The race to be able to boast having the most horsepower in a car is reaching a fever pitch, with both high end exotics and sports cars with more humble roots churning out lofty numbers from engines pushed to the brink of their performance envelopes. The effect of all of this research and development has trickled down to affordable models in almost every category, but it’s still the ridiculously well-motivated cars that get our blood boiling and have us excited to slip behind the wheel and shred some rubber.
Let's take a look - in no particular order - at ten models that do their best to offer the most horsepower in a car.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 01 - 2013 Ford Shelby GT500
The 2013 Ford Shelby GT500 is based on the same general platform as the standard Mustang GT, but it would be a mistake to assume that these cars have much else in common. At the heart of the Ford Shelby GT500 is a 5.8-liter, eight-cylinder engine that has been matched with a supercharger in order to push out an incredible 662 horsepower and 631 lb-ft of torque. Claiming to be the most powerful V-8 engine available in a commercially-produced vehicle, the Shelby GT500 also comes with a six-speed manual transmission and a launch control system that is designed to send all of that torque to the pavement with a minimal amount of drama.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 02 - 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG is the top-tier edition of the German brand's retractable hardtop roadster, and it represents the collective efforts of in-house tuning outfit AMG. Its hand-assembled V-12 engine is twin-turbocharged in order to produce 621 horsepower and 738 lb-ft of torque - the latter figure being one which is rarely seen outside the world of diesel pickups. There's nothing truck-like about the Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG's agile handling, however, and the grand touring car is shifted via a seven-speed automatic transmission. This 12-cylinder / seven-speed combination can also be found in a number of other AMG models built by the brand (including the full-size S-Class sedan).
Most Horsepower In A Car - 03 - 2013 Bentley Continental Supersports
The 2013 Bentley Continental Supersports is an even more potent edition of the already wickedly fast Bentley Continental GT coupe. Like the SL65 AMG, the Bentley Continental Supersports also features a twin-turbo 12-cylinder engine under the hood, this one arranged in a 'W-12' design. The 6.0-liter mill produces 621 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque, and a six-speed automatic transmission sends that output to an all-wheel drive system that is rear-biased in order to preserve sporting driving dynamics. Despite weighing in at almost two tons, the Bentley is capable of reaching a lofty top speed of 204 miles per hour.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 04 - 2013 SRT Viper
The 2013 SRT Viper is one of the baddest sports coupes on the block, as evidenced by the car's reliance on a bruising ten-cylinder engine to provide it with enough horsepower to knock the competition around the track. Displacing 8.4 liters, this unit can be counted on to put out 640 ponies and 600 lb-ft of twist, and the only transmission that can be spec'd with the SRT Viper is a six-speed manual. When ordered in GTS trim, the Viper features an adjustable suspension as well as a driver-controlled electronic traction and stability control system.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 05 - 2013 Ferrari F12berlinetta
The 2013 Ferrari F12berlinetta might not be intended as a track champion - it's actually the Italian brand's version of a comfortable touring car - but that doesn't mean it won't bug your eyeballs out of your skull with its formidable engine specifications. The Ferrari F12berlinetta develops 730 horsepower and 509 lb-ft of torque, and can rev all the way up to a screaming 8,700 rpm. The V-12 engine mounted at the front of the Ferrari is a 6.3-liter unit that doesn't need turbos or a supercharger to peg its speedometer, and it comes with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 06 - 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
The 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 is the ultimate iteration of what has often been referred to as 'America's sports car.' The Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 produces more power than any other version of the coupe, relying on its supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine to crank out 638 horses and 604 lb-ft of torque. Even with its launch control system, magnetically-controlled suspension, and advanced aerodynamics, the ZR1 is quite a handful to drive on the track. Twitchier than the more balanced Corvette Z06, the ZR1 is shifted via a six-speed manual transmission and can reach 60-mph from a standing start in a scant 3.8 seconds.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 07 - 2013 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4
The 2013 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 is the big boy on the Lambo block, a scary coupe (also available in convertible trim) that brutally pushes its way to a top speed of 217 miles per hour thanks to the frightening amount of thrust generated by its 12-cylinder engine. The 6.5-liter V-12 motor outfitted to the Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 is good for 690 horsepower and 509 lb-ft of torque, and an all-wheel drive system is present and accounted for to help keep the car pointed in the right direction with the right foot slammed to the floor. A seven-speed automated manual is the exclusive transmission for the Lamborghini.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 08 - 2014 Porsche 911 Turbo S
The 2014 Porsche 911 Turbo S is the best of the breed when it comes to a streetable version of Porsche's venerable high performance coupe. The Porsche 911 Turbo S pushes 560 horsepower out of a twin-turbocharged, 3.8-liter six-cylinder engine, which is an improvement of 30 ponies over the previous generation of the car. Torque checks in at 516 lb-ft. Purists will be disappointed to learn that the 2014 edition of the Turbo S can't be had with a traditional manual transmission, as only a seven-speed PDK automated manual unit can now be had with the car. All-wheel drive remains standard with the 911 Turbo S, and four-wheel steering makes its first appearance for the model.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 09 - 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
The 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 adds even more muscle to the repertoire of the brand's popular coupe and convertible pairing. The Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 borrows its supercharged, 6.2-liter V-8 engine from the GM parts bin and uses it to offer buyers 580 horsepower and 556 lb-ft of torque. Also included with the Camaro ZL1 are a few items more typically found on a Corvette options sheet, including a magnetically-controlled adaptive suspension system and Brembo brakes. Chevrolet allows the choice between either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission with the ZL1.
Most Horsepower In A Car - 10 - 2013 Ferrari FF
The 2013 Ferrari FF is perhaps the most unusual model to have left Maranello in modern times. The Ferrari FF's hatchback / wagon looks are intended to give the four-seater a measure of practicality, and its all-wheel drive system isn't just there for performance - it's supposed to make the Italian car a legitimate four-seasons ride. Moving beyond its capabilities as a livable daily driver, the FF additionally provides outstanding performance due to its 651 horsepower, 6.3-liter V-12. Also capable of generating 504 lb-ft of torque, the motor helps the Ferrari achieve a terminal velocity of 208 miles per hour.
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