Paul's Here

2010 Geneva Motor Show

38 posts in this topic

Check out some of these fantastic cars here.

My favorite:

Mansory Rolls-Royce Ghost

Tasteful, classy, refined — the Rolls-Royce Ghost is all of these things. However, the mod from Swiss super tuner Mansory is clearly not. The tuner describes it as "breathtaking individualization," which, to be fair, isn't far from the truth. Purple paint with gold trim certainly isn't shy, and nor are the performance enhancements. The factory Ghost packs a powerful 6.6-liter V12 engine producing 570 horsepower. But Mansory took it even further with its ECU tuning by squeezing an additional 150 horses out of it. The V12 now develops an impressive 720 horsepower and an astounding 752 lb-ft of torque. The result is a Roller that'll sprint from zero to 62 mph in 4.4 seconds and go on to a top speed of 192 mph.

41684b8c5e7044a7a957c96ba967a22b.jpg

I want it... I want it...

Not to mention the ABT R8 GTR that is "good for a sprint to 62 mph of 3.2 seconds."

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Besides the color, I think this is a wonderful car. I do not think I would own one as I enjoy driving myself, but if I need a comfortable tank, this would be the car. Of course I do not have the money to purchase one at this time either.

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41684b8c5e7044a7a957c96ba967a22b.jpg

I want it... I want it...

As someone I work with said when he caught a glimpse of a neighbor's Saleen:

You'd be stylin-n-flyin!

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I like the Porsche 918....

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41684b8c5e7044a7a957c96ba967a22b.jpg

I want it... I want it...

As someone I work with said when he caught a glimpse of a neighbor's Saleen:

You'd be stylin-n-flyin!

Too garish for me. Arab Sheik may enjoy it.

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Too garish for me. Arab Sheik may enjoy it.

Maybe a different color, then?

2011-rolls-royce-ghost.jpg

By all accounts this new RR has a refined presence, ride, and feel. I can't wait to see one in person. ($2K/day rental, anyone?)

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It's personal taste of course, but the front end, in particular the lower intake, clashes with the flowing lines of the rest of the car. Are those suicide doors I notice? Regardless, this car would not suit my personality.

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It's personal taste of course, but the front end, in particular the lower intake, clashes with the flowing lines of the rest of the car. Are those suicide doors I notice? Regardless, this car would not suit my personality.

Current RR front ends are a bit much, aren't they?

The Phantom's substnatial front, which is a huge car to begin with:

phantom_front.jpg

Those are suicide doors. They've become an RR trademark.

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I place these in the same category as airport limos. They are for comfortable and luxurious transport (often used by African Cabinet Ministers :D ), but they came across as too heavy and tank-like for my tastes. Yes, it is personal preference, but I have always liked cars that did more with less.

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Yes, it is personal preference, but I have always liked cars that did more with less.

Same here! While I admire and would love one of these RRs in certain contexts, give me a '60s Elan, a '73 911 RS, or an Elise SC with Exige engine upgrades any day.

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The XJ220 Jag' is still my dream dream car. I once saw one "live". It was *HUGE*. Incredibly long and wide, much more than a picture would suggest.

My favorite car in terms of lines in recent years has been the BMW z8.

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The other day, when I went skiing with a couple of friends, I was driving my LS400 behind one of them. When we got out, he remarked that my car looked "very gangster." (In Hungarian slang, you can turn any noun into an adjective.) I asked him to elaborate and he explained that he meant the massive front grille, which had made him feel like he was being tailed by the Mafia. Of course I am not anything like a gangster, but I sort of get a kick out of my car commanding that kind of respect. :D

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Oh come on, sometimes more for the sake of more is great:

I love super- and megacars as well, but for me it comes down to a certain balance and dynamics feel that only seems possible with more spartan design parameters.

The megas I love:

The McLaren F1 LM -- almost an antique and just as rare, but it keeps climbing in value because even though we now have access to a deeper knowledge base, better materials, and incredible design tools, various regulations make it impossible to offer a supercar that's this light (I'd bet that the sort of power we're talking about here will either be illegal or impossible to afford soon. It's already impossible to offer a megaengine that's as responsive to the throttle as this one was.)

The Zonda F -- way too ostentatious a presence for my tastes but it's as close as you're going to get to the above, with the added benefit of a degree of livability (the LM is a single seater that will destroy your hearing if you don't wear ear protection.)

The Carrera GT -- dating esthetically (that rear curve of the doors, what's up?), but still one of the most challenging and best handling cars ever released, with one of the most willing V10s ever unleashed on the road (it's one of the few cars in this league that's expected to appreciate over the next 5-20 years, so get your banker on the phone before things turn.)

The Lexus LFA -- packed with a V10 that can go from idle to its 9Krpm redline in 0.6 seconds (that's so fast that they couldn't find an analog tachometer to keep up with it. They ended up emulated one on a video screen.) Understated quality and luxury throughout. We'll have to do something about the shift times (how dare they do away with the manual transmission option AND put in a slow, rough paddle-shifter? Lexus claim it was done to emulate the feel of a manual transmission. ?!)

