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Old 02-09-2013, 07:29 AM   #26
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Old 02-09-2013, 06:39 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by heavyD View Post

Actaully that's not limited to FWD. 5.0 Mustangs will eat tires like no tomorrow if you mash the gas all the time. Super fun though and one of the things I miss now I'm back to AWD is the ability to act like I'm 18 again behind the wheel.
I agree with you but we were comparing a 500hp fwd car to a ms3 or other 250ish HP fwd car.

In fact you inadvertantly took away an argument from the folks that think high powered fwd cars are the debil. 500hp Fwd or rwd will still melt tires if you can't drive. The remaining argument then is torque steer which can be mostly removed with equal length driveshafts and equal weight over then front wheels.
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Old 02-09-2013, 10:46 PM   #28
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I agree with you but we were comparing a 500hp fwd car to a ms3 or other 250ish HP fwd car.

In fact you inadvertantly took away an argument from the folks that think high powered fwd cars are the debil. 500hp Fwd or rwd will still melt tires if you can't drive. The remaining argument then is torque steer which can be mostly removed with equal length driveshafts and equal weight over then front wheels.
Simple physics dictates that acceleration in a car transfers weight to the rear tires. There are reasons other than torque steer why FWD sucks. Also, having the power only go to the wheels that you control the car with is just generally a bad idea for many other reasons. It's great for a commuter: simple to build, efficient, easier to manage in inclement weather, etc. However, there is a reason no serious performance cars are FWD.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:05 AM   #29
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Depends on your definition of 'serious' now doesn't it
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Old 02-10-2013, 01:31 PM   #30
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Depends on your definition of 'serious' now doesn't it
I suppose that's true. However, if you think about it there is no car that a person would look at and think "This car would be better FWD". The opposite is true, though. You can take any FWD car and it would perform better if it was RWD or AWD. Performance FWD cars like the ms3 and st/rs are only FWD because mazda/ford didn't want to spend the money developing and implementing an AWD system, and/or they thought that AWD would raise the price of the vehicle to unacceptable levels. They instead spend money trying to make FWD less obviously sucky.

Why get a golf R over a much cheaper GTI?
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Old 02-10-2013, 02:34 PM   #31
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I suppose that's true. However, if you think about it there is no car that a person would look at and think "This car would be better FWD". The opposite is true, though. You can take any FWD car and it would perform better if it was RWD or AWD. Performance FWD cars like the ms3 and st/rs are only FWD because mazda/ford didn't want to spend the money developing and implementing an AWD system, and/or they thought that AWD would raise the price of the vehicle to unacceptable levels. They instead spend money trying to make FWD less obviously sucky.

Why get a golf R over a much cheaper GTI?
And yet drivers like Roger Foo and Taz Harvey (and many others) have demonstrated that cheap and sucky FWD platforms can be, in fact, superior to expensive RWD/AWD platforms during racing events.
Racing team backed by BMW and others are still wondering why independent drivers on minuscule budget like Roger and Taz have kicked their collective asses with a FWD Civic.
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Old 02-10-2013, 02:57 PM   #32
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And yet drivers like Roger Foo and Taz Harvey (and many others) have demonstrated that cheap and sucky FWD platforms can be, in fact, superior to expensive RWD/AWD platforms during racing events.
Racing team backed by BMW and others are still wondering why independent drivers on minuscule budget like Roger and Taz have kicked their collective asses with a FWD Civic.
Weight. The fact that the cars they drive are FWD is irrelevant, they win because lighter weight = superior handling. If their civics were RWD they would perform even better.

Miatas are widely regarded as one of the best track cars you can get. Why? Light weight AND rwd.

As you've demonstrated there are circumstances where FWD works, and that is when the vehicle is lightweight and low in power. However, just because it works in those circumstances doesn't mean that in the same situation RWD/AWD wouldn't be better.

Last edited by mrkyle3; 02-10-2013 at 03:04 PM.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:17 PM   #33
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Weight. The fact that the cars they drive are FWD is irrelevant, they win because lighter weight = superior handling. If their civics were RWD they would perform even better.

Miatas are widely regarded as one of the best track cars you can get. Why? Light weight AND rwd.

As you've demonstrated there are circumstances where FWD works, and that is when the vehicle is lightweight and low in power. However, just because it works in those circumstances doesn't mean that in the same situation RWD/AWD wouldn't be better.
You and others made blanket statements about FWD platforms being unsuitable for "serious" performance. I simply reminded you guys that FWD platforms have won and are still winning races even when pitted against supposedly better RWD and AWD platforms.
Now, you're saying that the drivetrain configuration is irrelevant and that weight is where it's at. So, you've just shifted the discussion from AWD/RWD/FWD platform configurations to weight . But, that's OK, I think you got my point anyway.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:19 PM   #34
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Weight. The fact that the cars they drive are FWD is irrelevant, they win because lighter weight = superior handling. If their civics were RWD they would perform even better.

Miatas are widely regarded as one of the best track cars you can get. Why? Light weight AND rwd.

