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Stephen K. Hone said:
Hmmm! Instead of talking about the M5, how about asking all the M3 owners that suffered catastrophic engine failure how they like their brilliantly engineered cars?? Also just becuse someone gets 400hp, out of a 2 litre engine doesn't impress me. BTW You are seriously nit picking on the word "Brilliantly engineered" I was pointing out that in the case of the STS V -Series and the Z06 Corvette that they have engineering second to none.

I'm sure one of the American mags tested the regular corvette against a 911 and gave it to the Vette. Now regardless of what you think, the American motoring journalists are not accustomed to cutting Detroit some slack out of some misplaced loyalty. They are generally pretty hard on the home grown products that they percieve to be lacking. However they give credit where credit is due and in the case of the afformentioned GM products they are very complimentary.

Autoweek recently tested the Standard STS againt the equivalent 5 Series. The 5 series won but barely. In fact one of the four testers stated that when the difference in price was taken into consideration he would take the STS. Another tester didn't pick a winner, That is a pretty strong endorsement. They also envisaged a time in the not too distant future where Cadillac would possibly win the comparison.


Come back and talk to me when the Z06 is tested against the likes of the Porsche Turbo. Something tells me that the Porsche ain't gonna win this by a walkover.

BTW You asked how I know you are British in another post. I don't. I assumed you are. Am I wrong?
Well actually, yes, I am British. (English to be more precise). Can't say I've heard about the M3 engine problems? I did see a Sniffpetrol 'advert' on the Pontiac(?) GTO/Vauxhall Monaro/Holden that reported engine problems with the Series 3 engine or something? I suppose most manufacturers get their fair share of problems, sometimes...

And I'd still be driving a TVR if I was in the market for a sports car, because of its looks, its sound, and yes, because it's British. Jeremy Clarkson (a TV presenter over here) also raced a Cerbera against several other supercars (Porsche 911, Dodge Viper, Ferrari etc...) and the Cerbera won a straight line race by quite a margin, so performance isn't an issue with this car. I'd like to see a new TVR in a race with the Corvette, just out of curiosity.
 

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Blington said:
Well actually, yes, I am British. (English to be more precise). Can't say I've heard about the M3 engine problems? I did see a Sniffpetrol 'advert' on the Pontiac(?) GTO/Vauxhall Monaro/Holden that reported engine problems with the Series 3 engine or something? I suppose most manufacturers get their fair share of problems, sometimes...

And I'd still be driving a TVR if I was in the market for a sports car, because of its looks, its sound, and yes, because it's British. Jeremy Clarkson (a TV presenter over here) also raced a Cerbera against several other supercars (Porsche 911, Dodge Viper, Ferrari etc...) and the Cerbera won a straight line race by quite a margin, so performance isn't an issue with this car. I'd like to see a new TVR in a race with the Corvette, just out of curiosity.


I was pretty sure you were British, which is why I was suprised that you were being so coy about your origin. I went back and read a lot of your posts and noticed a slight anti-American bias in some of them. So that kind of gave me a hint. Also your profile has a post code which it states is not required when you sign up if you do not live in the UK. Now that could mean you are either a foreinger living in the UK, or an uneducated American who cannot follow simple instructions. ;)

The issue of M3 engines going Mount Etna was a real one. It just shows that before condemning American manufacturers for quality engineering, it would be prudent to see what skeletons might reside in the closets of some of the other car companies. I can also point you in the direction of friends who will refute the notion that the Toyota Camry is totally reliable and defect free. In a recent test of the NEW Toyota Avalon, the tester bemoaned the fact that quality had slipped when interior trim items started falling off.


As far as the TVR Corvette comparo goes I'd say the Corvette Z06 would equate it self very well. The TVR might win the outright accelaration and perhaps the top speed. However GM has to engineer it's car with the assumption that it needs to last more than for one track test. As much as I love TVR they do not have a great record in this dept. They also don't have the budget that GM and Co. have. Still Explain that to the customer that shelled out 70,000 pounds or so for the TVR when it has a melt down. BTW the Z06 has a top speed close to 200mph. My guess is that it could achieve it comfortably. The onsale price will be about 40,000 pounds over here.

