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10 Most Powerful Naturally Aspirated Engines of Today

It’s evident that naturally aspirated engines are slowly but steadily yielding in favor of, usually, more efficient turbo and supercharged versions with smaller displacement. Even with turbo and supercharger trend catching fire, good old fashioned normal aspiration still has a lot to say. Apart from the fact that naturally aspirated engines still rule the affordable car markets where power outputs aren’t nearly as exciting, they can still kick some serious ass in more powerful application. In fact, normally aspirated mills still power some of the fastest and most prominent sports and supercars of today. Plus, nothing beats the sound of the huge naturally aspirated powerplant in full swing. Here are 10 of the vehicles fitted with 10 of the most powerful such engines you can get your hands on today.

10. Lexus RC F/GS F

5.0L V8 – 467 horsepower

Lexus RC F coupe and GS F sedan are powered by the strongest mill currently available in Toyota luxury division’s lineup. 5.0L V8 powerplant is more than capable of putting up 467 horsepower while propelling both the coupe and the sedan to respectable 0 to 60 times. Former achieves it in 4.4 seconds, while latter does the same in 4.5 seconds. The only thing stronger in Lexus’ lineup is LFA’s 552-horsepower V10, but that beast is a few pages behind in the history books.

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9. Dodge Challenger/Charger R/T Scat Pack and SRT 392

6.4L 392ci Hemi V8 – 485 horsepower

No list of most powerful naturally aspirated engines would be complete without the Hemi. Thankfully, Dodge Challenger and Charger take care of that. Their R/T Scat Pack and SRT 392 trims come with the 485-horsepower 392ci Hemi V8 which pushes both models to 60 mph from standstill in just north of 4 seconds.

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8. Porsche 911 GT3 RS/911 R

4.0L straight-six – 500 horsepower

Now that the 485-horsepower 3.8L straight-six from the 911 GT3 is out of the picture, stronger 4.0L mill pushes up a nicely rounded off figure of 500 horses. While the 911 R tops 200 mph, GT3 RS stops at 193 mph. On the other hand, GT3 RS accelerates much quicker. It achieves 0 to 60 time in only 3.1 seconds, while the 911 R needs the whole 3.7 seconds in order to do the same. You can write that one off to the difference between the R’s manual and GT3 RS’ PDK transmission.

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7. Ford Mustang Shelby GT350

5.2L flat plane crank V8 – 526 horsepower

Both GT350 and GT350R have the same flat plane crank V8 under their hoods, and it generates the same output in both of them. Both cars are extremely fast as well, but GT350R takes the cake thanks to its track setup. It only needs 3.9 seconds in order to reach the speed of 60 mph, while its R-less counterpart requires 4.3 seconds. Could this be the last of naturally aspirated engines in the Shelby Mustang lineup?

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6. Aston Martin V12 Vantage S/Vanquish

5.9L V12 – 565 horsepower

Duo of Aston Martin V12s currently boasts one of the most powerful naturally aspirated engines. Both the Vantage S and Vanquish offer the same 362ci 5.9L V12 capable of making 565 hp and 457 lb-ft of torque. In fact, Vanquish coupe and Volante produce 568 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque as of 2014 model year. That’s enough for 0 to 60 time of 3.6 and 3.8 seconds respectively, while the V12 Vantage S accelerates to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds. That very same naturally aspirated V12 produces 540 horses in Aston Martin DB9 GT and 522 ponies in Aston Martin Rapide S.

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5. Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4

5.2L V10 – 602 horsepower

Lamborghini Huracan LP610-4’s 610 PS translates to 602 pure horsepower. More affordable of the two Lambos can reach the top speed of 212.5 mph in perfect conditions, and it accelerates to 60 mph from standstill in under 3 seconds. Unlike its all-wheel drive cousin, rear-wheel drive Huracan LP580-2 makes 580 PS which comes to 571 hp. It needs slightly more than 3 seconds to reach the 60 mph mark, but it’s still fast as hell.

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4. Audi R8 V10 Plus

5.2L V10 – 602 horsepower

Second generation Audi R8 V10 shares the same powertrain as previously mentioned Lamborghini Huracan. 5.2L naturally aspirated V10 produces the same output of 602 horsepower in V10 Plus version of the R8. This allows it to develop the top speed of 205 mph and accelerate to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds. Regular Audi R8 on the other hand, “only” makes 533 horsepower.

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3. Dodge Viper

8.4L V10 – 645 horsepower

Serpent’s last model year is upon us as Dodge is finally giving it the axe. The main reason for that scenario is probably Viper’s humongous 8.4L V10 powerplant which guzzles fuel like crazy. 645 horsepower from naturally aspirated engine has to have some downsides, after all. Viper’s 0 to 60 acceleration really depends on the sports car’s configuration, but most of them are able to brandish the low 3 second figures.

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2. Lamborghini Aventador LP750-4 SV

6.5L V12 – 740 horsepower

Lamborghini’s flagship supercar makes the most horsepower in the lineup, although it’s being fitted with the naturally aspirated mill. 6.2L V12 pushes out as much as 740 horses in Aventador’s most powerful all-wheel drive LP750-4 SV form. The Superveloce (SV) should be able to top 217 mph if the conditions allow it, and it accelerates to 60 mph from standstill in 2.8 seconds. The same 6.5L V12 mill makes 690 horsepower in older Aventador LP700-4 models.

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1. Ferrari F12 TDF

6.3L V12 – 769 horsepower

Ferrari GTC4Lusso and F12 Berlinetta generate 680 and 730 horsepower respectively thanks to their 6.3L F140 V12 engine. However, the very same powerplant manages to fulfill its potential in Ferrari F12 TDF where it develops as much as 769 horsepower and 520 lb-ft of torque. Track-oriented F12 can push up the top speed of 211 mph thanks to that, and it accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds. It’s not hard to figure out why Ferrari’s F140 engine is currently the peak of natural aspiration technology.

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Categories: Gear Grinding, Production Cars

Nikola Potrebić

About Nikola Potrebić

Although driving a piece of junk, Nikola is a true car enthusiast. Very few things move him as muscle cars do - especially those from the golden era. Which makes him wonder: why wasn't he born a few decades earlier? Well, at least he's been able to enjoy the likes of Pontiak Aztek, Fiat Multipla, and the likes this way - right?