Automotive Enthusiast

If EA made a NFS U2 remaster or a NFS MW remaster I would die.

also I didn't know there was a motor enthusiast thread here so I guess I gotta disclaim: I am one. I really like modding and stuff, muscles are cool but my niche is 90's Japanese imports
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
:deep sigh:

Damn. It. All. To. Hell.

http://www.bbc.com/sport/motorsport/41117834

To anyone not familiar, Valentino Rossi is the greatest racer you've never heard of. No hyperbole. MotoGP isn't like F1, where there's basically one or two teams a year that have a chance to win, and everyone else is 4 seconds a lap behind. Some teams fall behind, like Ducati, but they literally change the rules to make sure the team and manufacturer gets competitive again.

So Rossi has been racing at the top level, against the highest level riders, in which the technology gap is not nearly what it is in other forms of racing, and he did it all through an era where the rules of racing changed. When Rossi was starting out, no one was doing the absolutely suicidal leans you now regularly see in MotoGP. Back then, getting your knee down was a risky bet:

Now? Now riders drag their freaking elbows on the ground while accelerating at insane speeds:

Some people will tell you that Giacomo Agostini is the greatest of all time. He has one more MotoGP title than Rossi, but he did it in a 9-year period when the races weren't as competitive, before the engineering arms race was so pronounced, before guys started dragging their bikes down as far as Newton's laws would allow them to.

Rossi has been bringing it for 20 years. While the engine displacements have gone all over the place. While tires are swapped around enough to make it a guessing game at the start of each season. While traction control waxed and waned and waxed (and yet is not nearly the same as in a car; the rider still has to find the limit, but is now thoroughly punished with high-sides when they go an eyelash too far). While promising, young stars came and went. And all Rossi did was kick their asses while learning all of the new techniques and tricks of the younger generations. Look at the resume:

2001 - champion
2002 - champion
2003 - champion
2004 - champion
2005 - champion
2006 - 2nd place overall
2007 - 3rd place overall
2008 - champion
2009 - champion
2010 - 3rd place overall
2011 - 7th place overall
2012 - 6th place overall
2013 - 4th place overall
2014 - 2nd place overall
2015 - 2nd place overall
2016 - 2nd place overall

In 2017, he is currently currently in 4th overall (in the most competitive title race in recent memory), and had he not slipped to 3rd place in last week's race after leading almost wire-to-wire, he'd only be 12 points behind overall.

At the end of the 2006 season, he was only 5 points behind the champion.
Almost a decade later, at the end of the 2015 season, he was...only 5 points behind the champion.

Valentino Rossi is the greatest racer that has ever lived. And it's a damn shame that this injury will probably be a career ender (having a compound fracture on the same leg you already had a compound fracture on is not a recipe for recovery). You were the best. You were The Doctor.
 
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EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
So, you think a good replacement for your Mini when the time comes? Speaking of which, how is the old girl? :mcool:
Ah, doing alright. No big problems to speak of since the water pump (I honestly can't believe the car works at close to its top form after, essentially, spending months as an air-cooled engine). I need to rotate the tires, but the lug lock is broken, so I'll have to buy one off of Amazon. Other than that? Umm...well, the clutch take up is getting a bit higher now. Pretty sure the R56 gen has a self-adjusting clutch, so there's no point in taking it to a garage. It's just drive it until it starts slipping. Still, there's probably another 20,000 miles in that clutch. So overall, no complaints. I paid for a $5,000 car, put a little extra money in due to wear and tear, and I still ended up with something that out-performs what would have been considered "sporty" in the 80s and early 90s. It's a hell of an era to look for cars; internal combustion is going out in style.

How about your Mini? Have you gotten the clutch sorted out to enjoy some back roads this summer?

[On that commercial, that's the type of vehicle my head tells me to get. Something practical. Hell, it's the reason I still haven't gotten rid of the PT Cruiser - I could live in that thing if I had to. It makes all of the sense in the world. But...my heart has to have something fun now. After getting used to the twitchiness of the Mini, I can't go back to cars that feel so numb. I need the car to feel alive.]
also I didn't know there was a motor enthusiast thread here so I guess I gotta disclaim: I am one. I really like modding and stuff, muscles are cool but my niche is 90's Japanese imports
Dude, 90's Japanese cars are something I think we all dig. There was that brief, beautiful period when we got the FD RX-7, Supra, 300GT, 300ZX, MR-2, plus the type R Hondas, and the NSX.

Speaking of...this past weekend, I saw an old NSX out in the wild. But...someone had done something horrible, unforgivable.

NSX.jpg

Friends...don't ever let someone modify an NSX.

Stop them by force, if necessary.

Because this can't happen again.
 
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Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
@EvilTw1n

That's too bad to hear about Valentino Rossi. I haven't really kept up with his career in MotoGP, but he's sort of the Michael Schumacher of Motorcycle racing from what I've gathered. Wish him a speedy recovery!

As of now, I still have not tackled the clutch, but over the last few hundred miles that I've driven it, it hasn't been slipping, or anything. After a rather spirited drive with my GF riding shotgun, it definitely needs new suspension. Felt just a tad floaty, but with over 161k miles on the original clutch, suspension, and supercharger, I think it's been holding up quite well. I know there are times if I try to speed shift, it doesn't really like it, so I try to shift carefully enough to not have so much force. At this point, I'm just going to drive it until the Winter, and then put it away, and work on it.
 
This beauty was parked in a lot by my university the other day
Other cars I see around where I live include this Celica,


This Nissan Z


In addition one of my good friends has several pretty nice cars including this AMC Eagle which he so kindly posed in front of


And this AMC Hornet we are currently rebuilding with a 304 V8, 4speed manual
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
This beauty was parked in a lot by my university the other day
R32 Skylines have quite the interesting look about them that despite being over 25 years old now, still feels relatively modern. Best part is you can find one for not too steep of a price (at least that used to be the case), and while there are much faster cars out today, the rather conservative 276hp is no slouch either.

