Japan vs. USA Power Quiz: Can You Choose the More Powerful Car?

By: Robin Tyler
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

There are those of us who love the way a car looks! The beautiful curves, elegant lines, the way the designer makes the entire design package flow into a machine that is pleasing to the eye.

And then there are those of us who simply want to know what's under the hood. The heart of the motor vehicle is its engine. And since the car was invented, people have wanted to put more and more powerful engines in their cars simply to make them go faster! And people care about that, sometimes more so than how beautiful a car looks!

So, what have we prepared for you in this quiz? Well, it's simple. We have taken American cars and pitted them against their Japanese rivals. You simply have to guess which of the models we show you in each question has the highest horsepower rating. 

Sound easy? In some cases it certainly is, and in others, you are going to have to think carefully and clearly, using all your auto knowledge to make sure you get the answer right!

We have chosen a range of models, from sedans, SUVs, pickups and sports cars... but haven't always pitted the same types up against each other.

This makes things just a little more interesting. 

Good luck1

A lesser-known muscle car from the 1970s against a modern sedan. The 1970 AMC Rebel comes out on top with its 6.4 liter V8 engine producing 325 bhp compared to the 201 bhp from the 2.4-liter DOHC inline-4 of the Acura ILX.

The Honda NSX needs no introduction. The first generation was designed with the help of legendary F1 driver Ayrton Senna. The second generation is more powerful than the 2017 Buick Enclave SUV, producing 500 bhp from its 3.5-liter V6 engine compared to the 310 bhp from the 3.6-liter V6 of the Enclave.

The 1993 Cadillac Allante produces 294 bhp thanks to its 4.6-liter V8 engine, 80 bhp more than the 1.3-liter rotary engined RX-7. That said, those are some impressive numbers from that Mazda power unit.

A close call on these two massive SUVs. The Q70 wins, thanks to its 5.5-liter V8 engine which pushes out 420 bhp. The Expedition isn't that far behind, coming in at 380 bhp despite having a much smaller power plant - a 3.5-liter V6.

The third generation of the Daihatsu Terios is powered by a 1.5-liter engine that produces around 102 brake horsepower, certainly no match for the Chevrolet Colorado, a pickup truck in the Chevy fleet since 2003. The most powerful models of the Colorado have 3.5-liter V6 engines that produce 308 brake horsepower.

Probably not a difficult one to choose but it is closer than most think. The more modern Honda Ridgeline (3.4-liter V6 engine) comes in at 280 bhp while the Hummer's 5.3-liter V8 produces 300 bhp.

The top of the range Taurus wins this one hands down. It has a 3.5-liter V6 engine that pushes out 365 brake horsepower. The most powerful Toyota Corolla from the same year pushes out 150 brake horsepower from its 2.0-liter DOHC 16-valve straight-4.

Despite the fact that we have a massive 5.7-liter V8 versus a modern 2.0-liter turbo engine, it's the smaller engine that wins. The Accord turns out 252 bhp compared to the 200 bhp of the GTO's V8.

This is so, so close! But it's the F-150's 5.0-liter Coyote V8 engine that wins the battle over the 5.7-liter V8 of the Tundra. It turns out 385 bhp compared to 381 bhp!

It's the Leaf that wins this one, with an electric motor rating at 110 kilowatts of power compared to to the 63 kilowatts of the Volt.

A close call with this comparison but the 4Runner from Toyota is the winner. Its 4.0-liter V6 turns out 270 bhp compared to the 245 bhp from the Everest. The Ford model only has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder motor, so those are some impressive numbers indeed despite the fact that it is less powerful.

The 325 bhp GMC Sierra C3 is the winner here, beating the Pathfinder by 41 brake horsepower.

The Cruze wins this one by 23 bhp. Although it has a smaller engine - 1.4-liter - it turns out 153 bhp thanks to the fact that it is turbocharged. The Sentra's 1.8-liter engine makes 130 bhp.

The 300 bhp from the 5.4-liter V8-powered Lincoln Blackwood is more powerful than the 1994 Mazda Navajo. Its 4.0-liter V6 engine turns out 160 bhp.

The Lincoln’s V6 power is too much for the Legend in this battle. It produces 365 bhp to the 300 bhp of the Legend.

'The Mirfmobile' from "Wayne's World" (yes, that's the AMC Pacer) is slightly more powerful than the 2017 Mazda 2. It has 130 bhp versus 114 bhp. The Pacer should be more powerful seeing that it has a 5.0-liter V8 when compared to the 1.5-liter engine of the Mazda 2.

