CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (2023)

Whenever there’s a discussion about the power of a car, the horsepower and engine displacement are mentioned. The simplest explanation is that horsepower represents the power output of the engine, while displacement represents the size of the engine.

The two are naturally tied together, but how do you calculate the horsepower from cubic centimeters? Our CC to HP calculator will do the math for you:

The calculator will give you the average ratio between horsepower and engine size but there are several other factors that contribute to the final horsepower count. I’ll cover these in more detail, so stick around if you want a more detailed HP to CC breakdown.

Naturally Aspirated Engines

Naturally aspirated engines differ from forced induction engines in the fact that they do not have turbochargers or superchargers.

This means that the air naturally flows through the intake manifold and mixes with the right amount of fuel. Naturally aspirated engines can be powered by diesel or gasoline fuel.

The power output of a naturally aspirated engine is between 25 and 70 horsepower per liter or 14 to 34 cubic centimeters per horsepower.

Over time, the technology used to design engines has improved significantly, and now even the smaller engines can get a lot of power out despite the lack of a turbo. The catch is that the peak HP is usually very close to the engine’s redline and that the smaller-sized engines produce very little torque.

Some of the high-performance cars can squeeze more than 100 horsepower per liter which is impressive power output.

ModelEngine TypeDisplacementPower
Ford F-150V85.4 L310 hp
Toyota GR86Boxer-42.0 L228 hp
Jeep CherokeeInline-42.4 L180 hp
Ram 1500V85.7 L395 hp
Chevrolet SparkInline-41.4 L98 hp

Turbocharged Engines

Turbochargers have practically become standard equipment for all modern vehicles due to the increasing environmental restrictions on the manufacturers, and increasing taxes and fuel prices for the drivers.

The way a turbocharger works is relatively simple, yet genius – it uses the high-pressure exhaust gases to spool up the turbine, which then pushes more air into the combustion chamber. More air means more oxygen, and when combined with more fuel, it results in a significant power boost.

Rather than using just the natural air resistance of the car as it moves to draw in the air, the turbocharger also pushes the air into the engine – hence the forced induction term.

CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (1)

Turbochargers are a great way to increase the power of almost any engine, but there is a drawback to them – turbo lag.


When you step on the gas in a turbo car, there is a period in the low RPM where there’s a significant lack of power. It’s only when the RPM reaches a point where there’s enough exhaust flow to drive the turbocharger does it engage. This is most evident when driving at low RPM or between gear shifts.

The bigger the turbo – the greater the power output, but also the turbo lag. The solution – install two turbochargers of different sizes. The smaller turbo has little to no lag, so it’s enough to get the RPM up for the bigger turbo to kick in.

With turbocharged engines, the sky is the limit in terms of cc to horsepower rating. One of the most notable examples is the Nissan Skyline GTR R32, which can be modified to output 1000 horsepower out of its 2568 cc engine.

ModelEngine TypeDisplacementPower
VW JettaI-41.5 L158 hp
Audi A4I-42.0 L220 hp
Ford MustangI-42.3 L310 hp
Ford F-150V63.0 L250 hp
BMW M5V84.4 L600 hp

Supercharged Engines

Superchargers are another forced induction system. Unlike the turbo, which uses exhaust gases to compress air, the supercharger takes the power from the crankshaft.

This means that the faster the engine is going, the more power the supercharger is generating in a linear fashion, just like a naturally aspirated engine. A supercharger can add up to 40% more power to the engine, or even more if properly tuned.

ModelEngine TypeDisplacementPower
Chevrolet Camaro ZL1V86.2 L650 hp
Dodge Charger HellcatV86.2 L797 hp
Jaguar F-PaceV63.0 L375 hp
Jaguar XF SV63.0 L380 hp
Jeep Grand Cherokee TrackhawkV86.2 L707 hp

What Is Horsepower?

Horsepower (hp) is a scientific unit of measure, most commonly used for engines and motors. There are actually three measures of power we use for cars – hp, ps, and kW.

The mechanical horsepower is the measure we use the most, with the abbreviation hp. One metric horsepower equates to 746 watts.

The metric horsepower (PS, cv, hk, pk, ks, ch) is the easiest to explain. It represents the power needed to lift 75kg of weight up by 1 meter, in 1 second – the power equal to 735 watts.

Horsepower is a derivate of the watt, one of the core units of measurement that also represents power. It’s used for electric motors but also as a representation of the power internal combustion engines produce, due to the possible confusion between imperial and metric horsepower.

When you’re looking at the vehicle’s specs, you might see all three of these measures. If a car has 100 hp, it also has 101 ps or 74 kW.

Knowing these ratios isn’t necessarily important, but it might help you get an image of how much power the car produces if you only get one of the three units of measure.

CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (2)

Horsepower @ RPM

When we say a car has 100 horsepower, we can somewhat gauge how that is going to reflect on the performance, but that figure alone isn’t enough to accurately judge how a car performs.

(Video) Horsepower vs Torque - A Simple Explanation

For example, you’ll find small-sized gas engines that have 150 horsepower @ 5700 RPM. This means that the peak performance is achieved only when the rev gauge hits the 5700 mark. Until that point, it’s steadily rising, and beyond it, the output flattens.

Knowing what RPM the engine has to reach to deliver peak performance is very useful even in everyday use. If you find yourself in a position to overtake, you’ll have to downshift or kick down to get into gear that will raise the RPM, and then you can accelerate past the vehicle while reaching the peak RPM and not shifting.

