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Koenigsegg sees new Tesla Roadster as the ‘gauntlet’ thrown down

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Christian von Koenigsegg

, the man behind the company that holds the

current record for world’s fastest car

, does not like to be outdone. So he did not particularly enjoy hearing the numbers regarding the forthcoming

next-generation Tesla Roadster

and its vaunted 1.9-second 0-60 mph time.

“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,'” the


founder and CEO

told Top Gear


As he told the site, he enlisted his engineers to start running numbers, and within a couple of days, they’d figured out a solution. “The simplest way of putting it is like this: It’s combining direct drive with the


we have in a different format with free-valve engine technology, in a peculiar layout,” von Koenigsegg said. He said the powertrain could take a car from 0-250 mph in 14 seconds “or something like this,” and said he wants to make a combustion engine with a higher power density than an


powertrain “for as long as possible.”

His talk about


brings to mind the

Koenigsegg Regera plug-in hybrid

, which weighs just 3,505 pounds and puts out more than 1,500 horsepower. It does 0-62 mph in 2.8 seconds — impressive, but a full 0.9 seconds less than the Roadster’s purported time. And not surprising for a company that is all about maximizing ponies, Koenigsegg likes to geek out over the details of things like

the design of the 1,160-hp Agera RS engine

. Could he be talking about the same vehicle as the successor to the Agera RS,

rumored to be called Ragnarok



, meanwhile,

unveiled said Roadster at Grand Basel

in Switzerland — or rather, it showed off what appeared to be a white, empty design shell that had been shown last year at Tesla’s shareholder meeting.

And don’t forget that the mad scientists over at



tinkering with the 7.6-liter V8 for the Venom F5

, the key to its quest to hit 300 mph. So buckle your seat belts, boys and girls: Things are about to get very fast.

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