British police have discovered the world's fastest unmodified Lotus Elise, having clocked motorist Tex O'Reilly at the phenomenal speed of 173mph - almost three-and-a-half times the speed limit for the area where he was 'caught'.

Unfortunately for the Derbyshire police, the Lotus Elise they managed to clock at 173mph actually has a top speed of only 127mph. Nevertheless, the Telegraph reports that the police stuck to their story that the radar equipment used on the day was properly tested and calibrated and that everything was in working order, despite suggestions that this was not the case from 'theories' such as physics.

In the end, either through some technicality (or perhaps having a terrible lawyer) O'Reilly admitted to doing 105mph, forcing him to pay a fine rather than spend three years in jail - the outcome he was looking at if he had admitted to traveling at 173mph in a 50mph zone.

Interestingly, if Tex did manage to reach 173mph in his unmodified Elise he would have the dubious record of earning Britain’s highest speeding ticket by a margin of just 1mph. As of 2007, this honor rests with 33-year-old Timothy Brady, who drove a 'borrowed' Porsche 911 Turbo to 172mph before being stopped by police and entering the record books.