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post #1 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 11:22 AM Thread Starter
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Question which is better for racing?

My cousin and I were arguning which one was better for racing. Front wheel drive or rear wheel drive. which one do you guys think is better.
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post #2 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 11:41 AM
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"Racing" is a VERY broad term...

If you're talking drag racing (and most automotive racing in general) RWD is better (IMHO).

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post #3 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 12:22 PM
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Well since you came to a front wheel drive forum, we all know what answer you are looking for... of course, front wheel drive rules. It rules any and all kinds of racing.

seriously though, if you look at rally racing for example then AWD is the way to go. But if the choice is limited to FWD vs. RWD then the laws of physics can't be argued with.


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post #4 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 12:44 PM
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uummm...how about mid wheel drive

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post #5 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 12:51 PM
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Rear wheel is "Considered" Better becuase you can stuff a larger motor under the hood.

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post #6 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 01:50 PM
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No, it's because upon acceleration, the weight transfers TO the drive wheels, not away from them.

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post #7 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 05:49 PM
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On dry pavement, AWD and RWD are about equal on a road course, but as soon as traction is questioned, the AWD pulls. And in the rain, AWD is unstoppable. But as for FWD/RWD, I've owned all 3 drivelines in the last 3 years.

FWD is really good for nothing other than building cheap disposable cars for people who don't know how to control a vehicle when the **** hits the fan. Think about it, ALL the weight over the front wheels? Can we say severe understeer, horrible weight distribution, and all the weight shifting AWAY from the drive wheels under acceleration? You're putting 3 different forces (acceleration, steering, braking) on a single pair of tires, and the other air or just weight carriers and braking. Then you're left with a the problem of trying to fit an engine AND a transmission under the hood and you've got no room to make a driveline stout enough to take the power you can extract from a modern engine. Even FWD engine. But still considering that utterly horrible weight problem? Sounds like a really bad formula to me.

RWD is old school, been around the longest by far, VERY proven in all forms of racing with the exception of Rally. You've got a much more balanced platform. Engine in front, transmission in middle, power to the rear. You split the performance loads more equally among all four tires, better weight distribution, and the room in the driveline for something powerful and more reliable.

Corner exit:
FWD: You've already got the front tires loaded up laterally through the turn with the majority of the vehicles weight on them, you get on the gas and shift that weight away from the front tires that are trying to apply that power and you have horrible inefficiency of the circle of traction for the front tires. All that weight on the front end makes the front end run wide and understeer horribly.

RWD: You load the front tires and rear tires up, but the rears take a larger portion of the load off the fronts. You get on the gas and shift the weight away from the front tires onto the rears. The rears are putting the power to the ground, the shifted weight onto them helps insure they get good, reliable traction. More prone to oversteer, but oversteer is a much much more desirable characteristic than understeer. Something much much more useful on a race (late brake into a turn too much and understeer? Pedal the gas to toy with rear traction to line the rear end up and point the car where you want to go. Borderline drifting concept).

Standing/rolling acceleration:
FWD: No-brainer, you just took all your weight off the wheels with the traction, good luck keeping good traction when you need it.

RWD: All the weight shifts onto the tires putting down the power and increasing the grip. Also no brainer.

Stopping:
FWD: So you think all that weight over the front brakes (which do most of the stopping) is a good thing? How about that overly light rear end lifting and making the back brakes either lock up easily or just not help much in stopping? You're putting almost the entire braking load on just the front tires.

RWD: Better weight balance, but still plenty of weight over the front tires. When the weight shifts it shifts onto the brakes doing most of the work, just like FWD, meanwhile since you've got a significantly more amount of weight over the rear tires, the rear brakes can actually do something useful and actually help slow the vehicle.


Those are just some examples, and doesn't take into account other numerable factors. But when it comes down to it, look at who's racing what, in America, Japan, Europe, all of them. The big dogs are all RWD with some AWDs in there.

Japan:
RWD: Supra, NSX, S2000, 350Z are some of the flagships.
AWD: Skyline, VR4, Evo's...some of those big dogs.

America:
RWD: Viper, Corvette, F-Body, Mustang, Ford GT, Buick GN...just a few
AWD: GMC Syclone and Typhoon...umm, anything else?

Europe:
RWD: Any Ferrari, Aston Martin, older Lamborchini's, Mercedes, BMW, Pagani...the list goes on.
AWD: Audi S4, Porsche, newer Lamborghini's...


There's some examples. Give me some FWD's that can tangle with any of those in both factory trim. Acceleration, Braking, AND Turns.

