Motoring / Motoring News
With The Citizen Motoring’s usual operations put on hold due to the current national lockdown, performing our usual high performance road tests are simply not possible. However, we have every intention of keeping petrolheads and enthusiasts interested during these times and for this we require the reserve gear.
I have been sniffling through my archives and discovered some interesting numbers in his detailed records from the last 16 years. For some light entertainment and an interesting glimpse into how things have evolved over time, we have compiled a list of the Top 10 fastest cars – in terms of 0 to 100km/h – for every year dating back to 2004. We are rolling these out over the course of the lockdown.
In 2012 McLaren started their assault on the South African supercar market and launched their 440kW/600Nm MP4-12C. Truth be told, their first cars had a bit of kit car interior feel to them. You kinda felt that after a few years of enthusiastic use it would be a bit ropey, unlike a Porsche that would age like a fine wine. But nonetheless, a McLaren remains a truly thrilling supercar to drive.
It also became the fastest rear wheel driven car I had tested at a very quick 3.39 seconds to 100km/h. Not quick enough to better Porsche’s 2010 AWD 911 Turbo’s time of 3.22sec for the overall record, but it did take care of Nissan’s 2011 GT-R’s time of 3.43sec. The record breaking did not stop there either, the MP4-12C also became the fastest car at 1 000m with a speed of 263km/h and a top speed of 326km/h.
Remember I said Nissan’s GT-R would prove to be a strange car to test due to its times not getting better each year? Well, ironically the 2011 model mentioned was to prove to be the fastest year for GT-Rs so far in my career. I guess refinement does come at the cost of raw pace.
2012 also presented the big Audi RS 3 Sportback versus BMW 1 Series M Coupe war. Technically they should never have gone up against each other. The Audi was a S tronic-driven AWD 5-door hatch and the BMW a rear wheel driven 2-door coupe with a six-speed manual gearbox. But life on the streets is not lived this way, both cars made the same power and torque at 250kW and 450Nm. One being from the RS camp and one being from the M camp, this fight was always going to happen.
The RS 3 was quicker than the 1M (as it became known) to 100km/h with a time of 4.75sec to 5.06. But by the 1 000m mark the BMW was back in the Audi’s face with a higher speed of 221km/h to 216km/h.
The debate about which was the better car still rages today. The RS 3 was better suited to everyday driving and straight-line sprinting, a fact borne out by the number of stupid fast RS 3s on the road and at the drag strip today. The 1M was a far more dynamic and exciting car, but was more suited to being a weekend breakfast run, track type car. In my shoot-out review back then I said I would have personally opted for the 1M if it was my money, but I gave the win to the RS 3 as it was the better car to own for everyday use. Cue the hate mail from the BMW fans!
Merc’s 386kW/700Nm ML 63 AMG came to the party with a class-leading run of 5.22sec, taking care of Porsche’s 368kW/700Nm Cayenne Turbo that ran a 5.79, Jeep’s now 6.4-litre 344kW/624Nm Grand Cherokee SRT8 that came in with a 5.81sec, and Range Rover’s 375kW/625Nm Supercharged Sport at 6.19sec.
VW’s Golf GTI VI, now in Edition 35 guise and with 173kW/300Nm on tap, was once again dishing out smacks and taking names with a run of 6.16sec. Renault’s 195kW/360Nm Megane RS 265 Trophy came close with a time of 6.37sec and Ford’s upgraded 184kW/340 Nm Focus ST brought up the rear with a 7.37sec run.
Mark Jones is The Citizen Motoring’s Road Test Editor. All his data has been obtained up on the Reef using the world recognised test facility of Gerotek, located West of Pretoria. He has always followed the same test procedure and makes use of the world standard in road test data equipment Racelogic VBOX.
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