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20 Speedy Supercars Featuring V8 Engines

Vukasin HerbezJuly 3, 2019

The V8 engine configuration is truly remarkable. Not only it is available in various displacements, gasoline, diesel and hybrid configurations it is the preferred power of every gearhead on the world. The V8 engine is in almost every type of the car, truck or SUV. And despite modern concerns about fuel efficiency and ecology, the V8 is still the way to go.

Since the V8 is such a versatile engine, it has even found its way in the supercar class. This is a car segment that is traditionally reserved for V12 engines. However, the V8 has proven to be a perfect match. In fact, sometimes, it is even a better choice than those complicated V12 machines. So, here are the 20 best V8-powered supercars ever made.

  1. Saleen S7

In the early 2000s, Steve Saleen, the CEO of Saleen Automotive, decided to branch out. He wanted to enter the supercar market with the S7 model. It was a fast, good looking and powerful exotic model featuring the latest technology and proven V8 power. Saleen invested a lot of time and money into constructing the S7. He even used companies that produced parts for Formula One cars to help him in the development of this car.

The result was the 550 HP Saleen S7 he introduced in 2000, immediately drawing attention from the supercar crowd. The S7’s superb performance, looks and technology were up to par with the best European supercars at the time. In 2005, he released the even more powerful Twin Turbo version with 750 HP and a top speed of almost 250 mph. The car proved to be relatively successful, even on the racetracks. Soon, Saleen produced a racing version, too.

  1. Ferrari F40

When Ferrari introduced the F40 in 1987, it was a commemorative model to mark the company’s 40th anniversary. However, it was much more than that. It was and still is one of the greatest sports cars they ever built, as well as one of the best Ferraris they ever produced.

Most of the chassis and drivetrain came from the 288 GTO. But they improved the engine, so it produced around 450 HP. Contrary to some other models in its lineup, Ferrari decided to install a twin-turbo V8. It had 2.9-liters of displacement instead of the naturally-aspirated V12, drivers commonly associate with the brand.

  1. Mosler MT900

Debuting in 2001, the MT900 was the product of a long development process. The goal was to present a car as light and as powerful as possible. And most people can say that Warren Mosler managed to do just that since the MT900 weighs only 2,500 lbs, which is less than the competitors.

The car is powered by a 5.7-liter V8 delivering 350 HP or 7.0-liter V8 with 435 HP in the MT900 S version. Both engines came from Chevrolet. The Mosler MT900 stayed in production until 2011. During that time, they only built 14 cars. Mosler even produced a racing version that competed with some degree of success in the World Endurance Racing championship.

  1. Ascari KZ1

Ascari presented the KZ 1 in 2004 and it featured cool styling. The construction was high-quality thanks to the carbon-fiber tub. Also, it had an S62 V8 engine from the E39 BMW M5, which was good for over 400 HP. Since the KZ 1 was light and balanced, the performance was great. In fact, going from 0 to 60 was possible in just four seconds while the top speed was 200 mph.

The specifications and features in popular magazines added to the hype. However, when they announced the pricing, the KZ1 hit a wall. Ascari priced this car at a hefty $400,000, which was more than a comparable Ferrari or Porsche. So, unfortunately, that sealed the destiny of the KZ1.

  1. SSC Ultimate Aero TT

SSC designed the Ultimate Aero to be the fastest and most powerful supercar on the market. And it came with engineering that represented a perfect blend between racing technology and streetcar design. The first Ultimate Aero models used a 6.2-liter Corvette racing engine with almost 800 HP. And that propelled this beast to 238 mph.

But the real treat came in 2009 when they released the Ultimate Aero TT. It featured a turbocharged Corvette mill delivering 1,200 HP. Also, they improved the suspension, chassis and aerodynamics. And soon, the Aero TT broke the production car speed record by achieving 256 mph, making it the fastest car in the world. With a price of close to $300,000, they only 24 Aeros between 2006 and 2009.

