High-performance cars, sports cars, racing cars and sports cars, don’t be confused about them

Rejuvenation is a buzzword in the automotive industry today.

Whether it is a mobility scooter, a family car or a commercial vehicle, the lines are getting richer and the layers are becoming clearer. This is a reincarnation of car design, and it is also because young people are becoming a new generation of consumers.

However, there are many dragons in the deep water, and there are also many bastards.

Some cars are truly sporty, such as the 2.0T Teana, which has 252 horsepower and 380 Nm. When matched with a CVT gearbox, it can accelerate from 0 to 100 kilometers in 6.42 seconds, which is 0.15 seconds faster than the current Golf GTI.

Some cars are selling themselves off like sheep, with some fancy kits and a tail badge to hold up a clear banner of “sportiness”, but in the end they are still purely household grocery shopping carts.

So today, there is no clear line between the general concept of "sporty" cars. Next, Ru Ru will share with you such "high-performance cars", "sports cars" and even "racing cars" and so on.

High-performance cars: more than steel guns, but less than supercars

As the name suggests, high-performance cars are born with a sporty foundation and very powerful power, rather than just good handling. So even if the Teana runs in 6.4 seconds, we will not call it a high-performance car. We will only consider it to be a high-performance car. A car that accelerates quickly.

Even so, the scope of "high-performance cars" is still as vast as the Atlantic Ocean. You can say that the Audi R8 is a high-performance car, and it is no problem to say that the Audi S3 is a high-performance car.

However, I personally think that high-performance cars are usually below supercars and above performance small guns, and are probably at the level of BMW M3/M4, Audi RS4 and Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG.

The M3 is a benchmark of balance in its class, integrating power and control. If you look through the photos from the Nürburgring track day, you will find many BMWs and previous M3s. Among them is the fastest E92 M3 modified by the Schirmer team many years ago. The lap speed is still comparable to the current Porsche 911 GT3.

▲Schirmer M3

However, some BMW fans are beginning to feel sad because the next generation is about to use the CLAR platform, which can switch between rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive like the M5. This platform was not a pure rear-wheel drive platform at the beginning of its development.

So the current M3 is the last generation of pure rear-drive M3. However, except for the stock car, you can't buy a brand-new car now.

This is due to Europe's promulgation of stringent WLTP test regulations in September 2018, which led to BMW's decision to discontinue production of the M3 in May last year and directly devote its energy to upgrading emissions to the development and testing of the next-generation M3.

The good news is that the new car will be unveiled in early 2020, and spy photos of the car’s exterior and interior have also been exposed online.

The next-generation M3/M4 will share the S58 engine with the X3 M/X4 M, which is BMW’s classic 3.0L inline six-cylinder engine. It uses a new intercooler and forged pistons, as well as a twin-turbo that is larger and more efficient than the S55. , the upgraded high-pressure fuel supply system has increased the injection pressure from the past 200bar to 350bar.

▲S58 engine

All this helps the S58 reach 510 horsepower and 600 Nm, exceeding the 500 horsepower of the current most powerful M4 GTS. At the same time, BMW is actively reducing the weight of new cars. Through carbon fiber materials and 4D printing technology, it is expected to have a slimming effect of 63.5 kilograms.

Although this is not an M3 built on a purely rear-drive platform, BMW may provide a beggar's version of the M3 with only rear-drive mode, lowering the engine power and matching it with a 6-speed manual gearbox, which will probably be really good again.

Sports car: it’s still a sports car even if it can’t run

As for sports cars, as long as they are sedans and two-doors, they can be collectively called sports cars. Therefore, some of them are ugly in appearance, and some of them pretend to be tigers and get eaten by pigs. For example, the Geely Beauty Leopard is a sports car, and the Ferrari F12 is also a sports car.

Of course, independent brands are not the only ones that create family cars that are covered in sports car shells and cannot actually run. Toyota's Jeluchi launched in 2004 is also a "weak" front-wheel drive sports car.

