Last post on Dec 08, 2007 at 5:35 PM
You are in the Coupes & Convertibles
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Porsche 911, Chevrolet Corvette, Ferrari F430, Lotus Exige, Lotus Elise, Coupe
#248 of 532 Re: BMW M6, a sports car? [ultimatedriver]
Jun 18, 2005 (3:37 pm)
I believe that BMW makes some of the best performance sedans and coupes on the market - M5, M3, even the standard 5 and 3 series.
But if they consider the M6 a sports car, let alone a competitor to the 911, someone in their marketing department has to have his head examined. Unfortunately, BMW has not made a competitive sports car since the M1. The Z3 and Z4 plop the same engine found in the 530i and X5 into an overweight roadster and call it a sports car?? Back in 2001, I bought an S2000 over a Boxster S on price, but I wouldn't take an M Roadster for $5,000 less than the S2000.
The 6 series and M6 might capture some of Mercedes CL and even Astin Martin buyers, but they are nearly 4,000 lb behemouths that are no more competitive with the 911 than the old 850i was. As a sports car, I'd take the base Boxster over the M6, so the PR guy that is shooting at the Porsche Turbo really needs to come down to earth.
Jun 19, 2005 (11:23 pm)
After spending the last few weeks driving some very fast and expensive cars, I'm pertty sure I've figured out what falls into the category of "sports car" and what doesn't.
I group the M6 in the same category as I do the R34 Nissan Skyline GT-R. After driving a highly modified version of this vehicle, I can truly say it falls into the category of a highly powerful sports coupe that's capable of outstanding numbers.
The Skyline had awesome power and was capable of accelerating faster than nearly every car I've ever driven, modified or not. The car was equally adept at negotiating hairpins like they were nothing due to the fact that I wasn't only dealing with a superb all-wheel drive system, but I had 4-wheel steering throwing me through these curves. The Skyline also comes as a sedan, however, and is also quite heavy. Regardless of whether or not it puts up Enzo-beating numbers is a moot point. Even with thought-driven steering/transmission/brakes, this is still a heavy car that is a really a powerful GT at traffic violation speeds, and a racer when the pace gets truly illegal.
The M6 might be able to do all of these things, but it will stand as a bit of an anomaly in the automobile world. Big enough to be a GT, but it might lack the comfy/taught ride. It'll have power, but not the nice lazy power people expect of a vehicle of that type. For my 6 figures, I'll take a used Lamborghini Gallardo with e-Gear. I still get a 500ish horse V10 and semi-automatic tranny. Not to mention a chassis that hasn't had it's weight chopped and moved to lower the center of gravity a couple of inches.
#250 of 532 Re: BMW M6 [ultimatedriver]
Jun 20, 2005 (3:19 am)
I agree with everthing except your last statement about gettign a Gallardo with e-Gear. Why? that seems to be the worst of both worlds. A car that is not a comfortable GT. And an automatic transmissioned muscle bound car that does not have the nimble feel and finesse of, say a Ferrari 360 or 911 S. Once again, at subsonic speeds, I'd even take my former S2000 over the nearly 3,600 lb Gallardo.
According to Edmunds review: The Gallado "Lacks nimble precision of its competitors".
I have pretty well convinced myself with research that the best $100,000 I could spend right now on a sports car is a 997 model 911 S Cabriolet. If money is no object, then the 430 Spider seems to be the ultra enthusiasts choice (albeit a car that can't be driven a quarter as much as the 911). Best bang for the buck is still the $32,000 Honda S2000 in my book. Between $40,000 and $75,000, it's a tougher decision, with the Boxster S and new Caymen being contenders, but not yet convincing me of their incremental value over an S2000. In my case, if I go Porsche, it will likely be the 911 S or not at all.
#251 of 532 I stand slightly corrected
Jun 20, 2005 (4:48 am)
I also agree with the fact that the S2K is the best sports car you can buy for less than $40K.