Turbocharged diesel engines are particularly good when it comes to overtaking, as their peak performance is at a relatively low RPM. Combined with the power boost of the turbo, they’ll quickly accelerate to the “overtaking speeds”.

What Is Torque?

Torque is the second measure of power used for vehicles, and one that is much harder to explain than horsepower.

The definition in physics and mechanics, torque represents the rotational equivalent of linear force. It is also called momentum, the turning effect, or the rotational force. It is measured in pound-feet (lb-ft) or in Newton-meters (Nm).

Because torque is a measure of rotational force, it means that it’s responsible for how much power is put through the wheels onto the ground. We could go as far as to say that torque dictates the speed at which a car accelerates.

Most cars are balanced so they have an adequate amount of horsepower and torque. Some extreme examples are the Honda S200, which has a lot of power but not a lot of torque, and the Mercedes C63 AMG Black which has soo much torque it cannot accelerate at full throttle due to tire spin.

The vehicle’s specification will always show peak torque at a certain RPM, but that will not affect you as much as the peak horsepower. It’s important to note that diesel engines generate more torque than gasoline engines by design.

CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (3)

Horsepower Output By Engine Size

There are more internal combustion engines than just those used in cars – they’re also found in chainsaws, lawnmowers, motorcycles, and so on. To give you the most info on CC to HP conversion, we’ll cover the general size-to-power ratio for all kinds of engines.

RC Vehicles

The engines installed in RC vehicles are the smallest you can get – they have only 10 to 20 cubic centimeters of displacement. Still, out of such a small engine, the engineers have managed to draw up to 3 horsepower at high RPM – between 7,000 and 10,000.


Gas-powered chainsaws are a powerful tool in the arsenal of every farmer or lumberjack. The 30cc engines fitted inside chainsaws have the perfect balance of power and weight, offering up to 4 horsepower at 5,000 RPM while being light enough to carry and maneuver around.


The lawnmower engine size depends primarily on the type, as the push mowers are much smaller than the riding mowers.

(Video) Automotive Basics: What Does Your Engine Size ACTUALLY MEAN?

The push mowers have engines sized between 125cc and 150cc and can deliver up to 5 horsepower, which is plenty for the short lawn grass.

The riding mowers have engines sized between 500cc and 750cc and can deliver up to 26 horsepower. The added power is needed to both carry the operator, and deal with the thicker and taller grass.


CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (4)

Go-Karts are built with a large variety of engines, but the most common sizes are 150cc and 200cc with a power output of 5-15 horsepower. This is plenty for the tight-corner racing on the Go-Kart track and the light body of the vehicle.


Snowblowers are a must-have machine in the colder areas of the world and they need to be powerful enough to propel heavy and sometimes tightly packed snow away.Snowblowers achieve their purpose quite well thanks to the 200cc engine that outputs up to 9 horsepower.

Outboard Motor

Outboard motors are attached to the river and sea boats alike and are available in a very wide range of sizes – from just 50cc to over 3000cc. Because of that, there’s no way to accurately gauge the power of the outboard engine, as it can range from just a couple of horsepower to over 100hp.


Snowmobiles are incredibly powerful for engine size and can unleash up to 130hp from 600cc and up to 175hp out of 850cc engines. The most powerful snowmobiles are fitted with 1000cc engines that deliver over 200 horsepower!


Like the snowmobile, jetskis are incredibly powerful for their size and need to be for the task of moving through the water at high speed. With the 1,000cc – 1,800cc engine, jetskis can deliver up to 150 horsepower.


How much is 1cc in hp?

CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (5)

Engine displacement doesn’t convert directly into power, but we can estimate that 1 cubic centimeter roughly represents 0.15 horsepower.

What is 150cc in hp?

The answer depends on the engine type – whether it’s two-stroke or four-stroke, as well as its application. The 150cc engine is too small for a car, and two-stroke engines are generally not allowed anymore due to high emissions, which means that the 150cc engine delivers 10-15hp.

How much hp is 600cc?

A motorcycle with a 600cc engine can output between 55 and 130 horsepower depending on the setup.

Are hp and cc the same thing?

No, the two units of measure have completely different meanings. Horsepower is used as a measure of mechanical power, while the cubic centimeter is a measure of volume.

(Video) Engine Torque / BHP / RPM | Horsepower vs Torque | Hindi

How many HP is 200cc?

Depending on the application, a 200cc engine can deliver between 5 and 15 horsepower.

How much horsepower is 250cc?

A 250cc engine can output between 10 and 18 horsepower.

How many cc is an 8hp engine?

CC To HP Calculator: Instantly Calculate Cubic Centimeters To Horse Power - Car, Truck And Vehicle How To Guides - Vehicle Freak (6)

An engine that generates 8 horsepower should have around 200cc.

How many cc is a 5 HP Briggs & Stratton engine?

The 5-horsepower Briggs and Stratton motors have a displacement of 206cc.

How much HP does a 450 dirt bike have?

The power output depends on the brand of the bike. For example, the Honda CRF450R delivers 55.2 horsepower out of the 449cc liquid-cooled engine.


Even though there’s no clear correlation between engine displacement and horsepower we’ve done our best to give you a fairly accurate calculator and all of the information you need to estimate the power based on the type of engine and how it’s aspirated.

By knowing that 1L equates to 1000cc and what hp, PS, and kW signify, you’re ready to calculate and estimate the power of any internal-combustion engine available!

Here are other related topics worth the read:

What Is the Average Horsepower of a Car?

How Much Torque and Horsepower Does a Toyota Tacoma Have?


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