  1. Isdera Imperator 108i

The legendary Vector W8 is a wedge-shaped, V8 powered monster they presented in 1990. It was an ambitious project by the Vector Aeromotive Corporation. They wanted to produce the most advanced supercar in the world using aeronautical technology and materials in car production

Under the engine cover was the typical American powerhouse in the form of a Chevrolet small-block V8. They paired it up with twin turbochargers to produce 625 HP, which was an impressive figure. The company claimed that at full boost, the 6.0-liter twin-turbo engine was capable of 1,200 HP.

  1. Vector W8

The legendary Vector W8 is a wedge-shaped, V8 powered monster presented in 1990. It was an ambitious project by the Vector Aeromotive Corporation. They wanted to produce the most advanced supercar in the world by using aeronautical technology and materials in car production

Under the engine cover was a typical American powerhouse in the form of a Chevrolet small-block V8. They paired it up with twin turbochargers to produce 625 HP, which was an impressive figure. The company claimed that at full boost, the 6.0-liter twin-turbo engine was capable of 1,200 HP.

  1. Iso Grifo 90

The legendary Iso Grifo from the ’60s and early ’70s left an everlasting mark on the industry. So in 1990, Pietro Rivolta, son of the founder, presented the Grifo 90 concept. They built it on a Corvette C4 chassis with a special new body designed by renowned stylist Marcello Gandini. Unfortunately, financial problems forced the cancelation of the project.

Soon, the Grifo 90 was forgotten. And that is a big shame since the Grifo 90 used a Corvette C4 ZR1 running gear and chassis. That meant it had 405 HP under the hood and brutal performance numbers. Better yet, the Iso Grifo body was a bit lighter than the Corvette, which improved its top speed.

  1. Ford GT

The early 2000s supercar boost motivated many manufacturers to offer exotic cars, introduce new models or revive some old legendary names. So Ford jumped on the bandwagon with a new and retro-styled supercar they simply called the GT. It was the obvious successor to the fantastic Le Mans-winning GT40 from the late ’60s.

The heart of the Ford GT was Ford’s fabulous 5.4-liter supercharged V8 with 550 HP. The GT could achieve a 0 to 60 mph time of just 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 205 mph. Despite the fact they didn’t build the Ford GT with racing in mind, it was capable on the track in the hands of many private teams.

  1. Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale

Despite the fact it is now irrelevant in the supercar class, in the late ’60s, Alfa produced one of the most interesting supercars ever built, the Tipo 33 Stradale. It was not only the most expensive production car at the moment; it was also the most exclusive. Powered by a screaming race-bred V8, Alfa sold only around 15 of them.

The 33 Stradale looks gorgeous but its production and public appearance were so limited, people forgot about this car. Under the hood was 2.0-liter V8 which revved up to 9,000 rpm, which was unheard of in the late ’60s.

  1. Hennessey Venom GT

The Venom GT is not a 100-percent American car but kind of a British-American hybrid. They based it on the Lotus Elise but significantly modified it. Hennessey widened and stretched the car, adding a different suspension, brakes, design and drivetrain. Practically everything is new and different from the original car.

The power comes from a 7.0-liter LS2 V8 engine with three power levels, 800, 1,000 and 1,200 HP. The Venom GT was available as a coupe or convertible. But best of all, it held the world record for the fastest production car. It went from 0 to 186 mph with an average time of 13.63 seconds. They ceased production in 2017 after building just 13 cars.

  1. Gigliato Aerosa

When Gigliato presented it in 1997, the Aerosa was an interesting supercar. They produced it in a joint venture between the Gigliato Design Company and Lamborghini. The Lamborghini did engineering work and fabrication of the prototype and Gigliato did the design and aesthetics, obviously.

They sourced the power from Ford in the form of a 4.6-liter Mustang V8 delivering around 300 HP. Even though the proposed price wasn’t too high and the car had respectable figures, the project never advanced beyond the prototype/one-off phase.

