Even in pics of exotic cars, they just scream speed. These autos truly are in a class of their own.
You might have guessed I'd start here. But personal childhood biases aside, Lamborghini remains a serious player among exotic car brands. This Italian icon is now under the Volkswagen Group umbrella. But the supercars are still masterfully crafted where the brand was born -- Sant'Agata Bolognese in Italy. Italian manufacturer Ferruccio Lamborghini established the company in his name more than 50 years ago. A few years later, the Miura sports coupe upset the industry with several novel features that would later be implemented by competing brands. The car came equipped with a rear mid-engine design and rear wheel drive. It set the standard for what would be considered the equivalent of supercars for many years to come.
Though sales took a dip during the oil crisis of the 1970s and early on in this century, that hasn't stopped Lamborghini's innovation. New models continue to take the breaths of the brand's loyal fans, young and old.
McLaren has made a name for itself on the racetrack, but the truly elite among auto collectors can have the same performance in their garage. The P1, McLaren's flagship exotic car, was designed to be the best driver's car in the world, according to the company. This supercar replaced the F1, which had similar aspirations. That was the company's first road vehicle and began production in 1993. The newer iteration doesn't claim to break all the records for speed, weight or power. But on balance it's hard to find a better all-around driving machine. And as you're looking through pics of exotic cars, there's no denying the McLaren's lines look right at home. This is the spirit of a car that won the 1995 Le Mans 24 Hours resides within a car that can be yours if the price is right.
Sure, you can get a Porsche from your neighborhood dealer and fit in with the upper-middle class set. We're not talking about that kind of Porsche. Cars like the 918 Spyder, while still retaining the features of a distant relative to more standard models, are different. Building on a legacy of performance rivaled by few, if any, other companies, this supercar is exceedingly exclusive. Technological breakthroughs and a hybrid carbonfiber frame set this car on a pedestal. But there are plenty of others in the Porsche lineup, past and present, that show what it takes to be an exotic car.
Maybe not a household name, but if you know about exotic cars, you know Koenigsegg. This Swedish company has been doing incredible things in the ultra high-end automotive market for more than a decade. The 1,030 horsepower Agera S has captured the attention of casual hobbyists and professional reviewers alike since 2013. Pics of exotic cars from around the world share certain characteristics, and this entry from Sweden does not disappoint. The exaggerated lines and sleek styling are clear signals to other motorists that they should probably merge right when you approach in their rear view mirror. But Koenigsegg designs are also elegant and beautiful, leaving little doubt that this brand belongs on any comprehensive list of exotic automobiles.
You knew it would show up somewhere on the list. Ferrari is synonymous with exotic cars with a long line of over-the-top performance and some of the most iconic autos ever. In recent years, cars like the LaFerrari have upped the ante. Some analysts say this car could arguably dominate the incredibly competitive supercar field. The same was said for earlier generations of Ferrari designs noted not only for their performance but their limited production numbers. Less than 500 LaFerrari models were produced over a two year period.
Similarly, cars like the Enzo, F40, F50 and 288 GTO were brilliant machines produced in astonishingly small quantities. Enzo Ferrari founded this legendary company in 1939. At the time, it was developed from within a racing division of auto manufacturer Alfa Romeo. While that iteration of the company produced a model as early as 1940, Ferrari's official launch is typically recorded as 1947. It was in that year that the first car bearing the Ferrari brand was released. The decades since have been largely favorable to the exotic car brand and it's owners. A 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO was sold in 2012 for more than $38 million, making it the most expensive auto sale to date. Two years later, Ferrari was named in Brand Finance as the most powerful brand in the world.
When the Brits are mentioned in conversations about exotic cars, the emphasis is often on luxury appointments. Supercar brands from Italy are associated more with performance. Perhaps that's a generally fair assessment, but Bentley is often overlooked as a powerhouse of a car. Just because the wood grain and supple leather embrace you with unparalleled warmth and comfort doesn't mean you can't also blow past highway traffic like it's standing still. (Always obey your local posted speed limits!) The Continental GT Speed, for example, does not share many design cues with other cars on this list. It will, however, get you down the road in a hurry. It's 6.0 liters and 12 cylinders produce 616 horsepower that work hard when you push the skinny pedal. Bentley proves you don't have to trade style for performance -- or vice versa.
Denmark's only entry on the list works hard to represent its homeland. Zenvo is the driving force behind the TS1 GT. It's 5.8 liter twin-supercharged V8 engine produces 1,163 horsepower. This powers a beast that hits 62 miles per hour from a dead stop in 2.8 second flat. And driver feedback in this car is unmatched. According to its manufacturer, the proprietary gearbox in its seven-speed transmission is capable of shifting faster than Formula One race cars. And this car is packed with gadgets, rare metals and other tricks that really set it apart in a truly impressive crowd of cars.
If we're going to include Bentley among our pics of exotic cars, it's only fair to also mention the iconic Rolls-Royce. Without a doubt, these cars are focused on luxury. Beautifully designed and appointed, there's hardly anywhere on earth one of these cars won't turn heads. What's under the hood of models like the Dawn, however, belies its more subdued appearance. The ultimate in country club luxury packs 563 horsepower in a beautiful car that will get you from 0 to 60 in about 4.3 seconds.
'Exotic' is a term reserved for foreign rarities. It perfectly applies to these cars.
You won't typically find a Lamborghini at the corner convenience store. The Starbucks parking lot isn't likely to be filled with 1,000-horsepower supercars. Along with the raw power and sheer good looks, exclusivity is part of the appeal. I hope you enjoyed my selection of the top exotic cars from around the world. If so, share it with the car enthusiasts in your life and find out if you share a common dream car. If you have driven any of these cars, or just want to share your favorite, add your take to the comments section below.
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