10 of the Fastest European Cars From the 90s
Last time we spoke about the fastest cars from the 90s, we looked at cars that came from Japanese automotive manufactures. This time, we’ll look at those speedy cars that came from European makers.
The cars range from exotics to sedans, but all have one thing in common: they were the fastest cars coming out of Europe at the time. Click next to view the list.
Few cars on this list remain relevant by today’s go-fast standards. However, the F-1 was the original super car, with its capable top speed of over 230 miles per hour. Everything about this car from the 6.1 liter 618 horsepower naturally aspirated V12 to the liquid lines of the body forced all other automotive manufactures who wanted to be called exotic car makers grimace with envy. Truly, this British car maker set the standard for every super car to follow.
Following the highly successful racing scene of the F40, it seemed obvious that Ferrari would continue on with this heritage. However, the F50 wasn’t quite as fast as its predecessor. It still made the jump from 0-60 in 3.8 seconds with a ¼ mile time of just 12.1. And, top speed wasn’t too shabby, either, at 190 miles per hour. Even though this is one of the fastest cars of the 90s, something seemed to be missing.
Mercedes clk gtr
There have been quite a few fast Mercedes to grace us with their presence over the years, but none were as influential as the AMG built CLK. The 6.9 liter V12 was capable of launching this long and low Benz from 0-60 in just 3.1 seconds, while achieving a blistering top speed of 215 mph. These cars were basically built for one reason: To dominate on the track. But, in order to comply with the rules, Mercedes couldn’t just build a race car, they had to sell a few of them to some lucky buyers with deep pockets.
Generally speaking, I dislike Jags as much as any red blooded American does. So, the only reason why I’m listing this car, is because it is fast. Reliability on the other hand, is an entirely different story.
Bugatti eb110 super sport
Bugatti is a far cry from who they were back in the 90s, in a good way. Automotive technology has come a long way for the hyper-car manufacturer, who is still very much the fastest kid in town. The eb 110’s quad turbo (yes, that’s 4 turbos) 3.5 liter V12 engine unleashed all of its power to drive each of the four wheels, which helped it inch from 0-62 in only 3.2 seconds, with a top speed of 216 miles per hour. By the standards put forth by the early 1990s, that ain’t bad.
The Diablo was the successor to the Countach throne, after it ended its decades long reign as the Lamborghini flagship model. The Diablo took style and looks to a new level, and disappearing were the days of the wedge shaped super car. Truly innovative, the mid-rear engine super car came with an all wheel drive system that helped plant the almost 500 ponies to the wheels, launching it from 0-100 mph in only 4.5 seconds. The Diablo was the link between what Lamborghinis were, and what they are today.
Porsche 911 Strassenversion
Porsche 911s are fast, regardless. They handle flawlessly, turn heads and drop jaws whenever the tree lights up. However, every so often, Porsche makes their other cars look like shiny turds whenever they introduce something truly spectacular. Such is the case with this race car equipped with a twin-turbo 3.2 liter six-cylinder. Somehow, those Germans were able to squeak 537 horsepower out of a much lighter setup, allowing it to go from 0-60 in 3.9 seconds with a top speed of 191.
In 1999, the BMW M5 produced a staggering 394 horsepower and was capable of going from 0-60 in only 5 seconds with a factory governed top speed of 155 miles per hour. Those are some awesome numbers coming from a 4-door sedan.
Ferrari 360 Modena
A late-comer to this decade is the 3.6 liter V8 powered 360 Modena. If ever there was such a thing as an “affordable” Ferrari, it would be the 360. The 360 is still modern enough to be cool, but old enough that you won’t have to auction your kidneys on the black market so you can actually buy one. The 400 horsepower engine helped it get from 0-62 mph in 4.3 seconds
Ferrari 550 maranello
Ferraris were really starting to come into their own by the time the 550 came on the scene. Gone were the days of the slow Testarossa, but still far off from what we’d call a fast Ferrari by today’s standards, the 550 Maranello is a classic and attainable Ferrari for many today. And, when you consider that the 492 horses under the hood of this front-engine mounted beauty helps propel it to 60 miles per hour in only 4.2 seconds, you can’t help but smile.
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