Horsepower is a great thing. It helps cars move, which helps us drive them, and driving is what we enjoy. But in some cases, too much horsepower does exist. When it seems like yet another company is showing off a new car with 1,000-plus horses every week, that means we, as a society, have too much horsepower.
That also means these cars individually have too much horsepower.
As a timely example, take the Aria FXE above. It’s a hybrid hypercar with 1,150 HP from its motors: a 720-HP V8 engine “from an American manufacturer” in the middle of the car and two electric motors up front that add 540 HP. (Note that this adds up to 1,260 HP. It’s common for hybrid and electric systems’ horsepower ratings to be less than the combined horsepower of all motors.)
That kind of horsepower is so ridiculous that it’s become lame. Oh, another car with 1,000-plus HP and a millionaire price tag? Yawn. It’s too expensive for most of the population, and, really, what fun is touching a gas pedal with your pinky toe and feeling like you’re launching into space? Sure, it has its moments, but there’s little joy in driving around the neighborhood with horsepower numbers higher than the world’s top race cars.
Absurd horsepower numbers are more for launching some wealthy person’s Instagram bragging rights than they are for actually launching the car, and it feels like they come around as often as crossovers these days. The Mercedes-AMG Project One, Aston Martin Valkyrie, Koenigsegg Agera XS, Bugatti Chiron, Zenvo TS1, Rimac Concept One and Rimac Concept S are just a few of the fancy hypercars with more than 1,000 HP that have come out in the past couple of years, and that’s already too many. The Faraday Future FF 91 and Lucid Air are more of the “family-sized luxury with power that’ll make your kid sick” style, but still go over 1,000 HP.
The problem is, these cars won’t be able to reach their potential on the public roads they’ll probably spend most of their non-garage time on. They’ll also sit in a garage as to not put on too many miles, because these expensive hypercars with way too much horsepower are meant more for looking at than for driving. That is silly.
If you’re going to take your $3-million hypercar to your local drag races, that’s great! Awesome use of horsepower. But most people who buy these cars likely will not do that. Bad use of horsepower.
Packing 1,000 HP into a road car isn’t for the performance it brings; those 1,000 horses are there so that @supercarcollector6969 can brag about all of the other road cars his can beat. That’s what makes this stuff so boring and useless, and it would be cool if we could come up with a new form of spitting contest soon to make things more interesting.
So, everyone, here’s the new Aria FXE. Deliveries should begin in late 2019, but if you forget to mark your calendar for the big day, it’s alright—Instagram will remind you when the time comes.