Our Two Cents: What Will Be The Last V-8 Standing?


Our last installment of Our Two Cents included a comment about the ever changing timeline for the V-8 engine’s demise. It seemed unlikely for decades, but serious undercurrents are changing our tune these days. The transition into electric motors capable of frenzied, four-figure horsepower numbers with the docile, street-able nature of a lazy, big block Cadillac means that V-8s are no longer the only game in town.

With that, there’s only one question left to ask: What will be the last V-8 standing? That’s the question I posed to members of the Hagerty Media staff, and the answers might surprise you.

American Trucks*

Brandan Gillogly

*As you might recall, the 2025 Ram now has a turbo-six. But Chevy and Ford haven’t given up on the V-8 yet.

“I think that American trucks will be the last vehicles offered with a V-8. Think about it, that engine is so solidly ingrained in the market that I don’t think you could offer a full-size truck without one, even if better options exist. I know I’d have a tough time not selecting my beloved V-8 if I were buying a new truck.” – Greg Ingold

“I think it’ll be the Chevy Pickup because of that glorious small block.” – Larry Webster

Mustang (and Corvette)

ICONS Camissa Mustang Dark Horse

“I think it’ll be a focused performance product—I don’t see pickups carrying the day here, especially with solutions like Dodge’s turbo six. I have a soft spot for Cadillacs and would love for it to be the 5V Blackwing, but I think it’ll be the Mustang that is the final holdout.” – Eddy Eckart

“I believe that as long as Jim Farley is running Ford, which could be a long time, his on-the-record support of the V-8 will carry it through. A Mustang? A Bronco Raptor? (Over $90,000 is awfully dear for a 3.0-liter V-6.) A super-heavy-duty Transit van? An F-150 Raptor R with the 5.2-liter V-8?

All that said, I think the V-8 in the Corvette stands about the same chance for longevity. Weaning its loyal customers off eight cylinders will be tough, no matter how much power a V-6 can pump out.” – Steven Cole Smith

Like, Literally?

GMT400 rusty fender
Kyle Smith

“Whichever one gets regular oil changes and doesn’t spend winters in Northern Michigan (or other salty states).” – Ben Woodworth

Mercedes Flagships

“This may seem insane, but Mercedes won’t abandon clients loyal to Maybach Limos, and G-class SUVs. They’d love to replace any engine with more batteries and bigger electric motors for their clients in established economies, but the Mercedes V-8 is a global sensation that an EV powertrain cannot replace. The keyword there is global.

Petrol power will still be needed in many countries, especially if one particular “Oil Sustainability Program” does what it promises. If so, the warlord/dictator/elite classes in third-world countries will pay a premium for a flagship V-8 engine in a flagship Mercedes vehicle. Who knows, that could justify keeping V-8s for selected AMG products, too!” – Sajeev Mehta


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    Hard to predict.

    If things remain as they are GM will hold the last mass produced factory installed V8. GM is developing a new V8 now. The Vette and trucks will keep the V8 as long as they can. Even if they are restricted to larger trucks.

    Ford will hold on but they need money for other programs and it may cut into the V8 program. Time will tell. Chrysler killed the Hemi.

    As for any other odd V8 there may be a few but they will be limited to exotic models at a price.

    I do expect Ford and GM to continue for a number of years the crate motor programs. Replacement engines may see a major growth.

    Not just because people want ice but it may be cheaper to replace the engine vs new EV in some cases.

    I agree that GM will field the last one – an LS-derivative or whatever the next Gen is going to be. Will it be in a pick-up or a Corvette? That’s a really great question, and I wouldn’t bet against either one. Hmmm, maybe the last V-8 will be featured in the Corvette Pick-up! (Don’t laugh, sillier things have happened…)

    I am a big proponent of the “Tiny V8” that is, if you call 4.8L (293ci) tiny. Point is, people don’t really need 500 HP. And what if gas gets really expensive? Take your 300 HP from your physically small and light 293, which will still sound like Nascar but at the same time get good fuel mileage.
    GM built the LR4 for years. Short stroke motor, will rev way up. Small and economical. Simple design.
    It is similar with the electric car guys too! (Are they barking mad?) They are building 500, 600, 800HP electric cars and complaining about their poor range, heheh… Guys c’mon. What about a ~150HP electric car? Wouldn’t that one have a greater range?
    Anyway I will go on record as predicting a shortage of electricity in the future, with nowhere near enough to run electric vehicles! Simple, reliable tiny V8 will always be the zenith of the automotive motor. And carbon has always been, and remains, good for the plants.

    I anticipate that there will be a reset in the EV world for a few particular reasons

    (1) The folks who can fit an EV into their lifestyle already probably have one at this point
    (2) There are already some clear areas where EVs just aren’t going to work (cold climates, emergency vehicles, military applications, etc… etc.
    (3) I suspect that while most of the mid-range offerings are more efficient than ICE, some of these high-end 12,000 pound goliaths that are out there will probably end up consuming more dinosaurs than their ICE counterparts – especially when using fast-chargers

    You can already see the signs. I wouldn’t write the obituary of the V8 just yet. This isn’t the first time in history folks tried

    The trouble is the Government just doubled down and one election will not fix things. This may take some time and that will only cost automakers more.

    We have a real mess.

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