As you've demonstrated there are circumstances where FWD works, and that is when the vehicle is lightweight and low in power. However, just because it works in those circumstances doesn't mean that in the same situation RWD/AWD wouldn't be better.
Agreed.. If I remember correctly the BMWs and other RWD cars were hot with a huge weight penalty and restrictions to keep power down to keep things even in 2000 and 2001..
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:24 PM   #35
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You and others made blanket statements about FWD platforms being unsuitable for "serious" performance. I simply reminded you guys that FWD platforms have won and are still winning races even when pitted against supposedly better RWD and AWD platforms.
Now, you're saying that the drivetrain configuration is irrelevant and that weight is where it's at. So, you've just shifted the discussion from AWD/RWD/FWD platform configurations to weight . But, that's OK, I think you got my point anyway.
No, that's not what I'm saying. RWD and awd are better for performance and that is a fact that is not arguable. However that is not the only factor that adds to the total performance of a car. Another major factor is vehicle weight. So while the civic beat other rwd cars around a track it's not because of the fwd, but rather because the disadvantages of fwd were more than compensated for by the enormously heavier cars it was competing against.

Fwd cars only win when they have a weight advantage. Given equal weight and suspension awd and rwd will destroy fwd every single time.

When you compare drivetrains it is unfair to compare a civic that weighs 700 pounds less than the rwd car it is racing.

Are you familiar with the scientific method? Given variables x y and z let's say you want to see how changing x changed the experimental outcome. To do so you ensure that y and z remain constant while only changing x. In your argument you are changing two variables and saying wow changing x (drivetrain) doesn't matter cuz sometimes it's better and sometimes it's not. You have to remember the other variables.

Last edited by mrkyle3; 02-10-2013 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:25 PM   #36
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You and others made blanket statements about FWD platforms being unsuitable for "serious" performance. I simply reminded you guys that FWD platforms have won and are still winning races even when pitted against supposedly better RWD and AWD platforms.
Now, you're saying that the drivetrain configuration is irrelevant and that weight is where it's at. So, you've just shifted the discussion from AWD/RWD/FWD platform configurations to weight . But, that's OK, I think you got my point anyway.
No, what many of us said is all other factors being equal RWD is better than FWD. Yes a civic will outhandle a Semi truck. If a racing series is seriously penalizing a competitor for being a certain drivetrain it takes a lot to over come that. Just like the first Audi AWD competitors that had to add 700 lbs after winning the first 5 races.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:34 PM   #37
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Agreed.. If I remember correctly the BMWs and other RWD cars were hot with a huge weight penalty and restrictions to keep power down to keep things even in 2000 and 2001..
Oh, so you're saying that the FWD platforms had an unfair advantage back then? That's fine.
The fact remains that there have been other sanctioned racing events around the world during which FWD platforms came out on top against RWD/AWD platforms. That can't be denied. Again, I'm pointing out the simple fact that a good FWD platform can be seriously competitive. That's all.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:42 PM   #38
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Oh, so you're saying that the FWD platforms had an unfair advantage back then? That's fine.
The fact remains that there have been other sanctioned racing events around the world during which FWD platforms came out on top against RWD/AWD platforms. That can't be denied. Again, I'm pointing out the simple fact that a good FWD platform can be seriously competitive. That's all.
Please site one series in the last 20 years where FWD and RWD cars competed on equal ground where FWD was even competitive, much less won.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:52 PM   #39
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[...]
Are you familiar with the scientific method? Given variables x y and z let's say you want to see how changing x changed the experimental outcome. To do so you ensure that y and z remain constant while only changing x. In your argument you are changing two variables and saying wow changing x (drivetrain) doesn't matter cuz sometimes it's better and sometimes it's not. You have to remember the other variables.
Initially, you didn't mention anything about weight. You just came out saying that FWD platforms can't be used for serious performance. I said they could and I provided an example. I never actually said that a FWD car is always superior to a RWD/AWD car all things being equal. Again, you guys make the blanket statement about FWD cars not being "serious" performance cars. That's what I'm taking issue with.
I own an AWD car and I'm sold on some of the performance advantages over a FWD car. But, I know there are a few very good FWD performers out there but the best of them are not available in the States (Megane RenaultSport R26R, Megane Renault Sport 265 Cup just to name a few).
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:06 PM   #40
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Initially, you didn't mention anything about weight. You just came out saying that FWD platforms can't be used for serious performance. I said they could and I provided an example. I never actually said that a FWD car is always superior to a RWD/AWD car all things being equal. Again, you guys make the blanket statement about FWD cars not being "serious" performance cars. That's what I'm taking issue with.
I own an AWD car and I'm sold on some of the performance advantages over a FWD car. But, I know there are a few very good FWD performers out there but the best of them are not available in the States (Megane RenaultSport R26R, Megane Renault Sport 265 Cup just to name a few).
I think we are making different points but still arguing. Yes it is possible to make a fwd car be pretty good, as evidenced by the cars you just cited as well as things like the ms3.

