How Do You Determine Your Car's Horsepower?

To determine a car engine's horsepower, check the specifications category in the manufacturer's manual, or visit a car review website that lets you search the specifications of different makes and models. Alternatively, connect the engine to a dynamometer, which measures horsepower by calculating the amount of power the engine produces when it carries a load on top of it. If you don't have a dynamometer, bring your car to a vehicle shop with drive-on dynamometers.

Another way to measure the engine's horsepower is to use an online horsepower calculator. The formula for calculating horsepower using torque involves multiplying your engine's torque and revolutions per minute and then dividing the product by 5,252.

The horsepower of the Dodge Viper is 450, while the Ferrari 355 F1 runs with 375 horsepower. The Shelby Series 1 has 320 horsepower, whereas the Lotus Esprit V8 comes with 350 horsepower. Other vehicles with horsepower above 300 include the Chevrolet Corvette, Porsche Carrera and Mitsubishi 3000GT twin turbo.

Every engine has a peak horsepower or revolutions per minute value that represents its maximum power. High-performance vehicles have plenty of power relative to their weight. Because heavier vehicles require more power to accelerate them, cars with good power-to-weight ratios are preferable for drivers who want fast driving speeds.