The Veyron -- for the sheer audacity of the thing, an insane balance of 1001 hp, torque figures my spellchecker won't let me type out, luxury, craftsmanship and phenomenal in-person looks (it's the least photogenic noteworthy car that I'm aware of.) I hate that it doesn't handle well - 4500lbs! - and I can't stand forced-air induction engines, but it's too big an achievement for it not to make this list.

The supers:

The new Ruf RGT -- it's getting a phenomenal, proprietary, Porsche Engineering-, Porsche Marketing-humbling V8. Equipped with one of Ruf's phenomenal analog suspensions, this is The 911. (Air suspensions, Porsche? "Really?!")

The Balboni edition of the Lamborghini Gallardo -- we'll have to do something about its no-feel brakes, its less than stunning throttle response, and the white stripe that runs from the front hood, through the interior and off the rear. But, by all accounts, it's the most exciting, most driver-oriented mid-engine currently available. (Why did they mess with the looks of one of the more unique, exciting yet refined bodies of our time with a stripe?)

Special consideration catergory:

Any car that might impress Claudia Bassols -- even if it's a Prius!

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The Veyron -- for the sheer audacity of the thing, an insane balance of 1001 hp, torque figures my spellchecker won't let me type out, luxury, craftsmanship and phenomenal in-person looks (it's the least photogenic noteworthy car that I'm aware of.) I hate that it doesn't handle well - 4500lbs! - and I can't stand forced-air induction engines, but it's too big an achievement for it not to make this list.

Why not forced induction? Relying on local atmospheric pressure to push air into the combustion chamber is primitive. That is why the engines have to make up with size. Give me a small turbo charged engine with it's reduced weight and top end torque.

Back in 1986 look at how these small engines ran flat out for three weeks on Talladega setting world records.

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=Ov8m8gJNeGA

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Why not forced induction?

In sports cars and sporty sports GTs, I want as much control over the engine as possible. That's almost impossible to do with turbocharged engines because of three reasons:

-- The turbo lag they've been saying has been reduced to almost imperceptible levels for thirty years now.

-- When the boost comes on you don't necessarily know what you'll get (As I'm sure you know, turbos are sensitive to weather conditions. They also cancel themselves out with the heat they generate, as they can loose as much as a third of their impact once items like the intercooler, if so equipped, the intake and valvetrain reach sustained spirited driving temps.)

-- Traditionally, turbochargers are sized so that they start to have an impact in the low-midrange (3500-4500rpm) and peak a few thousand rpm later. That costs the engine some of the power and fine control possible with higher rpm (say at rpm over 8K, exactly where normally aspirated performance engines are in their glory.)

Relying on local atmospheric pressure to push air into the combustion chamber is primitive.

I guess it depends on the application. I love turbocharged diesel engined trucks and boats. When turbos are used in racecars they're a blast, but those engines run in a relatively narrow band, making it possible to both fine tune the boost adequately and set up cooling systems that reduce the impact of all that heat.

Once in a while, I see a street engine mated with a medium or small turbo, which reduces lag and gives a nice, consistent boost to the midrange. As long as these cars aren't driven much above 8/10s for too long, these engines make great sense. But, given the marketing traditions of turbocharged engines - max hps! - they're the devil's work in my view.

That is why the engines have to make up with size. Give me a small turbo charged engine with it's reduced weight and top end torque.

Well, that's always been the right use for them, hasn't it?

A few points for your consideration, Arnold.

-- VW and others are trying to use superchargers and turbochargers on the same block in an attempt to give seamless or near seamless boost throughout the rpm range (VW has succeeded with a 1.4 liter engine that's in use in many VAG cars.) Perhaps such a setup will even allow the driver to have micro control over a high revving engine.

-- Two-and three-speed superchargers are being worked on so that superchargers can make power contributions past the midrange. If these pan out, we could see forced air with far less of a downside than either turbocharged, or turbocharged-supercharged engines. (As best as I can tell, work on turbocharger-supercharger systems is driven by Emissions and mpg issues, not performance advantages.)

-- While most large displacement engines are heavy and lazy, there are exceptions. Most of the cars I listed under mega- and supercars have large, light, manic engines that are normally aspirated.

Back in 1986 look at how these small engines ran flat out for three weeks on Talladega setting world records.

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=Ov8m8gJNeGA

Thanks for the link!

I understand that many German and Italian motorheads embrace turbos because they have the option of driving on roads where it's common to cruise in the 90-150mph range. At such speeds, a turbo can make all the difference, as they enable cars to soar to the upper part of the range before circumstances require traffic to slow down. Note, however, that the very best sports cars and track cars made for and by people that live in these areas are still normally aspirated.

I hope this was worth your time, Arnold!

