If speed is the only thing that matters, a supercar isn't really the best choice at all. While they are famous for being fast, it the exclusivity they offer that's the main attraction as to why people buy them.
Is it possible to turn a normal car into something that can beat a supercar? Of course it is! With enough money, it's possible to modify virtually any vehicle to the level where it can outperform the best of them. It should be said that it's much easier to start out with a car that has a relatively big engine to start with, as it will in most instances be the cheapest and easiest way of doing it.
Then again, there are plenty of small engined cars out there that are putting down power figures equal to those of the big boys, thanks to forced induction. It's quite common to see cars like the Honda Civic, with its highly tuneable VTEC engine, delivering a lot of power for not a lot of money. Cars like the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo or R34 Nissan Skyline GT-R are more powerful from the factory and make it much easier to get exotic-rivaling performance on a budget. At least a lower budget than what buying a supercar would cost.
Power is only one part of it though. Handling, braking, and a certain level of comfort are also needed in order to really beat a supercar. This list covers some cars that offer brutal power, high speed, and good enough handling to leave any supercar in their dust.
25 Ford Escort MK1 Cosworth
This fully restored 1974 Olympic Blue Mk1 Escort Cosworth is a true no expense spared build. The specs will take forever to list, so here are some of the highlights; it has a Cosworth engine that delivers 425 hp at the flywheel, but is built to handle 500+ horses. In order to get all this power transferred to the asphalt, there is a Sierra Cosworth 4wd drivetrain set up and an MT75 5 Speed ‘box with Quaife straight cut dog engagement gear kit.
The suspension is custom manufactured Gaz Gold coil over adjustable front and rear. The AP Racing 4 piston calipers with 330mm 2 piece discs on the front and 300mm rear brakes are hiding behind white 18x8” Revolution Motorsport 6 spoke alloys wrapped in 245/40/18 Dunlop SP Sport tires.
24 Pontiac Trans-Am
Pål Arvid Blytt's 1986 Pontiac Trans Am is a legend in Norway. With the latest engine configuration, it has 1407hp, does 0-60 in 1.9 seconds and 0-125 in 5.29 seconds. It set a new European record for street-legal cars, and clocked in at 253mph at the ATP-Papenburg track in Germany. While it was raining.
The engine is a 540 Donovan aluminum block with Dart heads, a ton of custom parts, and a massive Procharger. The power is transferred to a ZF 6-speed gearbox - which lets him "cruise along" at 186mph doing 2,700 rpm. The suspension is custom made Bilstein coilovers, and the brakes are 395mm carbon with Brembo 6 piston calipers.
23 Nissan Skyline GT-R R32
This Nissan Skyline GT-R produces an astonishing 920 horsepower, what makes it even more incredible is that it passes the bi-yearly Japanese 'shaken,' meaning it's road-legal - which probably explains why it has a full interior, AC, and all the creature comforts you'd expect in an everyday car.
The engine has been fully built and uses an impressively sized HKS T51R turbo in order to make those numbers. The wheels are 19-inch Yokohama Advan Racing RS, and behind them, there is a full Endless monoblock brake setup with 6-piston calipers up front and the 4-pistons in the back.
22 Mitsubishi Evo
Brandon Ranvek's 2006 Mitsubishi Evo RS is one of the world's best all-around street cars. Period.
Under the hood, you'll find a 2.3-liter stroker with a Garrett GTX3576R. Full boost comes on at 4,100rpm, which results in 620 horsepower at the wheels. The suspension includes ReinharteUSA triple-adjustable coilovers and WiseFab drop spindle kits.
In order to make space for those massive 315/30R18 Falken 615K+ tires wrapped around RAYS Volk Racing TE37V wheels, a wide-body kit was essential - which comes from Voltex. It's easy to see that this car was inspired by the Evasive Motorsports time attack Evo.
21 Smart 'Busa
There aren't many parts left of the original Smart ForTwo in this build. It has a widebody that's drilled full of 'speed holes,' but the real star is the engine - a 470hp 1,300cc inline-four Suzuki Hayabusa unit with a Garrett turbocharger.
