Home Cars Top 35 Turbocharged Cars Of All-Time

Top 35 Turbocharged Cars Of All-Time

Vukasin Herbez July 2, 2018

21. Callaway Sledgehammer Corvette C4

Rives Callaway established Callaway Cars in 1977, long after the muscle car craze winded down and high horsepower performance machines were just a thing of past. He specialized in producing turbocharger kits to be installed mostly on European cars. His knowledge, expertise and start of the turbo era perfectly lined up and the company really took off.

In order to show the real potential of twin turbo C4, Callaway produced the legendary Sledgehammer Corvette, a highly modified and heavily turbocharged 1988 Corvette which had 898 HP and could go over 250 mph!

22. Pontiac Trans Am 20th anniversary

In 1989, Pontiac was celebrating the 20th anniversary of its favorite muscle car – the Trans Am. What was a better way than to introduce a very limited run of 1500 cars to commemorate the occasion? But, anniversary editions have to have a twist and not to be just another decal and paint job, Pontiac decided to install Buick`s 3.8-liter turbo V6 from the GNX and create the fastest Trans Am of the decade. The white commemorative edition could accelerate 0.1 second faster from 0 to 60 mph than the GNX, at 4.6 seconds.

23. 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. Under the engine cover was a typical American powerhouse in 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 1200 HP.

24. Lotus Carlton

This crazy and menacing sedan is virtually unknown in USA despite the fact it was produced by GM`s subsidiary Opel in Germany and Vauxhall in the UK, and it once claimed the title of the world`s fastest four-door. Powered by the 3.6-liter six delivered 377 hp which was massive for the standards of the day and the performance was thrilling as well. The 0 to 60 mph run was over in just 5.2 seconds and top speed was record breaking 177 mph.

25. Buick Regal GS

For decades, Buick didn’t have a proper muscle machine and in 2012 it came from an unlikely source – Europe`s GM division Opel. Buick started selling rebadged Opel Insignias as Regals and amongst regular versions, the company offered a performance model called Regal GS. The stats were pretty good and drew a lot of attention of car aficionados. Under the hood was a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine with 280 HP, 6-speed manual transmission and all-wheel drive. The combo proved to be fantastically capable in real life and marked the return of Buick performance.

26. Volkswagen Golf GTI

For decades, Volkswagen`s benchmark hot hatch, the venerable GTI was naturally aspirated but when the fifth generation arrived at the scene in 2006 it was equipped with all new 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. The direct injection unit delivered 200 HP and transformed the ordinary family hatchback into a true performance car. Since then, all Golf GTIs including the brutal Golf R are turbocharged which brought new lease on life to the classic European hot hatch.

27. Volvo S60 Polestar

Since the late `70s, Volvo was known for turbocharged engines with big power in unassuming package. The new Polestar line is the spiritual successor of old turbo Volvos and delivers incredible performance in stealth package. Under the hood is a 3.0-liter turbocharged engine with 345 HP and intelligent all-wheel drive. This combo is capable of 0 to 60 mph times of just over 5 seconds and still returning decent fuel economy.

28. Ford Escort RS Cosworth

Ford wanted to rule the hot hatch class and win rallies, so it produced Escort RS Cosworth model. Built using Sierra RS Cosworth bits, this Escort was smaller but featured the improved 2.0-liter turbocharged engine with 227 hp. The exterior was pure business with flared wheel arches, hood with cooling vents and a massive and easily adjustable rear wing. The Escort RS Cosworth was pretty fast for the day and with 5.8 seconds 0 to 60 mph time, it could beat most sports cars of the day.

29. Audi RS6

With 605 HP and 3.9 seconds to 60 mph, the current Audi RS6 is faster than many supercars and also way more practical as well. This super wagon uses 4.0-liter twin turbo engine which pumps out 605 HP and can be tuned to deliver even more power. That is why it is a shame that this wagon is not homologated for the American market and we feel that company like Audi could easily do so if only they wanted to.

30. Porsche Cayenne Turbo

Ever since the first Cayenne Turbo appeared in the early 2000s, the market for really quick, luxury SUVs was born. The heart of this lightning quick SUV is the 4.0-liter twin turbo V8 engine which pumps out 550 HP and sends them to the 8-speed automatic and intelligent all-wheel drive. The result is impressive 3.7 seconds of 0 to 60 mph time!

31. Nissan Skyline GT-R R35

The R35 Skyline GT-R is a car which doesn’t need special introduction. One of the fastest, most capable and best handling sports cars you can buy is globally famous for its sublime characteristics and performance. The biggest part of its appeal is the engine and the Skyline has signature turbocharged 3.8-liter V6 which delivers 570 HP or 600 in NISMO trim. In combination with intelligent all-wheel drive, the GT-R can achieve 60 mph in less than 3 seconds!

32. Mercedes AMG GT

Mercedes wanted to attack Porsche 911 for a long time. That is why AMG presented the GT, a 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 powered coupe or roadster which has better performance, more power and higher top speed than most 911 versions. With fantastic driving dynamics and several versions, the AMG GT is not only a very successful sports car, but also a championship winning race car in AMG GT3 version.

33. Bentley Continental GT

One of the most interesting turbocharged engines currently in production is the incredible 6.0-liter W12 from Bentley Continental GT. Delivering 635 HP and insane 664 lb-ft of torque, this engine is a true monster and also extremely smooth. There is no turbo lag and torque is delivered immediately. The rest of the car is equally fantastic and we can say that matching this unique power plant with an exquisite car like Continental GT is a match made in heaven.

34. Fiat 500 Abarth

Despite the fact that the 500 Abarth has only 160 HP from its tiny turbocharged 1.4-liter engine, it is a seriously fast and fun little car due to its small weight and compact dimensions. Also, it is extremely practical in everyday driving, easy to park as well, and the package is completed with small price and running costs. For enthusiasts on the budget and irresistible need for speed, this small but wicked car could be the answer.

35. GMC Syclone

GM took an ordinary S10 body shell, installed a 4.3-liter V6 with a turbocharger, good for 280 hp, special 4-speed automatic sourced from a Corvette and performance biased all-wheel drive. The power figures don’t sound much these days, but the Syclone was able to sprint to 60 mph in just 5.3 seconds which made it faster than contemporary Ferraris. The key was light weight, small dimensions and lots of torque from that turbocharged engine.

These are the 35 greatest turbocharged cars ever made. You may have recognized some of them, but hopefully, some surprised you. You may have some new models to add to your ultimate turbocharged car wish list.

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