Last post on Dec 08, 2007 at 5:35 PM
You are in the Coupes & Convertibles
What is this discussion about?
Porsche 911, Chevrolet Corvette, Ferrari F430, Lotus Exige, Lotus Elise, Coupe
May 16, 2005 (4:42 am)
As a former Honda S2000 owner, I am compelled to defend the car perhaps more than I should. My neighbor's Porsche that you can "drive cross country and love every minute of it." was in the shop for serious repairs at least 2-3 times a year. It also left them with the top stuck in the down position in two downpours. They had a particularly bad model year (2000), but our friends with a 2003 911 TT have not had a fualtless ownership experience either. Having had a completely hassle free experience with the S2000 is perhaps my biggest obstacle to now purchasing a 911S or Boxster S.
I also must question what a "sports car" is supposed to be. The S2000 was not a Porsche 928 GT or my former Supra TT on the highway by any means. But the S2000 was far, far more of a sports car than those behemouth by comparisons ever were. I am dangerously close to turning 50 and I recall about 30-35 years ago the MGB's, Alfa Romeos and other roadsters that were the "real" sports cars of their generation. The 2,800 lb S2000 is a luxury cruiser by comparison. I put several 300+ mile highway trips on the odometer without any ill effect on me. I don't drag race at stoplights, but I can tell you there wasn't a single on ramp on the Washingon Beltway that I couldn't negotiate and reach illegal speeds long before merging. I also put much of my 18,000 miles on the car driving the streets of Washington DC and I still have all of my fillings in place. I'm not challenging any Corvette owners to an arm wresling match, but if the S2000 is too harsh for you, you've gotten soft in your old age. Thankfully, I haven't (yet).
I do accept that there are some among us who want to be able to stomp the gas pedal and be thrown back in their seat with instantaneous torque. Some even prefer not to be bothered with a stick shift and take their so-called sports cars with automatics. Thank God it's a free country, because if that was the national definition of "sports car" I'd have to move.
P.S. Wonder what my adversaries think of the Lotus Elise?
#176 of 532 I'd love a go kart ...
May 16, 2005 (7:40 am)
The Elise looks great at the track, but at 6' 3", 195# I've been told not to even try getting into one. If I got in I may need the jaws of life to get back out. Most articles note that even at 6 foot it can be a tight fit before you consider a helmet. One of the major factors that got me into a Corvette was that I fit comfortably and I don't seem to be a poster child for the leading edge of the Baby Boom with my condition. Three volleyball leagues a week seem to keep some of the excess off.
As to the S2000, I'd love to try one for a bit. Too tight and if I remember it had the same issue as the Boxster, the bulk head behind the seat. I drove an MGB for a dozen years and the recline made it a very comfortable ride from mid-20's to late 30's, I was a little slimmer back in those days. Based just on it's track performance the S2000 and the M3 are the best of what's out there today. Of course like the Vette, they are better if some aftermarket add-ons for suspension and tires are put into the mix. 240hp S2000's are one of the few things that regularly pass me, usually on race slicks but none the less, impressive.
I think I already mentioned the visit to Sears Point when I said hi to the Ferrari driver who was swapping tires at lunch after I'd passed him in the sessions before lunch, from his street rubber to D0T-R tires. His wife then made a big deal about how fast I must have been, she seemed to be crusing for a brusing, so I didn't get much info on his ride, too bad, I was interested. Some times things just don't work out like you hope for.
Enjoy what you drive, I do!
#177 of 532 Re: Ferrari vs. Chevy?? [spiritinthesky]
May 16, 2005 (8:26 am)
Do you seriously believe that a "Ferrari 7 liter, 800 horsepower engine" or a Honda 7 liter, 840 horsepower engine would fit under the hood of a new Corvette? The entire Overhead Vs Underhead Cam thing has been explored over and over again and the "packaging factor" often gets ignored. The fact that GM can put 7 liters in a smallblock should be a engineering achievement, not ridiculed as same-old, same-old.
Some posters need to open their eyes to "today". Should I let my S2000 purchase be determined by Honda's rust-out problem from 30 years ago?
#178 of 532 Re: Ferrari vs. Chevy?? [skeezix]
May 16, 2005 (2:16 pm)
the fact that GM can put 7 liters in a smallblock should be a engineering achievement, not ridiculed as same-old, same-old.
Question: if a small block displaces 7 liters (427CID) is it still a "small" block?
#179 of 532 Re: Perspective [habitat1]
May 17, 2005 (2:28 am)
I was going to ask you what you thought of the Elise. I've seen a few and they really look like fun, but nothing I'd want to drive everyday by any means. There is one in the gym parking lot most days, but I haven't been able to figure out who drives it yet. Going by the very interesting analogies provied earlier comparing the Corvette and Ferrari drivers I should have been able to tell by now...
May 17, 2005 (3:24 am)
I doubt you'll find the owner at the bench press. You may want to start at the treadmill. Someone who can lift their own body weight and handle themselves well. Like a gymnast. Wouldn't surprise me in the slightest.
Oh yeah, look for a fading smile as they walk through the door.
#181 of 532 Re: Perspective [merc1]
May 17, 2005 (3:34 am)
Although the Elise is probably the purest sports car out there, I doubt I would ever own one. I pulled next to one in my S2000 a couple of years ago (it was clearly an imported Eurpopean model with a big oval license plate). The degree to which I looked down at the opposing driver (in view angle, not status) was almost scary. I'm not sure what one's head height is when they are driving an Elise, but I don't think I could be sharing the DC Beltway with 18 wheelers in that car.
And one of my requirements of any car was that it must be able to hold my golf clubs, and one other person. The 911 barely qualifies, by having my golf clubs in the back seat. The Elise would need a roof rack or trailer, neither of which would help its performance.
#182 of 532 Re: Wanna Bet, ultimatedriver?? [habitat1]
May 18, 2005 (3:54 pm)
The standard C6 does 0-60 in 4.1 not 5.2 sec...your facts are incorrect. Ferrari's are peices of junk anyways. The engine goes out in them after 10k miles.
#183 of 532 Re: Wanna Bet, ultimatedriver?? [rfisher]
May 18, 2005 (6:18 pm)
Well, 4.1 seconds is just tad slower than 3.5 - check the June Road and Track.
As for the junk comment, I have now heard it all. Guess all those folks with an average net worth of $15+ million that are on a 3-5 year wait list for a 430 should come to you for advice on how to prudently invest their money or for a lesson on Chevy vs. Ferrari quality?
May 18, 2005 (9:31 pm)
This debate is over the performance of the C6 chassis'd ZO6, and the F430. Those folks that you speak of aren't buying performance. They're buying Ferraris. There's a big difference.
Were my net worth in that range (give me 5 years) and I found myself wanting a real Ferrari, I'd go for a 1959 250GT Passo Corto (3.0 liter Colombo-based V12 with 280bhp7000rpm!) or a 1960 250GT 2+2. Not to downplay the passion of today's cars, but those are real Ferraris. I'll cease fire on that issue (with which I have a huge case) and get back to the point.