Introduction

Introduction

In a world full of traffic jams, stoplights, and speed limits, the majority of us putt-putt along accordingly. We simply get where we need to go, never wondering what life could be like outside of our 70 MPH or less lives.

Photo Credit: (respres, Flickr)
Super Cars For Super Tasks

Super Cars For Super Tasks

But there are some out there who refuse to accept driving as a study in monotony. For those who house a deep longing for the roar of an engine, the empty vacuum left in a checking account and the seething jealousy of others, we have prepared a suitable shopping list.

Herein find the five fastest street legal cars you can buy (if you can find them). Read on to experience the thrill of driving like you’ve never known before.
5. Pagani Zonda F

5. Pagani Zonda F

Top Speed: 215 MPH
HP: 602 at 6150 RPM

Argentinian-born Horacio Zonda is the full-blown embodiment of a supercar creator. Zonda worked at Lamborghini for years before striking out on his own, concocting a Frankenstein-like beast made of a rip snorting Mercedes-Benz AMG engine. His Zonda F reaches speeds of up to 215MPH, in no small thanks to the 12-cylinder engine found behind the driver's back. The twelver produces 602 hp and 560 lb-ft of torque, the sort of numbers that make the $650,000 price tag seem damn near reasonable.
5. Pagani Zonda F

5. Pagani Zonda F

Top Speed: 215 MPH
HP: 602 at 6150 RPM

The shell is carbon fiber, of course (at this price, most of what you'll find is made of exotic materials) and looks the part of an exotic. Angled and direct, the Zonda's design isn't so much a beautiful expression of the pen as it is a rather angry looking doorstop. That's fine by us: the Zonda hits 60 MPH in 3.5 seconds and 0-120MPH in 9.8
4. Saleen S7 Twin Turbo

4. Saleen S7 Twin Turbo

Top Speed: 248 MPH
HP: 750 at 6300 RPM

One of two American cars on our list, our red, white and blue blood pumps fast for the Saleen S7 Turbo. Where some supercars are designed as exotic road cars, the S7 actually started life as a true race car, winning all around the world. The version you see here is only slightly modified to make it driveable for the street. Is the Saleen S7 something you'd want to drive every day? Perhaps, but only if live in Monaco, hold an FIA Superlicense and consider an event like the 24 Hours of Nurburgring your "day job."
4. Saleen S7 Twin Turbo

4. Saleen S7 Twin Turbo

Top Speed: 248 MPH
HP: 750 at 6300 RPM

In terms of top speed, the S7 is rated at 248 mph. The problem with that number, like many on our list, is that you're less likely to find a suitable road as you are likely to find the money to buy one.

The stats are something out of race car, because, well, it is a race car. The massive 7.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 behind the driver produces a volcano of power: 750 hp and 700 lb-ft of torque (and that's tuned down from the race spec for this engine). The aluminum chassis and carbon fiber shell complete the insanity: how is it even possible to buy one of these? We need $555,000 and a bigger life insurance policy.
3. Koenigsegg CCX

3. Koenigsegg CCX

Top Speed: 250 MPH
HP: 806 at 6900 RPM

The unspellable Koenigsegg was just a little known supercar company until a few months ago, when the Swedish family decided to take a whack at purchasing Saab from GM. The deal fell through (to Dutchman Spyker, another maker of exotics), but it did go some way toward raising interest in the little car company that counts a family crest as its corporate logo.
3. Koenigsegg CCX

3. Koenigsegg CCX

Top Speed: 250 MPH
HP: 806 at 6900 RPM

The CCX (standing for Competition Coupe X, but also notes the company's 10th anniversary) is one of the more rarified exotics you'll ever see (or, not see: only 18 Koenigseggs were sold in all of 2009). 806 hp and 678 lb-ft seem to sell themselves, though. It's a pity only a few people will ever get to experience how the Dutch envision speed.

The speed numbers are wild: 0-60 in 3.2 seconds and a top speed of 250 mph. All the while, we believe the CCX is one of the most beautiful among the superexotics. It's also one of the most comfortable, too.
2. Bugatti Veyron

2. Bugatti Veyron

Top Speed: 253 MPH
HP: 1,001 at 6000 RPM

The poster child for wretched excess, the Veyron is so big, fast and expensive that it practically deserves its own genre. In fact, its price often overshadows its outstanding performance. The second-fastest car on our list at 253MPH, the 'Ron pumps power through a W16 engine -- 16 cylinders in 4 banks of 4 cylinders, fed by four turbochargers, producing a jaw-dropping 1,001hp and 922 lb-ft of torque. 10 radiators (yes, 10) keep the car cool.
2. Bugatti Veyron

2. Bugatti Veyron

Top Speed: 253 MPH
HP: 1,001 at 6000 RPM

The Veyron is fast but it's also heavy: 4,162 lbs isn't our idea of high-tech speed. It makes us feel like we're running a sprint race in a fat suit. Though enormous, performance is still incredible. 0-60MPH takes place in just 2.6 seconds and 0-120MPH in 7.3 seconds, making it the fastest accelerating production car in history.

Of course, all of that power doesn’t come cheap: the Veyron costs some $1.7 million in hard currency and untold amount of stress for one's driving record.
1. SSC Ultimate Aero TT

1. SSC Ultimate Aero TT

Top Speed: 256 MPH
HP: 1,287

What? Who? That's right. Most people have never even heard of SSC (Shelby SuperCars), but taking the top spot in the Guinness Book of Records as the world's fastest car should bring notoriety to the American car maker.
1. SSC Ultimate Aero TT

1. SSC Ultimate Aero TT

Top Speed: 256 MPH
HP: 1,287

How is the SSC Ultimate Aero TT the fastest car in the world in terms of top speed? Just look at the numbers. Its twin-turbo V-8 engine swallows stratospheres of air, pumping a ridiculous 1,287 hp to the rear wheels en route to a top speed of 256 MPH. 60 MPH comes in just 2.7 seconds. Inside, it's even more obvious that the Ultimate Aero TT is designed for one thing only: speed. The door panels, steering column and even the speedometer and tachometer are made of carbon fiber in an effort to keep the car as light as possible. It won't be the most comfortable ride, but it will outrun anything else on the road. Prices start north of $650,000. Now's your chance.