Remember the days when a 0-60 mph time really mattered? Every car from the ’90s was so cool when it hit 60 mph in less than 5 seconds. Now, we have SUVs that can get there in less than 4. So it doesn’t really matter, until you get to 100 and 186. Oh, and don’t forget a Nürburgring lap time.
0-60 miles per hour is a basically a thing of the past. Cars are so fast these days that they practically skip to 60 and launch into 100+ mode. In fact, most super and hyper cars don’t come alive until they ring out 100 mph.
And while the Nürburgring has always been well known to racers and diehard fans of German cars and the Nissan GT-R, it’s becoming all knowing and popular over every other race track in the world. BMW and Porsche have had testing centers there for chassis dynamics for years, while Jaguar, Aston Martin, General Motors, Ford, and even Lexus, have gotten in on the action with testing centers and renting out hangars for their own development.
The Nürburgring is just as important to GM and its engine and chassis abilities in the Corvette and Camaro as it is to BMW and the M department. Need I remind you that the Camaro ZL1 is just as fast around the ‘Ring as a 997.2 911 Turbo S…
With all of the speedy times, it was fitting while in Frankfurt, Porsche decided to let everyone know that their new hybrid, the 918 Spyder, could lap the Nürburgring in just 6 minutes and 57 seconds. That’s officially the fastest lap time of a mass produced, road legal car. Impressive, isn’t it? It also became the first street legal car to best the seven minute mark.
We’ve talked about the lack of manuals and cars having too much horsepower these days. Regardless of all that, this is an amazing feat that we’re seeing in our lifetime. I remember when eight minutes was a hell of a lap.
What may say more to the average Joe who knows nothing of the Nürburgring is that the new 918 Spyder can hit 62 mph in 2.8 seconds, 124 in 7.7, and finally 186 in just 22 seconds. That’s absurdly fast. To give you a realistic understanding of how fast that really is, my personal 997.1 911 Carrera S will hit 60 mph in about 4.3 seconds, get to 100 in 10.7, 120 in 14.9, and top out at about 180. Before I’ve reached 100 mph, the 918 Spyder will be passing through about 140 mph. Hell, it reaches 124 7.2 seconds faster than I can hit 120. Just let that soak in. A 911 Carrera S is a fast car. A Porsche 918 Spyder is considered hyper fast.
So just a few years ago it was a big deal that a Porsche could get to 100 mph in about 10 seconds. However, these days, that’s considered par for the course. I miss the good ol’ days. But then I just sound old as dirt saying stuff like that. But seriously, cars are just too darn fast today. It’s hard enough for me to test a 0-to-60 time on a public road, much less see if I can best a magazine’s time to 100 or more mph.
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely lust after speed as much as the next guy. It’s a thrilling feeling when you know you’re doing something so radical and dangerous. All though I’m not sure if it’s the danger so much as it’s the general rush of feeling like Chuck Yeager pushing the limits of his own self and breaking barriers. That’s what gets me when going fast, and I feel a rush like not much else.
You may think I’m getting ahead of myself saying that 0-60 doesn’t matter anymore, but pretty much everything is getting faster than 4-seconds. The new C7 Corvette Stingray, nearly every Porsche, and a 4,000+ lb BMW M5 can make a 60 mph pass in just 3.7 seconds. So it really doesn’t matter anymore. There are nearly 3 ton SUVs in the mid to low 4-second range, too. And some of them can get to 100 mph before my car can.
Oh wait, I almost forgot, the damn Tesla Model S, an electric car, can hit 60 in about 3.9 seconds, too. Man, now I’m just feeling like I need to sell my car for something faster. But no, I’m happy with my “slow” car by comparison.
It isn’t about how fast it can go in a set time in a straight line, it’s also about becoming one with the car and accepting the responsibility of driving it the best it can be driven. I’d rather drive a slow car fast than a fast car slow as hell.