The Saleen S7 Was The Fastest Car When It Debuted

Automobile Industry has seen a plethora of supercars that were the fastest in their era. The Saleen S7, launched in August 2000, was the fastest car globally when it made its debut. The supercar appeared as America’s first production supercar. The Saleen S7 was created by Steve Saleen who is also honored for his extraordinary Ford Mustangs. He wanted to build his beast from scratch, and the result was America’s first true supercar – Saleen S7.

Surprisingly, Saleen and his team completed this car within 18 months. Steve planned to cook up about 300 to 400 units in four years. With an original price of $400,000, Saleen S7 made its debut, whereas its twin-turbo variant was priced at about $600,000 at the time of launch.

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How Did The Saleen S7 Become ‘The Fastest Car’?

In the late 90s, plenty of F1 cars were converted for everyday use in the US like other normal road cars. The 1998 built McLaren F1 had the crown of fastest car, which the Saleen S7 obtained later. The McLaren F1 could sprint from 0-60 mph in 3.4 seconds. On the other hand, the high-speed Saleen S7 took just 3.3 seconds for the same, making it the fastest car on its debut. It could cross the quarter-mile in just 11.6 seconds.

The early models of the Saleen S7 were equipped with a 7-liter Ford V8 engine, which could bestow 550 HP that was unsatisfactory for Saleen. Later, they rolled out the S7 twin-turbo model. With these twin turbochargers, the car could reach almost 250 MPH by generating a sufficient 750 HP. Though the engine was derived from Ford’s 351 Windsor, the Saleen S7 Twin-Turbo achieved 0-60 MPH in just 2.8 seconds and its highest speed was 248 MPH.

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Distinctive Design Of The Saleen S7

Saleen’s design pundit, Phil Frank, prepared the exterior design of Saleen S7 on the digital platform, and they optimized it later on. The engineering team had performed plenty of tests, including aerodynamic and functional tests, to obtain complete maneuverability and controllability. The supercar was invented at Saleen’s manufacturing and engineering facility in Irvine, California. Due to its exceptional design, Saleen affirmed the S7 as the most aerodynamically powerful streetcar ever built. Additionally, the driver’s seat was slightly offset towards the center for flawless weight distribution. This exotic car can be driven upside down at 160 MPH in a tunnel at any speed above 160 mph.


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Interesting Quirks and Cool Features of The Saleen S7

The Saleen S7 is one of the most enhanced supercars in terms of aerodynamic design and ergonomically impeccable. The car has an exciting feature called gills on the five-separate location. Basically, these 50 gills are part of what gives it a look that seems to be going 200 miles an hour. The Saleen S7 has gills located in the front and rear sides of the front wheels. With a group of them above the front wheels, few gills behind the engine on the body panel. Interestingly a few are in the backside, and another group of them in front of the engine. The gills tally up to a total of 25 numbers on each side of the supercar.


There are two functional air intakes, one on the front trunk and another one over the top of the windshield, which brought the air into the engine. Additionally, the royal car had dual trunks, which made it relatively practical. One located at the front side of the car, and another at the rear side.

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Inside The Saleen S7

If you glance inside the S7, you get to know that the seats of the Saleen S7 are bolted. With an ample amount of seat width, Saleen S7 contains gradually decreased footwells. Similar to racing cars, the steering wheel can move in the upward or downward direction. The front dash has a tachometer embedded in the middle, and the speedometer on the left with the top indication of 240 MPH. You have a fuel gauge along with the engine temperature indication on the right side of the front desk. It seems a little hard to access the pedal assembly. To make it a personalized Saleen S7, the car owner gets a first-class air ticket to the factory, quite a surprising fact of the luxurious Saleen S7.


The Saleen S7 has a story similar to that of the underdog coming out on top, as presented in Sylvester Stallone’s ‘Rocky’ movie. The Saleen S7 had everyone in shock and awe when it first came out on the market. Nobody could have envisioned it that a small firm would ever come out with the ‘Fastest Car in the World’. The Saleen S7 is an icon, a testament to the will of all those engineers and the visionary Steve Saleen that if you put in the hours and keep at it miracles will happen.

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