Goodwood 2014: The Koenigsegg Agera One:1 Causes Breathlessness.

DSC_5892 Choosing a “car of the show” from the rich assortment at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed is a difficult choice. There are so many categories to choose from, some of which could deserve the title through historical significance alone, and some of which could be nominated through sheer honest to goodness allure alone. Though I won’t be forced into naming mine, I can see this as being a frontrunner for the Car Of Show plaudit. And because I move in entirely the wrong societal circles, I’m extremely unlikely to ever spend time in the company of a Koenigsegg again, let alone see it hurled noisily up a narrow tarmac track. Take the jump to gawp at more naked carbon fibre and watch it attack the hillclimb. DSC_5887 There were two Koenigsegg Agera One:1’s at Goodwood, the one you see posing provocatively before your eyes which Michelin had on static display, and the one you’ll see in a minute. This car was regularly sent up the track, and spent the rest of its time buried under crowds of feverishly excited onlookers, all brandishing iPhones, desperate to get a better look. I won’t lie; I didn’t even try. Fortunately, Jason Connor was on the ball again and has trimmed a juicy portion of Koenigsegg track footage from the live video feed that Goodwood was pumping out over the weekend. Let’s take a look at that and then get back to the gawping. [youtube][/youtube] When you tune into this wavelength of the automotive spectrum, cars start to get a bit surreal, and possibly even harder to choose between. I can’t imagine anybody cross-shopping Bugatti and a Koenigsegg, for example. If you can afford one million quid car, you can afford two. And each ultracar bloodline has a very specific set of values. The Bugatti Veyron is all about The Most. More of everything, from cylinders to radiators, horsepower to price-tag zeroes, the Bugatti has a ludicrous excess. The Koenigsegg couldn’t be more different in its approach to achieving brilliance. DSC_5884 The Koenigsegg brand seems for more aligned with my tastes . Koenigsegg aren’t all about excess, unless we’re talking excess top speed or excess attention to detail. Machinery from the Ängelholm firm is, in a word, honed. A Koenigsegg embodies, as they put it, the spirit of performance. And then we have the numbers. The Koenigsegg website states the Agera One:1 as having a power output of 1 Megawatt, which I make 1341hp. One point three thousand. Of course, that’s presumably if it’s being run on a blend of angels tears, ambrosia and liquid dark matter. DSC_5885 But the thing that I love most about Koenigsegg is that they are completely free of emotional baggage. They wear their intents on the sleeves of their cars. They build these infeasibly well engineered cars and nothing else (aside from some very meritorious behind the scenes work on vehicle energy technologies). This is what they do. There are no legendary historic models for their current machines to be judged against, there is no reputation or legend surrounding them. A Koenigsegg seems more likely to be chosen and bought by somebody who knows and understands, rather than as a straightforward demonstration of wealth and conspicuous consumption. The ultracar for geeks? Sign me up. (Credits: Video captured from the Goodwood media feed, by PrecisionBoost, still images by Chris Haining for Hooniverse. Copyright 2014)

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