Ten Of The Least Powerful Road Cars Ever Made

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How do you make a Mitsubishi Mirage seem fast? Drive one of these cars first.


10.) Subaru 360

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16 Horsepower

As part of Japan's 360 cc-restricted Kei car class, this Subaru was powered by a two-stroke, two cylinder engine displacing just 356 cc. Later versions had up to a whopping 36 horsepower, which was pretty fruity in a sub-1,000 pound car.

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Inexplicably, the 360 was imported to the US where they couldn't even give them away.

Suggested By: HammerheadFistpunch, Photo Credit: Subaru


9.) Fiat Nuova 500

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13 Horsepower

Now I'm not talking about the new Fiat's with their excessive 101 horsepower four cylinders – I'm talking about the OG 500 which made just 13 horsepower from its air-cooled twin.

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The original 500 may have been down on power, but by most accounts, it wasn't lacking fun.

Suggested By: N2Skylark, Photo Credit: Fiat


8.) Daihatsu Midget

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10 Horsepower

Don't giant new trucks with their big V8s and turbocharged V6s seem like overkill? I really think Daihatsu had the right idea with the single seat, three wheeled midget.

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Later models added some unnecessary fripperies like doors, a second seat, and a steering wheel. Who needs those?

Suggested By: POD, Photo Credit: Mytho88


7.) Citroën 2CV

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9 Horsepower

The design goal of the 2CV was to carry two farmers with 50kg of potatoes at a steady 50 km/h, which apparently only required 9 horsepower.

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The last models had over 30 horsepower, but the spirit of the original remained intact.

Suggested By: SlabSheetrock, Photo Credit: Citroën


6.) Voisin Biscooter

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9 Horsepower

Oh you think you're so frugal with your front wheel drive car. Well try driving a Voisin Biscooter with its 9 hp single cylinder two-stroke sending power to only the right front wheel.

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Suggested By: Vander, Photo Credit: RM Auctions (Prototype Pictured)


5.) Oldsmobile Curved Dash

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5 Horsepower

Considering the fact that this car –which debuted in 1901 – was the first mass produced car, it's 5 horsepower doesn't actually seem all that low. I certainly wouldn't call it's water cooled single-cylinder underpowered.

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Suggested By: 472CID, Photo Credit: James Case


4.) Une Voiture Sans Permis

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5 Horsepower

For the non french speaking among us, this means "a car without a license." As featured on James May's Cars Of The People, these strange French things can be driven by anyone, even if they don't have a drivers license.

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They're all limited to 5 horsepower, and are inexplicably sold today.

Suggested By: Cé hé sin (hem från Sverige), Photo Credit: Chatenet (CH26 Pictured)

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3.) Peel P50

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4.2 Horsepower

4.2 horsepower doesn't seem like much, but when you put it in the smallest car ever made, it's more or less up for the job as Top Gear found out.

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Suggested By: RazoE, Photo Credit: Peel Engineering


2.) Brutsch Mopetta

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2.3 Horsepower

Egon Brütsch's Mopetta wasn't smaller than a P50, but it was less powerful making just 2.3 horsepower out of a 49 cc single-cylinder. That makes a 2CV nearly 4 times more powerful than this.

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Suggested By: Jonee, Photo Credit: RM Auctions


1.) Benz Patent Motorwagen

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.75 Horsepower

You have to wonder why Karl Benz even bothered when his car wasn't nearly as powerful as a horse, but thank god he did. It was one of the first automobiles, setting the pace for years to come (so to speak).

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Suggested By: DennyCraneDennyCraneDennyCrane, Photo Credit: Daimler

Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!

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Top Photo Credit: Fiat

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DISCUSSION

thwheelerZ
the_wheelerZ

In pants like those, it's pretty much impossible to NOT have fun.