7 Sports Cars that Lied about Their Horsepower Output

Cheating on horsepower ratings is not an uncommon practice in the automotive world. In theory it's not unlike a food company putting less calories on the package than what the food contains but in reality a few less calories will cost a lot less than a few less horsepower.

Sports cars manufactures often report lower output figures than what the car and the engine actually delivers, even today !

This technique saves them a lot of money and of course saves us, the sports cars lovers, a lot of money too. The expected winnings from a new sports cars model are not as high as from a family sedan or a compact SUV. It's the easiest way to go around newly imposed taxes on emissions and cheat EPA and insurance houses. Even further, manufacturers often adjust the desired horsepower in order to get a more NHRA classification. In reality they didn't lie about the figures, just measured the power in conditions that were more favorable to their needs.

There are numerous ways to cheat, on of the tricks for lowering the insurance cost and category is to measure the peak horsepower below the max engine speed or when decreasing the RPM. If sports cars manufacturers wanted to achieve opposite results they would measure hp at the crank and not at the wheels or use an open-exhaust system. There are plenty of combos and tweaks that produce the desired results.

Either way figures can be manipulated but lets face it there are a lot more cars that are underrated than the once that are overrated, so here is our list of five cars that lied about their power ratings and gave us more than what we thought we got. Here's a spoiler, no Muscle cars, they will be covered in a different article.

The BMW M5 F10
2011- Present

bmw F10

Even nowadays manufacturers use such tricks to go under the radar. The current F10 gen of the M5 - arguably the best BMW model - officially produces more or less 553 hp out of a 4.4L twin-turbo engine. The S63 engine has a compression ratio of 10:1 and the boost makes exactly 1.5bar (22 psi). Even further, that's the first engine to use the new BMW technology - the valvetronic or in other words the BMW version of the variable valve lift system.

Everything seems fine except for the fact that iND Distribution claims that the car produces more than 600 horsepower, or about 50 more than advertised ! They have put the sports car on the dyno which revealed that a stock 2013 M5 makes no less than 527 hp at the wheels, however there is some 15% loss due to the RWD drivetain. Simple calculations show that the engine makes more than 600 at the crank. Of course the the 15% rule is not adhered too strickly so BMW made the move to evade some taxes and and directly affects BMW cars and their prices .


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