It has a quickest pass of 7.6 seconds and a highest terminal velocity of 201 mph (323 km/h) in a 20-year old Civic with 350,000 miles (563,000 km).

Drag racing records have been dropping like flies in the last couple of weeks, but this is perhaps the most astonishing of all: a 20-odd year-old Honda Civic has become the quickest front-wheel drive, stock-chassis machine with a quarter-mile time of 7.61 seconds at 199.45 miles per hour (320.95 kilometres). It set a new speed trap record of a scarcely believable 201 mph (323 km/h), as well.

The car was put together by Tacoma, Washington-based SpeedFactory Racing with a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder engine breathing through a turbo the size of a dog. Quite a large dog, at that. Somehow - witchcraft, probably - the crew has managed to squeeze 1,850 horsepower out of the motor at the crankshaft. That’s five times the output of the most powerful 2.0-litre turbo production car.

After all, there are as many records to claim as there are types of car competing.

Incredibly, that power goes to the ground through an H-pattern gearbox. And the car has around 350,000 miles (563,000 km) under its belt.

The World Cup Finals at Maryland International Raceway provided the venue for the record-breaking run, and it seems like the crowd knew exactly what was stake, letting out an enormous cheer after each of the Civic’s runs in which it beat a V8-engined Pontiac Firebird and a Nissan 240SX for good measure.

Just last week, Gidi Chambi ran a 7.14 second pass in his AMS Performance-built, stock-chassis Nissan GT-R, a record for the type, barely a week after Ekanoo Racing had set the marker at 7.16 seconds. Drag racing is hyper-competitive, clearly. After all, there are as many records to claim as there are types of car competing. Someone somewhere in the world can claim to have the fastest Mark 5 VW Golf GTi running a stock chassis, modified aero, standard engine block, nitrous, and a DSG gearbox probably.

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The trouble with there being some many records to claim is that it is difficult to ascertain what the outright FWD quarter-mile record is. Can anyone enlighten us?



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