Most parts on the Smart are completely custom, but there are some elements that were borrowed from other cars. The ST Suspensions setup does what it can to keep the car on the road, and the brakes come from an Evo 9.
The short wheelbase combined with the big power makes this car quite a handful to keep on the track.
20 Audi RS4
Want to see some of the world's craziest cars driven by some of the craziest drivers? Visit Norway's Gatebil Festival, and you'll get to experience more cars like Mazhar's Audi, which has 1,300 horsepower and has been clocked at 200+ mph...on ice!!!
Let's not even talk about the specs of this thing, you already know it's a list of expensive Unobtainium. With an RS6 V8 fitted, Mazhar smashed the record for the flying kilometer on ice with an incredible average of 202mph and a top speed of 207mph during the 2017 Speed Weekend On Ice.
Unlike the Guinness record, which was set over a 9km run, Mazhar’s record was set over a distance of 1.5km of acceleration and then 1km of average speed. Bring on any supercar you want!!
19 Datsun 280Z
Josh, the owner of this car, decided to swap the engine for something a bit more powerful, so he went and got himself and LS1, fitted an LSA supercharger and a T56 6-speed manual transmission.
Of course, this also meant the Z needed an upgrade in the handling department, so it got new sway bars front and rear, as well as a set of Ground Control coilovers, and Techno Toy Tuning GTX2 front control arms and rear lower control arms. The wheels are Diamond Racing steel wheels wrapped in Hankook rubber.
With power and handling taken care of, Josh needed to make the car stop as well, so it received an OEM+ big brake setup comprised of Z31, 240SX, and 4Runner parts.
18 '68 Mustang
This South African Mustang has a Proformance 408 crate engine, as if that wasn't enough, there's also a Procharger - resulting in roughly 800 horses, 737ft-lbs, and 3mpg.
To make sure the Mustang stops as well as it goes, it was fitted with a 6-piston Wilwood brake setup, as well as braided hoses and special compound pads.
The suspension is a full Heidts setup, with fully adjustable coilovers front and rear, along with sway bars. Polyurethane bushes have been used wherever possible, as well as custom lower control arms and uprights. It might look like an old muscle car, but it goes like a modern supercar.
17 BMW Z4 Coupe V10
Eike, the owner of this tiny little BMW Z4 has managed to shoehorn an 8.3-liter Viper SRT-10 V10 engine into the engine bay.
In order to make it fit, he had to cut and replace large areas of the firewall and transmission tunnel. Then, to get the chassis strong enough, he had Stahlus develop a special roll cage with integrated transmission tunnel. The engine is now positioned behind the front axle, giving the car almost 50/50 weight distribution.
Now, this would be ok to do in a track car, but this Z4 is street legal and have been TüV approved, so it will be out there giving supercar owners nightmares.
16 Porsche Powered VW Bus
How on Earth can a VW Bus be a match for a supercar? Well, this is no ordinary hippie bus, it has a 525hp 911 Turbo engine, weighs just 3300lbs - and is known as the Race Taxi.
Fred, the guy who built it, took an original ‘T1’ from 1962, removed the body, and fitted it on a widened, lengthened ‘T3’ chassis from 1985. The twin-turbo, 3.6-liter flat-six engine was donated by a 993-generation 911 Turbo, and the gearbox comes from a 996 GT3.
It has front and rear independent suspension with height-adjustable Bilstein struts. The brakes are the original 993 Turbo brakes, same with the power steering. Of course, it needed some cool wheels, which are three-piece racing BBS wheels.
15 1989 Porsche Carrera
I hear you, this list was supposed to be about normal cars modified to beat supercars. But the old Porsches are no match for modern supercars - and that's why this car made the list.
This one started out as a limited edition 1989 Silver Anniversary Carrera. It has been stripped down and rebuilt with a carbon fiber roof and hood, as well as Akira Nakai's RAUH-Welt Begriff fenders.
The engine is a 1991 964 3.3-liter long block and has a center-mounted custom-made, one-off, twin-scroll Honeywell Garrett turbocharger hanging out the back, dual Turbosmart wastegates, and a custom aluminum intercooler. The result; a reliable 600hp Porsche weighing in at 2,400lbs.