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I understand that many German and Italian motorheads embrace turbos because they have the option of driving on roads where it's common to cruise in the 90-150mph range. At such speeds, a turbo can make all the difference, as they enable cars to soar to the upper part of the range before circumstances require traffic to slow down. Note, however, that the very best sports cars and track cars made for and by people that live in these areas are still normally aspirated.

I hope this was worth your time, Arnold!

Of course, always willing to learn different view points. :D

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This went up today on evo's site:

And if [reducing CO2 numbers to meet regulations] means we still get excellent naturally-aspirated supercars like the Gallardo LP570-4 Superleggera and Murcielago LP670-4 SV without engine downsizing, it’s a move we’re happy to support.

To take this thread on yet another, barely makable tangent:

Lambo has also opened up a research laboratory in the US, the neatly titled ‘Automobili Lamborghini Advanced Composite Structures Laboratory’. It’s in partnership with the Univeristy of Washington and Boeing, a leader in the use of carbon composite solutions in aerospace construction.

How many trillions of dollars will be spent unnecessarily before the Green-thing dies? (See the prices for carbon fiber material in its various forms in the 18-24 months after Airbus and Boeing started using the stuff in their products -- it basically quadrupled and stayed there. As I understand it, it's almost impossible to open a carbon fiber manufacturing plant in the US. All the American companies that own many of the relevant patents could do was license someone in Japan to make the stuff and have it ship it here and to Europe. And shipping carbon fiber in its more popular industrial forms is both expensive and whatever the opposite of Green is because it has to remain frozen until its about to be cut.)

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As I understand it, it's almost impossible to open a carbon fiber manufacturing plant in the US. All the American companies that own many of the relevant patents could do was license someone in Japan to make the stuff and have it ship it here and to Europe. And shipping carbon fiber in its more popular industrial forms is both expensive and whatever the opposite of Green is because it has to remain frozen until its about to be cut.)

Why can't carbon fiber be manufactured in America?

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As I understand it, it's almost impossible to open a carbon fiber manufacturing plant in the US. All the American companies that own many of the relevant patents could do was license someone in Japan to make the stuff and have it ship it here and to Europe. And shipping carbon fiber in its more popular industrial forms is both expensive and whatever the opposite of Green is because it has to remain frozen until its about to be cut.)

Why can't carbon fiber be manufactured in America?

Excellent question. Let's ask the Greens and people who don't want manufacturing facilities that involve oil refinement in their neighborhoods. (BTW, even with these obstacles progress continues. Horatio Pagani, the carbon fiber master behind Pagani Automobili, is using carbon fiber with strands of titanium woven in, in order to better the strength/weight ratios of the parts he manufactures in-house.)

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Excellent question. Let's ask the Greens and people who don't want manufacturing facilities that involve oil refinement in their neighborhoods. (BTW, even with these obstacles progress continues. Horatio Pagani, the carbon fiber master behind Pagani Automobili, is using carbon fiber with strands of titanium woven in, in order to better the strength/weight ratios of the parts he manufactures in-house.)

I understand that they have destroyed industry in California, and the New England area, but I thought states like Texas welcomed industry and didn't care about oil related facilities. Why aren't they there?

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Excellent question. Let's ask the Greens and people who don't want manufacturing facilities that involve oil refinement in their neighborhoods. (BTW, even with these obstacles progress continues. Horatio Pagani, the carbon fiber master behind Pagani Automobili, is using carbon fiber with strands of titanium woven in, in order to better the strength/weight ratios of the parts he manufactures in-house.)

I understand that they have destroyed industry in California, and the New England area, but I thought states like Texas welcomed industry and didn't care about oil related facilities. Why aren't they there?

Good point, but I don't have an answer for you. All I have is what I've read across the fields of composites, boating and automotive. Perhaps ewv could help?

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The carbon fibre industry's main client currently is the aerospace industry. Carbon fibre is the future of the auto industry, but from talking to the market leader's operations director, I understood that they need at least one major auto maker to make the necessary investments in order to be able to scale up production sufficiently to drop the price of CF materials below metallic substitutes.

I would venture the guess that Airbus being in Europe (and the A380 being the first majorly CF-structured aircraft) they just set up the factories near the main customer.

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The carbon fibre industry's main client currently is the aerospace industry. Carbon fibre is the future of the auto industry, but from talking to the market leader's operations director, I understood that they need at least one major auto maker to make the necessary investments in order to be able to scale up production sufficiently to drop the price of CF materials below metallic substitutes.

I would venture the guess that Airbus being in Europe (and the A380 being the first majorly CF-structured aircraft) they just set up the factories near the main customer.

Well, according to all kinds of other experts, the mainstream auto industry isn't already using carbon fiber because of the price of the material and the price and amount of labor involved. The labor issues can be resolved with a technology that was sort of test-run for the auto industry when McLaren was building the SLR (it's almost like pouring the carbon fiber into a mold instead of unraveling frozen sheets, cutting it, packing it, curing it just so, etc.)

The soaring of the price of the material in no time makes it reasonably clear that it's not just a matter of upping production.

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