I hope to one day get a chance to drive one just to see what all the hubbub is about.
 

theMightyME

Owner of The Total Screen
I have been seeing a goo number of Ferrari around town recently (usually on the freeway going between where I live and Los Angeles), and even a Lambo... but the only cars that really turn my head now are Teslas, and I think there are around 8 or more in my town now
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
I have been seeing a goo number of Ferrari around town recently (usually on the freeway going between where I live and Los Angeles), and even a Lambo... but the only cars that really turn my head now are Teslas, and I think there are around 8 or more in my town now
Your post reminded me of this scene from Gone in 60 Seconds with Nicolas Cage:

 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
So Koenigsegg has done it. With the Koenigsegg Agera RS, and it's 1360hp engine, they reached an average top speed of 277.9mph.


This speed war between Bugatti, and Koenigsegg (and Hennessy also) is heating up considerably, that's for sure.

Not only that, but while watching this guys' YT video (He's also a great Vlogger, and one of my favorite automotive YT channels to watch), Koenigsegg beat their own record for 0-400-0 from just under 37 secs, down to just over 32 sec. So basically, they blitz the Bugatti Chiron's 0-400-0 record by around 10 secs. :mshock:


Koenigsegg is not fucking around anymore. They've been waiting well over a decade to show how fast their cars can go, and Christian himself is done playing games.

Your move, Bugatti. I eagerly await your top speed run.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
I meant to bump this before because of my last post on Valentino Rossi. I, and many others, thought he was done.

But he took two-and-a-half weeks off, came back, and started practicing on a freshly-screwed together broken leg. He then raced - just 22 days after a compound fracture. And he raced like a damn demon. He finished that comeback race in fifth place, but I watched it...and he spent the entire middle part of the afternoon in second place, right on the leader's ass. He almost had him.

Rossi will probably return next year, but the time is growing short. If you have any love for speed, watch MotoGP next year. You'll (hopefully) get to watch him, the old lion, trying to win one last title, while Marquez (the youngest four-time champion in history, in his prime) tries to push him off the ledge. You couldn't write this stuff.
@EvilTw1n

How have things been these days with your Mini? Been holding up well enough, or have some unfortunate repairs occurred?
No big problems, but I do worry about the water pump. It's weird, because the coolant level looks like it's empty...but then I drive the car for a few minutes, open the reservoir cap, and it's right back up to where it's supposed to be. I dunno if there's something about to go wrong with the water pump or not, but it was broken and leaking like a sieve last year, so it's worrying me.

Otherwise, same old Mini. I've grown to appreciate it more, because a regular Cooper might be the only modern "sporty" car that you can drive at ten-tenths on a public road. Throw it on a back road in third gear, and you're pretty much wide-open throttle the entire time without having to worry about risking jail time. I don't think you could even do that with a GTI now; you'd be well into triple digits. Maybe a Miata, but you and me live where there's actual winter. One day you and me are gonna have to tackle a couple of good roads.

How's about your Cooper S? Clutch sorted out?
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
I meant to bump this before because of my last post on Valentino Rossi. I, and many others, thought he was done.

But he took two-and-a-half weeks off, came back, and started practicing on a freshly-screwed together broken leg. He then raced - just 22 days after a compound fracture. And he raced like a damn demon. He finished that comeback race in fifth place, but I watched it...and he spent the entire middle part of the afternoon in second place, right on the leader's ass. He almost had him.

Rossi will probably return next year, but the time is growing short. If you have any love for speed, watch MotoGP next year. You'll (hopefully) get to watch him, the old lion, trying to win one last title, while Marquez (the youngest four-time champion in history, in his prime) tries to push him off the ledge. You couldn't write this stuff.

No big problems, but I do worry about the water pump. It's weird, because the coolant level looks like it's empty...but then I drive the car for a few minutes, open the reservoir cap, and it's right back up to where it's supposed to be. I dunno if there's something about to go wrong with the water pump or not, but it was broken and leaking like a sieve last year, so it's worrying me.

Otherwise, same old Mini. I've grown to appreciate it more, because a regular Cooper might be the only modern "sporty" car that you can drive at ten-tenths on a public road. Throw it on a back road in third gear, and you're pretty much wide-open throttle the entire time without having to worry about risking jail time. I don't think you could even do that with a GTI now; you'd be well into triple digits. Maybe a Miata, but you and me live where there's actual winter. One day you and me are gonna have to tackle a couple of good roads.

How's about your Cooper S? Clutch sorted out?
I have not kept tabs on the MotoGP, nor Valentino Rossi over the years, unfortunately, but if you think Rossi has one more year in him for a world title, it might be worth checking out. If I enjoy the TT Races in Isle of Man, I can't imagine why I wouldn't like watching MotoGP. Major props for Rossi in making a bit of a comeback by the end of the season. The guy is also in his late thirties, which in professional motorcycle racing terms is getting up there. I'll be sure to tune in next season for that.

That is cool your EvilMini has been treating you well lately. I know I think last year you mentioned there were a couple issues that did get sorted, and now it appears things are looking ok. As far as your water pump goes, and you mentioning about coolant levels, coolant levels are always supposed to be checked when the car is cold, so if it's low when its cold, you'll need more. I ran into the same issue last year when I went to go visit @mattavelle1 . Coolant level when cold was quite low, almost too low, so I bought some coolant, and filled it back up. If I had air in the system, I would've known by now, so I imagine things have been sorted thus far. For you, Mike, maybe just get yourself some coolant, check the level when your car is cold, and if it's below its marker, I'd fill it up.

As far as my clutch is concerned, I still have not tackled that, and this is mostly because I was too busy driving it this year off and on during the weekends. I figured the clutch was overall ok if I wasn't too hard on it, so I continued to drive it throughout this year, and this winter is for sure when I'm going to change it. My plan though is not simply to change the clutch. This is my initial list of stuff to do:

-Clutch Replacement (Likely to get a Stage 1 kit for the extra HP, plus just having a heavier duty clutch)
-Rear Main Seal
-Limited-Slip Differential upgrade
-Supercharger service (includes all new gaskets/seals, plus reduction pulley)
-Cooling fan resistor replacement (small part that regulates the fan speed, which I suspect has not been working right)
-Clutch Slave, and Master Cylinder replacements
-Colder Spark Plugs (recommended with reduction pulley)
-Replace Bypass valve (I have a spare one that I accidentally got years ago, so I just kept it if I ever wanted to replace it)
-Replace Intake Manifold gasket (have one lying around that I bought years ago)

I also plan on getting an oil sample, and getting that analyzed by BlackStone Labs to see if there's anything else that I should be concerned about.