14 Honda Civic 1.5 Turbo
While Civics might have a reputation for being a ricer, they have the potential to be seriously fast if modified the right way. This Civic has definitely been built correctly, and a video of it leaving a Viper in its dust made the rounds on social media a while back.
It has a 1.5-liter D15B engine with a CNC-ported head, a big Precision 6262 turbo paired with a “3-inch eBay intercooler,” and E85 fuel is running through its veins. The result is 550 horses through the front wheels - at a total cost of just $5,000!!
13 Toyota Cressida
The Cressida was never considered a performance car, barely making 100hp it wasn't something to get excited about. This Cressida, however, gets us all kinds of excited!
The old engine had to go, and it was replaced by a 5.0-liter V12 Toyota 1GZ-FE.
The intake was modified by using 12 throttle bodies from Toyota's 4A-GE 20V ‘Silvertop’ engine. An equal-length crossover-style manifold built from scratch sits on top of the engine that puts out around 400hp and provides more torque than anyone would ever need.
The wheels are 14×8-inch and 14×8.5-inch SSR Longchamp XR-4, front and rear respectively, wrapped in 185 Bridgestone Potenza rubber.
12 Vauxhall Victor
Andy Frost has spent decades building his street-legal Vauxhall Victor, and the end result is just insane! It has done 250mph, it goes from 0-60 in less than one second, and from 0-220 in 6.5 seconds! No supercars can match that kind of acceleration.
It's even usable on the road - Andy drove his kids to school in it - and has added luxuries like leather seats and electric windows. According to him, it drives just fine on the road and has no problems tackling corners.
Speed like this comes with a price though. In this case, an estimated £100,000...while that could buy you a supercar, it would still be slower than the Vauxhall.
11 Alfa Romeo GT Junior
I bet no one expected to see a car like this on the list?! This is David West’s 1971 Alfa Romeo GT Junior 1300, and it has some nice tricks up its sleeve. For starters, the weight is super-low thanks to the hood, doors, and trunk lid being made from carbon fiber.
The Millington Diamond Series 1 motor is a 2.7-liter, 16-valve twin cam, naturally aspirated, dry-sumped powerplant based on the legendary Cosworth YB, producing an impressive 298bhp.
Bespoke forged three-piece wheels with Toyo Proxes 888R rubber were sourced from NTM Wheels in Italy, and tucked away behind them there's a set of Alfaholics 6-piston calipers and vented discs sit up front, while Sierra Cosworth discs and calipers reside at the rear.
10 BMW E30
Ross Bradley, the owner of this E30, has named his car the 'Widow Maker,' a suitable name once you learn what it really is. It started out as a 320 and it has taken years to turn it into the car you see today.
It has an older iron block 1977 350ci small block Chevy engine, rebored to 5.82-liters and rebuilt with fully forged internals, aluminum heads, billet roller rockers, stainless valves, and titanium retainers. Oh, and a pair of huge Holset HX35 turbos.
The rear suspension is a custom-made cantilever setup, the brakes are 330mm discs with Wilwood 6-piston calipers on the front and 300mm with 4-piston calipers on the rear.
17x9 front wheels with 215 tires and 17x10 wrapped in 275s on the rear should help keep the 1,000hp in line.
9 Mazda RX7
The owner of this RX7 started by removing all the bad modifications already done to it and then rebuilt it using only quality parts that would compliment the car.
The engine received a Turblown turbo kit, which was based around a BorgWarner EFR 8374, and the fuel system got a good seeing to in order to run on E85.
It was taken to Rotary Motorsport for proper tuning, resulting in 500hp, with boost coming on at 2,000rpm and delivering the full 25psi by 3,500rpm.
A carbon fiber diffuser and 18x9.5 Top Secret edition gold RAYS Volk TE37s finish off looks of the car, keeping it clean and retaining the lines of the car.
8 Audi RS6
Professional skier Jon Olsson has owned some serious cars. This particular one is, in my opinion, one of the coolest ones.
The Audi RS6 has a 4.0-liter V8 that was tuned by former Koenigsess engineer Leif Tufvesson, which resulted in a 1,000 horsepower beast.
