1. The ‘Tank Car,’ owned by American TV star and serial car collector Jay Leno, boasts a 29ltr V12 tank engine that has now been twin turbocharged, enabling it to produce a staggering 1600bhp and 3000lb/ft of torque.
2. The Nissan Skyline GT-R’s RB26 engine was famous
for being able to produce up to 1400bhp in extreme form, and the new Nissan R35 GT-R VR38 engine is showing similar potential. Unfortunately, although there are already 1000bhp+ examples around the world, their blocks are cracking with alarming regularity.
3. 2ltr, four- cylinder turbo lumps are probably the most common engine types to be tuned to extreme levels. The Ford Cosworth YB, Mitsubishi 4G63T, Nissan SR20 and Subaru EJ20 engines have all been pushed to over 1000bhp.
4. The Mazda rotary engine may only have around 1300cc of capacity, but when it’s tuned to extremes, people have seen well over 1000bhp and 10,000rpm out of this unusual little engine.
5. The Porsche 917/30 of the early 1970s is the most powerful circuit car ever racer. It had almost 1600bhp, weighed just 800kg, and could do 0-62 mph in 2.3 seconds and had a top speed of over 240mph.
6. The USA is known for its V8s, and with them, extreme power is easy. We have seen cars pushing in excess of 800bhp on standard internals, and even road- going cars with over 2000bhp, packing up to four turbos. Nuts.
7. You don’t need big engines for big power, as cars like the Renault 5 GT Turbo and Starlet GT Turbo prove. Both have engines that displace less than 1.4ltrs but have been known to produce upwards of 300bhp.
8. For many years World Rally Cars have been limited to around 300bhp thanks to a turbo inlet restrictor. Interestingly, the restrictor doesn’t limit torque, and some of these 300bhp, 2ltr engines have made around 550lb/ft!
10. If you want big power, you don’t have to have a Yank V8. ‘Mavis,’ a vintage racing car based on a 1930 Bentley, has a 42ltr V12 WWII bomber engine that produces 1500bhp and 2000lb/ft of torque!