( Motor Authority )- The end of the performance V8 engine is approaching. Of course, there will also be the odd enthusiast after the smooth revving and torqeuy nature of a big V8 but their numbers are dwindling fast. A new study has found that installation rates for V8 engines, the favored choice of powerplant for performance fans in the U.S. for more than five decades, is dropping and that new car buyers are markedly less interested in V8 power.
Data compiled in the Edmunds study reveal overall demand for V8s has dropped from 19% years ago to just 15% today. The drop is even more significant for SUV buyers, whose interest in V8s has dropped from 24% in 2006 to just under 18% at the end of last year. Demand for V8 power in large cars also slid from 36% to 29% in the same time frame, and the same story could be told for two-seaters. The only segment where demand for V8s has actually increased is the fullsize pickup market, with demand rising from 55% in 2006 to a current level of 59%.
With fuel prices now more expensive than ever and the push for green vehicles constantly being posted across the media, the allure of big V8s understandably is fading. America's carmakers have seen the writing on the wall and for once are acting fast. GM has already canceled its future luxury V8 program and Chrysler has stated that its legendary HEMI doesn't have a place in its future powertrain lineup.