- Jul 7, 2008
Rain dampens Ultima GTR 'Ring record attempt
Click above for a high-res gallery of the Ultima GTR720 at the Nurburgring
There is no shortage of automakers out there claiming to make the ultimate "race car for the road", but few of them can touch the Ultima GTR. While others try to make their road cars as close to racing cars as possible, the British sportscar-maker set about making their Noble-based racing car as close to a road car as possible. The result is blistering performance, with the latest GTR720 setting several Guinness-verified world records, including a 0-60 time of 2.6 seconds, a quarter mile below ten seconds and a 0-100-0 time in 9.4. With those numbers in the books, Sport Auto Magazine set its sights on setting a new Nurburgring road car lap record.
Unfortunately, after booking two, half-hour sessions at the 'Ring, the heavens opened up and soaked the track, so the attempt was aborted. The current record, held by the Pagani Zonda F Clubsport, stands at 7:27, but Ultima ambitiously projects that its car could undercut that with what would be a staggeringly fast lap time under 6 minutes, 55 seconds. Sounds impossible? Consider the performance stats quoted above, and that the lightweight track demon has hit a top speed of 231 mph. That was with the previous gearing setup, but with a taller fifth gear ratio, Ultima thinks it can reach even higher speeds. After the disappointment of a failed attempt due to the bad weather, the company's founder Ted Marlow turned around and headed back to England, claiming to have hit 220mph on a derestricted Autobahn along the way. We'll just have to wait until a more successful attempt to see if the record is shattered, but in the meantime we can enjoy the images in the gallery below and the press release after the jump.
BRITISH ULTIMA GTR NURBURGRING LAP RECORD ATTEMPT THWARTED BY RAIN
British supercar manufacturers and multiple world speed record holders Ultima Sports Ltd last week created an automotive stir by arriving in Germany for an attempt at the world renowned prestigious Nurburgring Road Car Lap Record in their standard production Ultima GTR720 road car.
The road tyred 231mph Ultima which was driven to the circuit, was on target during public testing to create history by recording a sub 7 minutes lap of the Ring thereby setting a new outright road car lap record, but unfortunately severe rain on the day that the track had been exclusively booked by Sport Auto Magazine for the record run meant that a fully verified attempt wasn't possible.
Ring specialist and pro driver Tom Coronel was employed to pilot the car to the new record and was staggered with the pace that the Ultima GTR had to offer during his public testing of the car in dry weather conditions.
"The Ultima GTR720 is the most powerful and by far the fastest road car I have ever driven. It's an absolute missile and a huge buzz to drive! The guys at Ultima Sports have a product which is a very special machine indeed. The Ultima is an extremely well developed and sorted package. I am confident I can set a new lap record time of below 6mins 55secs for a lap as measured by Sport Auto Magazine in this car. I can't imagine any other road car ever being able to compete with the overall performance envelope that the Ultima has to offer."
Richard Marlow, Director of Ultima Sports Ltd commented:
"It was gutting to have had the GPS timing gear all fitted to our Ultima GTR720 with the track booked exclusively for two half hour sessions on Thursday 3rd July via Sport Auto Magazine, only for the track to be saturated by a torrential downpour, forcing us to abandon the actual lap record run.
Exclusive track time at the Ring is essential for a lap record attempt such as this as a full-length lap (12.8mile for all Sport Auto official times) isn't even allowed to be travelled during public days due to various safety regulations. Unfortunately exclusive track time is at a premium and indeed we have been informed that it may be fully booked for the rest of this year so therefore despite our best efforts with the track organizers there was no opportunity for another lap record run on the following days. However, overall we all enjoyed ourselves immensely, it was a true pleasure to work with Ring expert and pro driver Tom Coronel who was right on world record pace.
Unlike some other car manufacturers we specifically set out to achieve this road car lap record in the spirit in which we believe it is intended by driving the car on the public roads to and from the Nurburgring from our UK headquarters. The Ultima road car is very much suited and enjoyable to use on such cross European journey's with its comfortable seating, sealed luggage compartments, complaint suspension, road car levels of ground clearance, tractable engine, air conditioning and stereo system all coming in handy.
I couldn't resist making a detour to make full use of the de-restricted Autobahn on the return road journey back home in the early hours of the morning, with speeds in excess of 220mph being comfortably recorded."
Ted Marlow, Managing Director of Ultima Sports Ltd commented:
"This was a fantastic opportunity for us to demonstrate to the world the superb road holding, aerodynamic proficiency and handling finesse of our British product, as the Ring along with the Top Gear track is one of the few tracks in existence that has publicly available verified lap times for all of the major worldwide road legal supercars in production today. This was intended to be yet further unequivocal proof of the Ultima GTR's engineering excellence and our aim for this event was to make history by setting an official outright road car lap record fully independently witnessed and timed by Sport Auto Magazine in the same way that the other supercar verified lap times are recorded. Our plan was deliberately not to merely set a manufacturer's claimed time without an independent witness but to return with a proven record. It's a shame that it appears to be very difficult and costly to obtain the required exclusive track time at the Ring unless you are a mainstream manufacturer. One thing is for certain, our Ultima GTR720 is without any doubt capable of taking the honours around the challenging Nordschleife. It was truly spectacular to watch during testing and all of us here at the factory have total confidence and faith in the world leading ability of our product and are delighted with how it stormed around this demanding track."
The Ultima GTR720 is a fully road going car and is often used as a daily driver. The car is equipped with e-marked road tyres and fitted with our standard production 720bhp Chevrolet V8 engine option built by our OE engine suppliers American Speed. A standard G50-03 transmission was used with a taller 5th gear ratio (the taller 5th gear ratio is now a new option on our pricelist at £540) to suit the prolonged 200mph plus requirement for a successful lap record of the Nurburgring in an Ultima.
We would very much like to take this opportunity to thank our record attempt sponsors AP Brakes, Goodridge, Intrax Suspension, Kumho Tyres and Titan for their valuable support.
NURBURGRING LAP RECORD
SUPERCAR COMPARISON TIMES
projected sub 6min 55secs
Pagani Zonda F Clubsport
Porsche Carrera GT
Porsche 997 GT2
Pagani Zonda F
Mercedes SLR 722 GT McLaren
Lamborghini Murcielago LP640
Mercedes SLR McLaren
Mercedes CLK DTM
Porsche 997 GT3
Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Porsche 996 GT3 RS
Pagani Zonda C12 S
Aston Martin V8 Vantage N24
Porsche 996 GT2
Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera
Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano
ULTIMA GTR720 PERFORMANCE STATS
2.6 secs World Record
5.3 secs World Record
11.8 secs World Record
1.8 secs World Record
9.4 secs World Record
3.6 secs World Record
Standing 1/4 mile
9.9 secs @143mph World Record
231mph (gearing limited)
1.176g World Record
NOTE: All performance figures independently have been verified by official Guinness book of world records timekeepers Datron Technology who use incorruptible GPS timing gear to record the official road car world record times on road tyres in controlled/monitored conditions.