Apart from their penchant for humor and a steadfast resilience to political-correctness, the presenters of the UK’s Top Gear were notable for one other virtue: putting undeserving vehicles through some of the most mad, rigorous torture tests in countless different memorable vehicular adventures.
So, when Top Gear got in contact with Hennessey Performance Engineering, asking for a high-performance pickup truck that could venture to hell and back, John Hennessey knew that he and his team had a difficult task at hand.
The end result of their labor: the 2015 HPE VelociRaptor 600. It was one of the very last vehicles to be driven by Jeremy Clarkson while a host on the BBC program, and it’s now available for public consumption, too.
The VelociRaptor 600, as the name suggests, produces around 600 HP. It’s not built on the Ford SVT Raptor like the previous truck; instead, the folks at Hennessey take a V8-powered 2015 Ford F-150, and fit it with a 2.3-liter supercharger and some other goodies. HPE says that it’ll do zero-to-sixty in just 5.2 seconds, and go on to a (tire rating-limited) 110 MPH top speed. All that, and Hennessey still offers a 3-year, 36,000-mile warranty.
The company slogan of Hennessey Performance Engineering is quite simple: “Making Fast Cars Faster Since 1991.” That’s doable enough not only by the HPE folks, but by myriad other tuning firms, as well. However, creating a Ford F-150 VelociRaptor 600 upgrade that can withstand even Top Gear‘s reckless abuse?
That is an accomplishment.