American racing driver Sean Kennedy has broken the world acceleration record for the standing mile, reaching 414.7km/h (257.7mph) over the distance in a highly modified Ford GT supercar.
A 12.2km/h increase over the previous 402.5km/h record doesn’t sound like much — but at these speeds it takes a massive amount of extra power to make any gains at all. The new record was achieved during the bi-annual Texas Mile Event last month.
American tuning outfit Hennessey built the record-breaking Ford GT for team owner Mark Heidaker. By replacing the standard supercharger with a pair of massive turbos, the tuner has enhanced the GT’s 5.4-litre V8 from a mere 405kW as standard to a “conservatively estimated” 1,471kW (2,000hp).
To achieve this requires 34psi of boost and 117 octane racing fuel — not to mention some exceptionally strong engine and transmission components to withstand the resulting forces.
Kennedy broke the 200mph (320km/h) barrier from stationary by the half-mile mark — meaning it took the remaining half-mile to add that further 97.7km/h — giving you some idea how challenging additional performance becomes at these velocities.
That said, the team will be looking to go faster at the next Texas Mile in October, and Kennedy is confident the Ford offers even more:
“I was impressed with how hard it pulled in fourth and fifth gears on that run. I think I can do better in the lower gears next time and we can run an even better speed.
“We’re coming back in October for sure. We want to go 260!”
Despite being twice as powerful as a 736kW (1,001hp) Bugatti Veyron, the fettled Ford cost just over a quarter of the Veyron’s $2.7 million price tag.