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post #8 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 06:21 PM
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In the 2wd rally classes they use fwd due to the traction advantange in the slick stuff. Also I've read about highly-modified Civics and Integras holding records on the Japanese mountain roads. I think that mostly has to do with their very light weight, which helps in the switchbacks. Driver talent plays a big part as well. Either way I still hate fwd.

Most people I know drive fwd cars simply for the traction advantage on ice and snow, but it's proven that rwd works alot better than fwd. Can't deny the huge advantage of awd though. About every time a 4wd racer comes up against a rwd racer, it's nearly unstoppable.....except in Speed World Challenge where the Caddy CTS-V's smoked the Audi's when they debuted at Sebring.
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post #9 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 07:36 PM
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It seems that my Contour (FWD) can hold a sharp turn at high speeds better than what The Thunderbird can. I don't know if that has to do with the FWD or if it is just the way the car is set up. I would probably take my Contour around a sharp turn at a higher speed before I would the Thunderbird. I feel as if I have more control over it.

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post #10 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 07:57 PM
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Most people I know drive fwd cars simply for the traction advantage on ice and snow
Those people have no idea how to drive then. Ive owned one FWD and during the winter I hated it. If you ever lose control on ice with RWD you can recover , with FWD hope your lucky. I read about a comparison a police department did between the Crown Vic and the new FWD police cars, I think this one was an Impala, the driver put both cars into skids/spins and every time recovered the Crown Vic, the Impala like every other FWD is almost impossible to recover quickly from a spin on icy roads. Even my friends who own FWDs (Monte Carlo, Intrepid, Neon) will agree that RWD handles much better on ice and snow.
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post #11 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 08:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cool Dude
It seems that my Contour (FWD) can hold a sharp turn at high speeds better than what The Thunderbird can. I don't know if that has to do with the FWD or if it is just the way the car is set up. I would probably take my Contour around a sharp turn at a higher speed before I would the Thunderbird. I feel as if I have more control over it.
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post #12 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 08:12 PM
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Dont forget TIRES (good ones and cheapie discount crap are worlds different), along with the condition of the suspension. With the tires I have and the fact that my springs and shocks are good, the Cat can take corners at speeds pretty damn good for a car its size.
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post #13 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 09:02 PM
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Weight and overall vehicle height make a big difference. Even having your driver's seat raised high or low and affect the height of the center of gravity.

Another issue is overall length and overhangs. If you've got a lot of fender and bumper sticking out past the front or rear tires, thats a higher polar moment of intertia, reduced turn-in.

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post #14 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 09:50 PM
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other american awd cars are .. well most jeeps and trucks... 4x4 is a form of awd

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post #15 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 10:25 PM
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You have a good point with the trucks and 4X4. Have you ever seen highly modified diesel trucks drag racing? Its F****** crazy and they haul a$$! They launch in 4wd and get all 4 tires to smoke. So I geuss 4wd is good except when you have 1,000 + Ft/Lbs of torque.

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post #16 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 10:32 PM
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hmmm desil trucks *goes to his happy place*

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post #17 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-16-2005, 10:44 PM
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hmmm desil trucks *goes to his happy place*

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post #18 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 01:13 AM
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depends on the racing

FWD Sucks ***. i can say that cause i have that and i hate it in all things but freeway pulls.

drag - AWD
track - RWD
roll - FWD

simple as that. even on freeway pulls fwd sucks, i sometimes have to feather the throttle cause at 20psi the wheels still want to break loose at 70.

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post #19 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 04:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomasR91169
depends on the racing

FWD Sucks ***. i can say that cause i have that and i hate it in all things but freeway pulls.

drag - AWD
track - RWD
roll - FWD

simple as that. even on freeway pulls fwd sucks, i sometimes have to feather the throttle cause at 20psi the wheels still want to break loose at 70.