Cars differing by 20 years in age, the more modern Acura ZDX is powered by a 3.7-liter V6 that produces 300 bhp which is 60 bhp more than the Ford F-150 SVT Lightning, coming in at 240 bhp thanks to its 5.8-liter V8.

The 2017 Ford Expedition has more power (380 bhp) compared to the 280 bhp of the 2017 Honda Pilot even though they both are powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine.

The top of the range 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee is a behemoth. It pushes out a massive 707 brake horsepower thanks to its 6.2-liter supercharged Hemi V8 engine. That's simply too much for the Infiniti Q70 by around 287 brake horsepower!

A Jeep legend, the 2017 Wrangler's 3.8-liter V6 produces 202 bhp. That is significantly more than the 2017 Daihatsu Terios, which turns out 102 bhp from its 1.5-liter engine.

So close but believe it or not, the Mustang (105 bhp) loses out to the 2000GT (115 bhp) by just 10 bhp.

No contest here with the Lincoln MKT (415 bhp, 3.5-liter twin turbo) outpowering the Mazda CX-5 (185 bhp, 2.5-liter straight-4 engine) by 230 bhp. That's like adding another engine.

Its the Colorado that wins this battle - 308 bhp to 280 bhp despite the fact that they both have virtually identically sized engines. The Colorado runs a 3.5-liter V6 and the Ridgeline a 3.4-liter V6.

These two are just two brake horsepower apart from each other! But it's the 1969 Nissan Fairlady (130 bhp) that wins over the Ford Transit (128 bhp). That despite the fact that the Transit has a 3.5-liter V6 and the Fairlady only a 2.0 liter straight-6.

The 150 kilowatt electric motor of the Via truck is more powerful than the 110 kilowatt motor of the Leaf. Stands to reason as a pickup needs the oomph! Even an electric one.

Another close battle. The 5.7-liter V8 of the 2015 Toyota Tundra pushes out 381 bhp compared to the 325 bhp 6.0-liter V8 of the 2001 GMC Sierra C3.

The Aztek comes in well behind the Nissan in the power stakes. Its 3.4-liter V6 only produces 185 bhp while the Titan's 5.6-liter V8 delivers 378 bhp.

The Silverado SS wins this power battle with ease thanks to its 345 bhp 6.0-liter V8 engine. This is far more powerful than the 2.0-liter straight-four of the Rogue which makes 143 bhp.

The Legend is a big powerful machine. It turns out 300 bhp from its 3.7-liter engine compared to the 161 bhp of the 2.5-liter V6 powering the 2000 Chrysler Sebring.

In this comparison, it's the American ride that blows its Japanese rival out the water. The Navigator puts out 647 bhp to the 150 bhp of the FR-V.

Probably not a difficult one to choose but it is closer than most people think. The more modern Toyota Tacoma (3.5-liter V6 engine) comes in at 278 bhp while the Hummer's 5.3-liter V8 produces just 22 bhp more at 300 bhp.

The Taurus' 3.5-liter V6 engine is the winner in this battle. It pushes out 365 bhp compared the the 252 bhp from the 2.0-liter turbo engine of the Accord.

It's the Tundra's 5.7-liter V8 engine that wins this battle, outperforming the 3.5-liter V6 of the Colorado, 381 bhp versus 308 bhp.

400 bhp vs. 115 bhp. The modern Pontiac GTO wins over the Japanese sports car of the '70s.

The Tundra wins this one even though both vehicles have similar size V8 engines. It produces 381 bhp compared to the 300 bhp of the H3 Hummer.

The more modern 4Runner, powered by a 4.0-liter V6 engine, produces 270 bhp. The Ram 1500, with its 5.9-liter Magnum V8, comes close, clocking in at 230 bhp. Close, but not close enough!

Even though the El Camino has 35 years on the BRAT, it is much more powerful, coming in at 320 bhp compared to 95 bhp. That is thanks to its 5.7-liter V8 engine, which is just a little more powerful than the 1.8-liter flat-four that powers the BRAT.

It's a close run, but the Chevrolet SRR wins by 12 bhp. Its 6.0-liter V8 engine produces 390 brake horsepower compared to the 378 bhp from the 5.6-liter V8 of the Titan.

The Taurus model with the most powerful engine is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 which produces 365 bhp. That is significantly more than the 130 bhp pushed out by the 1.8-liter straight-4.

Two incredible cars and so close in the power stakes but the GT-R is the winner. Its 3.7-liter V6 produces 561 bhp, just 11 more than the 5.4-liter supercharged V8 powering the GT.

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!

Explore More Quizzes