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Question of the Week

A worthy winner? Top Gear readers say this is the greatest supercar from the 2000s

We asked you to choose between the Ferrari Enzo, Porsche Carrera GT and the Mercedes McLaren SLR. What followed was a whitewash victory for one of the three

Published: 16 Feb 2024

This Monday, we asked our readers which of the Ferrari Enzo, Porsche Carrera GT or Mercedes McLaren SLR they felt was the best from the original ‘Holy Trinity’, and the response was… huge. Shall we begin?

The Enzo: 650 of Ferrari’s finest horsepowers rearing to go behind that finely-chiselled jaw, and accompanied by more Formula One tech than anything which came before it. Even now, 20 years on, the Enzo continues to command the utmost respect.

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Dhanu says: “I remember the first time that I saw it on TV. It was like seeing the F22 fighter jet, you knew instantly that it meant business. It was the peak of Ferrari engineering with zero compromise.”

Paul Esthete furthered Dhanu’s case: “Butterfly doors taking each half of the roof, 250mph speedometer and that mad front overhang straight from the F2002. Put it on the current semi slick compounds, and you’ve got yourself a sub-seven-minute car around the ‘Ring.”

It’s hard to argue against either of them, but there’s been a pretty compelling case made for the Carrera GT. Why? It’s slower than the Enzo, didn’t move the game forward as substantially as the Enzo, and was produced in nearly four times the volume. Well, sometimes, logic goes out of the window, and our readers certainly agree.

Here’s what Ivan had to say: “The idea of using an abandoned racing engine with a glorious sound and a delicious manual transmission made it stand out. The GT is the last of the true analogic supercars made by a ‘mass’ sports car manufacturer along with the 2005 Ford GT.”

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Teabag Towers then came to Ivan’s aid: “For me, there is just something so special and raw about that car. A manual gearbox, race car engine, and a carbon construction that Horacio Pagani admires. The Enzo was a glimpse of what the future would hold, whereas the GT feels like the end of an era.”

Last but certainly not least is the Mercedes McLaren SLR: a car which ghosts between ultimate long-distance hauler and snorty, supercharged freak of nature the way Doctor Strange can move between the multiverse. 

The first of two comments in favour of the SLR was provided by TBP: “It was the first car I had on my bedroom wall; I loved the cruise missile looks, gullwing doors, jet-inspired alloy wheels and side exit exhausts. I can’t help but admire the split personality of it, being ridiculously quick for its time yet having all the luxury accoutrements of a GT. It’s not a perfect car from a rational point of view, but it is my perfect car.”

Rick Moritz agrees: “I have the SLR family tree as my desktop background. That V8 sound is just awesome, and those art-deco looks are completely unique. The GT and Enzo are great cars, but the SLR is the most usable. Unless you get a Stirling moss spec, which, just the fact it exists, makes the SLR the best.”

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In fact, the supercharger whine is a big pull factor for a number of readers, with Sheldon Cooper saying there is “something Spitfire-like about the noise”, and Viznu coining it as a “hair-raising, guttural sound”. 

Before we conclude, shoutout to Brynylon for their cut-throat take on the entire subject: “All of these supercars are extremely ugly. As is the Dacia Sandero. However, the Dacia is much cheaper and has the biggest boot. I recommend the Dacia.”

Fair dos, Bryn. Fair dos. But as good as the Sandero and its superior boot space are, the winner of this week’s contest took twice as many votes as the second-placed car, and over three times as much as the least popular. 

We’ll leave Don’t Feed My Horse to explain why: “The Carrera GT is frequently cited as the last and possibly greatest analogue supercar. Race-derived V10, manual gearbox, electronic aids be damned, removable roof so every car is a convertible. Hearing the scream of the V10 behind you as you slam gears with the sun shining down on you. It wins because it’s a pure, uncompromised driver’s car. The other’s somewhat less so.”

So there we have it, folks. As voted by you, the Porsche Carrera GT is the very best from arguably the greatest decade of supercars ever. Also, don’t you dare feed Don’t Feed My Horse’s horse if you ever meet it. 

Stay tuned for our next Question of the Week on Monday morning, where we’ll pit three of the wildest manufacturers of the modern era against each other to see which comes out on top. Once again, thank you all for the huge involvement last week; we look forward to seeing how the next one pans out.

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