American cars often differed from their overseas 4-wheel counterparts. They were usually much larger which is a feat that mandated additional power. Things are still, more or less the same, but this strategy has had many ups and downs over the years. American muscle car reached its peak in late sixties and 1970 model year. Next decade and a half would be a roller coaster. A roller coaster towards the bottom. Malaise era hit the car world so hard that the industry would need more than thirty years to heal its wounds as first serial production non-supercars with at least 400 horsepower on tap only arrived after the millennium.
Needless to say, most powerful American production cars in history all hail from twenty tens. Not only has technology advanced to a certain level that allows 600+ horsepower cars, but the climate has been favorable as well. Of course, we’re only talking about factory production cars here. Callaway, Hennessey, Roush and co. will have to find another place to promote their majestically tuned beasts. Anyway, here are the top 10 most powerful domestic production cars ever made.
10. 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 (638 hp)
Corvette ZR1 from a few years ago was one of the first American production non-supercars with more than 600 ponies on tap. For a short time, it sat atop the Corvette hierarchy, but got dethroned by C7 Corvette Z06 soon afterwards. Motivating factor behind the ZR1 was 6.2L LS9 V8 with Eaton TVS supercharger. A setup that raised a whopping 638 horsepower. Engine wasn’t Corvette ZR1’s only focal point, though. It also came with carbon-fiber body panels all over and largest wheels ever fitted to a ‘Vette. At least until then. One neat detail was a polycarbonate window donning the center hood and allowing intercooler to be seen through it. ZR1’s sticker delved deep into six digit territory but the car compensated with extreme performance. There’s also a new version coming in 2019 which should develop between 700 and 800 horsepower.