These are the major things I plan to do over the course of this winter, plus anything else (i.e. seal or gasket) that I feel would be nice since I'll have the access to practically everything.

Suspension is another area that I would like to tackle, but that will come sometime next year I figure. I reckon I'll want to get Egan back to perfect working order, drive it for a little bit, and then do suspension stuff, which also won't be that cheap. For suspension components, that includes ball joints, bushings, springs/shocks, tie rods, etc.

The big conundrum I still face is whether or not it'll all be worth it for me in the end, because it is both a labor intensive, and expensive job for me to tackle. On the other hand, given how many miles I have on Egan now ( almost 162k), and its age, I wouldn't get more than maybe 4 grand if I sold it right now, plus you figure the extra couple grand I'll spend on parts for the engine and drivetrain, I don't see many vehicles that'll give me quite the excitement for the price. It's been my pride and joy for over a decade, and I still feel I cannot part ways with it. I sometimes worry if I'll only grow more attached to it after all is said and done. lol

Here's the one thing though, and I believe I brought it up to Matt last year after my trip through the mountains, I said to myself that I could not sell it. It was just that good. Maybe when I eventually pick up my next dream car, a pre-996 Porsche 911, I might be ready to part ways, but not now.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/arti...-banish-gasoline-cars-by-2040-is-in-the-works

Nothing more than a simple pipe dream that'll never amount to anything that is even remotely considered sensible by any stretch of the imagination.

Look, I'm all for the future technologies into electric cars, but that's still going to take decades to take effect. And thinking about it further, putting forth legislation that gives a deadline such as this is inherently unrealistic. What about all the tens of millions of cars already on the road? Is there a plan in place for that? I could understand if you'd like to take the French approach by banning the new sale of ICE cars by 2040, but to suggest you cannot even register an ICE-powered car? Fucking bullshit, is what it is. California, you done goofed if that takes effect.

Again, banning the sale of new ICE-powered cars is one thing, and that I'd be all for. You could even expand the already collector, and vintage car registrations to include all ICE-powered cars, so they can only be driven at certain times of the year. Most importantly though, off-road/track use would be exempt from that, and could be driven at any time.

If it ever gets to the point where I cannot legally drive a classic/vintage car, let alone drive any car period, then I may not want to live on this planet anymore. Future generations will undoubtedly say we were savages for taking control of multi-ton hunks of metal at blistering speeds without assists, and I'd reply with simply, "You're goddamn right we did."
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
:sigh: Damnit.

The Mini is leaking coolant. Again. I owe about $2,500 on it. If this is the water pump again (and not just a hose), I might just fill it with some coolant and take it to trade for a GTI or something. I could probably get enough in a trade-in to cover the outstanding loan, at least.

Not that I want to get rid of it. For reasons already stated, I don't. But damn.
I have not kept tabs on the MotoGP, nor Valentino Rossi over the years, unfortunately, but if you think Rossi has one more year in him for a world title, it might be worth checking out. If I enjoy the TT Races in Isle of Man, I can't imagine why I wouldn't like watching MotoGP. Major props for Rossi in making a bit of a comeback by the end of the season. The guy is also in his late thirties, which in professional motorcycle racing terms is getting up there. I'll be sure to tune in next season for that.

That is cool your EvilMini has been treating you well lately. I know I think last year you mentioned there were a couple issues that did get sorted, and now it appears things are looking ok. As far as your water pump goes, and you mentioning about coolant levels, coolant levels are always supposed to be checked when the car is cold, so if it's low when its cold, you'll need more. I ran into the same issue last year when I went to go visit @mattavelle1 . Coolant level when cold was quite low, almost too low, so I bought some coolant, and filled it back up. If I had air in the system, I would've known by now, so I imagine things have been sorted thus far. For you, Mike, maybe just get yourself some coolant, check the level when your car is cold, and if it's below its marker, I'd fill it up.

As far as my clutch is concerned, I still have not tackled that, and this is mostly because I was too busy driving it this year off and on during the weekends. I figured the clutch was overall ok if I wasn't too hard on it, so I continued to drive it throughout this year, and this winter is for sure when I'm going to change it. My plan though is not simply to change the clutch. This is my initial list of stuff to do:

-Clutch Replacement (Likely to get a Stage 1 kit for the extra HP, plus just having a heavier duty clutch)
-Rear Main Seal
-Limited-Slip Differential upgrade
-Supercharger service (includes all new gaskets/seals, plus reduction pulley)
-Cooling fan resistor replacement (small part that regulates the fan speed, which I suspect has not been working right)
-Clutch Slave, and Master Cylinder replacements
-Colder Spark Plugs (recommended with reduction pulley)
-Replace Bypass valve (I have a spare one that I accidentally got years ago, so I just kept it if I ever wanted to replace it)
-Replace Intake Manifold gasket (have one lying around that I bought years ago)

I also plan on getting an oil sample, and getting that analyzed by BlackStone Labs to see if there's anything else that I should be concerned about.

These are the major things I plan to do over the course of this winter, plus anything else (i.e. seal or gasket) that I feel would be nice since I'll have the access to practically everything.

Suspension is another area that I would like to tackle, but that will come sometime next year I figure. I reckon I'll want to get Egan back to perfect working order, drive it for a little bit, and then do suspension stuff, which also won't be that cheap. For suspension components, that includes ball joints, bushings, springs/shocks, tie rods, etc.

