Koenigsegg’s CEO wants to take it to Tesla’s upcoming roadster with a new car that can crush its acceleration performance.
But he’s still not willing to give up gasoline just yet.
Christian Von Koenigsegg is a true petrolhead. He loves the sound, the smell, and the fury of an internal combustion engine turning liters of dead dinosaur bones into pure, unadulterated speed. According to Mr. Koenigsegg, there is no greater joy to be found on this Earth.
But there’s a problem. Actually, there are a few problems, but we’re only going to focus on the immediately pressing one in the same way that our government does while ignoring all evidence of global warming.
The problem is the Tesla Roadster. Specifically, it can accelerate from zero to sixty in just 1.9 seconds. That’s a time that very few cars can achieve, and most of them are non-road-legal drag racers designed to go as fast as possible in a straight line. Sub two-second 0-60 times are a thing of legend, and the Roadster can do it without breaking a sweat.
In a new interview with Top Gear, this has apparently perturbed Mr. Koenigsegg and thrown a wrench into all his plans. “We kind of had our future mapped out, and then we heard about the new Tesla Roadster and its insane acceleration numbers, and we thought ‘damn that’s put the gauntlet down.’
“We thought, ‘this is not OK’. We wondered whether it was possible, and yeah, it’s possible,” he admitted. “Then we thought, ‘OK how do we deal with it? This is embarrassing.’”
So Christian went back to the drawing board with his best engineers to come up with a solution. What they brought back was a hybrid car, much like the current Regera, that used electric motors for acceleration while retaining the internal combustion engine for top speed.
The Regera uses a twin-turbo V8 engine combined with three electric motors to achieve a combined power of nearly 1,800 horses, but its 0-60 time is still almost a full second slower than the Roadster at 2.8 seconds. However, Koenigsegg assures us that with some fiddling with compression ratios, a sub-2-second to sixty time is possible.
Now it’s just a matter of seeing what new car Koenigsegg comes up with.