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13 Fastest 0-60 Cars of the 80’s That We All Forgot About

Vukasin Herbez October 22, 2017

9. Pontiac Trans Am 20th Anniversary

In 1989, Pontiac was celebrating the 20th anniversary of its favorite muscle car – the Trans Am. To do so, they presented a limited run of 1,500 cars to commemorate the occasion. But, they wanted the anniversary edition to be more than just another decal and paint job. So, Pontiac decided to install Buick’s, 3.8-liter turbo V6 from the GNX to create the fastest Trans Am of the decade.

The white commemorative edition could accelerate 0.1 seconds faster from 0 to 60 mph than the GNX at 4.6 seconds. The reason was simple. It had a better weight distribution and updated gearing from the Pontiac gearbox. The Trans Am 20th Anniversary model is hard to find, but quite desirable today.

10. Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

Called the “King of the Hill,” the Corvette ZR1 was exactly that. Chevrolet introduced the king of all Corvettes in 1989 with the ZR1. When the C4 generation of America’s favorite sports car saw the light of day in 1984, it was obvious Chevy hit a home run. The car was nimble, fast and potent.

The construction was new and improved. It was so advanced that even today, the 2018 Chevrolet Corvette uses the same chassis architecture as the Corvette from the 80’s. But, Chevrolet engineers knew this platform could do much more with the right engine. Although the 250 HP small block V8 was fine for regular customers, Chevy had nothing to offer those who wanted more power.

Finally, in 1989 they presented the ZR1. On the outside, a third brake light and wider rear track revealed this wasn’t an ordinary ‘Vette. Under the hood, there was the LT4 Lotus-engineered V8 engine. It produced 375 HP and later 400 HP thanks to the quad-cam heads and 32 valves.

The motor was an engineering marvel and it performed exceptionally well. With a beefed-up suspension and gearbox, as well as a pair of extra wide rear tires, the 1989 Corvette ZR1 was fast. It could accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds, making it one of the fastest cars of the era and a true modern classic today.

11. Lamborghini Countach 5000 QV

The definitive 80’s supercar was the Lamborghini Countach. They conceived the favorite bedroom poster car of the decade in the 70’s, but its popularity continued into the 80’s. It had an outrageous design, as well as spoilers and scoops. They produced a few fast and powerful versions. One of the best iterations in the Countach theme was the 5000 QV. The number was its displacement in cubic centimeters, although it was not totally

One of the best iterations in the Countach theme was the 5000 QV. The number was its displacement in cubic centimeters, although it was not correct since the V12 engine was an impressive 5.2-liters.

The power output was 414 HP with the help of four valves per cylinder head; hence, the QV meant “Quattrovalvole” or four valves in Italian. Some of the body panels contained Kevlar, which kept the weight down and raised the performance. The 1988 Countach 5000 QV could accelerate from 0 to 60 in 4.5 seconds.

12. Ferrari F40

The Ferrari F40 was and still is a special car in many ways. The company built it to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Ferrari company. In fact, the famous Enzo Ferrari envisioned it and supervised the production. It was his last creation because he died just a couple of months after he presented the F40 in 1987.

The F40 is a race car with a gorgeous body and the performance to inspire you to drive this car as fast as you can. Ferrari based it heavily on the 288 GTO model. The F40 is an improved version of a twin-turbo, 2.9-liter V8 engine supercar with two seats. It came with a basic interior, manual gearbox and 480 HP of screaming horsepower coming from the engine.

The F40 was one of only two cars in street-legal trim that could accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in less than four seconds. To be exact, various magazines have tested the acceleration at 3.8 seconds. Those are impressive numbers for a car from the 80’s.

13. Porsche 959

The fastest car of the 1980’s has to be the Porsche 959. In fact, not only was it the fastest, it was also the most advanced, technologically-complex supercar of the era. The 959 was a super Porsche in every way, including design, performance and price. The 80’s were fun times for Porsche. Despite the popularity of all their models, Porsche was confused about which path to choose. They struggled to decide to go with their rear engine classic 911 or with a more modern, balanced 928, 924 or 944.

The odds were against the 911, but it kept on selling and winning races. So, Porsche decided to introduce a model that would be a rolling compilation of the technology compatible with the 911. They used their experience from racing, the latest technology and turbocharging to produce the 959. Porsche introduced it in 1987. The 959 had a 3.0-liter turbocharged flat-six engine with 450 HP it transferred to all four wheels over an intelligent AWD system, which was the first of its kind.

They also equipped the car with traction control, ABS and host of electronic systems that helped the driver. Even though these things are standard in most new cars, in the late 80’s it was space age technology. In fact, the performance of this technological tour de force was astonishing. The 0 to 60 mph was possible in just 3.7 seconds.

If you’re looking for a fast and exciting car, you should look at those turbo-charged pioneers of the 1980’s. They were built to last and they have the power to go fast, too.

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