Since 1927, the 13 miles that make up the Nordschleife circuit at Nürburgring have served as the ultimate test for production cars and racers alike. Starting in 2005, the previously unthinkable mark of seven minutes became the standard for cars making the run. Since then, only three vehicles have managed to get it done.
Looking at the top all time on the Nordschleife, several production cars make up the list, including the fastest Japanese production car and the fastest Porsche to ever go in sale. Here are the nine cars topping the list of Nürburgring track records.
9. Porsche 911 GT2 RS (07:18.00)
When it first scorched the earth in May 2010, the 2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS was the fastest and most powerful car the automaker has ever conceived for street driving. It was capable of going 0-60 in 3.4 seconds using 620 horsepower to propel its road-ready 3,020 pounds. Those marks were otherworldly when Porsche debuted, but the stunning lap at Nürburgring told the tale in full. At 07:18.00, few cars had ever ran the circuit so quickly.
8. Donkervoort D8 RS (07:14.89)
Several of the cars making up the top ten times at Nürburgring-Nordschleife never see the roads of civilization, but that doesn’t make their engineers’ achievement any less extraordinary. For the full experience, ride along in the Donkervoort D8 RS for a lap that took fewer than 7 minutes and 15 seconds.
7. Lexus LFA Nürgurbring Package (07:14.64)
It was clear what Lexus had in mind when it put together its Nürburgring package for the LFA supercar. Sporting a 4.8-liter V10 engine, it was capable of grinding from 0 to 9000 rpm in 0.6 seconds. The LFA can produce a maximum 552 hp at 9700 rpm and 354 lb-ft of torque at 7800 rpm, making the 0-60 run in just 3.6 seconds. It can reach a top speed of 202 mph. Its mark of 07:14.64 in 2012 put Toyota back in the elites of the racing world.
6. Dodge Viper SRT-10 ACR (07:12.13)
The vicious Dodge Viper had its most impressive iteration in the SRT-10 ACR. This beast was capable of 600 horsepower and could blast from 0-60 in 3.4 seconds. Those capabilities served the Viper well when it went charging at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife and closed the loop in 07:12.13. That run still holds as the sixth-best in history.
5. Gumpert Apollo Speed (07:11.57)
Gumpert is not a household name, but speed enthusiasts know the Apollo Speed as holder of the fifth-fastest time ever at Nürburgring-Nordschleife. When it ran the table in 2009, its time of 07:11.57 was the production lap record. That time bested the Viper ACR (predecessor to the ACR-10) by more than 10 seconds. The racing model ran from 0-62 mph in 3.1 seconds with 789 hp.
4. Nissan GT-R Nismo (07:08.68)
Nissan’s GT-R Nismo can claim the record of fastest “volume production car” at the Nürburgring course. A GT-R made the challenging Nordschleife circuit in 07:08.679 in 2013, placing it fourth on the all-time list. Powering the GT-R is a 3.6-liter twin turbo V6 that’s capable of producing 595 hp and 481 lb-ft of torque. It can flash from 0-60 in 2.7 seconds, nailing top speeds above 200 mph. It’s the fastest Japanese car in the world.
3. Porsche 918 Spyder (06:57.00)
Porsche clearly had something special when it unveiled the 918 Spyder hybrid. Carrying a a hybrid gas and electric powertrain, the Spyder was a supercar that could produce a maximum 887 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. This massive output allowed the Spyder to run 0-60 in 2.5 seconds on its best tests. It can run 0-124 mph in 6.2 seconds, making it more than twice as fast as most cars on the road. That allowed the Spyder to break the 7:00 mark at Nürburgring in 2013, notching a spectacular run of 06:57.00. It’s the best any street-legal car has done.
2. Radical SR8 (06:56.08)
The Radical line of cars holding the top Nürburgring speeds since 2005 aren’t ready for a spin down U.S. roads, but they are worthy of the highest praise in engineering. In addition, the Radical SR3 SL is legal to cruise on the roads of the U.K., Japan, and Italy. Its speed of 06:56.08 was set way back in 2005. Only the 918 Spyder has challenged this mark.
1. Radical SR8LM (06:48.00)
To run 12.9 miles in 6 minutes and 48 seconds is something few humans will experience on land. In 2009, the Radical SR8LM made the record-breaking lap (06:48.00) at Nürburgring, cutting nearly eight seconds off the time its previous racer notched in 2005.
U.S. drivers can pick up a 918 Spyder (on a limited run of 918 models) or the Nissan GT-R Nismo, both track-worthy cars holding two of the top times ever at Nürburgring. For now, they’re the best to have proved their mettle on the challenging Nordschleife run.