In addition, I concur that the Gallardo isn't the enthusiasts choice when it comes to out and out sports cars. I would just get one were I to be choosing a competitor to the M6 based on spec and feel.
It's my feeling that because the M6 is trying very hard to be a sports car, and the Gallardo is a sports car and doesn't know it, these two would be perfect opposites to a common coin.
#252 of 532 M6 is a nearly two-ton GT car
Jun 20, 2005 (4:21 pm)
And the rear bumper is ghastly.
A sports car it is not.
Jun 22, 2005 (6:18 am)
I'm also not fond of what AWD does to a "sports car". I think it deadens it a bit. Certainly felt that way with the Porsche C4s. AWD does give you tremendous grip but also nails the car down a lot and increases driver effort. I like sports cars that feel very nimble and "electric"...if you slide around a little bit, all the better test of your skills. I'd rather rely on tires and suspension to keep me planted.
#254 of 532 Ah, but the tires and suspension only work ...
Jun 22, 2005 (9:08 am)
if the driver provides balance. That's why I understand it's so hard to drive a Porsche at the limit. It's harder to balance a 34/66 pendulum compared to a 51/49 bar. Although once you work it out, having all that weight over the back wheels seems to help a lot. And getting the proper slip angle as opposed to sliding will improve turn in providing a shorter route to the apex and better angle of exit to the track out. I just don't get why it's so interesting to master a flawed concept rather than doing quicker laps in a better design. Here's to watching Panoz (David) to see if it can come through more than once this season in ALMS. Always nice when the only junk yard dog in the ring shows up all the pedigrees! And it has a much nice sound to boot.
#255 of 532 Re: Ah, but the tires and suspension only work ... [starrow68]
Jun 22, 2005 (10:17 am)
"I just don't get why it's so interesting to master a flawed concept rather than doing quicker laps in a better design."
Same reason why men ride bulls in rodeos.
“I like sports cars that feel very nimble and "electric"...if you slide around a little bit, all the better test of your skills.”
Bingo, Shifty will get up on that bull.
#256 of 532 Re: Ah, but the tires and suspension only work ... [designman]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Jun 23, 2005 (10:14 am)
You got it. Mastering the perfect, un-eventful, clinically perfect lap (to me anyway) is like driving to a car show and then talking about the gas mileage you got on the way over.
This is also why watching modern racing is like looking at paint drying unless someone crashes or blows up, and why flying a small plane in Alaska is more fun than piloting a 747---so the pilots tell me. (I've flown in lotsa small planes but not piloted a 747, nor do I ever care to).
I'd rather not even have power steering in a sports car, but the wider rubber we run now makes that a necessary evil that I'm willing to live with.
It seems every day manufacturers conspire to take more and more feedback away from us.
As I have so tediously mentioned before, it is no co-incidence that many gazillionaires who also love cars spend a great deal of time and money racing the most primitive types old machinery around the race courses all over the world.
Well sure you don't have to go THAT FAR BACK to have a good time, but having every problem ironed out for you by technology is in my mind a most regrettable choice, as what you gain isn't as much as what you lose.
#257 of 532 All Depends ...
Jun 23, 2005 (7:55 pm)
You all see it as a loss while I see the opportunity to learn something new, to me, in taking a current, fairly high powered sports car, around different tracks and learning the line to improve lap times up to something almost respectable as a challenge and an opportunity to develop. There are some things that need to be built on as opposed to jumped into with both feet, first time out. I doubt a lot of Bull riders got their start at that point of their career. Your approach smacks of absolutes without accomodating the fun steps in the process for others beginning at different levels and with different goals.
Sure it would be nice to have an historic, saw a 850hp McClaren at Sears Point a couple weeks ago that would terrify me I'm sure, but at this point there are lots of basics that even at my age I still need to learn. Maybe that historic is off in the future, not too far off, but when I get there I expect I'll have driven a lot, taken several more classes, and learned a few things even from some of the technology available today. Keeping an open mind,
PS Aren't pilots just bus drivers with wings?