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Not all cars have to serve a progressive purpose. Instead, some cars exist just to delight the inner goofball in us all. That’s the case with these five performance cars; they shrug off the need for fuel economy, seating for a family, and, in some cases, road legality. Check out five of our favorite smile-inducing, albeit unnecessary, rides, like the Dodge Demon and Aston Martin Vulcan.

These five performance cars didn’t ask ‘why.’ Just ‘how fast’

A silver and black Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 performance car does a wheelie.
Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 | Stellantis

You won’t see a Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170 or Aston Martin Vulcan in the carpool lane at an elementary school. No, these five cars push the performance envelope at the expense of practicality.

  • Dodge Challenger SRT Demon
  • Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170
  • Ariel Atom V8
  • Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 (S197)
  • Aston Martin Vulcan

The Dodge Challenger SRT Demon and Demon 170 are hilariously hellacious

It’s no secret that the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon and the 2023 Demon 170 are ridiculous. Both cars constitute the absolute boundary of what’s possible for a modern muscle car. 

Each Mopar breaks production car records like “only production car to perform a wheelie” and “largest hood scoop.” Oh yeah, and 1,025 horsepower on 170-proof racing fuel doesn’t hurt. 

An Ariel Atom V8 is a track star for your garage

A 500-horsepower V8 isn’t shocking in today’s market. However, a 3.0L dual-overhead cam (DOHC) V8 producing 500 horsepower at 10,600 rpm is special. Now place that high-revving mill in a car weighing 1,213 lbs, and you’ve got a cruise missile on four wheels. 

The S197 Shelby GT500 is a performance car staple pretending to be a muscle car

Before there was the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, there was the S197-generation Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. One of the nuclear options of the horsepower wars, the Shelby model summons 662 horsepower from a supercharged 5.8L V8. What’s more, Ford claims it will scream all the way up to 200 mph. 200 mph. In a Mustang. 

You won’t see an Aston Martin Vulcan on your local highways anytime soon

The Aston Martin Vulcan is quite the departure from the refined, gentlemanly grand tourers that fans expect from the British marque. Instead, the Vulcan is a full-fledged 800+ horsepower race car. Don’t expect James Bond to drive a street-legal Vulcan in the next 007 film.