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Zero to 60 in three seconds

In these rough economic times, people have reorganized their values. If you walk into a restaurant, you see fewer waiters and waitresses. The crowds in the malls have diminished and every few days you hear about a new bank going under, or another car manufacturer turning over control to the court in bankruptcy. Fewer people have made home improvement purchases, gone splurging for new wardrobes and have even had to downsize on housing.

Yet, with all that said, it’s nice to know that Europeans still tickle the American fancy, and they do it better than the Americans could ever.

A great modern philosopher turned lunatic once said, “I feel the need, the need for speed.” Speed is something Americans have loved since we climbed on a horse’s back and told it to run for the sunset. We’ve turned those horses into mechanical horsepower, shelled it in aluminum, carbon fiber and fiberglass. Then we advanced upon that and utilized aerodynamic science from aviation development and created the race car. NASCAR, Formula-1, Indycar and even the urban street racing culture are stem from this tree.

Speed once was the pride of American Muscle, and loud engines that went fast and got 36 feet to the gallon were our adrenaline fixation. The Japanese then created fuel injection, and made cars just as fast, and the Europeans had style; both leaving Ford, Dodge and GM in the dust.

But if there’s one thing America itself hasn’t lost, its our insatiable quest for the better, faster, and most expensive status symbol.

Welcome, the Gumpert Sportwagenmanufaktur Apollo.

When people think of fast cars, they think of the Corvette for American cars, the Nissan Skyline R34 or Toyota Supra on the Japanese front, and Ferrari F50 or the Ferrari Enzo from our European speed demons.

But all that has been pushed aside by the new heavyweight.

Gumpert had made cars only available in Europe for many years. Recently however, they made the jump to producing cars in America for sale in the good ol’ USA. What sets Gumpert apart from Ferrari, Lamborghini, Aston Martin and the other big name super car manufacturers is that Gumpert sells completely customizable cars from the get go. Base pricing for their 10 Apollo a year is $400,000, with most of the final builds totaling more than $700,000. This is a car built around the individual buyer, making whatever he or she may want come to complete fruition.

If you’re ever lucky enough to save up enough pennies to buy one of these babies, there’s only one place in America where you can go to get it fixed, and that’s back in Arizona at the assembly plant, where the only authorized Gumpert repair specialists reside.

All that said, this is the car you want if you get a kick out of granny yelling at you from her porch as you fly by at 223 miles per hour. You can accelerate from 0 to 62 miles per hour in three seconds. You reach 124 miles per hour in 8.9 seconds. (All speeds from top speed.)

That puts this beast near the top of the supercar list for speed, and compared to the Bugatti Veyron, which tops at near 250 miles per hour, you can buy two of these for the price of one. Not that it matters much at that speed. Both cars run out of gas three to five minutes before the tires would blow.