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Pros and Cons of American sporties

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In which aspect do you think American sportcars have the advantage vs. European sportcars and viceversa??

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thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

American cars have a taste all their own, the booming deep exhausts, tire twisting torque, rugged beasts, dollar for dollar, no one else gives you more power, and usually there is a lot of room to tune an american car. Hanlding on american cars is nearly always inferior, in both numbers and feel to euro cars. american build quality is below that of eurocars, and eurocars nearly always have vastly superior interiors and fit and finish. Let's lay it down like this, European cars are more expensive, but have more of "the total package"

Soupy
Geschrieben

American sports cars are all about what's underneath the hood, whereas European cars seem to find a good balance between engine and suspension. European sports cars are flashy, yet quiet, while American sports cars range from very flashy to rather subtle. Take for instance, the Dodge Viper, or the late seventies Trans Ams, with large bright decals all over the place, and the fox body Mustang, which, at least in my opinion, resembles the Escort of the same era. European sports cars are usually very aggressive, yet graceful, such as the BMW Z series, or any Porsche. I personally prefer American cars just because, in most cases, they're cheaper to buy and maintain, and they tend to be easier to work on.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

i agree, american cars may not always be very classy, or classic looking. We have huge engines under the hood because the engines don't really work that well for their size. It is cheaper to make a big crude engine than a small and sophisticated one. That explains the big engines and the low prices. European cars seem to be better put together. A corvette handles pretty well, but I take your point for sure.

samt
Geschrieben

I love the refinement of the European cars. However, consider one advantage of American cars. An American car with big displacement it is relatively simple to enhance the vehicle and make it a true supercar, whereas European cars have smaller engines and have been refined to such a state that there is little that can be refined further. You can make a mustang, corvette or viper have 100HP per liter with a little work. Maybe this is my shortcoming but you can never have too much power. I also find it appealing that a mustang with a little work can crush a viper. One can not say that for a porsche or BMW.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

alright. my weakly little 318i. I have full intentions by summers end to have a dynoed 180hp to 1.8L - at 6,250rpms - and still get better than 25mph on average. That is room to tune. That is also naturally aspirated. I know its possible because I've seen it done. The only way a stang, vette, or viper gets close to 100hp/l is with some sort of forced aspiration. I think there is plenty of room in european cars.

An M5 for example, the very example of a totally tuned up sports sedan - no more power left right - 80hp/l stock at 6,600rpms.

Steve dinan redid the intake, the exhaust, the computer, the runners, headers, and valve-timing, and got 76 more horsepower, that makes a grand total of 470hp @ 7,200rpms - from a 4.9L V8 - no forced aspiration required.

More impressive yet is that it runs 4.1 second 0-60, vs 4.1 on Z06 and 4.0 on viper, and beats them both in the quarter. This is again - a 4,000lb sedan.

That is room to tune.

makara
Geschrieben
The only way a stang, vette, or viper gets close to 100hp/l is with some sort of forced aspiration. I think there is plenty of room in european cars.

.

Who cares what the hp/l is of an engine? Does it really matter or is it just an arguement that guys who have cars that can't make the power or torque use to justify their tiny engines? I'd rather have a huge torque curve, lot's of power, and a lower compression engine that is not stressed than some peaky, torqueless, engine that is overstressed (but smaller!!)

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

the torque curve on say, the 3.2L I6 in the BMW M3 E46 is damn close to untouchable, torque comes on low, is nearly flat, peaking at 4,500 - halfway throught the revs, and never looses it. That engine is good for over 100hp/l. I'll tell you why you would care, bigger engines are heavier. Heavier disturbs handling. A corvette just isn't as flingable as say, an ///M Roadster, mostly because it has the mass of a large V8 sitting up front, doesn't matter if it is 50:50 because you have mass forward of the front axle, which has negative mechanical advantage when the car turns.

BMW's 3.2 is high compression, it isn't peaky, and is generally a hell of an engine. I fail to see a drawback to it.