The big conundrum I still face is whether or not it'll all be worth it for me in the end, because it is both a labor intensive, and expensive job for me to tackle. On the other hand, given how many miles I have on Egan now ( almost 162k), and its age, I wouldn't get more than maybe 4 grand if I sold it right now, plus you figure the extra couple grand I'll spend on parts for the engine and drivetrain, I don't see many vehicles that'll give me quite the excitement for the price. It's been my pride and joy for over a decade, and I still feel I cannot part ways with it. I sometimes worry if I'll only grow more attached to it after all is said and done. lol

Here's the one thing though, and I believe I brought it up to Matt last year after my trip through the mountains, I said to myself that I could not sell it. It was just that good. Maybe when I eventually pick up my next dream car, a pre-996 Porsche 911, I might be ready to part ways, but not now.
That is a lot of work on Egan, but...it'd be cheaper than a new car. And it's your car. That counts. Mini 's on a backroad are hard to beat. Sure, anyone can buy an 86, or a WRX, or even a Miata, and probably be quicker. But they won't be having more fun.

On Porsche, I don't know any petrolsexual that doesn't want an old 911. I saw that Matt Farah just bought one, and even in that meh color, I still want it.


But...as they say...there is no such thing as a cheap Porsche. You're either gonna have a metric fuckton of money to pour into an old "cheap" one, or buy one that is mechanically sound for $$$. And either way, when it inevitably breaks down, the cost of fixing one can be a bastard. I'm really hoping that the Porsche bubble bursts before too long. But one car you can actually find deals (relatively speaking) on is a Cayman.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/arti...-banish-gasoline-cars-by-2040-is-in-the-works

Nothing more than a simple pipe dream that'll never amount to anything that is even remotely considered sensible by any stretch of the imagination.

Look, I'm all for the future technologies into electric cars, but that's still going to take decades to take effect. And thinking about it further, putting forth legislation that gives a deadline such as this is inherently unrealistic. What about all the tens of millions of cars already on the road? Is there a plan in place for that? I could understand if you'd like to take the French approach by banning the new sale of ICE cars by 2040, but to suggest you cannot even register an ICE-powered car? Fucking bullshit, is what it is. California, you done goofed if that takes effect.

Again, banning the sale of new ICE-powered cars is one thing, and that I'd be all for. You could even expand the already collector, and vintage car registrations to include all ICE-powered cars, so they can only be driven at certain times of the year. Most importantly though, off-road/track use would be exempt from that, and could be driven at any time.

If it ever gets to the point where I cannot legally drive a classic/vintage car, let alone drive any car period, then I may not want to live on this planet anymore. Future generations will undoubtedly say we were savages for taking control of multi-ton hunks of metal at blistering speeds without assists, and I'd reply with simply, "You're goddamn right we did."
I agree that it's not realistic from the standpoint of not allowing any classic car registration (ain't no way; wouldn't stand up in court), but I don't think it's going to take decades to get to electric. People always think these things are unrealistic; last time CAFE standards were raised, everyone was saying "but they can't hit those MPG targets"...and lo and behold, now your garden variety Ford Focus gets 40 mpg on the highway already. You put a date and a target on it, because without one, nobody does anything. Deadlines get shit done, and honestly are a boot in the ass to innovation. I think we could go to manufacturing all-electric cars way quicker, tbh. Shit, that's the easy part.

The hard part is infrastructure. Do all gas stations get converted? Or do you build all new ones? Who builds what? How do you stagger the project's roll-out to make it as noninvasive as possible to peoples' normal lives? What standards do you create for fast-charging? What new EPA regulations are going to be put in place for this influx of giant underground battery stations? What timeline do you have for phasing out old vehicles and old gas stations? Don't get me wrong, all of this and more is going to get done. Whether it will get done by 2040 is, to be kind, debatable.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
:sigh: Damnit.

The Mini is leaking coolant. Again. I owe about $2,500 on it. If this is the water pump again (and not just a hose), I might just fill it with some coolant and take it to trade for a GTI or something. I could probably get enough in a trade-in to cover the outstanding loan, at least.

Not that I want to get rid of it. For reasons already stated, I don't. But damn.

That is a lot of work on Egan, but...it'd be cheaper than a new car. And it's your car. That counts. Mini 's on a backroad are hard to beat. Sure, anyone can buy an 86, or a WRX, or even a Miata, and probably be quicker. But they won't be having more fun.

On Porsche, I don't know any petrolsexual that doesn't want an old 911. I saw that Matt Farah just bought one, and even in that meh color, I still want it.


But...as they say...there is no such thing as a cheap Porsche. You're either gonna have a metric fuckton of money to pour into an old "cheap" one, or buy one that is mechanically sound for $$$. And either way, when it inevitably breaks down, the cost of fixing one can be a bastard. I'm really hoping that the Porsche bubble bursts before too long. But one car you can actually find deals (relatively speaking) on is a Cayman.

I agree that it's not realistic from the standpoint of not allowing any classic car registration (ain't no way; wouldn't stand up in court), but I don't think it's going to take decades to get to electric. People always think these things are unrealistic; last time CAFE standards were raised, everyone was saying "but they can't hit those MPG targets"...and lo and behold, now your garden variety Ford Focus gets 40 mpg on the highway already. You put a date and a target on it, because without one, nobody does anything. Deadlines get shit done, and honestly are a boot in the ass to innovation. I think we could go to manufacturing all-electric cars way quicker, tbh. Shit, that's the easy part.

The hard part is infrastructure. Do all gas stations get converted? Or do you build all new ones? Who builds what? How do you stagger the project's roll-out to make it as noninvasive as possible to peoples' normal lives? What standards do you create for fast-charging? What new EPA regulations are going to be put in place for this influx of giant underground battery stations? What timeline do you have for phasing out old vehicles and old gas stations? Don't get me wrong, all of this and more is going to get done. Whether it will get done by 2040 is, to be kind, debatable.
That's too bad about your Mini. I find it rather baffling the water pumps in those engines are known to fail since that basically keeps the engine from overheating. It's unfortunate that the Prince engine has become a bit of a terrible engine, and doubly so in your case. Here's hoping it is just a simple hose, and not the pump itself. I don't know how mechanically inclined you are, but if you do need to get a new water pump, at least they don't cost an arm and a leg to purchase. I have not read up on how to replace them though.

