Ranking The Coolest Supercars Of The ’90s
The 90s was a great era for supercars, and we’ve ranked the coolestby Nicholas Waithaka, on
The 90s era lent itself to extravagance and performance in the automotive world. Most economies were doing well, and consumer optimism was up, resulting in significant sales. That allowed auto manufacturers to extend their extra-curricular budgets and invest in cutting-edge research. The result was creative electronics that allowed an increase in output while still playing within the designated emission rules of the time. The automotive 90s focused mostly on performance, though, rather than comfort or safety. Unlike today’s supercars, which prioritize the cabin, utility, and engine, these cars were mostly engine. Some, of course, did better than others, as it was a case of mostly trial and error to decipher which combination of features provided the best results. The following is a list of particularly cool cars of this unforgettable period.
It is not surprising the Ferrari F50 would be at the top of the list as it embodied everything that a supercar in the 90s stood for: neck-breaking performance and aching beauty. The F50 was a follow-up to the F40 with better styling and performance. The engine was a 512-horsepower, 4.7-liter, V-12 that was mated to a six-speed manual transmission. It managed an acceleration time of 3.7 seconds to 60 miles an hour and a top speed of 197 miles an hour.
|Engine||4.7 liter V-12|
|0 to 60 mph||3.7 seconds|
|Top Speed||197 mph|
Read our full review on the 1995 Ferrari F50
The XJ220 was once crowned the fastest car on earth for a time, as it was the first car to top 220 miles an hour. At its heart was a 3.5-liter, twin-turbo, V-6 that produced 540 horsepower to the rear wheels. It was mitigated by a five-speed manual transmission and the time to 60 mph was 3.6 seconds. It was a bit Spartan, though, as there were no driver aids, nor power steering even. Reviews indicate that the cabin was comfortable.
|Engine||3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6|
|0 to 60 mph||3.6 seconds|
|Top speed||220 mph|
Read our full review on the 1996 Jaguar XJ220
The Diablo was one of the most lusted-after cars of its generation, forming the subject of wallpapers and action movie scenes. The base model came available with a 5.7-liter V-12 delivered 492 horsepower, and and the acceleration to 60 mph was done in 4.5 seconds. Other versions in the following years, like the Diablo VT, brought all-wheel drive to the setup providing better handling. Towards the end of the series, its SV model introduced electronic brake-force distribution and driver airbags.
|0 to 60 mph||4.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||208 mph|
Read our full review on the 1995 Lamborghini Diablo
The CLK GTR was only built due to Mercedes entering the FIA GT1 class, which required them to build a class of road-legal units. The lucky few that could afford a CLK GTR were treated to a 6.9-liter V-12 engine that was worth 604 horsepower. The top speed was 199 miles per hour, which was faster than anything else Mercedes had in production outside of motorsport. It was also very expensive at a little over $1.5 million.
|0 to 60 mph||3.8 seconds|
|Top Speed||199 mph|
Read our full review on the 1999 Mercedes CLK GTR
The Bugatti EB110 is one of the lesser-known Bugatti’s from the golden era. It was low, long, and had a cockpit-style cabin with rounded glass, not to mention upward-opening scissor doors. The EB110 had a 3.5-liter V-12 with four turbochargers that produced 553 horsepower, and the body was also made of lightweight carbon fiber. It hit 60 mph in 3.2 seconds and had a top speed of 216 miles per hour, making it one of the top five fastest cars of the entire decade.
|Engine||3.5 liter V-12|
|0 to 60 mph||3.2 seconds|
|Top Speed||216 mph|
Read our full review on the 1995 Bugatti EB110
The McLaren F1, like the F50, is one of the most idolized models of the era due to the aesthetics and high strung engine. The engine bay entailed a 6.1-liter V-12 engine that produced 618 horsepower. This was linked to a six-speed manual transmission to transmit the power to the rear wheels. The F1 reached 60 miles per hour within 3.2 seconds and had a top speed of 231 miles per hour. However, it did have some foibles, such as the rear visibility and the high pricing due to its exclusivity.
|0 to 60 mph||3.2 seconds|
|Top Speed||231 mph|
Read our full review on the 1995 McLaren F1
Like several other prominent supercars of the period, the 911 GT2 was created from the necessities of FIA homologation rules. For Porsche to use the 993 platform in GT racing, it would have to produce several road cars. The GT2 has been characterized as a track car for the most part. It features an intercooled, twin-turbo, 3.6-liter engine that was rated at 450 horsepower. The acceleration to 60 miles per hour took 3.9 seconds, and the top speed was 187 mph.
|0 to 60 mph||3.9 seconds|
|Top Speed||187 mph|
Read our full review on the 1993 Porsche 911 GT2
The Zonda debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in 1999 and was a huge hit, illustrating the future of supercar styling. It also featured the performance attributes of the best supercars, including a 6.0 V-12 from Mercedes and 789 horsepwer at the highest level. The Pagani also had a fighter jet feeling in the cabin, considering the visibility and the finely crafted layout from the best materials. There were aluminum components as well that were included in the finish.
|0 to 60 mph||4.2 seconds|
|Top Speed||185 mph|
Read our full review on the 1999 Pagani Zonda
The Strassenversion was one of the best 911 models made due to the FIA requirements for GT racing as well. It had a 3.2-liter, twin-turbocharged, flat-six engine that produced 537 horsepower. The acceleration to 60 mph was 3.9 seconds, while the top speed was 191 miles per hour, making it one of the fastest Porsches of the era. It was discontinued in 1999 after the cancelation of the GT1 class, so the Strassenversion is one of the unicorns for Porsche enthusiasts who adore track models.
|Engine||3.2 flat-six twin-turbocharged|
|0 to 60 mph||3.9 seconds|
|Top speed||191 mph|
Read our full review on the 1996 Porsche 911 GT1 Strassenversion
The Cerbera, more than the TVR models that came before, cemented the automaker’s place in the supercar hierarchy. The offering had great power, sleek styling, and a reasonable price tag. Its engine was a 4.0-liter straight six-cylinder for the base model, linked to a five-speed manual gearbox, and higher levels gained a 4.2-liter V-8 that generated 360 horsepower. The acceleration time was 4 seconds, and the top speed was 193 miles per hour. Its interior also had unique additions such as push-button controls for the ignition, lights, and wipers.
|Engine||4.2 liter V-8|
|0 to 60 mph||4.0 seconds|
|Top Speed||193 mph|
Read our full review on the 1996 TVR Cerbera