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best value sports car under 100k?

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by GQgeek, Jul 20, 2007.

  1. maomao1980

    maomao1980 Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Then again, if you are going to take the car to the track, you might as well get a cheap race car. Does a much, much better job on the track.

    I think the point is being able to drive your car in the environment where it excels the most, thus extracting the most from the ownership experience. Not everyone who drives on the track are aiming to achieve the faster than the other guy. Having a race car also means the need for a truck, trailor, parking space, amongst other smaller things.

    Though many people who started going to the track with their street cars will shift their attitude from having a good weekend to kicking butt on the race track, and thus eventually will step into the money pit that is race car ownership. I've stopped going to the track having moved to HK, but most of the friends who I started out with have ditched their street/track cars and track events for race cars and club racing.
     
  2. rpatrick

    rpatrick Member

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    I'm just making one small point DarkNWorns. No need to condescend, but I'll bite (again).

    Performance wise, we're talking about value for money, and not all-out performance, I'm not sure which cars other than Ferraris and 911s, whose company you believe the S2000 doesn't belong in. The Z4's? Boxster's? Lotus?

    I'm a fan of any exciting car or marque period, not just Honda. I haven't actually owned a Honda in a number of years now.
     
  3. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    What did you like more about the Z4, the open rear diff in corners or the feel of the electronic steering? I assume you are talking about street driving and not tracking.

    Its handling was predictable, it talked more to me, and did what I wanted it to do more than the M3. Whether that's due to its open diff, the electric steering or something else, I don't know, but I drive the car not its feature list. I haven't driven one on the track, but CCA instructors have said the same thing.

    In general, I'm not impressed with the E46 M3's handling. It has a bone-jarring suspension, but offers no better handling than my lightly modified and far more comfortable E46 328Ci (Bilstein sport shocks, H&R sport springs, UUC sways, GC RSMs, stock sport package alignment).

    He could drive a 100hp Yugo around a track faster than any of us, but I am not going to buy one.

    A Yugo has more deficiencies than just its engine. Let's compare apples to apples.

    --Andre
     
  4. LSeca

    LSeca Senior member

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    A Yugo has more deficiencies than just its engine. Let's compare apples to apples.

    --Andre


    Understand, I was just using a similiar example. People want to buy cars that perform beyond their driving skills, there is nothing wrong with that.

    Btw, an open diff does nothing good for a car's handling on a track. Imo, it is one of the strenghts of buying an M model (among other things) over the garden variety Z4. The electronic steering is something I don't think I could have. The "M" models of the Z4 are really good cars, I would like to have one.
     
  5. maomao1980

    maomao1980 Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Understand, I was just using a similiar example. People want to buy cars that perform beyond their driving skills, there is nothing wrong with that.

    Btw, an open diff does nothing good for a car's handling on a track. Imo, it is one of the strenghts of buying an M model (among other things) over the garden variety Z4. The electronic steering is something I don't think I could have. The "M" models of the Z4 are really good cars, I would like to have one.


    That may not be case in every situation. For example, Lotus engineers all prefer the Exige with traction control and no LSD for track driving, as opposed to with LSD and no traction control. I do think that in general, a LSD equipped car has certain advantages in certain situations, but how much it can help or hurt a car's performance depends greatly on how the rest of the car is set-up.
     
  6. LSeca

    LSeca Senior member

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    That may not be case in every situation. For example, Lotus engineers all prefer the Exige with traction control and no LSD for track driving, as opposed to with LSD and no traction control. I do think that in general, a LSD equipped car has certain advantages in certain situations, but how much it can help or hurt a car's performance depends greatly on how the rest of the car is set-up.


    True, but you are using an example of a mid engine car with a rear bias weight balance. The Exige has less difficulty putting power to the ground because of this, as do some Porsche without an LSD. The Z4 is a 50-50 weight bias, a limited slip helps it a lot in tracking situations.

    edit: I just looked up the Exige weight specs. 32/68% rear weight bias. Z4 is 50/50 I think.
     
  7. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    To be honest, when I think of Mercedes, sportscar doens't even register in my mind. Maybe the day they offer a low weight high performance 2 seater without an automatic, I would reconsider, as for now, they are nothing more than a boulevard crusier.\\


    What about the 300SL?
     