  1. Falcon F7

In 2009, American car designer and businessman Jeff Lemke established Falcon Motorsports. It was a company dedicated to building high performance and limited production supercars. Their first car, the Falcon F7, debuted in 2012 at the New York Motor Show.

Most people think the Falcon F7 is the coolest looking supercar for sale today. The silver paint, sharp front end, futuristic interior, and aggressive stance make it a great looking vehicle. The power comes from a naturally aspirated, all-alloy 7.0-liter V8 engine with 620 to 680 HP. Also, Falcon has a twin-turbo version delivering 1,100 HP.

  1. Covini CW6

The wild-looking Covini C6W is an Italian super sports car featuring twin front axles and a rear-mounted V8 engine. The four front wheels are for turning and braking while the rear wheels are powered by the engine, a 4.2-liter V8 producing 440 HP by Audi.

No one knows the exact performance figures. But, they should be similar to most supercars since the Covini is light due to its space frame chassis and carbon fiber body. They unveiled the production version in 2004 so the car is currently in production. However, it is unclear how many of them they have made.

  1. Ariel Atom 500

This is probably the craziest car for sale today you can put license plates on. The Ariel Atom 500 V8 weighs only 1,200 pounds and gets 500 HP from a V8 engine mounted directly behind the driver. The car is basically a go-kart with a spoiler with room for two people.

It has no trunk, no body panels, and no fenders. It’s just naked chassis with a screaming V8 behind you. The Atom comes with 500 angry horses that want to run free in full power, a seven-speed sequential gearbox and four tires.

  1. Gumpert Apollo Sport

This is not the prettiest supercar they ever produced but it is one of the most brutal. The Gumpert Apollo was the brainchild of German engineers. Using Audi`s 4.2-liter V8, carbon fiber chassis, F1-syle suspension and aggressive aerodynamics package, Apollo produced truly incredible performance numbers.

They designed the Apollo to be the missing link between the race car and road-going supercar, something that it did quite well. However, the market was looking for more comfortable machines, so sadly the Gumpert Company soon closed its doors.

  1. Koegnisegg Agera R

One of the newest members of the exclusive supercar society is the Swedish brand, Koenigsegg. With its bespoke cars, advanced technology, and super powerful engines, Koenigsegg is the pinnacle of automotive engineering.

And the Agera R is just that with its twin-turbo V8 producing 1,100 HP and a 280 mph top speed. The first Koenigsegg models used a V8 they based on Ford’s block. But later, the company developed its own V8 that is capable of insane power levels.

  1. Lotus Esprit V8

The Esprit was available from the early ’70s all the way up to the early 2000s. It was always a fantastic supercar despite the fact it had smaller engines than the competitors. But the last and the best version was the V8 producing 350 HP.

And with its lightweight body, it could outrun many competitors while still retaining that classic wedge look. The 3.5-liter V8 wasn’t particularly powerful, but in a light and aerodynamically efficient body it was a blast to drive.

  1. Audi R8

The sportscar world was surprised when Audi presented the first-generation R8. Nobody expected such a bold move from Audi or such a great sports car. In fact, the Audi R8 is a supercar with its mid-mounted V8 engine and design. However, with its sports car prices, it’s available to a wider audience.

The engine itself is a true piece of art. It’s a naturally aspirated 4.2 liter V8 producing 420 HP. Packed in a lightweight body and mated to perfect dual-clutch gearbox, the R8 V8 was capable of attacking some Italian exotics with no problem.

  1. Spyker C8

The 2000s brought several great supercars, but just a few managed to survive the economic recession. But one of the cars that didn’t was Spyker with its fantastic C8. The C8 was a great looking model with a unique design.

Also, it had a 4.2-liter V8 in the back to deliver respectable performance. However, it was something totally different from the rest of the cars in its field. Best of all, the Audi C8 had a V8 engine, which the same as in the R8, proved to be a perfect match.

These are 20 of the best supercars with V8 engines they ever made. All of them have the perfect combination of a powerful motor, low weight and aerodynamic design. Which one was your favorite?

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