We’d take those old sports cars to the race track on a modern muscle car any day.

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Modern muscle cars have taken a big leap forward when it comes to performance. The pony car now battles for track position against the established sports cars. For example, in Motor Trend testing, the 2016 Ford Mustang GT350R swept through Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca faster than a Ferrari 458 Italia.

However, modern muscle cars have yet to reach the pinnacle of performance. There are a few old sports cars that can still smash these modern muscle cars around a race track. In this piece, we’ll look at 10 you should select for a track day instead of any modern muscle car. So dive in.

ten Cizeta V16T – Lamborghini lookalike


Cizeta V16T
Via: Secret Classics

The Cizeta V16T was shamelessly designed to look like the Lamborghini Diablo. However, this bold design decision did not help improve its sales. Only 19 copies left the factory. That’s even though the Cizeta was meant to outperform the car it was built to look like.

RELATED: Why The 1989 Cizeta V16T Failed To Storm America As Promised


Cizeta V16T
Via: organized

As such, the V16T packed a massive V16 engine under the hood. Indeed, the V16 powertrain consisted of two Uracco engines sharing a common crankshaft. The total displacement was 6 liters with 64 valves and 8 camshafts. Rated power was 547 hp. The Cizeta V16T could thus sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and reach a top speed of over 200 mph.

9 Ruf 911 CTR – More performance than a Porsche 959


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2-Via-Instagram-Cropped-1

The Ruf 911 CTR was based on the Porsche Carrera 911. It was launched in 1987 and produced only to order. The bodies were fresh from the factory, with each body carrying a unique Ruf serial number. The company also ditched most of the base Carrera’s exterior panels for lighter aluminum parts.


2-Via Cropped DriveTribe
2-Via Cropped DriveTribe

It was, however, still very difficult to spot the visual differences between the Ruf 911 CTR and the base 911 Carrera. Most important changes have been hidden. So, under the rear hood, the CTR packed an enlarged 3.8-liter twin-turbo engine that developed 493 hp. The brand could thus reach 100 km/h in 3.85 seconds.

8 1989 Corvette ZR-1 – Performance Bargain, Track Day Superstar


3-Via CorvSport Cropped
3-Via CorvSport Cropped

Automotive collaborations turned out to be excellent most of the time. Chevy had already produced the C4 Corvettes which were extremely fast. The parent company, GM, then used the overseas expertise to manufacture the ZR-1 pest.


3-Via cropped YouTube
3-Via cropped YouTube

The first finished example of the ZR-1 was released in 1989. The production model would come later with LT5 V8 engines featuring four valves per cylinder and four cams, a first for GM. Although slightly heavier than the standard model, the greater engine power gave the ZR-1 a ridiculous sprint from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds. It could also reach a top speed of 180 mph.

seven Lamborghini Countach QV – 1980s pinup supercar


4-Via Cropped Car Collection
4-Via Cropped Car Collection

At the time, it was difficult to find a child who did not have this brand as a poster car. The Countach was the dream car of the 80s. In 1985 it was updated to the more modern QV specification, making it the most powerful Countach ever produced. The powertrain, now with four valves per cylinder, could produce 449 hp.


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4-Via Mecum Cropped Auctions

Compared to modern sports cars, the Countach is still a very fast car. 0-60mph takes 4.2 seconds, with top speed rated at 183mph.

6 Aston Martin Virage Vantage V8 550 – Straight Line Monster


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5-Via Cropped Classic Hub Motor

Aston Martin took a very different direction with the Virage Vantage V8 550 engine block when they produced it. While other automakers were stuck installing turbochargers in their engines, Aston bolted a zero-lag supercharger to the side of the Virage’s V8.

DLATED: 10 surprising facts about the Aston Martin Vantage


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5-Via Secret Classics Cropped

Built from 1989 to 2000, the Virage Vantage became the last model developed by Aston Martin before the release of the new DB7 models. Both ranges existed at the time, but the Virage was considered Aston Martin’s flagship model. The supercharged 5.3-liter engine produced 550 bhp, which was enough to launch the two-tonne mark from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.6 seconds.