It was built as a tribute to the German DTM racing series and uses carbon fiber from the same factory that delivers to Pagani for use on their cars. That's not the only fancy thing though, the custom turbochargers are anodized in 18-carat gold.
7 Honda S2000
The standard Honda S2000 had an incredible 2-liter engine that produced a rather pleasurable 240 horses. This S2000 has had its engine stroked to 2.2L and features Toda Racing A2 camshafts and many other upgrades - with the coolest one being the HKS GTS7040 supercharger, which with a pulley swap to raise boost pressure sees overall power increased to around 400hp.
To get the power transferred to the ground, there is a Kurumadoh Custom Factory LSD unit. The wheels are 18x10 Volk Racing CE28SLs, wrapped in 295/30R18 Yokohama Advan rubber. Behind the spokes, you can see the D2 Racing brakes featuring 6-piston calipers at the front and 4-pistons at the rear.
6 Nissan 350Z
This Nissan 350Z uses a twin-scroll BorgWarner EFR series single turbo, and while it's unknown how much power the fully-built V6 is generating, the number of horses has to be well over the 500 mark.
The car has plenty of custom aero and carbon work that’s been designed to develop as much downforce as possible, making this baby handle like it's on rails through the corners. There are widened fenders that keep the Enkei RS05RR wheels with 295 tires tucked in nicely, and of course, a mahoosive rear wing made from carbon fiber.
5 Chevy Nova
If you have been reading Hot Rod magazine for a long time, you might remember a feature of this 1972 Chevy Nova back in 2009.
Just by looking at it, there's not much to tell you that it possesses enough power to annihilate modern supercars.
The unrestored Nova has an incredible 1,160 horsepower, all thanks to a twin-supercharged LS2 V8 engine with liquid-to-air intercoolers. It also features an "Octane On Demand" fuel system - basically two fuel systems running in tandem, one for pump gas and another for race fuel. For everyday driving the primary pump gas system is in use, but when the throttle is floored the secondary system sprays race fuel into the injectors.
Anyone who has ever watched an episode of Street Outlaws knows about the Farmtruck, a 1970 C-10 Chevy Long Bed pickup truck Sean “Farmtruck” Whitley and AZN use to go "fishing."
Not the relaxing by a lake kind of fishing, but luring unsuspecting people into racing them for money.
Farmtruck has a custom built 8-cylinder Big Block engine and 2 stage nitrous oxide, which makes it deceptively fast and has proven to be more than powerful enough to give a modern supercar a run for its money.
3 Lunchmoney Rat Rod
This car was on the Netflix show 'Fastest Car'. The owner, Corey Caouette, transformed a 1927 Dodge Coupe into a pickup, and since he's in a wheelchair, the car had to have a custom hand control setup - and the entire build came in at just $6,500. The pickup was built on a $6,500 budget, which is ridiculously cheap for a 400 horsepower hotrod.
Powered by an LS1 engine that's hooked up to a small nitrous kit, the awesome hotrod puts out north of 400 horsepower. In the Netflix show, it proved that it's capable of beating supercars by taking the win ahead of a 2006 Ford GT.
2 Stanceworks Model A
Mike Burroughs, the man behind the legendary BMW E28 'Rusty Slammington,' is at it again with the Stanceworks Model A. Everything started with Rusty and all the lessons learned through that build came together in this Ford.
The Model A weighs in at just 2276lbs, it's powered by a supercharged Coyote V8 from a 2011 Mustang that pushes out 600+ hp.
The one-off upper and lower control arms are connected to Mustang SS550 front spindles and Ford Motorsport hubs. The rims are center-lock 2018 Mazda IMSA Le Mans Prototype Motegi Wheels, with 18x12.5 up front and 18x13 at the rear.
1 Twin-engined Golf
A Golf VR6 is nothing special, but this has 2 VR6 engines - one in the front and one in the rear, making it a VR12. Of course, that wasn't enough! It needed turbos as well.
The engines each power an axle and can work either separately or together, and when they are combined, they deliver 1600 horsepower - roughly the same as two Lamborghini Aventadors. That kind of power explains the parachute at the back, it was probably needed when the car did 183mph during a 1/2 mile run.
Sources: Polly Motorsport, Daily Mail, Gatebil, Speedhunters