Last post on Jul 16, 2012 at 7:08 AM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Buick Lucerne, Chevrolet Impala, Dodge Charger, Ford Taurus, Hyundai Azera, Toyota Avalon, Nissan Maxima, Pontiac G8, Car Comparisons, Sedan
#3370 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [captain2]
Sep 24, 2007 (8:53 am)
Why? Because there is a large segment of our population that's older and wants a big lazy high torque engine in a large car. Having to wring the crud out of a Toyota V6 to get it to make its maximum torque.
4800+RPM is moot when we're talking 2000-2500rpm around tow. Not to mention 4800rpm in an Avalon is what - 50mph in 2nd gear? It may be rated for 250+HP, but you're lucky if you get 150hp around town with normal driving. That's why a big V8 is exactly what people want in a big car.
And, there's a lot of people what equate luxury with a V8. Witness how almost every Cadillac is seen as a joke unless it offers a V8. Or a SUV. Yep - has to offer a V8. BMW and Mercedes also know this and offer a V8 option, as does Lexus now. It has to have loads of low end torque and say "I'm so wealthy who cares what my mileage is?"
#3371 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [plekto]
Sep 24, 2007 (9:16 am)
The thing with the Northstar is that it isn't a high-torque, low-end grunt of an engine. To get to its potential, you need to wring some revs out of it. Max torque comes around 4,500 RPM IIRC, not far from the Avalon's peak torque RPM number. The old 3800 gets max torque before 4k RPM.
The 4.6L gets 275 hp at 5,200 RPM. The bad part is that there are several sedans that will outrun this V8 due to lighter weight and much better gearing. Those same sedans can also get 5MPG better than this same V8, not to mention do better than the 3800!
For example... the Lucerne weighs 3764 lbs and has a 4-speed transmission, getting 15 MPG city. The Avalon weighs 3495 lbs, has a 6-speed transmission, and gets 19 MPG city, all while being within 7 horsies of the 1.1 liter larger Buick V8.
The 197 hp 4-sp Lucerne gets 16/25; the 260 hp 6-sp Taurus gets 18/28; the 268 hp 6-sp Avalon gets 19/28.
Let's face it, the Buick is a decent automobile. GM made the best they could with the hand the bean-counters dealt them. But they are behind in the powertrain department.
#3372 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [plekto]
Sep 24, 2007 (9:22 am)
I invite you then to compare the performance figures (peak torque and HP relative to rpm) for both the Northstar and the 2GR as well as some of these other better V6s. You will find negligible difference s because the Northstar while it is bigger is NOT a 'lazy' engine at all (that distinction goes to some older design pushrod V8s), it is more similar to all these 'efficient' V6s than even you would care to admit - only less so!
#3373 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [thegraduate]
Sep 24, 2007 (9:32 am)
The thing with the Northstar is that it isn't a high-torque, low-end grunt of an engine.
EXACTLY and the 'sad' part of this is that the Northstar is likely the best engine out of GM in a number of years - the new 3.6 is in the running as well, in some respects representing a 'downsized' Northstar.
#3374 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [captain2]
Sep 24, 2007 (10:27 am)
The 3.6L has a higher max output in its top form with DI(the CTS, STS; 300 + hp I think?) than the current Northstar (291 hp?).
Unfortunately, there is no extra capacity for the 3.6L, so they have to use other engines that are less competitive.
Ford faced a similar problem with their new, competitive, 3.5L engine. All the vehicles that would benefit from it can't necessarily get it.
#3375 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [thegraduate]
Sep 24, 2007 (10:53 am)
would guess that the 4.6L Northstar could be pushed well past 400 hp with nothing more than some reengineering of the valvetrains, some direct injection etc - in short some of these new technologies. Kind of the same thing that Toyota is doing with the 2GR. Turbo/supercharging always a possibility as well with some obvious internal fortification and probably at the expense of long term longevity. Don't know that we really want 400hp in any FWD sedan, however.
#3376 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [captain2]
Sep 24, 2007 (10:55 am)
Well, a supercharged, slightly smaller version of the Northstar (4.4L) is capable of 469 horsies in some Caddy cars!
With what GM is willing to do with it to satisfy Big Brother the Bean Counter, is another story.
#3377 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [thegraduate]
Sep 24, 2007 (11:36 am)
yep, I guess the UAW is doing their best to squeeze blood out of a turnip - whilst we speak. Anybody remember PATCO?
#3378 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [plekto]
Sep 24, 2007 (3:43 pm)
I really doubt the transmission is near that cost, especially if not at a dealership. That transmission is everywhere and it's four-speed not the 5- or 6-speeds that do run up cost in some car lines.
#3379 of 6854 Re: Lucerne [captain2]
Sep 24, 2007 (3:45 pm)
>uses more expensive fuel,
It uses regular...