And yes, it is a lot of work for Egan, but this week I've been doing some reading up, as well as watching videos on doing many of the things I want to get done. Fortunately, this guy has the perfect walkthroughs for how to do a lot of the stuff for R53s (chiefly because he himself has a R53), and after watching through several of his videos, there's a lot to remove, yes, but it is not difficult per se, and I plan to take my time with it throughout the entire winter season. Plus, I won't be buying parts all at once, and instead some here, and some there. I've also realized that due to the nature of what I'm doing, I might as well do the suspension at the same time, since the sub-frame will be out, and I might as well do the ball joints, and bushings (at least in the front). Shocks and struts I could probably hold off though. Ultimately, money will be the big thing. I do have the means to purchase everything, but it's more if I want to spend the money. On the other hand, I've accepted that this is the type of person I am (Car Enthusiast), so it comes with the territory. Hell, better than drugs and hookers, amirite?

On the Porsche side of things, I like how he has a 87-89MY 911SC as that is basically the year range I was thinking about in the future. Compared to the earlier SC models, it has the bigger and more powerful engine, better transmission as Matt pointed out, and also a hydraulic clutch versus cable-operated, so it never needs adjusting. My Dad used to own an 81' 911 SC Targa that he eventually sold to his neighbor (who not only still owns it, but Tracks it a lot throughout the year, and says we are welcome to drive it whenever. I will take him up on that next year after my Mini is finished), and he also owned a 993 for a short period (unfortunately was tiptronic and not manual), as well as an early model 944. Good cars though. My older brother had talked about getting a used Cayman since they are relatively cheap on the market right now, and he also loves Porsche. We'll see what happens with him though.

On your last bit, perhaps you are right that maybe we should have a hard deadline, although I still maintain that it should be amended as to not force ICE-powered cars completely off the road because that would be economical suicide I believe for starters. Not to mention the tall order to salvage all the cars in the first place, and recycle them. It would be quite the undertaking I think. Not impossible, mind you, but I think banning all ICE-powered vehicles fro the road by 2040 in California is both too soon, and unrealistic.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
Cracked thermostat. $200 part. $175 installation.



Basically adding two additional car payments in. I guess I have to do it, because I can't afford a new car, and I'm not gonna spend the next 6 months looking for a used car again that meets my criteria. Finding a truly affordable, non-beat-to-hell used GTI or WRX or Civic SI is like trying to find a stable rolling meth lab.

Shit. You win, Mini. You better not have some catastrophic electric failure after this, or the timing chain death rattle.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
Cracked thermostat. $200 part. $175 installation.



Basically adding two additional car payments in. I guess I have to do it, because I can't afford a new car, and I'm not gonna spend the next 6 months looking for a used car again that meets my criteria. Finding a truly affordable, non-beat-to-hell used GTI or WRX or Civic SI is like trying to find a stable rolling meth lab.

Shit. You win, Mini. You better not have some catastrophic electric failure after this, or the timing chain death rattle.
I shall pray for good fortune ahead for your Mini. :mpray:
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
https://jalopnik.com/dont-be-biased-against-front-wheel-drive-1821649141

I love the comments on this one. You can tell who knows how to get lift-off oversteer and who doesn't ("Hell, even my 54-hp Polo can get sideways when it’s slippery enough and it’s driven dynamically"). And you can tell who has never driven old RWD to see that it, too, has problems. I had an '88 Crown Vic that would oversteer like mad. Which isn't "fun." To me, fun driving is having a car that will go through a corner at speed properly - which isn't sideways, drivetrain be damned.
I shall pray for good fortune ahead for your Mini. :mpray:
So a new warning light came on last week - not on the dash/speedo, but on the digital readout on the tach. I looked up what the light was in the owner's manual...and it wasn't there. I looked it up online...and it wasn't there. I was freaking out. Then my eye happened to catch the door window switch. There was the symbol. I was getting a warning light because it was too damn cold for the window motor to work properly.

I'm kinda wondering how this design makes it out of QC in European-designed cars. They have damn cold winters, too. So why put in a door that has frameless windows? It's a curious design choice. I suppose they just weren't anticipating the absolutely arctic weather we've had lately.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
Yup. I saw that last night. Equally as cool though is this:

https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2018/01/14/mustang-bullitt-found-real-mcqueen

And it is true being a "one of those days" type of cars. In reality, it wouldn't make sense for me to get one at this point given I already own two vehicles, but some day, it would be cool. It honestly doesn't make a whole lot of sense anyway, given it won't handle as well as my Mini, is a lot bigger than my Mini, and most of the people who buy them will never be as cool as Lt. Frank Bullitt himself.

The vibe I get from these Bullitt editions are people who want to think they are cool, but in reality, they are fat, balding middle-aged men that simply try to hard.

I still want one though, whether it be this new edition, or the 2008-2009 model. Not a fan of the 2001, and a 1968 GT 390 Fastback in Highland Green would be more expensive to get these days than this new edition.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
They said it couldn't be done.

They said front-wheel drive was for safe cars.

They said you had to buy an expensive rear-wheel drive car.

Over to you, Japan.


Some day @Shoulder, me and you are gonna drift Minis.
The vibe I get from these Bullitt editions are people who want to think they are cool, but in reality, they are fat, balding middle-aged men that simply try to hard.
I also think they're cool looking, but this is why I couldn't buy one. It's a mid-life crisis mobile.

But I'm also pointing this out because at my age, I see some of my peers literally going through their own mid-life crises in various other ways. But no one says shit about those things because they aren't balding bros buying Mustangs. Which is kinda messed up, when you think about it. If someone else tells you "I did (fill in the blank)" and they're around 40, you've gotta sorta nod and be like "right on, be free and do what you do." But if you add "bought a Mustang" into that blank, the response is "LOL you poor bastard."

[/random observation]
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
On some recent drinking nights, me and a buddy have watched a couple of old F1 races. The 1979 season has been making its way onto youtube, and we dug into it. A few nights ago, my buddy dug into some old photos on his phone, and he saw that he actually saw one of the cars that raced that season, when he was on vacation in Italy.

What car? The 1979 Ferrari 312T4.

To see it in action, we watched the '79 French Grand Prix.


If you've ever wondered why people used to watch racing so much, that's it. That era of F1 was something else. No traction or stability control. Very little aerodynamic downforce. Laughable tire technology. Manual transmissions. Tracks with shitty paving and tar snakes everywhere. Effing trees visible that you could fly off into, if you took a corner too hot. Look at that racing. Oppo-lock dialed in on the regular. Four-wheel drifting. Fighting wheel-to-wheel. Every time you see a car get loose there, that means the driver was a few milliseconds away from death.

