and “upgraded” sway bars.
The car’s exterior is dealt with new 20-inch wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2 rubber and a carbon-fiber boy kit consisting of a pair of side skirts, front splitter and a rear bumper with working air diffuser.
Hennessy says that only 24 vehicles will be made. The company plans to put a hefty $119,500 price stick on this street-legal rocket on wheels.
Photos: Hennessey Performance Engineering