You've got that a little backwards:

Drag: RWD
Track: AWD
Roll: RWD

The reason I say RWD pwns AWD at the dragstrip is because the AWD system causes more drag on the driveline, thus reducing the power put to the ground. This problem is worsed exponetially at the top end. The AWD car may have the advantage on the launch due to traction, but a RWD car of similar weight and power will usually haul the AWD car in at the top end. Once I hit 300whp I'll have to prove this using Beau as my test bed. lol
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post #20 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 05:10 AM
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eh that driveline drag doesnt show till about 110.

my buddy in his 96 awd talon vs me on the freeway(2 in the morning, 0 traffic for miles). 60 and up. almost head to head(same mods, evo16g with support, he has supra smic, i have fmic) but after he hit 100 he hits a brick wall. of course thats on a little 16g.

then again more turbo will allieviate this problem. you make 400hp on a big turbo that has no remorse when it pulls your *** to redline, 110 is gonna come up before you know it(end of 3rd) and 140 is only 2000rpm away(end of 4th). strap a 50trim on a awd and youre never gonna feel any difference in the top gears.

id say a set of slicks on a RWD as compared to a AWD in the track is about the same. awd's loss isnt going to come to effect till 3/4 track.

but assuming no slicks, both cars respectively the same times, awd is just better for launching.

awd for track use, eh i dont know about that. generally they have understeer(save the evo/sti). but it depends on the track and the driver and the car. tight autox will kill cars that have lots of understeer(as in awd) but a roadrace will kill a car that has no top end(as in awd).

im still sticking to my guns. awd-drag, rwd-track, fwd-dumpster.



and youre gonna need more than 300 to catch a stealth before the end of the 1/4. i give that stealth 500 bucks and it can see 12's.

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post #21 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 05:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomasR91169
eh that driveline drag doesnt show till about 110.

my buddy in his 96 awd talon vs me on the freeway(2 in the morning, 0 traffic for miles). 60 and up. almost head to head(same mods, evo16g with support, he has supra smic, i have fmic) but after he hit 100 he hits a brick wall. of course thats on a little 16g.

then again more turbo will allieviate this problem. you make 400hp on a big turbo that has no remorse when it pulls your *** to redline, 110 is gonna come up before you know it(end of 3rd) and 140 is only 2000rpm away(end of 4th). strap a 50trim on a awd and youre never gonna feel any difference in the top gears.

id say a set of slicks on a RWD as compared to a AWD in the track is about the same. awd's loss isnt going to come to effect till 3/4 track.

but assuming no slicks, both cars respectively the same times, awd is just better for launching.

awd for track use, eh i dont know about that. generally they have understeer(save the evo/sti). but it depends on the track and the driver and the car. tight autox will kill cars that have lots of understeer(as in awd) but a roadrace will kill a car that has no top end(as in awd).

im still sticking to my guns. awd-drag, rwd-track, fwd-dumpster.



and youre gonna need more than 300 to catch a stealth before the end of the 1/4. i give that stealth 500 bucks and it can see 12's.

Just between me you and the wall, I've taken him from a roll. On the track.
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post #22 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
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im still sticking to my guns. awd-drag, rwd-track, fwd-dumpster.
How many AWD cars are in the 11's, 10's, 9's, 8's, 7's?

How many Mustangs/Camaros are in the 11,s, 10's, 9's, 8's, 7's?

Althought it would be interesting to see two cars with the same hp/tq curves and weight be compared. One with AWD and slicks and one with RWD and slicks. I wonder which would win in the 1/4 miles.

I would bet on the RWD due to the driveline loss in the AWD vehicle. If it's rotating, it is contributing to driveline loss.

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post #23 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 09:36 AM
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AWD has a huge advantage off the line. Watch the start of any Speed World Challenge race and check out the advantage the AWD Audis pull over anything else in the field. Once speeds get up, though, that advantage pretty much ends.

If FWD were better for racing, don't you think top fuel drag cars and F1 cars would use it? I'd be willing to bet that no FWD car holds any kind of ABSOLUTE (ie regardless of class, displacement, fuel, etc.) record for speed or acceleration.

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post #24 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-17-2005, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomasR91169
eh that driveline drag doesnt show till about 110.

my buddy in his 96 awd talon vs me on the freeway(2 in the morning, 0 traffic for miles). 60 and up. almost head to head(same mods, evo16g with support, he has supra smic, i have fmic) but after he hit 100 he hits a brick wall. of course thats on a little 16g.

then again more turbo will allieviate this problem. you make 400hp on a big turbo that has no remorse when it pulls your *** to redline, 110 is gonna come up before you know it(end of 3rd) and 140 is only 2000rpm away(end of 4th). strap a 50trim on a awd and youre never gonna feel any difference in the top gears.

id say a set of slicks on a RWD as compared to a AWD in the track is about the same. awd's loss isnt going to come to effect till 3/4 track.

but assuming no slicks, both cars respectively the same times, awd is just better for launching.

awd for track use, eh i dont know about that. generally they have understeer(save the evo/sti). but it depends on the track and the driver and the car. tight autox will kill cars that have lots of understeer(as in awd) but a roadrace will kill a car that has no top end(as in awd).

im still sticking to my guns. awd-drag, rwd-track, fwd-dumpster.



and youre gonna need more than 300 to catch a stealth before the end of the 1/4. i give that stealth 500 bucks and it can see 12's.
So speed is related to driveline loss? Is that why a stock VR4 or R/T Turbo will only throw down around 230awhp when they're making 300hp at the crank? You're still as annoying as I remember you being.

