View Poll Results: How do you feel about current car design trends? (Especially sports cars)

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  • Bigger is better, regardless of weight/efficiency. As long as there is more power.

    10 11.24%
  • I miss the old days of sports car design. Gimme a Lotus Elise anyday

    61 68.54%
  • I don't particularly care, as long as cars still work.

    10 11.24%
  • Yo. My Cavalier is tHa best/fastest caR evAr.

    8 8.99%
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Thread: The demise of small cars...

  1. #1
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    The demise of small cars...

    Personally, I'm currently seeing a contining trend of making cars bigger and bigger. I just pre-production renderings of the Golf V and noticed that it looked at least 30% larger than the current model. It doesn't stop there, either... nearly every manufacturer (including many sports car companies) is beefing up the size and weight of their vehicle lineups.

    So here's the question: What do you think? I love small cars, and I don't think I'll ever buy anything bigger than the size of an Altima, and prefferably, a fair bit smaller. I recently saw a new MR2 Spyder (Washington liscence plate, they don't sell them in Canada) which, to my great admiration, was pretty damn tiny I'm seriously considering saving up and buying one south of the border as soon as possible.

    Anyway, back on track: The roots of true sports cars (size/weight/power) are being lost, and I consider this a bad thing. What do you prefer? Do you guys like the direction that car size and design is heading in?
    Last edited by Egg Nog; 07-19-2003 at 05:03 PM.

  2. #2
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    I like my cars light too, without any useless technological gadgets and with a good old stick shift. Not that they have to be as extreme as the Elise, but I don't want to drive around in big fat cars that seem to be made for people twice my age.
    Would it be possible, to play forever?
    The conclusion reached was that a player is inevitably doomed to lose.

  3. #3
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    Bah... people never post when they're forced to actually think about something :P

  4. #4
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    The size of the car should really be dependent on what it's purpose should be. Sports cars should strive to remain light and small... It'd be more beneficial to their performance. Family cars should try to offer as much room as possible as to make hauling the kids and groceries easy.
    Personally, I would love to own something small like a Speedster/Elise/S2000, but I also wouldn't have a problem driving something like a Z06 around which is heavier, nor do I have a problem driving around my current car.

  5. #5
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    ?????

    What is the problem with a big/heavy car that outpowers, outperforms, has better handling and stability, looks better, is cheaper, safer and more technologically advanced than a small/light car ??

  6. #6
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    Originally posted by BPx
    The size of the car should really be dependent on what it's purpose should be. Sports cars should strive to remain light and small... It'd be more beneficial to their performance. Family cars should try to offer as much room as possible as to make hauling the kids and groceries easy.
    Personally, I would love to own something small like a Speedster/Elise/S2000, but I also wouldn't have a problem driving something like a Z06 around which is heavier, nor do I have a problem driving around my current car.
    You really DO NOT want to own a Speedster. When it rains, the water comes in the cockpit.

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Lagonda
    You really DO NOT want to own a Speedster. When it rains, the water comes in the cockpit.
    It'd be a sacrifice I'm willing to make... I just love the shape of the car... Ah well, probably never see it here in the US. Last I heard, Lotus was still bringing their Elise here... I'll have to check and see how much I'll have to save up to get one of those.

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by BPx
    It'd be a sacrifice I'm willing to make... I just love the shape of the car... Ah well, probably never see it here in the US. Last I heard, Lotus was still bringing their Elise here... I'll have to check and see how much I'll have to save up to get one of those.
    Well If you DO get one of those cars.. Please oh please buy an Elise it's a million-trillion times better .

  9. #9
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    Re: ?????

    Originally posted by Misho
    What is the problem with a big/heavy car that outpowers, outperforms, has better handling and stability, looks better, is cheaper, safer and more technologically advanced than a small/light car ??
    Well, it's all a matter of taste. First off, you can't really compare looks... you can't justify saying that "big cars look better than small cars" because it really depends which ones you're referring to And I must say... you simply can't deny that the best of the best handling cars are nearly all small and lightweight. That is, in fact, the main advantage.

    Secondly, a small car (when compared to a large car with on par performance) is nearly always cheaper. Technology is a matter of preference. If someone likes technology, then they really will have to go with the heavier car.

    I agree with you regarding the safety issue. I could easily go into a long rant about safety and huge "safe" cars posing a huge threat to the people in smaller cars who can't afford them, but I think I'll stop myself for the sake of keeping this on topic

    And besides, what better a company car than one such as the Lotus Elise or a Caterham? Huge tax benefits, awesome perfomance that matches that of larger cars for less (waaaay less in the case of the Cat). And you really can't complain about a car that does 0-60 in around 5 seconds and gets milage in the neighbourhood of 50 MPG.