It's less than half an hour to watch that highlight reel of the race, but if you can't spare it, fast forward to the last three laps. From about 20 minutes on, Rene Arnoux (Renault) and Gilles Villenueve (the Ferrari 312T4) basically do vehicular combat. They bang wheels. They try to run each other off the track. They lock up brakes trying to pass each other. The Renault was the faster car on that road that day (they had a twin-turbo engine; the race was won by Jean-Pierre Jabouille in the other Renault, which was a few seconds ahead of everyone else). But Villenueve was nuts. He drove like a mad man. Right on the knife's edge.

It's hard to argue with everyone who venerates the greats - Fangio, Schumacher, Prost, Senna. They have the resumes. Gilles Villenueve never won a championship. He died too soon, in an on-track accident. Maybe he wouldn't have ever won like those other drivers.

But I'll be damned if he wasn't as talented as any of them.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
So on my NC work road trip, I got a loaner/rental - a Jeep Renegade.

First, the good. Easiest road trip of my life. Bluetooth connection was pretty easy, all of my tunes came with me, and I got turn-by-turn direction through the audio system. New steering wheels are awesome because you can turn up the volume, skip songs, or switch audio sources without ever having your hand leave the wheel. It's so easy that I honestly wonder why people fly. My co-workers took a 53-minute flight to get down south. But...it's an hour to the airport. And an hour to get onto the plane (if you're lucky). Then another hour to get your bags, get out of the airport and go to the rental car place down there. The another 30 minutes to drive to the hotel. Yes, their trip was faster. But mine was easier.

Also good - really comfortable car. Jeeps aren't renowned for comfort, but this thing ate up highway miles, and the seats were awesome. Good interior materials, too. It had a good deal of wind noise due to its mirrors, but otherwise? That things is a cocoon. It's just you and the road.

I wouldn't call the engine overly peppy, but it was adequate. I fooled the automatic transmission a few times; in parking lots it would try to skip from second to fourth and there was that old clunk (I thought autos were better than this now - online sources list this with like a 9-speed auto, but I had a 5-speed slushbox). Reasonably good steering.

The bad?

Oh my god the blind spots.



The C/D pillars in the back are an accident waiting to happen. Utterly horrendous. The back-up camera and the large-ish mirrors (I think mine were bigger than that picture) don't make up for normal sight lines. Terribad. A car passed me on the right and I almost turned right into him because he camped out in my blind spot. To drive this thing on a daily basis, you'll have to adjust your mirrors waaaaaaaaay the eff out there and constantly check them.

The gas mileage is also pretty shitty. I think it's supposed to get about 30 mpg on the highway, which...didn't seem to be true. And that'd be OK...if it didn't have a tank of about 12.5 gallons. That's a tank about the same size as that of a Ford Fiesta. I gassed up full before I left, and stopped twice en route, because I'd be driving along happily, skip a couple songs in my shuffle, then look back down to see a quarter tank had gone away. Whenever I got below half a tank, I was looking for gas stations, because I didn't know how fast it would drain.

There's a ton of wasted space in this thing. It looks fairly compact, but then you get behind the wheel, look out over a long dash that seems to go on forever, and see a hood longer than that four-banger needs. It's got a bulky, Darth Vader-y looking plastic assembly around the interior rear view that doesn't seem to serve any function; with the EZ Pass system right next to it, the passenger side got blotted out of view pretty easily. Don't get me wrong, it's spacious and not at all claustrophobic, but FFS, trim an inch here or there and you'd still have plenty of shoulder/waist/headroom.

But...in its defense, it all makes sense. Get behind the wheel, and aside from the mirrors, the car is perfectly sensible; you can drive it with 100% confidence within 20 minutes. I grok why suburban families buy these things. It'll go in the snow (this one has 4WD), carries 4-5 people, and will handle family vacations with ease. Everyone bemoaning the CUV/crossover apocalypse needs to explain why a sedan that might get 5 mpg better is so much better than this. Because I don't see the reason. It's easier to get into and will handle winter better.

Of course, all of the things that make it a good roadtrip/family car make it an utterly horrendous driver's car.

The moment I got back into my Mini, I realized how completely anesthetized you are from really driving that Jeep. The Renegade gives you no feedback. The steering doesn't communicate any grip you may be losing. The brakes are pretty much binary; there isn't any in-between braking zone to utilize. The throttle is similarly digital feeling. The suspension is so dampened that, again, you won't know you've lost tire grip until you're watching the scenery go in the opposite direction.

Granted, my Mini is a manic little thing. That's why I bought it. But whew, that Jeep is nearly autonomous as-is.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
Well, I hadn't had a chance for an irresponsible test drive in a bit. But, 2019 is a new year, and one of the dealers around here actually got a Fiesta ST.

Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan.

I get it.

When I first got in the car, I didn't. It was smaller than I thought it would be. The clutch is (as typical for new cars) so light that it felt like an old seat-with-pedals-and-wheel arcade videogame. And the clutch travel is almost comically long. The interior materials are, if I'm honest, far worse than my 2009 Mini (and this is a Fiesta ST from 2016 we're talking about). The visibility isn't great. The shifter is about 2 inches too far away, so that the throws feel longer than they should. The wheel feels a touch small. The windshield is too damn long - you can't place the nose of the car anywhere, because you literally cannot see it, which is ridiculous in something this small.

Then you turn the key and rev it out.