LateNightCable
Geschrieben

American cars have traditionally been built for American roads, long, with a minimum of tight twists. " Cruising " capability has always been important. They are built on sound, simple priciples no matter how out dated. They are traditionally very rugged and simple to work on. They are also rather large because Americans love to carry all their junk with them wherever they go.

European cars are more somber, lacking the colorful bravado inherent in American cars. The Europeans are all about details, precise and tight tolerances, also the roads can be quite different in those countries ans so they are built to specialize in different tasks.

That said, I am very happy that I am an all around car lover and can see and appreciate the value of many cars no matter where they came from. :P

makara
Geschrieben
the torque curve on say, the 3.2L I6 in the BMW M3 E46 is damn close to untouchable, torque comes on low, is nearly flat, peaking at 4,500 - halfway throught the revs, and never looses it. That engine is good for over 100hp/l. I'll tell you why you would care, bigger engines are heavier. Heavier disturbs handling. A corvette just isn't as flingable as say, an ///M Roadster, mostly because it has the mass of a large V8 sitting up front, doesn't matter if it is 50:50 because you have mass forward of the front axle, which has negative mechanical advantage when the car turns.

BMW's 3.2 is high compression, it isn't peaky, and is generally a hell of an engine. I fail to see a drawback to it.

So what do you think of a midship engine placement such as the viper's where the engine sits behind the front axle?

GIR
Geschrieben
So what do you think of a midship engine placement such as the viper's where the engine sits behind the front axle?

Why would anybody want todo a thing like that? You'd be better of moving the engine all the way to the rear.

First of all you'd need a very strong structure to carry the engine because the weight of the engine now sits more towards the middle of the car. This would make the car heavier then it needs to be.

Second the car would be suceptable to sudden oversteer or even loss of control, specialy when you're on a bumpy road.

The engine of the Viper is already heavy enough as it is and with the added inability because of these structurale flaws it's going to be very hard to drive.

makara
Geschrieben

Why would anybody want todo a thing like that? You'd be better of moving the engine all the way to the rear.

First of all you'd need a very strong structure to carry the engine because the weight of the engine now sits more towards the middle of the car. This would make the car heavier then it needs to be.

Second the car would be suceptable to sudden oversteer or even loss of control, specialy when you're on a bumpy road.

The engine of the Viper is already heavy enough as it is and with the added inability because of these structurale flaws it's going to be very hard to drive.

Why would someone want to do it? To reduce polar inertia during a turn and to place more weight on the rear tires.

A midengine car carries it's weight towards the middle of the car too. Are ferrari, and lamborghini flawed in their design? Ferrari actually found the driving experience of a midship design to be more rewarding than a rear-midengine design which explains it's choice to move the engine to the front on the maranello.

GIR
Geschrieben
Why would someone want to do it? To reduce polar inertia during a turn and to place more weight on the rear tires.

Again moving the engine to the rear midship instead of the front midship, where it has a profound impact on the handling, would be a way better solution. You seem to confirm my statements, I thank you for that.

A midengine car carries it's weight towards the middle of the car too. Are ferrari, and lamborghini flawed in their design? Ferrari actually found the driving experience of a midship design to be more rewarding than a rear-midengine design which explains it's choice to move the engine to the front on the maranello.

The only reason why those cars have their engines in that place is because of the added length of the transmission and differential. If they could I'm sure they would place the engine as far back as possible.

The Ferrari lineup is 2 fold. First you have the 550 and 575 which are for people would like to own a Ferrari which they can drive to work every once in a while. It doesn't need all the noise, vibrating and power regular Ferrari's have. On the other hand there are the 355 and 360 which do have their engine's to the back and are made for racing, they are in every sence road racers. Because of this the 550/575 have a more tame and subtle appearence, which requires the engine to be at the front.

Any way you look at it a read midship engine is better then a front midship engine.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

actually, ferrari moved the engine upfront to curb incredible maintanance issues. They found they could make a much more economical, practical, predictable and user freindly car by moving the engine up front.

