V8 engines have been at the center of driving excitement since the first one arrived on a race track giving massive power and performance.
Whether it was a small block version or a big hunk of iron, this engine setup allows all car enthusiast to know there’s something special going on under that hood. Mostly, what we want to know is how much power comes out of the engine, but we also love to hear the sounds of a properly tuned model that has an exhaust that doesn’t muffle the sounds. Listen to the roar of a powerful V8 and you’ve found the song of gearheads everywhere.
What are the top V8 engines?
The thought of massive power and the smell of exhaust fumes coming from a powerful V8 makes us giddy with excitement. Let’s see some of the top models in history, according to Hot Cars, and get excited by the raw, unassisted power most of these engines provided.
Chrysler 426 Hemi
There’s no denying the Hemi name and its iconic place in driving history. This engine brand is found in some of the top models offered by Dodge and when we hear it, read it, or know it’s there, we already have an idea of the raw power coming out from the under the hood. This engine first arrived in 1964 and gave us a 7.0-liter or 426 cc displacement to produce 425 horsepower. That was an amazing amount of power, especially from a naturally aspirated engine from that time. This Hemi earned the nickname Elephant for how massive it was.
Ford Boss 302
To make the Mustang perform as desired, Ford needed a smaller engine with high output numbers to give it the desired power. Enter, the Ford Boss 302. This engine offered a 4.9-liter displacement and is one of the most talked about V8 engines of all time. The Boss 302 first arrived in 1969 to produce 290 horsepower but it lasted so long that a new version of it was seen as recently as 2007.One aspect of this engine that make it so popular is the fact that owners could tune it to get more power. This gave many weekend racers the flexibility needed to take a Mustang to the track with a lot more power than the manufacturer intended.
Mercedes-AMG Hot V
Here’s the first of the turbocharged engines on our list and we don’t mind at all. The Hot V is the product of serious German engineering. The turbocharger sits between the cylinder banks to aid in cooling the engine. This is the position associated with superchargers today, but that’s for another conversation. The displacement was 4.0-liters, making this a relatively small V8, but it certainly was a potent model, giving the luxury performance partnership the power and speed desired.
BMW 4.4-liter Twin-Turbo V8
A more familiar name for this engine is the N63 and its an impressive model from the BMW brand. Among the V8 engines on this list, this one might be the most modern, first showing up in 2008. Since that time, several improvements were mad to the power and performance of the engine. The power reaches 591 horsepower, delivering incredible power to the wheels to ensure the car using this engine could rocket around the track with ease. As you might expect, this engine was found in the M5 and X6 M Competition models. Both of these vehicles expect impressive performance numbers and this is the engine to offer what’s needed.
Land Rover used the Rover V8 for more than forty years. That’s an incredibly long time for an engine, and a testament to how impressive this model happened to be. We found this impressive engine under the hood of the Land Rover and Morgan vehicles, but it was also used to power the TVR Griffith and TVR Chimaera. These little cars showed off what this amazing engine could do with its 5.5-liter displacement and 340 horsepower coming out from under the hood. The Rover V8 was used in many cars in history, many of which were highly respected for the impressive level of power offered.
Ferrari F106 V8
Ferrari didn’t need a massive V8 to make things go, they wanted something smaller, but still powerful. The F106 is one of the most impressive V8 engines ever made. This engine arrived in the Ferrari Dino 308 GT4 giving this car 250 horsepower and a 2.9-liter engine. The small size kept the weight down, which was perfect for the Dino. While the power number doesn’t sound too impressive, it was more than enough for this little car. This V8 was used for mid-engine Ferrari cars from the Dino to the 360. This longevity and wide use is more than enough to put this V8 on the list.
When you hear LS1 or any other LS number associated with an engine, you know we’re talking about something found in the Chevrolet vehicles. Specifically, the LS1 was featured in the Corvette. Today, we have the LS9, but the LS1 arrived in 1997 to be an exciting new engine for the iconic car. The output was 345 horsepower and could be boosted to 350 when properly equipped. The LS1 wasn’t only used for the Corvette. It powered the Pontiac Firebird Formula, Chevrolet Camaro, and Pontiac GTO models as well.
Ford Flathead V8
Many hotrod vehicles from the 1950s showed the impressive build of the Ford Flathead V8. This iconic engine began in the 1930s but lasted a long time as one of the most impressive V8 engines to every hit the market. This was the first independent V8 produced by Ford for use in mass production vehicles. We still see some of these engines being used today, some can produce as much as 700 horsepower, making it the right choice for power and speed.
Ferrari 3.9-liter F154 Twin-Turbo V8
Since 2013 we’ve had this impressive Ferrari engine and it is an amazing power machine. Both Maserati and Ferrari use it in some of the most powerful sports cars we wee in the market. This engine can produce 780 horsepower and is found in the F8 Tributo and F8 Spider. Among the many V8models in the market, this engine is easily near the top. The power and sound coming from this engine is something that you can’t match when at the track.
6.2-liter Hemi SRT Hellcat Supercharged V8
Its nearly impossible to argue with the superiority offered from the Hellcat engine. When you simply mention the name Hellcat, everyone knows what’s under the hood. Of course, this engine has been tuned to demonic levels or given some owners the Red Eye treatment along the way. Mostly, this massive V8 offers 717 horsepower and comes in either the Charger or Challenger from Dodge. This means its not only one of the most powerful V8 engines in the market, it’s also one of the most affordable. The power to price ratio with this engine is insanely affordable, making it the reigning muscle car champion engine.
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