Born with a passion for speed and fast cars, John found early racing success behind the wheel of a modified Mitsubishi 3000GT at events such as the Pikes Peak Hill Climb and the Silver State Classic. Hennessey even set a world speed record in his class at the Bonneville Salt Flats.
Fueled by his passion for racing, horsepower, and speed, John began modifying imports out of his garage in 1991 – it wasn’t long before his 1,000-hp twin-turbocharged Dodge Vipers were getting international attention in celebrated automotive publications such as Motor Trend, Car and Driver, Top Gear, and Road & Track.
John quickly opened a dedicated performance shop, which grew to be one of the largest independent automotive tuners in the world. Hennessey became a name synonymous with performance – “the American icon of speed and the open road” – and the company’s vehicles were being offered and sold to a global market. By the numbers, more than 10,000 specialty vehicles, including mid-engine supercars, six-wheeled supertrucks, and modern muscle cars have been improved with Hennessey performance modifications.
Still operating at full throttle, John founded Hennessey Special Vehicles in 2017 with the mission of designing, engineering, and manufacturing the world’s fastest cars. The company’s first project, the Venom F5 – a bona fide 300+ mph hypercar – will see customer deliveries in 2021.
Today, the Hennessey facilities in Texas include a large manufacturing plant and a dedicated test track – where vehicles may be tested at speeds of up to 150 mph. Tuner School, the only teaching institution of its kind, offers the next generation of automotive enthusiasts hands-on education to the art of making vehicles faster.
John, his wife Hope, and their five children live in Houston, Texas.