Fuckin' hell, man. Old naturally-aspirated engines in normal commuter cars, regardless of what you're driving, usually want to shift at 3,000 RPM. That's where they're comfortable. The only exception to that were old Honda engines, which were built to rev out to 7 or 8 grand. This little Fiesta will let you beat on it. It's a power-bottom. You can rev the nuts off of it, and it's comfortable all up and down the rev range. 4,000 RPM felt like the earliest you should shift, tbh. I almost never redline the Mini (just for the odd Italian tune up), but the Fiesta damn-near craves it. This is, hands down, the best engine I've ever driven. It's better than the tuned, dual-turbo, straight-six BMW 335I my buddy has, which is basically M3 power after the tune. No, the Ford isn't as fast, but in the BMW it feels like you're really pushing the car, like you're beating on it. No one wants to beat on a car they own; it feels like you're stressing the car, and asking for some component failure somewhere. You can push the ST, but it never feels like you're asking too much of it. The car wants to rev. It is way faster than the numbers suggest. I think the 0-60 time is somehwere around the high 6's, or around 7 seconds if you're not dumping the clutch. 1/4 mile around 15 seconds. But the acceleration for usable public road speeds? I don't think there's anything out there that touches this for usable speed. On a tight, twisty road, your WRX will not lose a Fiesta ST. An M2 eventually would, but that's $60K, and you primarily gain better off-the-line performance...and a top speed that will earn you jail time. And if it rains? I'm not so sure your M2 will lose the little ST on a back road.

So, the engine is fabulous. Utterly amazing, if I'm honest. The rest of the car? Turn-in is pretty impressive. The chassis is not upset by fairly bad road imperfections, and the suspension is stiff, but not overly punishing. The chassis/suspension is also quite communicative - you know what is going on in all four corners of the car, like there's a telephone line from each wheel to the butt of the driver seat. Good stereo, too.

I nearly bought it. I don't have the money to, and the trips I plan on taking this year prohibited me from doing so, but I almost did it anyway.

Then I got back in the Mini and drove away, and the differences with the Fiesta became even more starkly clear. The ST is loud. It doesn't sound like the cabin is too chattery when you're in it, but then you switch to another car, and the NVH difference is staggering. So is the chassis. The Mini feels like an old Cadillac, by comparison. It has a shorter wheel base, but the dampers are so, so, so much better. No, the ST doesn't punish you, but you still feel every bump and crack in the road...and that can get old, after awhile. The interior is also quite a bit of a step up in the Mini; it has over 140,000 miles on it, and no rattles or squeaks. The Fiesta ST has 25,000 miles on it, and I'm pretty sure that the cheaper, more brittle plastics are going to start a chorus after 75,000 miles or so. And then there's the handling - the Mini can honestly take as much speed into corners as the ST - on well-worn tires, no less. The shifter throws aren't shorter, but the shifter itself is closer to the driver, which I prefer.

So the Mini either wins all of those categories, or brings the Fiesta ST to a draw.

But the Mini simply cannot accelerate like that ST. Not even close. That's probably better for my driving record, all things considered. But dear god, I still want that ST for its engine.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear

It's quite interesting you talking about this because you mention the lack of power in your Mini, and yet if you drove the S model, it pretty much has what you seek. Granted, for the 2nd Gen Minis, it's a crap shoot at times due to reliability issues of the earlier models compared to newer ones (2011 and newer is where the 2nd Gen Minis started becoming much better).

I have heard many good things about both the Fiesta ST, and the Focus ST (minus the head gasket issues of the latter), but they fall short in the materials department. It's as though they focused more so with the performance, and less about the overall package, which is sort of what my Mini is like. Quite unrefined, loud, rattles, and yet it just loves to rev, and drive at any point. Doesn't hurt that the Tritec Engine in the 1st gen Minis are practically bulletproof. That's interesting though you mentioning how good that engine is.

Ultimately, I think you're in the right with keeping your Mini, despite some of the hardships you've had over the last few years.
 

EvilTw1n

Even my henchmen think I'm crazy.
Moderator
It's quite interesting you talking about this because you mention the lack of power in your Mini, and yet if you drove the S model, it pretty much has what you seek. Granted, for the 2nd Gen Minis, it's a crap shoot at times due to reliability issues of the earlier models compared to newer ones (2011 and newer is where the 2nd Gen Minis started becoming much better).
I did drive a couple of R53 Cooper S cars, but in my price range at the time* - about $5K - they were all absolutely beat to living hell. I wish I could've found a good example, because a supercharger feels different than a turbo. At least in those, it did. There was more of a poke, then a surge of torque. Turbocharged cars I've driven in the past few years are comparatively more immediate on the torque...but that could've just been the R53s I drove. I did almost buy a regular R53 (in British racing green, natch), but by the time I had made my mind up on that one, it had been sold. Now you've got me thinking I should try to find an old S and see how it drives. :p

[*And at that time, I wasn't the driver I am now, either. I'm not a good driver now, mind you, but I was worse then, because I hadn't really driven properly quick for about a decade. So I wasn't a great judge of what those cars could've done.]
I have heard many good things about both the Fiesta ST, and the Focus ST (minus the head gasket issues of the latter), but they fall short in the materials department. It's as though they focused more so with the performance, and less about the overall package, which is sort of what my Mini is like. Quite unrefined, loud, rattles, and yet it just loves to rev, and drive at any point. Doesn't hurt that the Tritec Engine in the 1st gen Minis are practically bulletproof. That's interesting though you mentioning how good that engine is.
Ford absolutely neglected the cabin (**), so it's pretty much just hard plastics over a good suspension and a good engine. But man, that little 1.6 liter in the ST is special. Granted, the one I drove was already broken in (it had about 25K miles on it), but it never once felt like it couldn't take some back road hooliganism - and I was beating on that thing like it was a rental.

It is the only engine I've ever driven that felt that way. You could bounce that thing off the limiter and it couldn't have cared less. TBH, a part of that might have to do with Ford's "sound symposer," or whatever that little resonator is that they pipe sound in through from the firewall. It makes the engine sound bassier in the cabin, so that might factor in. Other engines get harsher as you get to redline, because of course they do. But...not that Ecoboost. Maybe massaging the engine noise a bit can go a long way in masking that. That aside, the little bastard just revs. I really hope you get a chance to drive one of these. The press the ST gets is not unwarranted. You do have to drive it hard, though. Below 3,000 RPM, it really does feel like a normal Fiesta.

