While our brains have been conditioned to conjure images of Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and McLarens whenever the term is bandied about, the truth of the matter is exotic cars (also referred to as supercars) are defined as very expensive and high performance sports cars or grand tourers. They are generally limited production, typically offered by elite manufacturers, and can be standard looking cars modified for exceptional performance. They can also feature unique and distinctive styling, though this isn’t always a requirement for qualification for super car (or exotic) status.
As for American exotic cars, the first model to be advertised as such was the 1957 Rambler Rebel, considered to be the first American car to apply the formula of fitting a manufacturer’s most powerful engine to its lightest car. As you’ll see on the accompanying list of the best American exotic cars for 2016, this formula has been put to very good use over the ensuing years. And yes, we know exists an abundance of intensely powerful cars from well-respected aftermarket manufacturers. However, for this list, we’ve focused on cars offered by mainstream manufacturers, built in their factories, and sold in their dealerships.