But since front engine is superior, maybe you should go to maranello and remind them of that, since the forgot and moved back to rear midship for Enzo, maybe you should tell McLaren they screwed up making F1, tell Lambo that they don't know the first thing about car making, maybe you should go tell koenigsegg that his CC would hanlde better if it were front engine, i mean hell, it is only pulling 1.15g on the skidpad, no front engine production car has ever matched that, but clearly handling is better with the engine up front because a viper does it that way and a viper is perfect right?

The issue with how the viper mounts the engine is the fact that they failed to balance the mass on the rear subframe. You see, general motors in making C5 knew that part of the LS1 sat above the front suspension, and thus had mass forward, so to compensate, the rear transaxle places weight rear of the rear axle, similar to that in the front. The result is balance and predictability. Viper is not well balanced, so even though the numbers place it close to 50:50, where the inirtia is in the body is not well balanced, and will act upon the car.

SRT Mike
Geschrieben
actually, ferrari moved the engine upfront to curb incredible maintanance issues. They found they could make a much more economical, practical, predictable and user freindly car by moving the engine up front.

Do you work at Ferrari? If not, how do you know the thoughts that went into the decision to put the engine in the middle?

The 12 cylinder cars are more expensive to maintain then the 8 cylinders, and the 8's have mid-mounted engines. When did Ferrari start worrying about maintenance costs? If front engines were worse designs but cheaper to maintain, why did they leave the entry-level Ferrari as mid-engine? Will the new 420 be front engine? What do you think?

But since front engine is superior, maybe you should go to maranello and remind them of that, since the forgot and moved back to rear midship for Enzo, maybe you should tell McLaren they screwed up making F1, tell Lambo that they don't know the first thing about car making, maybe you should go tell koenigsegg that his CC would hanlde better if it were front engine, i mean hell, it is only pulling 1.15g on the skidpad, no front engine production car has ever matched that, but clearly handling is better with the engine up front because a viper does it that way and a viper is perfect right?

Who said the Viper was perfect? Point is you claim the Viper is unbalanced and ill handling due to it's front engine. Well, it outhandles the mid-engine Modena and the mid-engine TR's. How about this - the DESIGN of the car is more important than whether the engine is in front or back.

You have no idea what you're talking about. One of the big reasons GM moved the transmission to the rear was packaging - so they could stuff the engine further back and not have a huge driveline "hump" like they did on the C4's. And how come the far-superior C5 with it's wonderful "balance" gets it's ass handed to it by the Viper in any sort of handling test? Don't come back with "Z06" this or that, the C5 had a rear-mounted transmisison since 97. And how come my 3 series BMW has a much better FEEL than any other car I've driven? With it's front engine, front tranny, RWD, it SHOULD feel like crap, no?

This whole argument about "efficiency" of engines is just retarded. It's not like european engines are better because they have a higher hp/L number... the bottom line is that torque is generally a function of bore and stroke. Smaller engine = smaller torque. Anyone that has driven a Viper knows *exactly* why people like big engines. Show me a euro car with a smaller engine that is in the same ballpark in price that performs like a Viper? Oh, there isn't one, I forgot. What's close? M5... with it's V8. Porsche TT - with it's twin turbos. Ferrari 575, with it's V12. Toyota Supra, with it's twin turbos. Hmmm... I dunno, it doesn't look like these super-efficient euro cars can keep up, even when they put big engines in!

What does the F1, Enzo, Zonda, Murcielago, and 575M have for engines again? Wait, they must be small high-revving 6 cylinders right?? right?

GIR
Geschrieben
Who said the Viper was perfect? Point is you claim the Viper is unbalanced and ill handling due to it's front engine. Well, it outhandles the mid-engine Modena and the mid-engine TR's. How about this - the DESIGN of the car is more important than whether the engine is in front or back.

You claim this and you still fail to see why the Viper is a bad car? I applaud you.

You have no idea what you're talking about. One of the big reasons GM moved the transmission to the rear was packaging - so they could stuff the engine further back and not have a huge driveline "hump" like they did on the C4's. And how come the far-superior C5 with it's wonderful "balance" gets it's ass handed to it by the Viper in any sort of handling test? Don't come back with "Z06" this or that, the C5 had a rear-mounted transmisison since 97. And how come my 3 series BMW has a much better FEEL than any other car I've driven? With it's front engine, front tranny, RWD, it SHOULD feel like crap, no?