Also you stated in another post that American cars hold about as much interest to you as a pencil. Fine "Horses for courses" I say. I happen to think that the U.S. is starting to turn out cars that have real flavour (Chrysler 300/ Dodge Magnum, New Mustang, V Series Cadillacs, Corvette etc) and are very desirable. Not to knock the Astra etc but come on what do you think the average punter wants to drive? An Astra or a Dodge Magnum?? I could be wrong on this but as I understand it Chrysler is now keeping Daimler Chrysler afloat. That is quite a turn around isn't it.
 

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Stephen K. Hone,

the Corvette is great, and there are also a lot of other great cars from the US.

But:

There is a world apart from your car magazines and it´s called reality.

And this reality looks in Germany (and in many parts of Europe) as follows:

NO ONE wants to buy an American car.

That´s the problem:

If anyone here decides to buy a sport car, then it won´t be a Corvette! The Corvette can be as powerful and fast as it wants - people will favour a Porsche. The reason is that a Corvette is ragardet as a pimp mobil.

You just cannot park it in front of the house!
 

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timekiller said:
The reason is that a Corvette is ragardet as a pimp mobil.

You just cannot park it in front of the house!
So are a lot of other cars; like Range Rovers and 3 Series Convertable BMW's. I don't think that is the No 1 reason that people do not buy American cars... If I liked a car so much that I wanted to buy one, I couldn't care less whether people thing it is a Pimp Mobile or not.

The only thing wrong with American cars is that they have an image problem for being badly built, unreliable, expensive and inefficient with their engine sizes relative to their power output. This is something that is slowly dying away, but mud sticks as a lot of Rover owners are finding out...
 

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Stephen K. Hone said:
I was pretty sure you were British, which is why I was suprised that you were being so coy about your origin. I went back and read a lot of your posts and noticed a slight anti-American bias in some of them. So that kind of gave me a hint. Also your profile has a post code which it states is not required when you sign up if you do not live in the UK. Now that could mean you are either a foreinger living in the UK, or an uneducated American who cannot follow simple instructions. ;)

The issue of M3 engines going Mount Etna was a real one. It just shows that before condemning American manufacturers for quality engineering, it would be prudent to see what skeletons might reside in the closets of some of the other car companies. I can also point you in the direction of friends who will refute the notion that the Toyota Camry is totally reliable and defect free. In a recent test of the NEW Toyota Avalon, the tester bemoaned the fact that quality had slipped when interior trim items started falling off.


As far as the TVR Corvette comparo goes I'd say the Corvette Z06 would equate it self very well. The TVR might win the outright accelaration and perhaps the top speed. However GM has to engineer it's car with the assumption that it needs to last more than for one track test. As much as I love TVR they do not have a great record in this dept. They also don't have the budget that GM and Co. have. Still Explain that to the customer that shelled out 70,000 pounds or so for the TVR when it has a melt down. BTW the Z06 has a top speed close to 200mph. My guess is that it could achieve it comfortably. The onsale price will be about 40,000 pounds over here.

Also you stated in another post that American cars hold about as much interest to you as a pencil. Fine "Horses for courses" I say. I happen to think that the U.S. is starting to turn out cars that have real flavour (Chrysler 300/ Dodge Magnum, New Mustang, V Series Cadillacs, Corvette etc) and are very desirable. Not to knock the Astra etc but come on what do you think the average punter wants to drive? An Astra or a Dodge Magnum?? I could be wrong on this but as I understand it Chrysler is now keeping Daimler Chrysler afloat. That is quite a turn around isn't it.
I wouldn't say I was completely anti-American. I like some models from America, like the Lincoln Town Car, and the Chrysler 300C is growing on me quite considerably. However, every time I think of American cars, I can't help but think of things like the Pontiac Aztec and the old AMC Pacer. There are also a heck of a lot of models out there from American manufacturers, with only a few that I find genuinely nice and desirable. Still, as you say, this may change in the future. As long as they stop producing cars that look like the Pontiac Aztec, for example, then that'll be a step in the right direction.
 

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Blington said:
I wouldn't say I was completely anti-American. I like some models from America, like the Lincoln Town Car, and the Chrysler 300C is growing on me quite considerably. However, every time I think of American cars, I can't help but think of things like the Pontiac Aztec and the old AMC Pacer. There are also a heck of a lot of models out there from American manufacturers, with only a few that I find genuinely nice and desirable. Still, as you say, this may change in the future. As long as they stop producing cars that look like the Pontiac Aztec, for example, then that'll be a step in the right direction.