25-30% driveline is 25-30%, no matter if you're going 30mph or 130mph. It takes power to turn the driveline regardless. And slapping on a bigger turbo means you won't feel any appreciable driveline loss? How about the significant about of power increase afforded from a larger turbo? My 9b's are good for mid-low 13s on a good day in a totally stock car. A pair of 16Gs on mine are good for over 500awhp and 11 flat. Your views are skewed.


Slicks....sure, if the RWD can keep traction. Slicks don't always equal traction. I've been in a 90 Mustang GT, almost bone stock that can still spin on 26" M/T ET Drags. AWD doesn't always have the launch advantage. 1.6 60' times are some good 60' times for VR4s and R/Ts, your AWD DSMs as well, but Joe Lynch pulls 1.4xs in a 99 Cobra? Sure he runs 11 flat to a 10.6 in a 1.6 60' R/T (Matt Monett).
A $130 rear strut tower brace in my R/T and it'll give it STi style understeer...NONE. And as far as road course, is that why a 300ZX and a VR4 are neck and neck in lap times on a road course, with comparable power and much much less weight for the 2wd nissan? Or how about the capabilities of the venerable Skyline?

And as for $500? Give me $1500 and I'll just have it mostly reliable. (and don't lecture me about how great your DSM is, we all know you have crank walk). I don't even LIKE imports and I'm more educated on them than you are.

And yes, he has outrun me top end in his stock 94 SC 5speed.

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post #25 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-18-2005, 02:23 AM
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Quote:
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FWD :Can we say severe understeer, horrible weight distribution, and all the weight shifting AWAY from the drive wheels under acceleration?
Just look at an SHO. 200lbs weight advantage, 15hp power advantage, but 2.0 60 ft times are considered great, and a stock one is barely faster than a stock 4.6L

Ever broke the front wheels loose, cranked the wheel a 1/4 turn, then let off? Your back end comes around REAL quick.




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post #26 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-18-2005, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
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Just look at an SHO. 200lbs weight advantage, 15hp power advantage, but 2.0 60 ft times are considered great, and a stock one is barely faster than a stock 4.6L

Ever broke the front wheels loose, cranked the wheel a 1/4 turn, then let off? Your back end comes around REAL quick.
Your response makes no sense in reference to the quote you picked Matt.

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post #27 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-18-2005, 08:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AverageJoe
Japan:
RWD: Supra, NSX, S2000, 350Z are some of the flagships.
AWD: Skyline, VR4, Evo's...some of those big dogs.

America:
RWD: Viper, Corvette, F-Body, Mustang, Ford GT, Buick GN...just a few
AWD: GMC Syclone and Typhoon...umm, anything else?

Europe:
RWD: Any Ferrari, Aston Martin, older Lamborchini's, Mercedes, BMW, Pagani...the list goes on.
AWD: Audi S4, Porsche, newer Lamborghini's...


There's some examples. Give me some FWD's that can tangle with any of those in both factory trim. Acceleration, Braking, AND Turns.
Uhm, I can think of a few decent FWD's that can compete with a Mustang GT, or F-Body..
-SRT-4
-Integra Type R
-Acura TSX

But really, I'm not a firm supporter of the wrong wheel drives.








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post #28 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-18-2005, 09:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AverageJoe

There's some examples. Give me some FWD's that can tangle with any of those in both factory trim. Acceleration, Braking, AND Turns.

I dunno if they can tangle with he cars u listed but any of the 3.8L SC'ed GMs are very quick cars in stock trim....example- (my favorite) Buick Regal GS, Pontiac Grand Prix GTP, Pontiac Boneville, and the Taurus SHOs, and SVT contours are also fairly impressive. As far as foreign FWD cars, My friend just bought an Eagle Talon TSI, and its very quick in stock trim, no its not the AWD, and his main problem is getting traction, he ran a 9.5 at the local 1/8th mile on all season tires, and stock trim, allthough so did the 1996 boneville in the other lane.

