With so many cars available in the game now, the fastest car in GTA Online is a tricky one to assess. Is it the fastest car in a short drag race? Around a standard circuit with corners? With the highest top speed? Going in reverse then pulling a J-turn and accelerating up to 60mph?
There are a lot of variables that it's possible to measure speed over, but for the purposes of this article I'm going to focus on two of the most useful—lap times and top speed. Listed below will be the five fastest cars around a regular circuit in GTA online (where braking, cornering and acceleration all play a part in getting a quick lap time), followed by the five fastest cars on a long straight piece of road (when all cars are travelling at their maximum speed).
Looking at the best cars across these two metrics will then allow us to infer what the best overall car might be for GTA 5. The following results come from the very detailed and scientific car testing I carried out on this YouTube channel. Check out these lap times and top speeds docs for an overview of my methodology.
This article has also been updated in September 2018 to be correct as of the After Hours DLC, and only focuses on the raceable Supercars class. The only notable exceptions from doing this are the Rocket Voltic and Vigilante, and the Pariah from the Sports class. If you're interested in the performance of those or future cars, vehicles from other classes, or what's below sixth place in Supers check out these videos covering lap times and top speeds.
This article has also been updated in September 2018 to be correct as of the After Hours DLC, and only focuses on the raceable Supercars class. The only notable exceptions from doing this are the Rocket Voltic, Scramjet, Vigilante, and the Pariah from the Sports class. If you're interested in the performance of those or future cars, vehicles from other classes, or what's below sixth place in Supers check out these videos covering lap times and top speeds.
6th: Pegassi Zentorno—1:00.960
5th: Pegassi Tempesta—1:00.803
4th: Overflod Autarch—0:59.960
3rd: Ocelot XA-21—0:59.927
2nd: Annis RE-7B—0:59.727
1st: Dewbauchee Vagner—0:59.194
6th: Dewbauchee Vagner—126.75 mph
6th: Progen Itali GTB Custom—127 mph
5th: Truffade Nero Custom—127.25 mph
4th: Grotti X80 Proto—127.5 mph
3rd: Överflöd Entity XXR (128 mph)
2nd: Bravado Banshee 900R—131 mph
1st: Pfister 811—132.5 mph
From the above you now know the cars you want if you have a corner-heavy race and a long top speed race. But having the best in one situation doesn't necessarily mean you'll have the best in the other. For example, the Tempesta is pretty low down in the overall top speed list for supercars (26th) despite being in the top five for lap times. In addition, the 811, Banshee 900R and Entity XXR are nowhere to be seen when it comes to the overall lap times list for supercars (26th, 33rd and 31st respectively) despite being in the top 3 for top speeds.
So what if you just wanted one car that would suit you in every situation? A jack of all trades car that you can buy and use to do well in most situations. Well, the car that’s best suited is actually our number 1 car for lap times: the Dewbauchee Vagner.
When it comes to lap time there was almost a 1 second per lap difference between the Tempesta in 5th and the Autarch in 4th. Around a track that is only a minute long, that’s significant. Especially when the difference in lap time between the Vagner in 1st and Autarch in 4th is also almost 1 second per lap. So let’s take a closer look at the “big four” and see why the Vagner is so dominant.
None of the top cars for lap time appear in the top five for top speed, so where do the others in the “big four” fall? The Vagner actually leads the way here with a top speed of 126.75 mph, putting it 3 places behind the Nero Custom in 8th overall. Next up is the Autarch at 125.5 mph in 13th place in class. The RE-7B is next, 19th in class at 123.5mph, followed by the XA-21 with 122.5mph in 21st in class. Whilst the Autarch is somewhat close, the Vagner has them all beat for both lap times and top speed.
One of the main differences these cars have which will actually affect you in a racing situation is weight. Weight in GTA has no effect on performance but is instead programmed to be used in collisions. A car that weighs more will fare better in a crash with a car that weighs less. The big standout here is the XA-21 which weighs 1,400kg. Compared to the 1,300kg of the Autarch the advantage doesn’t seem that great, but it’s a lot better than the 1,000kg weight of the Vagner and 880kg weight of the lightest-in-class RE-7B. If your opponent attempts to take you out of a race he’ll have a much harder job of doing it if you’re driving an XA-21 rather than an RE-7B.
Some people are better drivers than others, but everyone can benefit from a car being easy to drive from the get go. Even top drivers will have more consistently good results in an easier to drive car. In this respect the Vagner is actually the worst of the top four, with the Autarch (often referred to as the “baby Vagner”) offering the most stable drive. The XA-21 is a close second though, and for novice drivers would probably win out due to its impressive acceleration and less reliance on needing to extract the maximum in terms of cornering speeds which is where the other three cars get their lap times from.
Cost is an important factor. The Vagner is nearly 0.7 seconds quicker than the Autarch, RE-7B and XA-21 around a lap and has a higher top speed, but if it’s significantly more expensive it might be worth going for a cheaper option. However once again the Vagner outclasses its rivals, setting you back $1,535,000 in comparison to the $1,955,000 for the Autarch, $2,375,000 for the XA-21, and $2,475,000 for the RE-7B. All of these values are the base cost of the vehicles not including performance and visual upgrades, but those are the same for these cars anyway. None of these cars are cheap but the Vagner certainly offers much better value for your money.
Overall Winner: Dewbauchee Vagner
The Vagner always stood out as a fantastic supercar with its dominance around a track, even compared to the others in the “big four”, and when looked at under the microscope it further extends its place at the top. Whilst it may have a few more issues than others in a contact race, and it will take some practice to master, it’s not possible to look beyond the Vagner’s better price, top speed, and lap time when compared to the other top cars. In the end the Vagner should be a top priority on your shopping list, since no other car can come close to dethroning it for overall performance.