During the "Giant
Muffler Test" you had a dyno for load testing but I didn't see any dyno results
in the article. Is there another table somewhere that shows the changes in peak
power as a function of the different mufflers? The reason I ask is to understand
the price/performance trade off.
The better the flow, the better the potential performance.
Rear Wheel Drive 1
With regard to “Driving Emotion” 19/05/07. I remember reading a column written by Ed Ordinsky where he commented on driving his Group N Lancer Evo rally car (of the time). Due to mechanical failures in separate events, he had the opportunity to drive the same car in both front wheel drive, and rear wheel drive. He stated that in rear wheel drive ‘mode’ the car was unpredictable, damn near dangerous, and slow. But in it’s front wheel drive ‘mode’, the car was much more predictable and was only marginally slower than with it’s normal four wheel drive. I still prefer a well set up rear wheel drive car, though. Especially when you have some decent power, it’s just more FUN.
Rear Wheel Drive 2
I felt compelled to offer my opinion based on my experience re: Driving Emotion - Rear wheel drive can be dangerous.
I have owned a 2003 Mitsu Magna Sports for three
years now, a relatively powerful and as previously reviewed by you, a very
responsively engined car (unfortunately though, the manual trans is
without traction control). I also own a 16 foot trailer boat
which weighs around 800kg. I can categorically say from
personal experience that towing this boat, regardless of the
steepness of ramp, or however thick the sand or caked-on the seaweed might
be, I’ve never once had a problem pulling it up out of the water.
I've also never had any dramas at roundabouts or tight turns
while towing, and any wheelspin I experience is only if I provoke it,
and is always without real drama and is very easy to recover.
Loss of traction does not naturally lead to vehicle instability with
Rear Wheel Drive 3
I agree with your Driving Emotion 'Rear Wheel Drive Can
Rear Wheel Drive 4
Going beyond the
very basic (and somewhat indisputable) drawbacks of "cheaper" front wheel drives
(the questionable launch characteristics, torque steer, etc etc) front wheel
drives are cheaper to build and more economical on fuel - with these
benefits, why would even recent sports cars (200sx, 350z, MX-5, etc
etc) persist in making rear wheelers?
Rear Wheel Drive 5
I totally agree with the view that you have
published about rear wheel drive being not as good as it's perceived to be. This
I think can in no small part be attributed to the likes of people like Mark
Skaife shown in the various Holden/HSV advertisements talking about his belief
that RWD is safer than FWD.
He replied by telling me that they are a great car
as long as you get the manual and not the auto. His reasoning was that the
manual is able to bag the wheels up very easily thereby showing it
obviously had more power. Whilst there is no doubt that generally most
manuals are more powerful than autos (less PWR train losses) I don't
understand the bit about wheelspin. Whenever I was driving through the
hills of Adelaide and turned the traction control off, as
soon as I floored the throttle the car would head straight towards the
outside of the turn requiring me to back off the gas. You couldn’t steer
properly or pick a good line through the corner. This happened on high and
low speed corners. With the traction control turned on I had no worries, wet,
dry, fast or slow the best technique was to brake hard b4 the corner,
turn in and stand on the throttle, easy effortless and very neat. I have
surprised quite a few 'Real Cars' when passing on the outside of some corners
because the power gets to the road and I can still steer the thing.
Also brings to mind a conversation I had with
a Pommie bloke I used to work with. He was talking about the Australian
obsession with wheelspin, in The UK he told me they were obsessed with getting
the power to the ground where as in Oz they want tyre smoke? He
couldn't understand it and neither can I, I'll take FWD and traction
controlled autos with no wheelspin that you can steer over RWD no traction
control and big slow slides, unless it's Drifting which a whole new kettle of
Rear Wheel Drive 6
I'm not sure you
can tar all RWDs with the same brush used for EF Falcons and VT Commodores.
Having owned a V6 VP Commodore (with IRS & ABS) and a R32 Skyline GTST, I'm
certainly no rally driver but after having "moments" in both, I can tell you the
former is far more dangerous. This is despite the later having no ABS, a LSD,
and far from a linear power delivery. One has a balanced chassis and suspension
package that when the car lets go it does so in a progressive fashion and is
easily recoverable, the other is a lead-tipped dart ready to pendulum swing down
(or off) the road at the slightest provocation and with little warning. RWD,
FWD, or AWD, those particular locally produced cars were never going to handle
well under anything but the most benign situations.
The thermal mass of a water/air system makes it less responsive to short term changes like a water spray.