  8. DNW

    DNW Senior member

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    I'm just making one small point DarkNWorns. No need to condescend, but I'll bite (again).

    Performance wise, we're talking about value for money, and not all-out performance, I'm not sure which cars other than Ferraris and 911s, whose company you believe the S2000 doesn't belong in. The Z4's? Boxster's? Lotus?

    I'm a fan of any exciting car or marque period, not just Honda. I haven't actually owned a Honda in a number of years now.


    I actually don't dislike Honda. I just think there's better way to spend that money. The S2000 is a decent car, but you have to rev it to hell to get to the good stuff. It's suppose to compete with the 350Z, the RX-8, Z4, TT, Boxster, Elise, etc. But nobody actually takes it as a serious competitor to the German cars because the overall package does not compare well. As for value for the money, I'd rather take the 350Z over the S2000, for the reason stated.
     
  9. Southern-Nupe

    Southern-Nupe Senior member

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    What about the 300SL?
    I apologize, I mean modern day Mercedes, the 300's of the past were simply classics, but look at what the SL has evolved to a 4,000+ lb behemoth.
     
  10. Dragon

    Dragon Senior member

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    The same things that make a sports car fast at the track will also make the car very fun to drive on twisty canyon and mountain roads. A cheap race car typically doesn't have a license plate, so you can't play on the public roads with a cheap race car.

    I don`t think sports cars are THAT fun to drive on the track. They are not really made for the track anyway.

    I agree that a sports car would be fun to drive on a twisty mountain road, but you can enjoy just as much with a sports GT, or something relatively fast. The mountain road is not enough to enjoy the sports car to the fullest, and the track is too much for the sports car for the non-race car driver.

    The line these days is very distant.

    I agree that you should try to take your car to the track at least once.
     
  11. Dragon

    Dragon Senior member

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    I think the point is being able to drive your car in the environment where it excels the most, thus extracting the most from the ownership experience. Not everyone who drives on the track are aiming to achieve the faster than the other guy. Having a race car also means the need for a truck, trailor, parking space, amongst other smaller things.

    Though many people who started going to the track with their street cars will shift their attitude from having a good weekend to kicking butt on the race track, and thus eventually will step into the money pit that is race car ownership. I've stopped going to the track having moved to HK, but most of the friends who I started out with have ditched their street/track cars and track events for race cars and club racing.


    I would recommend karting over taking your own street car to the track.

    I agree that taking your own to the track at least once is a good experience. I don`t think it`s something you should do on a regular basis, because most street cars aren`t designed for the track, and you will probably get a better experience from doing it properly.
     
  12. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    I apologize, I mean modern day Mercedes, the 300's of the past were simply classics, but look at what the SL has evolved to a 4,000+ lb behemoth.

    Well, take into consideration that it needs to meet all modern crash test standards (airbags everywhere, etc...), has an insane amount of electronics and luxuries, including 18 (or more?) way power seats which are heated (and I think they offer air-conditioned seats as an options as well, no?), full retractable metal hardtop, a massive engine (5.4 liter V8 vs. the original 3.0 Liter straight-6), etc...

    And you end up with a very heavy car. I mean even the new Jaguar XK is about 1000 lbs lighter thanks to its aluminum body and chassis, plus other weight saving techniques such as a traditional soft-top.

    The modern SLR is a true sports car (albeit an insanely expensive one at that), so is the SLK55 AMG, because it is the only MB which can actually take a corner and is small / light enough to slip into the sports car category.

    Jon.
     
  13. Kai

    Kai Senior member

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    I don`t think sports cars are THAT fun to drive on the track. They are not really made for the track anyway.

    Then you are driving the wrong sports car.

    Try a Lotus Elise, Dodge Viper, or Corvette Z06. They are made for the track. If you don't think that these cars are "THAT" fun to drive on the track, then you either haven't driven them on a track, or you don't really like to drive sports cars at all.

    I agree that a sports car would be fun to drive on a twisty mountain road, but you can enjoy just as much with a sports GT, or something relatively fast. The mountain road is not enough to enjoy the sports car to the fullest, and the track is too much for the sports car for the non-race car driver.