You're getting desperate...AMC Pacer?? How long has that been out of production? Tell you what I'll see your Pacer with an Allegro Vanden Plas, And I'll raise your Aztek with a Morris Ital. The Pontiac Aztek was pretty awful but it was the execution not the idea's behind it. Certain features the car had were actually really quite good. However it looked like a bucket of s***!

The Buick Lucerne looks like it has what it takes to steals sales from the Toyota Avalon. Neither of these cars will raise your pulse, but then they aren't supposed to. As far as the Germans not buying Corvettes and American cars that is their loss. Unlike the UK and the USA the Germans support their 'homegrown' manufacturers big time. Granted most of the cars are wonderful but I think if they were less than wonderful they'd still buy German. The same applies to the French. BTW I can't wait for the day the Corvette Z06 gets tested against the Porsche Turbo. the Germans might be in for a shock. :)
 

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Stephen K. Hone said:
the Germans might be in for a shock. :)
Mh, no.

There were always cars cheaper and more powerful than Porsche but no one buyed them here.

It´s an image thing: A Corvette will always be regarded as a cheap gas-guzzling plastic bomber.

American cars will always be as bad qualitiy products.

No matter how good or bad they are.

I critizised the US-Managemant for making decitions only by numbers, not by the heart (which means culture etc.).

Now you make the same mistake, Stephen.

You look at your paper and see the numers - the Corvette might beat the Porsche so you conclude that it´s the "better" car and might sell well.

THIS AMERICAN WAY OF THINKING IS WRONG!

A car at this price must have a history, a soul. It must be elegant and so on. And there is Porsche - not Honda, Corvette or something else.
 

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Stephen K. Hone said:
You're getting desperate...AMC Pacer?? How long has that been out of production? Tell you what I'll see your Pacer with an Allegro Vanden Plas, And I'll raise your Aztek with a Morris Ital.
Went out of production a long time ago... like the Allegro and Ital. ;)
 

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timekiller said:
Mh, no.

There were always cars cheaper and more powerful than Porsche but no one buyed them here.

It´s an image thing: A Corvette will always be regarded as a cheap gas-guzzling plastic bomber.

American cars will always be as bad qualitiy products.

No matter how good or bad they are.

I critizised the US-Managemant for making decitions only by numbers, not by the heart (which means culture etc.).

Now you make the same mistake, Stephen.

You look at your paper and see the numers - the Corvette might beat the Porsche so you conclude that it´s the "better" car and might sell well.

THIS AMERICAN WAY OF THINKING IS WRONG!

A car at this price must have a history, a soul. It must be elegant and so on. And there is Porsche - not Honda, Corvette or something else.


Let me see. The Corvette has as much history as Porsche. The latest ones are not poorly built. A 911 is NOT elegant imho. The Corvette probably outsells the 911. As far as it being a cheap gas guzzling plastic bomber (are you in Germany?) that is merely your evaluation of the car. Have you even seen the latest Vette in person? My guess is No.
 

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Not all new American cars are junk, but many leave a lot to be desired. Many American cars are improving.

As I posted earlier, here is information on the 2006 Corvette Z06:

http://www.corvettemuseum.com/specs/2006/

Yes, it has only 71 hp per liter, but at least it won't self-destruct like the current B*W M3's engine does. See the following link:

http://members.roadfly.org/jason/m3engines.htm

Pushrod engines weigh less than OHC engines and have have less height. The Cadillac CTS-V has a 400 hp LS6 from the previous Z06 due to fact that Cadillac's 4.6 liter DOHC Northstar V-8 wouldn't fit because of its height.

The Corvette is backed by the factory in the American Le Mans Series. The previous Corvette went 1-2 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2001, 2002, and in 2004. I'm glad that the Aston Martin DB9 is backed in racing. One of the DBR9s won the 12 Hours of Sebring (GT1 class) for the first time since 1956. I wish more car makers were involved in racing.

Here is an article about the 2006 Corvette Z06's 500 hp LS7:

http://popularhotrodding.com/tech/0504phr_ls7/

The Corvette has a fiberglass body which weighs less and is more resistant to dents than steel.