If you had read the thread then you would've seen that we applaud BMW's for their power and handeling abbilities. With servotronic and DSC the BMW's are able to out maneuver any car out there. Is the Viper designed by BMW? No! Does it have all the BMW goodies under it? No!

This whole argument about "efficiency" of engines is just retarded. It's not like european engines are better because they have a higher hp/L number... the bottom line is that torque is generally a function of bore and stroke. Smaller engine = smaller torque. Anyone that has driven a Viper knows *exactly* why people like big engines. Show me a euro car with a smaller engine that is in the same ballpark in price that performs like a Viper? Oh, there isn't one, I forgot. What's close? M5... with it's V8. Porsche TT - with it's twin turbos. Ferrari 575, with it's V12. Toyota Supra, with it's twin turbos. Hmmm... I dunno, it doesn't look like these super-efficient euro cars can keep up, even when they put big engines in!

What does the F1, Enzo, Zonda, Murcielago, and 575M have for engines again? Wait, they must be small high-revving 6 cylinders right?? right?

Well I can see you fit the old "There is no replacement for displacement" group. Now listen, the old way of thought for bigger engines = faster is gone, now it's all about who the best tuner is. If you look at the torque curve of a BMW, Porsche or Mercedes you just know that if they ever decided to produce an engine of Viper size they would beat the crap out it, the McLaren F1 proves this oh so well.

Today smaller engines do not mean smaller torque. Just look at the CL65 which has 1001 nm of torque already available at 2000rpms, is the Viper able todo this with it's much bigger engine? Okay the CL65 is a little bit extreme but if you look at what other manufacturers can do, for instance the M3 or M5 which may rev upto 8000rpm but have their torque peak already available at 4000-5000rpm which leaves the whole 4000-8000 rpm band available for fun. Same goes for Ferrari's and Lambo's. They might ev up pretty high but have their torque peak available at low rpm leaving a huge band to play with. Funny thing is even though all those cars rev up high, their torque peak is available before the Viper, even funnier that they have more torque then the Viper and here I was thinking a bigger engines = more torque.

Big bored heavy engines have a too much impact on the handeling, just look at the Veyron, which is the european Viper btw, the car maybe fast but it also handles like a ton of bricks.

Okay, let's call up the bigboys then. How about the McLaren F1, KoenigsEgg, SLR, CL65 or Zonda? They all have smaller engines then the Viper, they respectively have V8's and V12's, smaller bore's but are able to beat the Viper on every point.

The F1 doesn't have a V6, even more so for the Enzo, Zonda and Murcie. They all have V8's and V12's.

What I think is funny is that you Viper lovers start calling people stupid and say they have no idea what they are talking about when the person is pushing their face into the facts. You might continue to ignore these facts but I would advise you to wake up and smell the roses. The Viper is not the badass car you thought it was.

The only reason why other manufacturers do not produce engines of that size is because they do not have the need. Why would they? Their current engines perform better then the Viper and comply with emission and consumption standards all over the world. Funny thing is that the Viper only complies with emission regulations of just 50 states while the European cars comply with emission regulations all over the world and can still outrun the Viper.

cmill
Geschrieben

Some of the arguments are so grossly stated that they are silly. ex. smaller european engines are more effecient than large, big bore american engines. First, in many cases a lower octane gas can be used in an american car and it have no adverse effect on performance, as compared to european cars. Second, american engines are large because we proud americans Like them that way. If american engines are so ineffecient, then why are so european car makers using them....the mustang cobra engine, and the gm ecotec engine. actually, I would have to say that smaller european engines are less effecient than american ones, because many of them use forced induction to match what we do with cubes. Besides the viper, our engines are really not that big, they have more bore and stroke, but in actual size measurements ours match up pretty well. Don't get me wrong I perfectly like some european cars, when I turn 30 yrs old, I am going to get a bmw m3.....but I would love to also have a z06.