5 Lister XJS Le Mans – Jaguar’s legendary V12 lives on


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6-Via-Facebook-Cropped-1

Lister’s philosophy was to get a big engine, increase its capacity, add superchargers to it, and create a monster power unit. The XJS Le Mans, an incredibly rare brand, is more powerful than Ferrari’s mythical F40.


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6-Via Reddit cropped

The brand retains the Jaguar V12 engine from the production car with a capacity of 7 liters and two compressors. This power unit can develop 600 hp. That’s enough to launch this 2,900-pound machine from 0-60 mph in just 4.5 seconds before maximizing speed to over 200 mph. This makes this brand still fast by today’s standards, despite being launched in 1986.


4 TVR Griffith 500 – Simple Brutal Performance


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7-Via UK Cropped Sports Cars

The TVR Griffith 500 has proven that British automakers can put on some good muscle, too. It was the last model to feature the famous Rover V8 engine. The Griffith 500 used the same simple recipe as previous TVRs. It featured a steel frame mounted on a fiberglass body with a monstrous engine and no electronic assistance to spoil all the fun.


7b-Via UK Cropped Sports Cars
7b-Via UK Cropped Sports Cars

0-60 mph took 4.1 seconds, making it very fast, even by modern standards. This was thanks to its updated 5-liter V8 engine which could produce 340 hp. This, along with TVR’s signature loud exhaust, helped make the Griffith 500 one of the best value sports cars of the 90s.


3 Pontiac Tojan – supercar and muscle car killer


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8-Via Mecum Cropped Auctions

Modern muscle cars have finally approached and passed the 700 horsepower mark. However, in the 80s, a very powerful American muscle car had already reached this level. The Pontiac Tojan, produced by Knudsen Automotive, represented what the third generation Firebird should have been.


8-Via Cropped Hooniverse
8-Via Cropped Hooniverse

It came with a factory-spec 5.7-liter engine that was extensively reworked. It was combined with two turbochargers which boosted the power to around 800 hp. The Pontiac Tojan could potentially hit 206 mph. Sources claim that around 150-300 were produced, making the Tojan a very rare brand.


2 Ferrari 512BB – First mid-engined V12 Ferrari


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9-Via the Classic Motor Hub Cropped

The Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer (BB) preceded the Testarossa which many tankers said was uglier. Both, however, offered identical performance. In 1973, Ferrari launched its first mid-engined V12 sports car. The brand was never imported into the US market, leading dealers to bring the BB 512 independently later.

RELATED: Ferrari Testarossa Was An Iconic Mistake Of The 1980s


9b-Via The Cropped Classic Hub Motor
9b-Via The Cropped Classic Hub Motor

The marque had a similar profile to its smaller 308 cousins. However, they offered better performance thanks to the naturally aspirated 4.9-liter V12 that sat under the rear hood. This engine could produce anywhere between 360 hp and 390 hp depending on tuning. 0-60mph took 5.4 seconds, with top speed rated at 180mph.


1 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake – The fastest and largest Cobra


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10-ViaSafari cropped wallpaper

It is arguably one of the fastest sports cars of all time. What the modern muscle car tries to do today has already been achieved by Carroll Shelby in this wild machine. The standard Cobra 427s were already powerful enough. They were packing a huge V8 that could put out 360 hp.


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10-Via Wikimedia Commons cropped

Carroll Shelby managed to add a supercharger which increased the power to 800 hp. The weight/power ratio is close to 800 hp per tonne. 0-60mph took 3.8 seconds, with the car capable of hitting over 200mph flat out. Only two examples were built. One was used by Shelby as a daily driver while the other briefly belonged to Bill Cosby before he returned it as it was too scary to drive.


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