Forget your Mustang GT350Rs and Corvette ZR1s; they’re just toys. The big dog is back in town, and is said to pack more firepower than ever before

The folks over in the United States have been producing an all-new category of sports car lately. Ford has produced the GT350R, with an engine that was produced solely for it, and it can rev over 8000rpm with ease. The power-train division even had a Ferrari V8 on hand to ensure the Ford’s engine surpassed it in every way.

Chevrolet also produced a stonking new Corvette Z06 that packs 650hp and has an absurd amount of torque down low in the rev range. But there was one American vehicle manufacturer who was pumping more horsepower into the atmosphere by a long shot some seven years ago; Saleen. 

You’ll no doubt remember the Saleen S7 from your favourite racing game, or on 50 Cent’s rap video for Candy Shop. It was sleek for its time and was produced from 2000–2009, with the most recent guise packing 750hp from a twin-turbo 7.0-litre V8 engine. The team at Saleen have just announced that they’ll be producing a modern take on the S7 — named the S7 LM — to commemorate the company’s 20th anniversary of a seven-year long run of racing.

This isn’t to be a big production run, but rather a seven-car line-up, each featuring unique liveries, wheels, performance upgrades, and interior enhancements. What is set in stone is a higher-powered version of the 7.0-litre V8, which will now pack 1000hp to bring it up to play with most modern hypercars and supercars. The price? Just a cool $1M US. 

Many are sceptical, as the company has been in financial strife since around 2008, shortly after they announced their newly designed S5S Raptor, which never saw the light of day. At one stage, Saleen announced it only had $7261 in cash on hand. We haven’t got a date for the S7 release, but if they can pull it off and turn a profit, then it will be good for the struggling automotive company. 

René Vermeer

Dutch, French, or just a Kiwi, René isn’t quite sure, but he does know he has a passion for Japanese vehicles like no other. A well-seasoned Gran Turismo player dating back to his single-digit days, René has a comprehensive knowledge of a wide range of performance vehicles and has owned more than 30 performance cars here in New Zealand, ranging from Nissans to Hondas. A lover of photography, you’ll find him either peeping under someone’s bonnet to snap a detailed shot, or on the side of the racetrack, perfecting his panning.