The term 'supercar' was first used in the 1920s, but it wasn't until the mid 1950s that high performance sports cars began to appear.
Supercars as we know them arrived in the mid 1960s with the motorsport derived Ford GT, born out of Ferrari's refusal to become part of Ford.
But perhaps the first genuine supercar was Lamborghini's mid-engined Miura, designed from the outset as a road car.
The fuel crisis of the early 1970s almost killed off the supercar before it had really began.
Thankfully we were treated instead to the birth of the definitive supercar of a generation, the Lamborghini Countach.
The 70s also saw the first mass market turbo road cars, notably the BMW 2002 and classic Porsche 911 Turbo.
The Financial boom of the 1980s saw supercar values soar, leading in turn to the birth of the low volume, super exclusive hypercar market.
Starting with Ferrari's Group B inspired 288 GTO, the decade was rounded off with the legendary rivalry between Porsche's technology led 959 and Ferrari's F40 road racer, the first 200mph road car.
This is also when the Nurburgring first came to our attention, thanks to the legendary exploits of the RUF CTR 'Yellowbird'.
The 90s began with a very significant car, the Honda NSX. This showed for the first time that supercars could be civilised, easy to drive and reliable.
Hypercar development continued through the decade with notable cars from Jaguar, the re-emergance of the Bugatti name and probably the world's first super saloon the 175mph Lotus Carlton.
However, there is one car that outclasses them all, setting new levels of exclusivity and performance (240mph in 1994), remaining many peoples pick as the greatest supercar of all time, McLaren's legendary F1.
The 2000s saw two differing approaches to performance. Track focused companies such as Ariel, Radical and Ultima taking the light weight route, while the likes of Ferrari and Porsche, joined by newcomers Pagani and Koenigsegg, went for all out power.
They were all trumped in 2005, with the arrival of the awesome Bugatti Veyron. Blowing away even the F1's figures from just a decade ago, the 1000bhp Veyron was the first car to break 250mph and hit 0-60mph in just 2.5 sec.
This decade also saw the shape of things to come, with the introduction of the world's first electric sports car, the Venturi Fetish, closely followed by Tesla's Roadster.
This is also when we see the emergence of the now ubiquitous super SUV, headed by Porsche's Cayenne. Thought of as a bold move at the time, even Bentley, Maserati and Lamborghini are now in on the act.
We are now in a 'golden era' for supercars. Never before have their been so many high performance models from so many manufacturers.
The 2010s have seen the birth of a new breed of supercar with hybrid or fully electric engines.
The so called 'Holy Trinity' of the McLaren P1, Porsche 918 Spyder and Ferrari LaFerrari hybrid hypercars set new levels of performance with relatively green credentials.
There are still plenty of 'old-school' supercars around though, with the likes of the Koenigesgg One:1, Henessey Venom GT and Bugatti's 1500hp Chiron vying for title of the world's fastest car.
However, the future of performance cars is without doubt electricity. Rimac and Tesla have shown us that the instant torque of a 4WD electric motor is more than a match for even the most powerful internal combustion engines.
Aerodynamics and lightweight construction also play a big part, with Ford's 2017 GT, Porsche's 911 GT2 RS and Lamborghini's Huracan Performante all utilising state of the art aero to achieve previously unimaginable track times.
But even before the end of the decade, Mercedes and Aston Martin have again moved the goalposts with the introduction of their F1 inspired race cars for the road. Huge power levels and race car dynamics promise to put all that came before them in the shade.
Here's to 50 years of the supercar. Long may it continue!