GIR
Geschrieben

I do agree with you on some points but you've got a few things wrong. First the US isn't as strict when it comes to refinment of fuel, while here in Europe refinaries have to meet very strict standards. The defined fuel of almost all Mercs, Audi's and BMW's is Euro95 unleaded which is a very low octane fuel. Lambo's, Ferrari's, Jags, etc... all require Euro98 unleaded (AKA Super unleaded) which is much richer in octance but if you look at the octance levels in the default fuel for the Viper it's higher then Euro98.

You also have to keep in mind that European cars have to meet much stricter emission and consumption regulations.

European engines have turbo's because of the sentiment here in Europe. While you guyz feel like bigger engines = faster we seem to think turbo's = faster. Ofcourse both are wrong but still if you want to sell you have to produce what the buyer wants, most people don't know as much about cars as you and I do. I have seen alot of people here in Europe claim that the Compressor or Supercharger engine's Merc makes are better then the normal engines BMW makes, ofcourse this comes from the mouths of ignorant people.

Finally we are not bashing on all American cars, ofcourse there are some cars that are able to compete with the European cars, what we are bashing is the Viper.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

i'll agree to that, I am a huge fan of the mustang cobra, i like the corvette, i can't argue with the performance and refinement of Z06, I disagree with chevrolet going out of their way to make Z06 vibrate like a motel bed at idle, but that is what sells cars here.

It is a difference in taste. It just bugs me when people go, "bigger is better, viper is biggest, so it is perfect"

i love the logic "viper does it, so it must be good"

maybe you should think logically about what makes a good car, and then look to find cars that match what you just thought of, instead of buy something that looks cool and bend logic to fit it.

bleh
Geschrieben
Some of the arguments are so grossly stated that they are silly. ex. smaller european engines are more effecient than large, big bore american engines.
my example and i quote
First, in many cases a lower octane gas can be used in an american car and it have no adverse effect on performance, as compared to european cars.
do you know what 2 way knock sensors are? get with the times
Second, american engines are large because we proud americans Like them that way.
speak for your self! large cars are simply part of the american mentality, which some people to not conform to. myself included in that i prefer a smaller car to deal with traffic.
If american engines are so ineffecient, then why are so european car makers using them....the mustang cobra engine, and the gm ecotec engine.
who does this?
actually, I would have to say that smaller european engines are less effecient than american ones
you know nothing about artificial displacement which some mustangs tend to have..............
thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

i agree totally with bleh

actually, no european manufacturer uses the mustang cobra engine. Sorry. Actually, the supercharger ford used is the same Eaton model used on the pre '01 Jaguar XJR and XKRs, so I guess you could say that was out of the european parts bin.

Koenigsegg bought rights to make the Ford SVT 4.6L DOHC V8, that's true.

Ford's supercharged 32V 4.6L = 390hp

Koenigsegg' Supercharged 32V 4.6L = 655hp

They both run on the same gas. I dare you to put 87 octane into mustang Cobra.

That there is a great example of europeans doing it better, hell, ford's supercharged 5.4L is only making 500, still 155hp short. Viper only makes 500 on 8.3L, I am an american - and I don't find a big engine making small power that attractive.

By the way my foolish freind, do you happen to know who debuted the 2.2L Ecotec engine? Opel. I am pretty sure they are very much german. It later came to the US. I think we are using their engines.

For instance, the 3.9L that goes into Thunderbird and Lincoln LS is actually a Jaguar AJ-V8 with a slightly shorter stroke. The first model year of Thuderbirds were built in coventry, england by Jaguar. Mostly because their engine and transmission are purely JAGUAR. They are, by the way, not american.

The 3.2L engine used in the Cadillac CTS is built in germany by Opel, the engine is shipped here for final assembly. It is a german engine, by design and construction.

The 2004 Saturn Vue is going to replace it's european built 3.0L (yes, made by Opel in germany) with a Honda 3.5L. Yes, GM is buying engines from honda now. The intake plenum has the H on it. Open your GM, see the honda H!

The chrysler crossfire is built in Baden Wurtenberg germany, it has a daimler 3.2L V6, a Daimler 5spd tranny, in fact, it is all daimler.