Here is the rear of the new Z06 which has an aluminum chassis:



Here are two new Z06s which will go on sale this fall



Yes, the new Corvette has transverse leaf springs but, GM's main reason for using the transverse leaf springs, front and rear, on the C5 (applicable to the C6 as well) is, believe it or not, space.

To do a proper coil-over suspension, the shocks on the car would need to be mounted at a more vertical angle. This would require not only redesigning the lower control arm (no big deal) but also the upper shock tower (big deal.) Said redesigned shock tower would cut into the rear storage compartment (no big deal) and, up front, the engine compartment (REALLY big deal.)

The leafs allow the shocks to be mounted at a slightly more horizontal angle, thereby lowering the shock tower and not cutting into interior space.

As for advantages vs. disadvantages, there aren't many at all. Seperate coil-overs offer you independent wheel adjustments, allowing you to change the spring rate on the front right wheel without affecting the rate on the front left, if you desired. Overall, the 4 coils may actually be a tad bit lighter than the two big leafs. In reality, those are the only two advantages coil-overs have.

One should drive the new Z06 before writing it off.

The new 997 911 does not have dry-sump lubrication like the new Z06 and Porsche has yet to fix the RMS (rear main seal) leaks that have plagued some new 911s. This problem first came out on the 1997 Boxster. Check this link:

http://forums.rennlist.com/rennforums/showthread.php?t=179949

I hope the next-generation Corvette gets rid of the hatch and removeable roof. I'd like to see rear end styling (not retro like the new Mustang though) like this 1963 Corvette Z06



The 2006 Cadillac STS-V won't match the performance of the E55 AMG, but at least it is no longer front-wheel drive. The following is from motorsportscenter.com on the 2006 Cadillac STS-V:

"The supercharged Northstar V8: 4.4 liters, 440 hp, 430 lb-ft of torque - 90% of which is available from 2200 to 6000rpm, and VVT. This supercharger is worthy of special note - engineers were happy to tell us that this blower operates with some 30% less drag than the Ford GT's supercharger, and the intercooler has 50 cooling fins per inch length of the pipeline."




Here is some information on the new STS-V:

http://http://media.gm.com/events/autoshows/05naias/brands/cadillac/stsv%20overview.html



I'm glad that Pontiac will produce the 2006 Solsice by this summer. Some may say that it copies the BMW Z4, but the Solstice was first shown as a concept at the 2002 Detroit auto show in January 2002 which was months before the Z4 was shown to the public. The 2006 Pontiac Solstice will start at $20,000 which will be around $2,000 less than a Mazda MX-5. It will weigh more than an MX-5, but less than an Audi TT or a BMW Z4.

Here is the 2002 concept:

http://http://seriouswheels.com/top-Pontiac-Solstice-Roadster-Concept.htm

It was shown at last year's Detroit auto show in production form:

http://seriouswheels.com/top-2006-Pontiac-Solstice-Roadster.htm

I don't care for the taillights, but it looks decent.

Here is a picture of it:

http://fast-autos.net/features/05naias/pontiac/9.jpg



Panoz builds their Esperante by hand. Sure it doesn't have original styling, but it doesn't look too bad. It has an aluminum chassis and is backed by the factory in the American Le Mans Series. This picture of a GTLM is from testing for the 12 hours of Sebring.




check out:

http://panozauto.com/

Motor Trend tested an Esperante recently and said that next year's production Esperante will use some carbon fiber for its chassis which will boost rigidity and drop an estimated 100 pounds.

The 2005 Ford Mustang is far better than the previous one. Sure it doesn't have new styling and it still has a solid rear axle, but it looks far better than last year's Mustang and the rear axle has been improved and gives it much better handling and ride quality than last year's car. The new Mustang convertible's chassis is twice as rigid as last year's convertible. The Mustang GT's 4.6 liter 300 hp V-8 makes 40 more hp, 18 more lb-ft of torque, less emissions, and weighs 75 pounds less than last year's V-8 engine thanks to the aluminum block replacing the iron block. No cars available under $30,000 here in North America can match the performance, excitement, and seat four people with their stuff like a new Mustang GT.

Here is the new Mustang's chassis.



Here is a review of the new Mustang:

http://www.motorsportscenter.com/article_462.shtml

The new Mustang has already won two out of the first three Grand-Am Cup races this season.





Carroll Shelby and Ford joined forces back in 2003 to create some high-performance cars.