What I am saying is if you take those fwd cars and make them rwd or awd they would be even better in all circumstances.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:06 PM   #41
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Please site one series in the last 20 years where FWD and RWD cars competed on equal ground where FWD was even competitive, much less won.
I don't know. You go find it .
You said you don't believe FWD cars are competitive platforms. I say they are. I never said they would consistently, all things being equal, come out on top when pitted against RWD/AWD platforms. I just rejected the notion that FWD platforms can't be used for serious racing. I grew up watching FWD platforms used for tarmac rally racing when expensive BMW and Audis could not even finish some of the stages. So, you won't convince me that FWD platforms can't be competitive. I'm done here.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:18 PM   #42
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I think we are making different points but still arguing. Yes it is possible to make a fwd car be pretty good, as evidenced by the cars you just cited as well as things like the ms3.

What I am saying is if you take those fwd cars and make them rwd or awd they would be even better in all circumstances.
Hey, I agree, I own an AWD car after all and I do recognize the advantages over an equivalent FWD platform.
One of my favorite car is a RWD platform with a mid-ship engine that started out as a very inexpensive FWD platform. It's the Renault 5 Turbo.
The Renault 5 started its life as a FWD platform and Renault quickly recognized that it would be much more competitive as a mid-engined RWD platform. And it was.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:27 PM   #43
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Oh, so you're saying that the FWD platforms had an unfair advantage back then? That's fine.
The fact remains that there have been other sanctioned racing events around the world during which FWD platforms came out on top against RWD/AWD platforms. That can't be denied. Again, I'm pointing out the simple fact that a good FWD platform can be seriously competitive. That's all.
not sure why didn't F1 utilize FWD instead... All that R&D but they couldn't figure it out, but a forum user did.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:38 PM   #44
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I think we have all gotten mixed up in the semantics of everyone else's post. I personally never said that FWD chassis cars couldn't perform, that just that all else being equal RWD was better for performance. Someone else mentioned that FWD is just as competitive in Motorsports and the you mentioned the Speedvision Touring series. I just wanted to clarify that it was not a level playing field and they can not be competitive with out serious sanctions being made. I firmly feel that FWD platforms can make fun street cars and combined with other factors like weight they can even hold their own. The point I was making was all other factors being equal RWD is superior in performance, mainly due to weight transfers and separation of acceleration and steering vectors.
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:47 PM   #45
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Please site one series in the last 20 years where FWD and RWD cars competed on equal ground where FWD was even competitive, much less won.
Does WTCC counts? Yes ? No? FWD Chevy Cruze, FWD Seat Leon driven by Ivan Muller and others. I haven't looked up the rules in details but it seems to me the BMWs were weighting about the same and had around the same amount of available power. I know, I know, I said I was done with this but you put me on the spot and I felt like I had to go look for at least one relevant series.
Now, I'm in trouble with my wife because of you guys; I was supposed to go pick up groceries and I'm still here typing stuff .
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Old 02-10-2013, 05:12 PM   #46
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Does WTCC counts? Yes ? No? FWD Chevy Cruze, FWD Seat Leon driven by Ivan Muller and others. I haven't looked up the rules in details but it seems to me the BMWs were weighting about the same and had around the same amount of available power. I know, I know, I said I was done with this but you put me on the spot and I felt like I had to go look for at least one relevant series.
Now, I'm in trouble with my wife because of you guys; I was supposed to go pick up groceries and I'm still here typing stuff .
Ha, me too. Just got back from he store. About the WTCC, the BMWs were hit with a 125 Kg ballast penalty for RWD and winning. This was on top of being 40 KG heavier in the first place. So it's pretty much the same situation as before.
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:32 PM   #47
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Does WTCC counts? Yes ? No? FWD Chevy Cruze, FWD Seat Leon driven by Ivan Muller and others. I haven't looked up the rules in details but it seems to me the BMWs were weighting about the same and had around the same amount of available power. I know, I know, I said I was done with this but you put me on the spot and I felt like I had to go look for at least one relevant series.
Now, I'm in trouble with my wife because of you guys; I was supposed to go pick up groceries and I'm still here typing stuff .
BMW's have a gear less.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:11 AM   #48
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:24 AM   #49
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Old 02-11-2013, 11:07 AM   #50
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I will reitterate that it comes down your definition of serious.
For the street and HPDE events a highly evolved FWD car is LOADS of fun, which is the true measure of greatness for a car purchased by a non professional driver.

Fun. The term compeititve is meaningless and should be striken from any arguement involving a street car. A MS3 is an absolute hoot to drive. I would wager by my two test drives a Focus ST is a great car as well.

The drivetrain configuration is not nearly as important as the level of engineering that was put into the car. To prove my point, the 911 still exists and is successful. Not because having an engine that hangs out behind the rear wheels is a good thing, but because they have found a way to make it work, and work VERY well.

Do not get hung up on FWD/AWD/RWD. Go drive the darn cars and NeVER let yourself think that you are a competitive race car driver, because you are not. You drive on the street, and do 'for fun' track days. Times mean exactly squat. Being competitive means nothing when there is not trophy or money at the end of the day.

I will continue to drive what feels good, what feels fun, what feels alive (which is why I bought the R over a GTI), and I could give a rats A$$ about being 'competitive' in some imaginary race that does not exist.
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