Horsepower and Torque


Asked by Jan 03, 2009 at 11:03 PM

Question type: Car Customization

How much is too much???   What level do you think the cutline is for each of the following
Street use (with a little fun of course) summer cars and all year rounders (assume snow is involved...)
Track use: road course, rally, quarter mile

And  if you had to drive it for both performance track times and on the street ie your daily driver and track whats the max for that???

factor in drive type   AWD FWD RWD...

8 Answers


Depends on the car itself... its engine and of course the transmission. Really though, you want serious power, lets say 300HP plus, best to go RWD or AWD, FWD would have torque steer problems past 300, but then again, ive seen 300+ HP FWD cars... but pure race, not street. And of course, its sometimes not always about power, lightweight cars and good power to weight ratios can give you impressive results as well. Ind the end, it really depends on what you want and how far you willing to go. You pick a car, research eveyrthing on it, right down to reliability, then research on the best mods for it and how to go about it. The max for a nice street machine is no more than 400hp, considering how much you willing to spend and the radicial change in the car itself. wanna go over 500hp, then maybe its time to look for a beast machine and buy a corolla for the ride to work.


just to put things into perspective here .... I built a BMW M52 turbo charged engine into an E30 body with the idea of driving the car daily ..... The car makes 550 wheel horse power and 770 newton meters of torque. Its a monstrosity on the drag strip and its fully street legal. The problem I have with it is that its super heavy on fuel. The car is extremely angry in the rain and when I say angry I mean you can break traction in a straight line at 180km/p (110mp/h) on dry tar and forget about driving it in the snow, you will kill your self. for a street car too much is anything that you can not handle. For a drag car there is no too much. A maximum effort modified car is not really streetable and a streeable car isn't really a race car. You trade power for practicality and cost of running factors here. A really strong race car needs a button clutch which is a nightmare to drive should you get stuck in traffic. The tyres and you have to look at the emmisions laws in your state. Or you can just buy an M3


you guys are kinda missing the point... i know all this info about cars... ive driven lots of cars from all over... What im asking is in which car how much horsepower is too much to be streetable... I know guys that drive 800rwhp Cobras as daily drivers... that being said i know lots of people that dont full time drive their 545i bmws I also have a friend that recently built a 1000 hp corvette but needed some lessons on how to get accross town in it... so for you what is your limits in your cars... For me i would daily drive a 700rwhp (700ftlbs tq)mustang as long as there is no snow... In the snow i would keep it down to about 400-450hp but i understand rwd in snow too... im driving a 260hp/400ftlbs tq stang in the snow now. So for you in a car you like what would you build it to to keep it driveable to work and still a hoot when the time called for it... And yes i agree 300 hp FWD is stupid...


I'll stick with the diesel pickups. Easily make 1,000 hp and 1800 ft lbs of torque yet still turn down the programmer on the fly and get 20+ mpg.


Well mate, get a Viper, it can be driven mildly and they have tons of power. It really depends on the car man, horsepower and torque figures can go through the roof, but if the car has a great chassis and handling to match, anything can be used on the street. If you can drive a 700whp Mustang easy on the street, then thats gold. I understand the problems your mate would have with the Vette... In Oz, I live in Sydney, no snow, just hot weather, rain and low speed limits. The perfect blend of performance, power and consumption would have to be 240kw, 450Nm @ 2000-4500rpm which equals to 325hp at 5250rpm... Lololz, as you guys figured it out, the specs are of a turbocharged 4.0 inline 6 called the Falcon XR6 Turbo. I guess its the perfect match. Anything over that would be overkill, but I might be tempted with a FPV Typhoon which is more hardcore... but also hard on the gas tank.


Clay, you overlooked ONE IMPORTANT addition. The compression engine can burn BIO-DIESEL! When you make it yourself, it costs around .55-.75 cents per gallon! That is a HUGE PERK!


300hp fwd is completely streetable. I was running 326hp and 396ft/lbs in a 90 Lebaron with no issues. My Rio is around 250hp/270ft/lbs and it is a bit more of a challange sometimes. But it's all in driving style. Leaving hard with street tires on the street wouldn't be recommended all the time. But I've been in 400+hp SRT4's which are a joy on the street to drive with no issues at all. I think the key thing to recommend is when you are driving something like this on the street is you have to know the car and respect it's limits. Proper tuning would also be a good thing to help with the drivability.


peter ive driven the viper and i will never ever buy one... unless im rich enough to tack one to a wall then ill buy one because its pretty but god its a terrible thing to drive... im driving a mustang how far would you take it (1996 GT) and yes im planning on doing things properley i have a T56 current Viper spec tranny, plan to go full 9" rear, big ass BAER 14.1" brakes front and 12.8" rear so i can stop before going back in time... and plan to spend 5k on suspension upgrades and am planning on running BFG Gforce KD 335/45ZR 18 rear and BFG Gforce KD 325/55ZR 17s on the front... (on those cobra deep dish rims that just came out there sick...) so im gonna do it properley... not half assed... So with the proper supporting modifications how far would you take a 96 mustang GT... assume you have to drive it as long as there is no snow or ice... so sunny conditions and wet conditions... Id take it to 700rwhp possibly 800rwhp once i got enough time behind the wheel...

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