Unlikely-sounding but true times around Germanyâ€™s 13-mile â€˜country roadâ€™ circuit
The Nurburgring in Germanyâ€™s Eifel region is a legendary location for private motorists seeking to test their carsâ€™ â€“Â and their own â€“Â mettle. You can drive around it at whatever speed you like, once youâ€™ve paid for a ticket that is, so you could just amble around admiring the scenery. But most tend to try and get their moneyâ€™s worth by going as fast as humanly and mechanically possible, otherwise whatâ€™s the point (they say).
The â€˜Ringâ€™ is also used by just about every performance car manufacturer these days to develop the handling of their latest creations. If they manage to get round in under seven and a half minutes, theyâ€™re doing pretty well. Anything under 7min 12sec will get your vehicle into the top ten times set by road-legal cars.
Thatâ€™s seriously quick, but youâ€™ll need to knock another full minute off that to get near the absolute record, which somewhat incredibly has been standing for the last 34 years. Phew.
Anyway, weâ€™ll get onto that in a minute. First though, here are the quickest lap times in the major categories, starting withâ€¦
The ten fastest road-legal cars
1 Porsche 911 GT2 RS (6:47.30)
If there is still someone around who reckons that a rear-engined 911 canâ€™t go quickly around a track, theÂ 690bhp 911 GT2 RSÂ is here to put them straight.
2Â Radical SR8LMÂ (6:48.00)
Radicalâ€™s street-approved racer powered by a 2.8-litre, 450bhp V8 made up of two Suzuki motorbike engines held the road-legal Ring record since 2009.
Read more:Â Experiencing the Nurburgring 24-hour
3 Â Lamborghini Huracan PerformanteÂ (6:52.01)
A pretty impressive effort by Lamborghini’sÂ 631bhp HuracÃ¡nÂ Performante, which delivers 631bhp at a screaming 8000rpm from its 5.2-litre V10.
4 Radical SR8Â (6:56.08)
The SR8LMâ€™s predecessor produced 360bhp from its 2.6-litre V8 engine and set a new NÃ¼rburgringÂ record in 2005 thatâ€™s still impressive today.
5 Porsche 911 GT3 RS (6:56.4)
The last hurrah for this generation of 911 is going out on a high, knocking its hypercar hybrid cousin down the list
6 Porsche 918 SpyderÂ (6:57.00)
Featuring a hybrid 4.6-litre V8/electric powertrain in a lightweight carbonfibre body, the 918 Spyderâ€™s combined output of 887bhp gives it a top speed of 214mph.
7 Â Lamborghini Aventador SVÂ (6:59.73)
With a single-clutch automated gearbox and a 50kg weight reduction over the standard Aventador, the SV does the 0-62mph in just 2.8 seconds.
Read more:Â The worldâ€™s fastest-accelerating cars
8 Dodge Viper ACR (7:01.3)
The fastest manual-transmission car to lap the ‘Ring. The Viper takes the good old-fashioned American approach to going fast with an 8.4-litre V10 putting out 645bhp.
9 Â Nissan GT-R NismoÂ (7:08.68)
Running the bigger, high-flow turbochargers from Nissanâ€™s GT3 racer, the Nismo GT-R charges from 0-60mph in 2.7 seconds and uses complex chassis electronics to keep it nailed to the ground.
10 Mercedes-AMG GT RÂ (7:10:92)
There have been more power AMGs but few provide such a sharply focused and nakedly aggressive driving experience as theÂ Mercedes-AMG GT R.
Other NÃ¼rburgring lap records
2017 Honda Civic Type RÂ (7:43.80)
Porsche 911 GT2 RSÂ (6:47.30)
Nio EP9Â (6:45.90). It would be the all-time production record holder but the time was set on bespoke tyres.
Nio EP9Â (6:45.90)
Fastest ever Ring time
Porsche 956Â (6:11.13), set in 1983 by Stefan Bellof.