25 Cars with the Best-Sounding Four-Cylinder Engines

Sounding great isn't just for cars with V8s and V12s. Even a car with a four-cylinder engine can sound amazing.

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YouTubeDavide Cironi Drive Experience

Sounding great isn't just for cars with V8s and V12s. Even a car with a four-cylinder engine can sound amazing. Here are some of the best, according to you.

1 of 25
Lotus Elan

The Elan packs Lotus's famous twin-cam engine, which, in addition to making great power, is compact, simple, and makes a wonderful sound.

2 of 25
Toyota Corolla (AE86)

The Toyota AE86 is great in a lot of ways. Though it might just pack four cylinders under the hood, that 4AGE engine makes a symphony of fantastic noise all the way to its 8000-RPM- redline.

3 of 25
Ferrari 500 Mondial

When most people think of Ferrari engines, they think V12s. This Ferrari 500 Mondial uses a four-cylinder, but it still lives up to its badge in terms of sound.

4 of 25
Nissan Silvia

The SR20 found in many of Nissan's performance cars of the '90s is a go-to choice for tuners everywhere, and it's easy to see why. It can handle tons of boost, and makes a wonderful sound while doing it. for sale you can drop into your newest project car right now.

5 of 25
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

When it comes to turbo-fours, Japanese manufacturers definitely know what they're doing. The Lancer Evolution, equipped with Mitsubishi's 4G63 engine, is a great example. is for sale on eBay for $27,000.

6 of 25
Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16

The Cosworth-modified 2.3-liter four-cylinder in the Mercedes 190E made it a real gem to listen to. can be yours today.

7 of 25
Brabham BT52

If you thought all the best-sounding F1 cars had V10s and V12s, think again. The Brabham BT52 sports a BMW-built turbo inline-four that makes over 600 horsepower and a wild noise.

8 of 25
Dodge Neon SRT4

The SRT4 Neon is a fantastic front-wheel drive pocket-rocket that's tons of fun behind the wheel. What people don't really mention much is just how good it sounds. You can own for just under $13,000.

9 of 25
Lancia Fulvia

Not all four-cylinder engines have inline designs. The Lancia Fulvia has a V4 (like a V8 with the back half of its cylinders lopped off). It makes an interesting noise you should hear. is up for bidding on eBay right now.

10 of 25
Mini Cooper

Early versions of the modern Mini Cooper came with supercharged four-cylinders from the factory, and sound as entertaining as you'd expect. can be yours for just under $6000.

11 of 25
Porsche 944

Porsche may be known for its iconic flat-six noises, but the 944's four-cylinder engine has a distinct sound that shouldn't be overlooked. has a Buy It Now price of just $4000 on eBay now.

12 of 25
MGB GT

When people get nostalgic over the light, simple roadsters of the '50s and '60s, this is the sound they remember. Full of deep rumbles and lovely backfires, these are noises no new four-pot car can replicate. You can own for just $8750.

13 of 25
Ford Escort RS2000

There's nothing quite like hearing a high-strung, well-built engine revving all the way to redline. Cosworth is famous for making fantastic engines, the side effect of which is some seriously enjoyable soundtracks.

14 of 25
Alpine A110

Most inline-fours these days are muffled and sound virtually the same. Not the new Alpine A110. It has a throaty, powerful note with tons of substance and satisfaction.

15 of 25
Acura Integra Type R

In the mid 1990s, the Acura Integra GS-R was one cool little front-wheel drive coupe. Then, in 1997, Honda brought over the Acura Integra Type R, a car that even today is still considered one of the best-handling front-wheel drive cars ever made. Its 1.8-liter engine made an incredible 195 horsepower, and you could rev it all the way up to its 8,400 rpm redline. It was glorious.

16 of 25
Alfa Romeo 4C

If you're looking for a small, nimble, quick little sports car, either the Porsche Boxster or Cayman would be the rational way to go. But what if you think less about rationality and spreadsheets, instead preferring soul and passion? In that case, Alfa Romeo has you covered with the impractical-yet-amazing 4C. With that exhaust note, you'll never forget it, either. just $42,500 right now on eBay.

17 of 25
Any Offenhauser-Powered Car

Fred Offenhauser sure did know how to leave a legacy. His engine design dominated Indy Car racing to the point that "Offy" engines are essentially synonymous with the sport. He built them to be both powerful and reliable, which he achieved, but one of the side effects was that they sound amazing.

18 of 25
Any Twin-Cam Alfa Romeo

When an engine's in production for 40 years, it's going to find its way into more than one car, and never has that been more true than with the Alfa Romeo Twin Cam. It was quite advanced for the time when it was introduced in 1954, and over its life cycle, it found its way into more than a dozen cars. Even from the beginning, it sounded wonderful. can be yours now.

19 of 25
BMW E30 M3

BMW says it developed the original M3 to sit at the intersection of road car and race car, and we believe it. The M3 of today is much more powerful and significantly faster, but there's still something about the E30. It had an engine that would rev and rev and rev, and the longer you kept your foot down, the better it sounded. can be yours now for just under $70,000.

20 of 25
Fiat 500 Abarth

Reliability issues aside, the Fiat 500 is a great little city car. It also happens to come in a performance trim that's an absolute blast around town. Yes, the Ford Fiesta ST is the better all-around car, but the Fiat 500 Abarth has an ace up its sleeve, and that's how it sounds. Say it sounds like half a Ferrari or like a Jaguar F-Type R for the masses, but man does it sound good. You can own for just over $10,000.

21 of 25
Ford Focus RS

The Ford Focus RS has a lot going for it in the performance department. It makes 350 horsepower, only comes with a six-speed manual transmission, and puts that power to the ground through a torque-vectoring all-wheel drive system (that also has a drift mode). Its exhaust was also designed to eliminate the central muffler, giving it "an angry, raspy, spitting sound that is unique to the RS." There's right now for under $30,000.

22 of 25
Honda S800

The Honda S800, Honda's follow-up to the S600, got a slightly larger engine that made 13 more horsepower and a 10-mph higher top speed. The fact that those increases measured up to a grand total of 70 horsepower and a top speed of 100 mph don't sound impressive compared to today's cars, but who cares? The S800 sounds wonderful all the way up to its 8000-rpm redline. Oh, and there was a racing version that could rev even higher.

23 of 25
Honda S2000

Carrying on the spirit of the S800, when the Honda S2000 was introduced in 1999, it had only slightly less horsepower than the Ford Mustang GT. Somehow, it managed to make that much power despite having half the number of cylinders and less than half the displacement. The S2000 was light, balanced, had an amazing manual transmission, and its 2.0-liter engine sounded better than any four-cylinder at the time. can be yours for just under $23,000.

24 of 25
Porsche 904 Carrera GTS

Porsche's successor to the 718 was the 904 Carrera GTS, a car that allowed the company to break back into sports car racing after withdrawing from Formula One. It had a timeless design and an advanced chassis for the time, but the best thing about it was probably its engine. It made 70 horsepower per liter, an amazing figure for the time. Plus it sounded far better than any four-cylinder engine has the right to.

25 of 25
Subaru WRX STI

There aren't many automakers that would decide an engine is good enough in 2004 and keep it around, mostly unchanged, for more than 10 years. Subaru did, leaving the EJ257 largely unchanged in the STI for the last three generations. Still, when you hear a WRX STI's exhaust note, it has the kind of distinctive sound that you won't confuse with any other car. is just over $20,000 on eBay right now.

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