If you want a 200 MPH+ car, your options are limited. If you want one that also waves the Made in America flag, they're even more limited. But don't worry, Nice Price or Crack Pipe has got your back.
Yesterday was not a good day for the Nicest Yugo in the World. Fully 90% of you felt its $7,999 asking price would be better spent on lobbyists to promote legislation banning Malcom Bricklin from starting any more car companies. Someone else who lent his name to an automotive venture - but with greater success - was racer and entrepreneur Steve Saleen, and today we're going to take a look at his pinnacle achievement.
Irvine California is no stranger to hyper-fast machinery, considering its sprawl of suburban neighborhoods abuts what once was the El Toro Marine base- home to the Marines West Coast Fighter Squadron. So it was natural for Steve Saleen, when he first began making mustangs more muscular, to base his operations there. In addition to the ‘Stangs, Steve applied his magic touch - and more Saleen badges than you could shake a stick shift at - to F150s, Foci and a herd other FoMoCo products. But those were all tuned versions of somebody else's vehicles. What we have today is the culmination of everything Saleen had learned about making cars go faster, handle better and look cooler - the Saleen S7.
This pearl white example is claimed the last built before Steve sold his company and the rights to his last name. Production number 78 is one of a total run of a mere 21 twin-turbo street cars. That makes it more rare than an Enzo, more so than a Veyron. At that it is tickling at the production numbers of Spyker- or Aston Martin in 1979.
This car comes with the ‘Performance Option' which includes a grand total of 850 bhp out of its Ford-based aluminum 427. That's good for a claimed 245 mph top speed as well as sub-four second runs from the In-N-Out drive thru window to freeway speeds when Tony Stark gets the munchies.
What does such performance cost? Well, in this instance $375,000 will plop you down into the leather driver's seat, and behind that fat wheel. That buys you gull-wing doors, enough carbon fiber that you'll be regular for a year, and that thunder god that lives in the back, and under the mating-aliens intake manifolds.
Your options, again, are pretty limited, as few of these locomotives come on the market with much frequency. And another thing to consider is the beating that exotic car sales have taken in the economic downturn. A super car of this desirability and exclusivity would normally appreciate in value, but this one is demanding a mere 65% of its $585,000 base price when new, only 4 years ago. If you've got the cash, this is the time to spring for your garage's new fall wardrobe, and nothing accessorizes better than an S7 in white.
So, with all that going for it, do you think plunking down $375,000 for this American-do super car will make your accountant do zero to crapped-pants in under four seconds? Or, does that price make you wonder why your accountant hasn't recommended this investment earlier?
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