The underpinnings to the new chrysler pacifica are straight off the E-Class.

Starting for 2004, Dodge is phasing out their own line of 4 cylenders for a line designed and built in korea by hyundai which chrysler is now buying.

The new "high-feature" GM V6s (which aren't that revolutionary) were primarily developed by Opel in germany, who worked with GM powertrain division in the US (who basically only worked production fisability) and SAAB in sweden who designed the engine control systems. SAAB is also handling the turbocharging.

The upcoming Pontiac Solstice is based on the british Vauxhall VX.

I am pretty sure the European manufacturer are selling their fine engineering, not buying it.

cmill
Geschrieben

Polar fox...First of all I am not your friend, nor am I foolish. The word you should have used was ignorant (brush up on your english gramar). Second there are european/ itallian car makers using american engines....Qvale (italy), noble (british), and detomaso (italy) all use or used ford engines. Next...go to www.gm.com...click on the innovations tab...next click on the powertrains tab...now click on the ecotec icon...you will now see that the ecotec engine was designed by gm (with help), it is clearly a gm engine that is being used in other car makers vehicles.

GIR
Geschrieben
Polar fox...First of all I am not your friend, nor am I foolish. The word you should have used was ignorant (brush up on your english gramar).

Where do these dwarfs come from? It's like we have a cockroach investation, they lay one egg and suddenly there's millions of them!

Anywayz good for you, you can spell. Doesn't make you any smarter then the rest of the world, just qualifies you into the lewser category. Have a good time getting the typo's out this post, I'm sure nobody could give a rats arse.

Second there are european/ itallian car makers using american engines....Qvale (italy), noble (british), and detomaso (italy) all use or used ford engines.

How nice, lets get the real facts shall we. Qvale is not Italian. It is a American company which was started in 1947, back then they used to import european sports cars into the US. Their HQ is in California. For some reason they decided to buy a factory in Italy and produce a car there, not a big hit as you can see.

I hope you don't mean the Noble M12 GTO, a car which is partialy funded by Ford.

DaTomaso? I don't know where you get that one from becuase DeTomaso is still an independent producer and all their engines are produced inhouse.

You missed a few other producers who do use Ford engines. Not becuase they are better then other engines, not because they have superior engineering but because they are cheaper.

Just look at F1:

Ford engine: 3 million

Ferrari engine: 9 million

Mercedes engine: 12 million

BMW engine: 20 million

If you wanted to produce a car on a low budget, which one would you choose?

Next...go to www.gm.com...click on the innovations tab...next click on the powertrains tab...now click on the ecotec icon...you will now see that the ecotec engine was designed by gm (with help), it is clearly a gm engine that is being used in other car makers vehicles.

Funny cause EcoTec engines were available on Opel cars way before GM ever claimed it was developed by them. And in case you don't get it, EcoTec was developed by Opel, not GM. After the buy out I guess they could say EcoTec was developed by them but it's not.

After the buy out GM sent the engine over to Vauxhaul for further development.

thepolarfoxqx
Geschrieben

GM owns Opel, Opel developed the Ecotec engine. Sure GM claims they developed it, they own the people who made it. It was NOT the GM in detroit who designed it. Opel made it, GM saw that is was extremely lightweight, potent, and that it fit the need they had.

Sure, Detomaso has used ford engines in the past. Detomaso is one company, and there is a reason they are considdered a tier below Ferrari and Lambo. They used for engines because they were cheap, easy to tune, and available. They were rugged and simple. It was a whole hell of a lot easier than making an engine from scratch.

My grammar huh? Maybe I'm not anal about grammar when I'm talking cars. I'll watch the details of my language at a business meeting, but i'm here to talk cars. You'll excuse me if I don't proofread all of my posts. :roll:

and when you said grammar, I believe the word you were looking for was vocabulary.

and ignorant people seem to be crawling out of the woodwork.

makara
Geschrieben

and ignorant people seem to be crawling out of the woodwork.

When you say ignorant people, would you include the person who said a car runs out of steam 1100 rpm before it's hp peak?

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