    I guess it depends on your definition of "enjoyment." If comfortable cruising is what you are after, then a GT car is fine, but there really is no substitute for a true sports car when you are focused on driving.


    The line these days [between race cars and sports cars] is very distant.

    Not as distant as you might think. Saleen and Mosler make sports cars that are not much different than the cars that race in various racing series. Dodge's Competition Coupe shares its suspension and drivetrain (except for the dif) with the street version. There are tons of amateur racing series (SCCA T1 for example) that race relatively stock versions of street cars


    I agree that you should try to take your car to the track at least once.

    Once is not nearly enough. The more you do it, the more you learn, and the more fun it is. It's a challenging sport, and you can spend a lifetime learning and improving and having a really fun time doing it.
     
  14. Dragon

    Dragon Senior member

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    Then you are driving the wrong sports car.

    I agree

    I`ve driven a Viper for a couple of laps. I really don`t have any desire to drive any of those cars on the track though.

    I guess it does.

    I am not talking about comfortable cruising though. I am saying that on regular streets (mountain or whatever), a sports car or a GT car is not going to make much of a difference. You can`t drive to the full potential of the cars on the streets anyway.

    Yes, I agree with you. In some rare models, the gap between street and race cars is minimal. Aside for the 1% of sports cars that you are talking about, the gap is big though.

    I agree. I don`t think taking a street car to the track that often is good though. It`s not so good for the driver or the car.
     
  15. Southern-Nupe

    Southern-Nupe Senior member

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    Well, take into consideration that it needs to meet all modern crash test standards (airbags everywhere, etc...), has an insane amount of electronics and luxuries, including 18 (or more?) way power seats which are heated (and I think they offer air-conditioned seats as an options as well, no?), full retractable metal hardtop, a massive engine (5.4 liter V8 vs. the original 3.0 Liter straight-6), etc...

    And you end up with a very heavy car. I mean even the new Jaguar XK is about 1000 lbs lighter thanks to its aluminum body and chassis, plus other weight saving techniques such as a traditional soft-top.

    The modern SLR is a true sports car (albeit an insanely expensive one at that), so is the SLK55 AMG, because it is the only MB which can actually take a corner and is small / light enough to slip into the sports car category.

    Jon.

    They actually classify the SLR as a Super GT, but I see where your coming from, I'd probably also consider it a sportscar. The catch with the SLR, is the fact it was co-designed with McClaren, and even then they felt it could've been better. I was thinking about the SLK's classification, it be would considered it a sportscar based on the true definition, I just have to wonder why the more powerful AMG version is only optioned with an automatic, if I was driving a small powerful convertible, my first option would be a 5 or 6 speed, auto just seem so wrong for true sportscars.
     
  16. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    I don`t think taking a street car to the track that often is good though. It`s not so good for the driver or the car.

    A track is one of the best environments to learn how to drive better. Given proper instruction and a good attitude, I don't see how a driver can't dramatically improve their awareness and driving skills with a track driving school in a street car.

    My car's also spent about 5 percent of its total mileage of 103K miles on racetracks, and the only thing that's done to the car is to accelerate its normal wear items (brakes, tires).

    --Andre
     
  17. Dragon

    Dragon Senior member

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    A track is one of the best environments to learn how to drive better. Given proper instruction and a good attitude, I don't see how a driver can't dramatically improve their awareness and driving skills with a track driving school in a street car.

    My car's also spent about 5 percent of its total mileage of 103K miles on racetracks, and the only thing that's done to the car is to accelerate its normal wear items (brakes, tires).

    --Andre


    Of course, I agree that a track is the best place to learn how to drive. I just think that a proper race car is better than a street car on the track, that`s all.
     
  18. Pariolino

    Pariolino Senior member

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    For some of us the size of a sportscar can be a restriction. Some of these are beauties though.
     
  19. MathiasW

    MathiasW New Member

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    Nissan GT-R Brembo track pack. 0-60 in 2.7 seconds.
     
  20. culverwood

    culverwood Senior member

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    I know this is a dead thread but something in it must have lodged in my mind as I went out an bought a 1979 928 last year

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I like the unadorned look and thankfully someone else has spent a ton of money on it.
     

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