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post #29 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-18-2005, 11:15 PM
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Seeing this reminded me of a conversation me and a few friends were having a month or so ago. We were debating which car would be better on a road course...

His del Sol with springs, shocks, bigger wheels, and summer tires....or my car with the same "handling" mods. Any opinions?

~Jeff

*signed off
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post #30 of 46 (permalink) Old 05-19-2005, 02:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 94 Daily Driven 4.6L
How many AWD cars are in the 11's, 10's, 9's, 8's, 7's?
umm, brent rau, john shep to name a few. its easier than you think. grab yourself maybe 6 grand and a 1g awd and 10's are only a racetrack away.

ive seen stock awd dsm's make 185 to the wheels. theyre said to make 225 crank.

speed IS related to the amount of drag in the driveline. i have a club with 30 dsm's in the central california area, ive seen awd, fwd, small turbos, big turbos, almost every dam configuration you could think of we have. like i said, take a awd and fwd dsm with the same mods and put them on the freeway, itll be tied to the T until about 110ish. what does that tell me? speed is relative to drivetrain drag.

youre talking about drivetrain loss. different things. of course its gonna be around 20%+, but i wouldnt go any higher than 25% unless it was auto. you got a tranny, transfercase, differentials, each component takes a certain amount of power away.

obviously youve never been a car with such a turbo, that you dont get any positive boost till 4k, and dont reach full boost till 5k, but from 5k-8k its a dam blur. 3rd gear was scary, 4th was insane, 5th im glad he didnt get to. that guys awd i wont even mess with, this is the guy that has done 11's at the track([email protected] i believe) on pump with a conservative tune. he was running a FP58, which is some weird *** conjured up 56 trim that forced performance custom made for him. i think its comparable to a 3065 but not ball bearing.

and god dam if crankwalk is the only thing people can find wrong about dsm's, theyre pretty sad. guess they dont know its only 2% of the 95-99 FWD's that "Could" get it. then again, how many 94-97 MN12's have blown up 4r70's? i know i took out 2 in 2 years babying it. i wouldnt mind getting CW at all, that just means im only 1000 away from fully forged internals on a 6bolt 1g motor, that doesnt walk. its said the people who have crankwalk symptoms go ahead and do a rebuild, and upon building find their crank pulley has seperated, which causes the same symptoms of Cwalk(except for the left turn clutch slip thingy)

Quote:
Originally Posted by AverageJoe
I don't even LIKE imports and I'm more educated on them than you are.
educate this n00b. dsm's arent imports. built in Normal, Ill. the only thing imported were the 4g63 from japan, and seeing how good japan engines are, im dam glad they were made there, and not some mehican sweatshop where the rest of ford gets their parts.

Quote:
1.6 60' times are some good 60' times for VR4s and R/Ts, your AWD DSMs as well, but Joe Lynch pulls 1.4xs in a 99 Cobra? Sure he runs 11 flat to a 10.6 in a 1.6 60' R/T (Matt Monett).
thats nice and dandy, but thats a cobra on slicks, vs a awd in street tires. ever seen a studderbox launch on awd at 5k with full boost at launch? or how about a Auto AWD with built tranny brakeboosting off the line? imagine a AWD with slicks, using the above launching techniques, sub 1.* 60fters will follow(given the clutch and axles hold)

Quote:
And slapping on a bigger turbo means you won't feel any appreciable driveline loss? How about the significant about of power increase afforded from a larger turbo? My 9b's are good for mid-low 13s on a good day in a totally stock car. A pair of 16Gs on mine are good for over 500awhp and 11 flat. Your views are skewed.
umm i dont get where youre going at here. you mean a bigger turbo gives a significant increase in power? i thought it was for the sound. i know your stealth/3000gt whatever does mid 13's, and you should definately do the 16g swaps. 3000gt/stealths are badass, theyre still 10k in our area for crappy ones.

Quote:
And yes, he has outrun me top end in his stock 94 SC 5speed.
umm duh. it was prolly in the 100+ range that he started pulling away. where your drivetrain started killing you. get some more mods and that will change. do the 16gs and tuning, and your top end will be so much better. maybe youll be able to keep up with me someday on the freeway. come january i will be dropping in a AGP RS60T, 720cc injectors, 255lph+aeromotive FPR, and DSMlink to tune(i have to wait till jan to get it smogged first, then ill have 2 years of no smog worries) im also looking for a 1g 6bolt to do a nice forged rebuild so i can use that 60T to its fullest, around 30psi should suffice for some pretty scary freeway, i mean drag strip, passes.

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