(**The R56 cabin is just a nicer place to be than the Fiesta, by far. Everyone talks about Minis shaking themselves to death with a short wheelbase and a stiff suspension. Mine doesn't even have a rattle. My only - ONLY - complaint with the interior is that there's a little rip developing on the left bolster in the driver seat. But man, it's got 140K miles on it, and it's a vinyl seat. That's pretty good.)
Ultimately, I think you're in the right with keeping your Mini, despite some of the hardships you've had over the last few years.
This month is my last car payment on the R56, and yeah, it's been more than worth it. I went in knowing I'd have to put money into the car. It had 119K miles on it when I drove it off the lot, after all. So...new bushings all around was...I forget, maybe $200? New thermostat, $200. New water pump, probably $400. That's not too bad, all things considered. Helps that my '09 never exhibited any timing chain rattle.
 

Shoulder

Your Resident Beardy Bear
My Fiancee and I went to the Chicago Auto Show yesterday, and saw some really nice cars, both new, and old designs, but it occurred to us later on the day that we are becoming car snobs, much like Beer, and Booze snobs. Some cars we noticed miss the point on certain simple ergonomic features such as making it easy to fold down the back seats (same with 3rd row), and others do it very nicely (buttons on the side that can do either). Some of the sedans are nice, but the truck space can be difficult to reach in the way back because it's so deep, and the rear window takes some of the real estate in order to see in the back (can still fit multiple bodies in there, so there's that) On other vehicles, the front dashes are overall nice with good quality materials, but some are going full-bore with touch screens, and I hate that. Even some of the vehicles that go for push button gear selections I think haven't really gotten it down. Honestly, we did, however, like how Lincoln has it setup, and that is on the left side of the touch screen in big bold letters, so it's easy to spot, and not in the traditional location where the normal physical gear would be (Saw the Honda Passport does this, and felt it wasn't needed there). The Ram 1500 has the gear selector rotating knob, which is not the worst idea, but it is close to other knobs, so potentially someone could knock it into neutral. In terms of interior quality, we honestly really like Lincoln. Very impressed with the interior quality, better than Cadillac we think. We even saw the new MKZ with it's hybrid trim level, and for 45 grand, you get this fantastically well-equipped sedan that also gets 40mpg combined, which is really nice. The Lincoln Continental has fantastic rear seating, and the head rests were the best out of all the cars that day.

Speaking of Cadillac, another letdown overall. Sure, the new CT6-V was incredibly nice inside, AND I think it's one of the few cars that gets it right for rear screen entertainment. The screen can actually retract inside the front seats, so it doesn't take extra room, or risk being destroyed because it's always present. The front seats were also nice, and overall was cool. But the crossovers? The XT4, and XT5? For the price you pay there are other cars that do the job just as well, even more so, and for a lesser price. And the Escalade is just way too big, and way too over priced for what it is. The new Toyota RAV4 was a nice improvement over the old one in terms of interior quality, ergonomics, and front seat layout. The rear seats are nothing to shout about as it's only a small crossover, but the cargo space is large. It's not a bad vehicle. Now, we get into some of the disappointments: The Ford Ranger I was not impressed by. It's not bad by any stretch, but I expected a bit more in terms of innovation that sets it apart from the competition. Speaking of mid-size trucks, the Jeep Gladiator, and again, unimpressive overall. It's just a Wrangler with a pick-up bed, and I'm sorry, but that is not good enough. For starters, because it's just a Wrangler pick-up they'll charge an extra 5-10 grand for a similarly priced Tacoma by comparison. As a pick-up, it does nothing innovative (pick-ups that go off-road is nothing new, and being able to remove the roof is not a reason to get one alone I think). What the Gladiator does have going for it is the looks. It truly looks good, possibly one of the best looking midsize trucks in the segment, but other than that, it doesn't do anything that will wow you.

Moving on, we get to something we did like. We took a ride in the new Kia Telluride, and found it to be incredibly nice inside, and for the price with its options, not many vehicles in that segment can touch it. If typical Kia reliability stays good, this'll be a real good contender. I've even recommend my parents check it out when it goes on sale. With the captains seats, and all the luxury features, it would be a good traveling vehicle with 4 adults, plus luggage, coolers, and other space for goodies to buy along the way. On paper, it's very good, so here's hoping the driveability will hold up (the ones we took a ride in were modified for off-road use, so not representative of the stock product). We were also very impressed with the Ram 1500, which by and large feel its the best fullsize truck in terms of tech, utility, being innovative. The Ram Box or the bed, plus that new fancy split tailgate is highly impressive, especially for a truck, and the interior quality I think is best-in-class. The only real drawback for the Ram is its size. It's just too big, which is why I wouldn't get one for that reason. A mid-size truck is all I would need for utility. (Side note: If the Dodge Dakota comes back as a Baby Ram pick-up that is similarly spec'ed like the Ram, it would be a real winner I think.)

Speaking of that, we both come away impressed with the Honda Ridgeline, which is a few years old now, but still impresses we think. For starters, it, like Ram, does some innovative things with the bed that most others don't. The tailgate both goes down, and opens to the side, which is nice, and it has that trunk space for extra storage (something the 1st gen Ridgeline also had). You might say it's just a Honda Pilot with a pick-up bed, so why do I like it? Well, again, unlike the Gladiator, the Ridgeline actually does more than just stick a bed on there. It utilizes the space efficiency with the storage, and the swinging tailgate, plus because it's unibody, it'll certain ride nicer than the Gladiator, and get better gas mileage. If my money were on the line for a mid-size pick up, the Ridgeline would be that car, hands down.

One side note I'll make is going further with the whole touch screens, a few brands are butchering how the screen should be integrated into the dash, and Mazda I think is the worst offender with the screen looking it was simply tacked on, so it sticks out, and feels flimsy as a result. Carmakers needs to start integrating the screen into the dash so it looks like it was designed with it in mind. The new Mazda 3 we also checked out, and while interior quality was nice, the screen where it was just wasn't good. Mazda may be the only independently owned mass brand out there, but boy do they need a less on in ergonomics, and overall dash layout. It's unacceptable in this day and age. Audi does this too, although I give them props for at least letting you retract the screen, but then you're missing out on being able to access certain features. the new Audi Q8 does this well in terms of integration with the touchscreen, but then they decide that everything should be touch screen enabled, and no physical buttons. It was a serious letdown in that regard. I. WANT. BUTTONS!
 
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