If there's one performance metric that's pure marketing hype, it has to be a vehicle's Nürburgring time. Our good pal Jack Baruth brilliantly debunked this ever-growing myth. In case you missed Jack's article, here's the gist:
"Sorry. There's no "Nürburgring lap time record" for a simple reason: Real lap time records are set by real race cars, using real timing and scoring equipment, during actual competition or sanctioned practice sessions. They aren't "self-reported" for the same reason the World's Strongest Man Contest isn't held by having everyone mail in their "results" because people can, and do, lie and cheat."
All that truth spoken to power, it's still accurate to say that certain cars generally tend to get around Green Hell faster than others. The big players lately have been the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, Dodge Viper ACR, Porsche GT2 and Godzilla, better known as the Nissan GT-R. All four of these cars can scoot around the Nürburgring in 7:30, maybe a squidge faster. Again – it really doesn't matter. But one of the reasons why automakers play up these 'Ring times so much is that the Nürburgring is regarded as one of the most difficult and challenging strips of macadam anywhere – for both car and driver. To rephrase that, there are lots of accidents.
Meet the Nürburgring Rapid Response GT-R. The back seat has been removed to make way for a tank full of fire-retarding foam. The firehose itself is in the trunk, along with other flame-fightin' gear. And because the Rapid Response GT-R will be hustling round the 'Ring nearly as fast as Toshio Suzuki would flog it, there's a roll cage and carbon fiber Recaro race seats. Almost makes us wish we were German firemen. Almost.