Here is the 2007 Ford Shelby Cobra GT500 that was shown at last month's New York auto show. The blue car on the left is a 1968 Shelby GT-500KR. Here are two pictures.

http://www.rage-board.com/files/gt500/ShelbyCobraGT500Show_40l.jpg

http://www.rsportscars.com/foto/02/cobragt50005_02_1024.jpg

Chryler's new 300 sedan is far better than the bland, fwd car it replaces.

Some say that the new Chrysler 300 is a Bentley rip-off. That is false.

Here is the 1998 Chrysler Chronos concept car

http://www.allpar.com/cars/concepts/chronos.html



Here is the new Chrysler 300C SRT8 (performance model)



Here is another picture:

http://automobilemag.com/photo_gallery/sedans/0502_chrysler_300c_srt8_05_1024.jpg

The new 300C SRT8 costs just under $40,000 and has forged aluminum wheels. Here is information on it.

http://www.fast-autos.net/chrysler/chryslersrt8.html

The grilles of both Chryslers (57 and 05) look similar. The new 300 is retro, but it looks better than the previous 300.

Notice the lines in the middle of the 57 and 05 Chrysler's hoods.

Also notice the rectangular taillights of both cars.

The front end styling of the new Chrysler 300 is very similar to the front end styling of the 1998 Chrysler Chronos concept except for the slant of the new one.

The Bentley Arnage, the current big Bentley sedan, came out as a 1998 model that used an underpowered (when compared to the old OHV turbocharged V-8) turbocharged BMW 4.4l V-8.

"Named for one of the most challenging corners on the Le Mans racing circuit, the Arnage was fittingly introduced at the French circuit in April of 1998."

- from autos.msn.com

The new Dodge Magnum has done more to help the station wagon in North America than any other station wagon ever sold here. Its styling reminds some of a hot rod with its 'chopped top.' The new new Dodge Magnum uses the same parts as the new Chrysler 300. Here are links to pictures of the new Dodge Magnum SRT8:

http://www.fast-autos.net/features/05naias/dodge/15.jpg

http://www.fast-autos.net/features/05naias/dodge/17.jpg

http://www.fast-autos.net/features/05naias/dodge/18.jpg
 

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Just for the record guys, I'm British, I live in the UK, and I drive a '92 Saturn SL2. It's my second Saturn and I think it's great!

My only complaints about it is the build quality of the dashboard/interior trim and the turning circle. Other than that I love it. It's reliable, does 35mpg, it is fairly quick, it handles well, has a great manual gearbox and nice meaty-feeling steering and it is usefully compact in size too.

I use it everyday, it has 131,000 miles on the clock and i enjoy taking it to American car shows in the summer time. It's an extremely rare car in the UK and gets a lot of attention.

I don't understand how anyone can say that American cars have no character. Sure they do! American cars have much more character than most European and Japanese cars IMO and they are often very different from anything else on the roads in the UK. Ask yourselves this: If American cars don't have character, why are there thousands of American car enthusiasts like me running them in the UK and enjoying a vibrant club and show scene?
 

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Saturn Simon said:
Just for the record guys, I'm British, I live in the UK, and I drive a '92 Saturn SL2. It's my second Saturn and I think it's great!

My only complaints about it is the build quality of the dashboard/interior trim and the turning circle. Other than that I love it. It's reliable, does 35mpg, it is fairly quick, it handles well, has a great manual gearbox and nice meaty-feeling steering and it is usefully compact in size too.

I use it everyday, it has 131,000 miles on the clock and i enjoy taking it to American car shows in the summer time. It's an extremely rare car in the UK and gets a lot of attention.

I don't understand how anyone can say that American cars have no character. Sure they do! American cars have much more character than most European and Japanese cars IMO and they are often very different from anything else on the roads in the UK. Ask yourselves this: If American cars don't have character, why are there thousands of American car enthusiasts like me running them in the UK and enjoying a vibrant club and show scene?
Because as you've said, it's in your opinion. And there's probably more to enthusiasts clubs and the like than the character of the cars. If there wasn't, then websites like this http://www.2003corolla.org/ probably wouldn't exist.
 

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Well I always liked American cars, especially the new Chrysler and Jeep models ! But some American cars are simply not suitable for European roads.

I am sorry for every brand that disappears from the road, but GM has a lot of overcapacity, so it is logical that they have to cut somewhere!
 
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