Lotus? Let's sit down and have a talk about TVR and Lancia for a moment before judging Lotus too harshly.
An audiophile and petrolhead's journal: Buckle up! - Page 250
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I've not driven a "modern" Lancia, so I wouldn't know, but my B20 is a very well sorted car. TVR... well that's TVR. That's like Austin and Morris, they don't make pretense to their cars being top shelf. It's the running gag of the car world. "My TVR is falling apart!" "So? Aren't they supposed to do that?" I do want a Tuscan 4.0 S at some point, there's just so few over here it's hard to catch one on sale.
I drove the Bugatti T35, what a weird, wonderful little car. With the shifter outside the car, no synchromesh gearing (double clutching is a good idea), and if the battery is dead you can start it with the hand crank. It's fast too, especially for being an 85 y/o car (what parts are original), I did a dead start 0-60 in 8.5 sec flat. Really. Plus there's the sound and the feeling, it's so raw. We put on our flight caps and goggles and drove through the mountains, my wife handling the gauges and the oil pressure (the driver can do it too, but it gave her a job and she enjoyed it). It was an event. Talk about drawing attention, it drew more looks than any other car I've ever taken out. We drove through downtown Gatlinburg and people honked and asked us about the car. Handling... it has no grip, not really. If you turn in too quickly you slide, it's oversteer everywhere so you learn quickly to work with it and use it. We found some stickier tires and I'm going to try them, but there just isn't enough rubber making contact with the road to make a big difference, I'm betting. 80 mph is hairy in it, I can only imagine the size of the cojones of the drivers who took these to >120. The ride jars your bones, the seats are uncomfortable, the steering has great feel but it's awkward and incredibly heavy, the shifter is the same, and it constantly smells like an oil-burning stove with a leak. I love it!
I think it's sort of like a high-end PC that has a screaming fast CPU & GPU, but the cheap $3 case fan is noisy & rattles like a fragment of angry candy.
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Well Mercedes finally went in the right way when tarting up the new AMG S-Class.
Even if it's far from pretty, it's a far cry from the very aggressive styling of past AMGs. I like it! It's very understated, very restrained and not at all show-offy. It reminds me of the late 80s early 90s where you can't really differentiate between a standard model and an AMG one at a given distance. This is probably the ultimate luxury Q-Car.
As for specs, the S63 AMG puts out 585 HP and 663ft-lb of torque from its 5.5-liter AMG V8 Biturbo. It's 100 kg lighter than the last S63 and goes from 0-60mph in 4.4 secs or 4.0 for the 4WD version. Top speed is still limited to 155 mph but that won't stop tuning houses like Brabus to break 200 mph I think.
Now where's the S65 with the V12 Biturbo?
He seemed to imply that it was at least partly because demand far outstripped what Ferrari anticipated. He also forgave Ferrari because the car still goes like stink.
On the AMG - I agree - it looks better than the previous versions. I'm still not sure if Merc gets the correct secret sauce when compared to the M-cars.
Damn, I so want one. Where do I send the check?
While the cat's away stuff was going on. It seems they took me literally when I said I kind of wanted a 500 Abarth:
This one just needs a little assembly. It's not that bad, it does actually run. We're going to see what we can get out of that little 4-banger, and upgrade the suspension, wheels, etc. as well as fix the body and give it a wicked paint job.
That was great, but I'm not happy about how they handled a delivery when I wasn't there. The guys with the shipping company arrived with the 4 Italian ladies (the 250 GTs and the Bizzarrini), did a good job unloading the cars, and were very punctual, but my people didn't tip them (we keep petty cash at the shop for that kind of thing). I'd explained to them before that we tip $100 /car /person, or a min of $200, it's customary with expensive cars. I had to track the drivers down, "strongarm" them for their email addresses, and Paypal them the money. So I browbeat my guys a little over that, because it was kind of embarrassing. That's not easy work and I believe that if an individual takes pride in what they do, and it's traditionally accepted, they should be compensated as a "thank you" for taking good care of your property.
Edited by Magick Man - 7/17/13 at 10:09pm
There's no intrusion into the passenger compartment and the unibody wasn't deformed, so it's okay, all that damage was just plastics and sheet metal. If you tape the bumper on or remove it entirely, you can drive it down the road. They've fixed up cars that were a lot worse than that (the Aventador was one heck of a project).
Billy! I think I found a great car for your SoCal commute, or just tooling around. It's a great ride, very fun and pretty affordable.
1) The ingenious redneck engineering required for this, or
2) He was smoking while setting this up, or
3) It actually worked!