Originally Posted by acecow
OK, we're really failing to understand each other here. I drive a 335xi (in Southern California, nonetheless. if you ever see a 335xi with stick shift, you know it's me) and I posted its dyno chart above. The HP curve is "kind of" constant from around 5 to around 6.75 thousand RPM. I can feel it in the engine response. My point is, with a nicely tuned car, the speeds at which you get the most out of the engine are broader than you posted. Do understand, that I generally agree with you here, but I think you are over-exaggerating a little.
EDIT: Not my car's power chart. Just a reference for a turbo 3-series.
^^acecow, I think what you are feeling is torque, not hp. unless you routinely track your car on an oval you are not driving with hp, you are driving with torque. virtually every car will have a peak hp near the redline, unless you are running a restrictor plate or something else that will flatten the curve at revs above a certain level. a torque curve that peaks early and stays flat through the range is ideal and that shape will produce a steep, upward sloping hp curve. when the torque begins to drop, the hp continues to rise but less steeply. A car with a flat hp curve would generally imply that torque peaks very early and declines steadily and significantly with revs (think basic calculus and note how the inflection points are the same for both curves on just about every dyno chart you see). although used synonymously torque and hp are not the same, they are related.
but lets back up a second...this thread is like comparing wines on the basis of varietal or stereos on the basis of watts per channel
. it ignores fundamental drivers of a car's handling...weight, distribution, size and compound of tires, suspension, traction control (bane of my existence), and drivetrain (e.g. rwd/awd/fwd/4wd).
500hp in an s600 is still boring, in a porsche turbo it is fun, yet 450hp in an f40 is scary as hell
(and really, really fun