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Trucks are some of the most popular vehicles on the market. As a result, automakers are offering a wide variety of truck options. Some are more efficient than others, with some heavy-duty payload capacity. Automakers are also building trucks with high amounts of horsepower. Here’s a look at which truck excels in that category.

Why horsepower matters on a truck

A 2023 GMC Sierra parked in front of a mountain side, which is the truck with the most horsepower.
2023 GMC Sierra | Creative Commons

As its name suggests, horsepower refers to the amount of power an engine can produce. As a general rule of thumb, the more horsepower a car has, the faster it can go. It’s more complicated than that though, as an engine’s torque output also affects how fast a car can be. For trucks, torque is also important because it can help improve the truck’s tow rating.

Because of the importance of torque, many truck lovers don’t pay too much attention to how much horsepower their truck gets. That said, a truck’s horsepower output still matters, especially for drivers who intend to drive their truck on roads a lot. Trucks are large pieces of equipment, and they’ll need a lot of horsepower to get them moving at highway speeds. 

On top of that, more horsepower can also help drivers overtake others when they’re on the road. As a result of these benefits, many automakers offer trucks with a high horsepower output, and it can be challenging to find out which one is the best overall. Kelley Blue Book made it easy by listing the best high-horsepower trucks. 

The 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab has the most

According to that list, the 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab has the highest horsepower rating. It starts at about $44,000, and it comes with a 2.7-liter turbo four-cylinder as standard. This standard engine only gets 310 hp and 430 lb-ft of torque, and it’s not the engine option that puts the Sierra over the edge. 

GMC offers three other engine options for the truck, including a turbodiesel. The most powerful engine as far as horsepower is concerned is the 6.2-liter V8. This engine gets 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, allowing the Sierra to have the most horsepower for a 2023 model year truck.

That said, the Sierra is very similar to the Chevy Silverado, and the Silverado can also be equipped with that 6.2-liter V8. However, the 2023 Silverado didn’t make the list, and only the 2022 model year did. Overall, Kelley Blue Book praised the Sierra for other reasons beyond its powerful engines. For example, its top trims are very luxurious, and GMC also offers Super Cruise, the automaker’s semi-autonomous self-driving feature.

The Nissan Titan is the runner-up

The Nissan Titan is not only in second place, but it’s also in third place. This is because the list included different cab configurations, and the Titan King Cab came in second place, while the Titan Crew Cab came in third place. Both truck versions have the same powerful engine, and that’s because Nissan only gave the Titan a single engine option.

It’s a 5.6-liter V8 that gets 400 hp and 413 lb-ft of torque. It’s a capable and reliable engine that helps make a strong case for the truck. The King Cab version of the Nissan starts at about $41,500, while the Crew Cab version starts at about $43,000. While the Titan offers a good amount of standard features, its interior isn’t very luxurious, and its towing capacity of over 9,000 pounds is below average for a truck.


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