5 cars with an amazing range of engines

By the early 2000s, you could order some cars with either 4, 5, 6 up to 12 cylinders! From a 2.0 to 5.0 or 6.0 liters in the very same engine bay.

Nowadays, if you want to buy a car, you are most likely to have a choice between a 3 or a 4-cylinder engine. Even in the luxury market, the latest and greatest often have a 6 or an 8-cylinder under the bonnet, but that’s it.

The current Audi A8 can only be equipped with a V6. The V8 is reserved for the sportier S8. In the 7 series from BMW, you are lucky. There is a 6, 8 and a 12-cylinder engine for the top of the line M760Li. And I bet you it is going to be the same with the new S Class, 6 or 8 cylinders.

Of course, sports cars still come with V8 or even V12 but good luck finding one than offers more than two options. That’s sad because, a few years back, you could order basically the same car with a 2.0 inline-4 up to 5.0 V10 or even 6 liters 12 cylinders!

Audi A6 (2004–2010)

The third generation of the German had quite a range of engines. The base model came with either a four-cylinder petrol or diesel engine. Nothing fancy here. But then, the buyer could upgrade to several petrol and diesel V6 that developed up to 250 hp. Want more? There is the petrol V8 with up to 350 hp.

The sporty version, the S6, had V10. Not any V10, the one from the Lamborghini Gallardo. Slightly detuned, it produces 435 hp and 540 nm of torque. Enough to reach 60 mph in just 5.2 sec.

And that is not even the top of the range. Add a couple of turbos to this engine and you have the RS6. With 580 hp and 650 Nm of torque, the 0 to 60 only takes 4.6 sec. It only came as an estate. Nice.

Audi A8 (2003–2010)

the luxury sedan had way more engines back in the days. First you have the petrol and diesel V6. both developed a bit more than 200 hp. Enough to drive comfortably in a luxury sedan like this one.

But, of course, there is more. V8s could replace the V6s. They developed up to 350 hp, basically the same as in its little sister, the A6.

Then, there is the S8 with, once again, the same 5.2-litre V10 has the Gallardo. It develops 5 hp more than the one in the S6 but with the same torque, enough to reaches 60 mph in 5.1 sec. That is the sportier version of the limousine, no RS here.

But there is still another engine, and quite a big one. The most luxurious version of the A8 was the W12 equipped with the same 6.0 liters 12 cylinders as you can find in a Bentley. The power is the same as in the S8 but with even more torque, 580 Nm. It only came in the long wheelbase for maximum comfort but can still do the 0 to 60 in 5.1 sec.

BMW 5 Series (2003–2010)

Enough VAG cars for the moment. Let’s move from Ingolstadt to Munich with the E60 5 series. The 520i and 520d came with a 2.0 inline-4.

Obviously, BMW equipped his 5 series with some inline-6, an engine the brand is pretty known for. From the 523i and 525d up to the 535i and 535d, all cars are equipped with a 6-cylinder that develops up to 300 hp. Then came the 540i and 545i with their V8 of 300 and 330 hp. The latest one only takes 6 sec to reach 60 mph.

On top of all those engines, came the famous and mighty 5.0-litre V10 of the M5. This engine is a bomb. Not only because it develops 500 hp and can reach 60 mph in only 4.7 sec, but also because it is not the most reliable one. It can destroy itself at any moment in any circumstances. Not its best feature but, hey, that’s what makes its charm.

Mercedes S-Class (2005–2013)

Still from Germany, apparently the German use to love variety back in the early 2000s, the S-Class W221. The base model can be equipped with either a 4-cylinder diesel engine that develops 200 hp or a 6-cylinder petrol engine that is good for 300 hp.

The biggest diesel engine was the inline-6 from the S350 that develops 250 hp. But on the petrol side, you could have much more, from a V8 of 435 hp in the S500 to a V12 of 520 hp in the S600.

And those aren’t even the AMG version. For this generation of S Class, Mercedes was kind enough to produce not one, but two sporty versions of the limo. First, there is the S63 AMG with its 6.2-litre NA V8 of 525 hp that reaches 60 mph in 4.6 sec. Then, there is the insane biturbo 6-liter V12 with 612 hp and 1000 Nm of torque that goes from 0 to 60 in just 4.4 sec.

VW Touareg (2002–2010)

This SUV is maybe not the most exciting one to look at but was clearly one of the best to configure.

OK, let’s start with the most basic one, and it already had a special engine. The entry level Touareg was equipped with 2.5 liters 5-cylinder diesel engine which develops just 174 hp. Not much for a 2.3 tonnes SUV but it has 400 Nm of torque available from 2000 rpm, a great figure when you need to tow stuff.

On the diesel side, tow more engines were available: a 3.0 V6 of 225 hp and 500 Nm of torque and a 5.0 V10 of “only” 313 hp but 750 Nm of torque. In case you didn’t get it, the Touareg was built to tow stuff, big stuff, like a plane, for example.

On the petrol side, three options: a V6 that evolved during the life time of the SUV to end up with 280 hp and 360 Nm of torque, a 4.2-litre V8 that is good for 310 hp and 410 Nm of torque and the special W12 edition equipped with, you guessed it, a 6.0-litre W12 Bentley engine. It develops 450 hp, 600 Nm of torque and was limited to only 500 vehicles.

Other cars with an amazing range of engines ? Put them in the comments below

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Comments (23)

  • W124 and the 1st E-Klasse.

      18 days ago
  • Perosnally I think the Rover 75 is one of the best for weirdness.

    I4 BMW diesel (the bad choice.)

    I4 Rover petrol.

    I4 Rover petrol turbo.

    V6 Rover petrol.

    V8 Ford petrol.

    Your choice of engine would also decide whether or not the car was FWD or RWD.

    It was an absolutely exquisite car, but my god was it strange.

      12 days ago
  • The VW Passat from 1996 to 2005. inline 4, VR5, V6 and W8 engines available.

      17 days ago
    • Very true ! And with two special engines that were the VR5 and the W8. Thanks for the comment 🙂.

        17 days ago
  • That's a class article. Nice research!

      18 days ago
  • The 12th Generation Ford F-series pick ups. 3.5 V6, 3.7 V6, 4.6 V8 either as a 2 valve or 3 valve, 5.0 V8, 5.4 V8, 6.2 V8. That’s just the F150.

    The SuperDuty trucks even had a 6.8 V10 option,

      18 days ago