The car community’s definition of a super car is quite vague, but there are a couple of important boxes these cars all need to check: high speeds, aggressive designs, and very steep price tags. We know that’s quite self-explanatory, but what else can you expect a super car to be than “great?”
Today’s supercar market is extremely diverse and made to cater to a wide range of buyers. Despite that, most buyers only care about the most popular brands like Ferrari and Lamborghini. Therefore, it was inevitable for some supercars to fly under everyone’s radar.
As a result, we’ve had a plethora of unsung supercars that still don’t receive the love they truly deserve. Some of our entries today will be from manufacturers you might not even have heard of, while others include mainstream manufacturers’ unsung legends. Without further a due, let’s jump right into the most underrated supercars to ever roam public roads.
10 Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR
In all honesty, if you were to ask people a few years ago about the CLK GTR, many people would give you a blank stare. But as it happened, more people have grown to know about the GTR’s existence, and that’s partially the reason why they’re selling for around $9 million nowadays. Another reason for that enormous price tag has to do with its engineering.
At its core, the CLK-GTR is a hardcore racecar, but Mercedes-Benz had to comply with some FIA requirements, thus we were blessed with just 26 of these road-going behemoths. The “base model” CLK GTRs were powered by a naturally-aspirated 6.9-liter V12 engine that spurted out more than 600 hp and 572 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels and had a top speed of 214 mph. If for whatever reason that seems inadequate for you, Mercedes later gave birth to the CLK GTR Super Sport too which had 711 hp at its disposal.
9 Jaguar XJR-15
When mentioning a Jaguar supercar, most people’s thoughts immediately gravitate towards the XJ220, but there’s something arguably a bit more special, and it’s called the XJR-15, and some people see it as what the XJ220 should have been. See, originally, the XJ220 was supposed to come equipped with a nasty V12 engine, but after customers put their deposits down to order one, Jaguar had to notify them they lost six cylinders in the manufacturing process and gained turbocharged power. And this is where the XJR-15 comes into play.
The XJR-25 received its power from a naturally-aspirated 6.0-liter V12 engine with 450 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. It wasn’t as fast as the XJ220 since it had a top speed of “only” 191 mph, but it was the first-ever fully-carbon fiber car the world had seen, and it looks absolutely menacing.
8th Vector W8 Twin Turbo
Dough DeMuro called the Vector W8 “the craziest supercar ever made”, and we can see why. This wedged-out American-built supercar had a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter V8 called the Rodeck strapped in its middle, and it pushed out 625 hp and 649 lb-ft of torque – and this was in the early ’90s! But it doesn’t stop there, the Vector W8 could actually put its power down to the tarmac… well eventually.
0-60 took place in over 4 seconds, which was rather mediocre, but what makes it stand out is its top speed of 218 mph. So, to recap: it looked like a spaceship inside and out, flew like one, and made intergalactic turbo V8 sounds when the slim pedal was pressed to the floor.
7 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren
It’s not every day that two major car manufacturers join forces to create something bewildering, but we’ve seen it been done successfully before, like with the new Toyota Supra, and back in the 2000s, Mercedes-Benz and McLaren smashed their teams together to create what we now know as the SLR. It was produced from 2003 up to 2009, just over 2,000 models were ever made, and it introduced the world to a new genre of supercars – a comfortable grand touring division.
The SLR had a 5.4-liter supercharged V8 under its hood good for 617 hp and 575 lb-ft of torque, but it had no intention of rearranging your skeletal system while you drove. The SLR still isn’t getting the appreciation it deserves, but with well-known collectors like Manny Khosbin acquiring some, their whereabouts are starting to increase. Oh, and there was a special edition called the Stirling Moss with a cut-off roof and slightly different styling elements too.
6 Saleen S7 Twin Turbo
Ah, here have it, another manically powerful turbocharged V8 supercar from America that you probably haven’t heard of. It’s from the Saleen company, who have created their own individual cars numerous times, but actually specialize in tuning Mustangs to their absolute maximum potential.
The Saleen S7 Twin Turbo however was powered by a 7.0-liter Ford V8 with two turbos attached to it, and as a result, this broad supercar made a whopping 750 hp, and all of it was sent to the rear wheels! So if you happen to have nerves of steel and wish upon yourself sweet death, you could catapult the S7 up to 248 mph.
5 Mosler MT900S
If you’ve ever played a Forza Horizon game before, you know exactly what this car is, and you know how insane it truly is. The Mosler MT900S was built in America from the year 2003 to 2010, and throughout those 7 years, only 20 were ever built. They came with two engine variants, one being a 395 hp 5.7-liter LS1 V8, and the other a 600 hp 7.0-liter LS7 V8, and we’ll be talking about the latter, more powerful variant.
That robust V8 engine was tucked right behind the driver’s seat, and it was offered only with a 6-speed manual gearbox that had to somewhat tame the power to the rear wheels. One of the most noteworthy owners of these scarce MT900S models is George Lucas, he was even the first individual to receive a road-going version in the US.
4 SSC Ultimate Aero XT
In the 2000s every single person was memorized by the Bugatti Veyron and its immense top speed, some actually still believe that it still is the fastest car in the world, but the SSC Ultimate Aero took its title when it reached a top speed of 256 mph in 2007, and Bugatti wasn’t happy. So they later released the Veyron Super Sport that one-upped the SSC in every way, so it was never properly appreciated.
There were various different versions of the Ultimate Aero built, but it’s last hoorah was the most impressive, the XT. It was propelled by a menacing 6.9-liter twin-turbo V8 that produced 1,300 hp and 1,000 lb-ft of torque, the same engine meant for the SSC Tuatara.
3 Classy M400
Noble Automotive is a lesser-known sports car manufacturer based in Brittain, and they have made some of the most underrated supercars the world has ever seen like the M600, but their most underappreciated model has to be the M400.
Usually, supercars make use of colossal V8, V12, or even 16-cylinder engines, but the M400 only had a 425 hp twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6, but because it only weighed 2,300 lbs, that was more than enough. This meant that the M400 could go from 0 to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds, and could take corners without struggling with grip, and the fact that it was about as expensive as a Porsche 911 at its release made it one hell of a performance bargain.
2 Nissan R390
If you’re having a sense of deja vu right now, it’s because the Nissan R390 is essentially a carbon copy of the aforementioned Jaguar XJR-15 with a slightly revised design, and a much more powerful, yet smaller, 3.5-liter V8 engine capable of producing 550 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. And before you ask, yes, this is an actual road-legal vehicle despite it looking like an actual Le Mans racecar.
Nissan planned on producing a few examples of the R390 and selling them for $1 million a pop, but that idea was short-lived, and they ended up only manufacturing one road-going version, and if it were to be sold today, we can only imagine it going for nearly 5 times its original value, if not more.
1 Spania GTA Spano
It’s not every day that you see a vehicle being produced by Spain, not to mention a supercar, but Spania GTA thought it would be worth the effort, and we’re so glad they did. There have been two different generations of the Spano manufactured, and its second-generation (which is still made today) is absolutely bonkers.
At the back of the Spano is an 8.0-liter twin-turbo V10 engine that generates more than 900 hp, and every single pony is sent to the rear wheels via a rigorous 7-speed automated manual transmission much like the Lamborghini Aventador, and it just adds to the hardcore exhilarating feeling of the Spano.
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