It hasn’t seemed noteworthy that a new car can achieve more than 100 mph for nearly a century. That speed – the same as the exit velocity of a human sneeze’s, um, residue – surely blew minds back in 1905, when Brit Arthur MacDonald became the first person to pilot a car to 100 mph. That his record, such as it was, fell less than an hour later is a testament to how attainable 100 mph really is. So surely every modern vehicle for sale today can crack 100 mph, right? Wrong, as proved by the following list of cars, trucks, and vans, most of which we’ve painstakingly put through our testing regimen. Click through to see the vehicles for which the century mark is an exotic dream:

Car and Driver

Chevrolet Colorado Diesel: 99 mph

When you opt for Chevrolet’s mid-size Colorado pickup in diesel-powered guise, you won’t be going 100 mph. That’s whether you get the standard version or the substantially more butch-looking ZR2 off-road model. The ZR2, with its knobby tires, lifted suspension, and barely-there front bumper, is the slower of the two; its engine computer puts the kibosh on high-speed antics at just 98 mph. Skip the ZR2 kit while keeping the diesel (the gas-powered V-6 models are faster), and you’ll buy yourself one additional measly mile per hour on the top end.

Car and Driver

Ram ProMaster: 99 mph

For a large, heavy box, the Ram ProMaster actually is quite quick. We whipped a V-6–powered example to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds. Yet all of that frontal area eventually holds the 280-hp engine’s might at bay, and drag keeps the ProMaster’s top speed just under 100 mph.

Michael Simari – Car and Driver

Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 2500HD/3500HD: 98 mph

The question isn’t whether a full-size heavy-duty pickup truck can crest 100 mph – it’s whether or not you want it to. Today’s HD rigs, particularly those equipped with powerful diesel engines, veritably slam into their electronic speed governors when you keep the throttle pinned when accelerating onto the highway. That applies to the Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and 3500 HD models (and their mechanically similar GMC Sierra counterparts). They could go faster, but General Motors keeps their terminal velocities in check to keep tires (and sanity) from disintegrating.

Chris Doane Automotive – Car and Driver

Ford F-series Super Duty: 98 mph

As is the case with General Motors’ heavy-duty pickups, the Ford Super Duty lineup is electronically capped to just under 100 mph. Interestingly, Ram allows its beastliest trucks to just barely exceed 100 mph, hence their absence from this list.

Michael Simari – Car and Driver

Ford Transit: 97 mph

“Rapid Transit” is not a nickname that we’d pin on Ford’s full-size Transit van, at least not based on its top speed. The vans are surprisingly quick, however, when equipped with their optional 310-hp twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V-6. A 2017 passenger model we recently tested hit 60 mph in 7.6 seconds; a lighter cargo model with the same engine did the deed in 6.8 seconds.

Alex Conley – Car and Driver

Chevrolet Bolt EV: 93 mph

As far as non-Tesla-branded electric cars go, the Chevrolet Bolt EV is an admirable performer. It accelerates to 60 mph in a quick 6.5 seconds, pleasing with its rush of instantaneous off-the-line torque. It also steers and handles like a normal car and offers an EPA-rated 238-mile driving range per charge. Alas, its lone dynamic low point is its top speed.

Michael Simari – Car and Driver

BMW i3 EV: 92 mph

When it comes to electric vehicles, the faster you go in one, the more quickly the battery drains. It’s pretty much the same concept as driving fast in an internal-combustion vehicle, only EVs such as the BMW i3 lack multi-speed transmissions that can lower the revolutions of fossil-fueled engines and thus their energy consumption. That means in order to go faster, the electric motor must spin faster, in direct relation to road speed and drawing more power. It’s no wonder most automakers selling non-performance-focused electrics limit their cars’ top speeds to modest velocities. The slowest version of the BMW i3 is the basic electric-only model, hitting just 91 mph, while the i3 with the available gasoline-fueled range extender has a 1-mph-higher top speed. The spicier i3S introduced for 2018 did exactly 100 mph in our hands when equipped with the range extender.

Manufacturer – Car and Driver

Kia Soul EV: 92 mph

An all-out speed contest between the Kia Soul EV and the Chevrolet Bolt EV is not something we’d pay to see, not least because the outcome is fairly predictable. The Chevy is 1 mph faster than the electrified Soul, and it also accelerates far more quickly, reaching 60 mph 3.2 seconds sooner. But, hey, at least Kia has those hamsters.

Car and Driver

Nissan Leaf: 92 mph

As we’ve established, most mainstream EVs not assembled and sold by Tesla aren’t speed machines. The second-generation Leaf sees its electronically governed top speed drop 1 mph relative to its less powerful predecessor with its smaller lithium-ion battery pack, placing its terminal velocity on par with the Kia Soul EV’s.

Car and Driver

Nissan NV200: 90 mph (claimed)

It’s not too surprising that the Nissan NV200 isn’t capable of 100 mph. Just look at it! Those dinky tires, the one-box shape – little about the cargo van suggests speed. The 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and continuously variable automatic transmission under its stubby hood don’t even speak speed’s language.

Car and Driver

Fiat 500e: 88 mph

Surely there is some poetic irony in the electric 500e’s 88-mph top speed. No doubt Fiat wishes it could gun things to 88 like Marty McFly, travel back in time, and forget building the loss-leader 500e altogether. (It created the car purely to appease California’s zero-emissions EV mandates, and it was hardly a cost-effective venture.) As the late Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne once put it, “I hope you don’t buy [the 500e], because every time I sell one it costs me $14,000.” Opting for the wee electric hatchback, on the other hand, costs you the ability to hit triple-digit speeds.

Car and Driver

Ford Focus Electric: 85 mph

Not only is the Focus Electric slow on the top end, it isn’t particularly quick off the line, either. It took a 2016 model we tested 9.9 seconds to reach 60 mph. Hey, at least the electric Ford gained a bigger battery for more driving range for the 2017 model year.

Car and Driver

Volkswagen e-Golf: 85 mph

We have to give VW credit for fitting the battery-electric version of its Golf hatchback with a 100-mph speedometer. That’s only optimistic by 15 mph. The Nissan NV200 shown elsewhere on this list boasts a 120-mph speedo, in spite of its 90-mph top speed; ditto the conceptually similar Ford Focus Electric, which also uses a 120-mph speedometer yet shares this VW’s top speed.

Chris Doane Automotive – Car and Driver

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter: 85 mph (claimed)

The rear-wheel-drive Mercedes Sprinter van has a top speed of 85 mph, according to its maker. Opt for the lifted, four-wheel-drive Sprinter 4×4 and you’ll be able to hit only 84 mph.

Car and Driver

Smart Fortwo Electric Drive: 81 mph (claimed)

Fun fact: The Smart Fortwo Electric Drive (available as both a coupe and a cabriolet) isn’t even capable of achieving the speed limit on certain Texas highways that are now marked at 85 mph. The dweeby little EV – Smart no longer sells internal-combustion Fortwo minicars in the States, only electrics – would barely cut it at the average “flow of traffic” speed in our home state of Michigan. On the upside, what need would you have for cruise control when you can simply plant your right foot and sit on the limiter all day?

Car and Driver

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