    It's nice to see other Canadians on this board

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  10. #10
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    Re: Re: ?????

    Originally posted by Egg Nog

    I agree with you regarding the safety issue. I could easily go into a long rant about safety and huge "safe" cars posing a huge threat to the people in smaller cars who can't afford them, but I think I'll stop myself for the sake of keeping this on topic


    The safety issue is exactly what makes cars heavy these days. It a selfpropelled mechanism, whereby the more safety gadgets in the car,the heavier it becomes, and the more safety gadgets it will need. (and scoring 5 stars in the crash test is good marketing value). At the end of the day it's the people who cause the accidents, and because in modern quasi armoured cars they feel unvulnerable, the risk of being hit is increasing. Therefore if you want to participate in modern traffic you might as well protect yourself because although you might be driving this nippy Elise, which will allow you to use the road at your discretion and with a minimal use of energy (imagine all the kilo's that don't have to be moved), you stand no chance against a SUV driven by a moron that is probably sitting too high to even notice you.

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by BPx
    The size of the car should really be dependent on what it's purpose should be. Sports cars should strive to remain light and small... It'd be more beneficial to their performance. Family cars should try to offer as much room as possible as to make hauling the kids and groceries easy.
    Personally, I would love to own something small like a Speedster/Elise/S2000, but I also wouldn't have a problem driving something like a Z06 around which is heavier, nor do I have a problem driving around my current car.
    You win. I really cant see the point of this thread. The answer is personal preference and for what purpose the vehicle is used. I have a large V8 sedan I use as a company vehicle and for driving the family around during the week. I also have a large 4x4 I use for camping and fishing trips. I would love a 200SX Silvia or a 350Z to tool around in as well. I would have a dozen different cars for all sorts of purposes if I could afford them . It comes down to a compromise of what you can afford, what you need the car for and personal preference. For most people who participate in the forums on this site, cars are more than mere transport, so logical thought is always clouded by sentiment. Car makers of course would not have it any other way.
    "A string is approximately nine long."
    Egg Nogg 02-04-2005, 05:07 AM

  12. #12
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    Originally posted by crisis
    [B]You win. I really cant see the point of this thread.
    I think the point is that to meet the same requirements (performance, space or what ever) you are getting a car that is at least 25% heavier than say 15-20 years ago. A decently sized european middle class car back then would tip the balance at say around 950-1000 kg's. Today you would be lucky if a similar car weighs less than 1300 kg's. As road tax (at least over here) is charged according to the weight of the car governments love these developments.
    If you are talking (would be) sports cars just compare the MGB and the BMW Z3. (920 kg vs. something over 1250).

    Now where is all this weight coming from? Partly from all the automatic devices that make people forget that they were born with hands, but partly also because doors are fitted with steel reinforcing beams and the roofs are now protected to allow a full roll without loosing your head. Is this a good or bad development? It is matter of what you want to sacrifice, either your life or the pleasure of driving a driver oriented car. If you can afford the comprimise, go for a modern car as your daily driver, and get yourself a decent classic to enjoy pure motoring the way it used to be, on a sunny (partly clouded, because you will have no airco) day, outside the peak hours.

  13. #13
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    the best 'sports' cars are definatly built by lotus. sports cars are really supposed to handle extrordinarily and shouldn't be judged according to straight line performance, but have decent straight line performance. all the true sports cars were made before 1965.(jaguar xk 120, lotus europa etc.) because they didn't have the super engines of today so they had to focus on handling more. there are still true sports cars today, but before 1965 was the golden age of sports cars
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    Last edited by Batmobile_Turbo; 09-12-2003 at 07:02 PM.
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  14. #14
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    Light is the only to go. yeah there are safety issues but if you can't control a sports car or don't know how to drive safely then you shouldn't drive let alone own a fast car. But on with my post, weight kills performance and efficiency (sp?). I'm with Egg Nog on this one, lighter and less gas usage will sell me over more powerful and black hole styled gas comsumption of heavier large engine beasts. Sport means light, quick and nimble. Utility means rugged, reliable, persistant and ponderous. They don't belong in the same phrase. Go light!
    "If you feel like you're in control you're not going fast enough" - Mario Andretti

  15. #15
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    Im sure Ferrari and Lamborghini would dispute that. Sport may mean small light an chuckable to you but its not the only criteria. There is a lotof fun to be had from unleashing large amounts of power and torque. Lotus may make great go carts but I cant believe how underpowered they are.
    "A string is approximately nine long."
    Egg Nogg 02-04-2005, 05:07 AM

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