The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

Every so often a carmaker comes around, makes up a supercar with a zillion horsepower that runs on baby tears and we all try not to laugh. Jalopnik readers know ten manufacturer claims that outdid all the others.

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The car business is very competitive and very difficult. A few startup companies spring up every year, only to be bankrupt and gone by the next. Even established manufacturers easily slip into bankruptcy if something they build fails to catch the buyer’s attention.

Maybe that’s why automakers make so many ridiculously unbelievable claims all the time. If they didn’t lie, nobody would care. Who wants another 600 horsepower supercar? Pretend it makes 1,000 and people will take notice. Who wants another gasoline V12? Pretend your startup brand from Kyrgyzstan is all-electric. Or hydrogen-powered. Or it runs on environmentally friendly soy lattes. Some kid is going to put that poster up on his wall.

And year in, year out, we all read the same stories, even though we can spot a never-going-to-happen claim in a second.

There are actually so many totally BS manufacturer claims over the years that we had no hope of fitting them all into one top ten list. Let us know which ones we left off in Kinja below.

Photo Credit: Chrysler/Brown Car Appreciation Society

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

10.) Covert Tuning LP2000

When Covert Tuning unveiled their hen Covert Tuning unveiled their "LP-2000-2 SV," a 2,000 horsepower rear-wheel-drive Murcielago, last year, they rolled the car out to the press promising ridiculous speed and power... and we haven't seen much of them since.


Suggested By: ImSam, Photo Credit: Covert Tuning 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

9.) Soft Corinthian Leather

When Ricardo Montalban advertised back in 1975 that the new Chrysler Cordoba had “soft Corinthian leather,” it certainly sounded like the new Chrysler Cordoba had soft leather that came from Corinth. Nope! Most of Chrysler’s leather was sourced from outside of Newark, New Jersey.

Suggested By: gearboxtrouble, Photo Credit: Chrysler/Brown Car Appreciation Society 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

8.) Barabus TKR

We give Barabus props for actually building something resembling a car (as opposed to most vaporware supercars that are just Photoshops), but excuse us when we laugh at its 1,005 horsepower twin turbo V8, 270 mph top speed, and 1.67 second claimed 0-60 time. Prove us wrong, Barabus, prove us wrong...

Suggested By: Atomic, Photo Credit: Barabus 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

7.) Carbon Motors

Since 2009 we’ve been hearing that the Carbon Motors E7 is going to become the standard police car in the United States. We’re still waiting, although it seems they got bored with the car and moved on to a van.

Suggested By: Sam Payne, Photo Credit: Carbon Motors 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

6.) Mosler’s $25,000 Bet

Before Molser became the supercar it is today, it was called Consulier. Warren Mosler himself bet $25 grand back in 1988 that his Consulier GTP could beat any street-legal production car around any US circuit. He was beaten by Car & Driver in a base model C4 Corvette.

Suggested By: ejp, Photo Credit: Consulier/Alden Jewell (barely updated 1991 model shown) 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

5.) The Ford Granada Looks Just Like A Mercedes

Ford claimed their mid-size Granada looked just like a much more expensive Mercedes. It did, if you were blind.


Suggested By: Brian, The Life of, Photo Credit: Ford 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

4.) Lotus’ Five New Cars In Six Years

Hey, you guys know the new Lotus Elise right? The revolutionary new Lotus that's coming out next year? Oh, it still doesn’t exist, just like the five other cars that some Baldwin brother unveiled all at the same time at the 2010 Paris Auto Show? Color us surprised.

Suggested By: SennaMP4, Photo Credit: Lotus 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

3.) The Dodge Tomahawk’s 420 MPH Top Speed

Dodge first unveiled their four-wheeled Viper V10-powered motorcycle with a claimed top speed of 420 miles per hour. When Popular Science asked if they could test that speed. Dodge said no. When PopSci asked if anyone could verify the claim, Dodge said no. They dropped the top speed to 300 mph, then dropped the bike altogether and now wish you would forget about it.

Suggested By: Zendax, Photo Credit: Dodge 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

2.) Holden Energy Polarizer

In 1987 Peter Brock, legendary Holden racing driver, unveiled a new technological device for the HDT Holden VL Director called the “energy polarizer.” Brock claimed the device produced “orgone energy,” which was “unknown to current physics.” For the low, low price of $470, it would turn a “dog of a car” into a sweet running one by “align[ing] the molecules,” reported The Sydney Morning Herald.

It was actually just two magnets, contained in some resin, in a box.

Suggested By: MAKATTAK427, Photo Credit: HDT Special Vehicles 

The Most Outlandish Automaker Claims Ever Made

1.) Everything By Vector

Vector is surely America’s greatest supercar company. Not best, greatest. They almost never make any cars (except for a few that caught fire or didn’t work), but they’ve been making claims of 2,000 horsepower and 300 MPH for years. Vector isn’t just absurd; it’s been absurd for decades. It’s winning the endurance race for crazy.

Suggested By: MrdrDingo, Photo Credit: Vector