Zelas' name in the Middle East, China and South America is Zelas, which is a distortion of the Italian "Zelante", meaning "passion" and "enthusiasm"; in the United States, it carries the Sein tC logo, that is, "Touring Coupe" (abbreviation for touring sports car).

The first-generation Gelachi was still linked to sports. The platform came from Toyota's mid-size car Avensis sold in Europe. The running system was MacPherson strut at the front and double-wishbone multi-link suspension at the rear.

The power is a 2.4L engine with a compression ratio of 9.8:1, a large-angle intake cam has been replaced, and the redline speed can reach 6,500 rpm. After the optional supercharger kit from Toyota's sports department TRD, it finally has 200 horsepower and 251 Nm, matched with a 5-speed manual transmission, and can push the 1,318 kilogram body to accelerate to 100 kilometers in just 7.4 seconds.

Don’t underestimate this machine. 2AZ-FE uses cast iron bushings, forged crankshafts, aluminum cylinder blocks and cylinder heads, taking into account both lightweight and high strength. It also has dual overhead camshafts and VVT-i variable valve technology. The key is that the modification cost is not high and the solution is mature.

So some people would rather give up the horizontally opposed four-cylinder of the 86/BRZ and transplant the 2AZ-FE. Some even squeeze out an exaggerated 750 horsepower and 950 Nm, and can run to 100KM/H in just 3 seconds.

▲Sain FR-S (i.e. 86/BRZ) equipped with 2AZ-FE

With modification potential and complete configurations, the first generation also achieved a sales peak of 79,215 units in 2006.

The second generation released in 2010 did not continue its former glory. The platform was updated simultaneously with the Avensis, but it was replaced with Camry's 2.5L self-priming engine, which no longer provided supercharging. It has 180 horsepower and 236 Nm, and can accelerate from 100 kilometers to 100 kilometers. Reduced to 6.5 seconds.

However, it is also a front-wheel drive car. At this time, everyone is more willing to buy a small turbocharged steel cannon. It is easy to upgrade later and has higher practicality. The 86/BRZ with rear drive was unveiled in 2012. In the end, only 9,300 units were sold in 2016. Jie Luchi goes to history.

Hatchback small steel cannon: you can also pretend to be a pig and eat the tiger

Nowadays, there are many models that pretend to be pigs and eat tigers. The entire Internet knows which cars they are, such as the Volkswagen R36, and ABB's high-performance RVs. Even some of the current four-wheel drive small steel cannons have been upgraded to second and third levels. After powering up, the acceleration is no less than that of a supercar.

However, these models are not extreme enough. They are limited by the small steel cannon with a front engine. Compared with a mid-mounted sports car, this is a congenital shortcoming that cannot be made up for later. Is it the fate of the hatchback to have a front-mounted layout when it was born?

▲Renault first generation Clio Williams

The whimsical French Renault used facts to tell us in 1999 that nothing is impossible unless we imagine it.

The second-generation Clio, which debuted in 1998, was originally a small hatchback that matched the Carnival and the like. It was smaller than the common fourth-generation Golf, with a length of only 3.8 meters.

▲Renault second generation Clio

Renault then inserted a mid-mounted rear-drive layout under the shell, and changed the rear seats to a 3.0L V6 engine with a 60° angle. The power was reduced to 230 horsepower and 300 Nm, and it was matched with a 6-speed manual transmission. Complete It only takes 6.2 seconds to accelerate to 100 kilometers.

In fact, this Clio V6 Phase 1 shares very few parts with the Clio, and production was also transferred to the British team TWR (which once broke Porsche's Le Mans monopoly in the 1980s) at its factory in Sweden. The media at the time called it "the smallest in the world." 's supercar".

Due to the advantages of its short body and layout, Clio V6 Phase 1 has great advantages in corners. It is said that the steering is as delicate as Lotus. Not only does it not understeer, it can also be used for drifting.

If you look at it from the perspective of commuting, this is definitely not a car for people to drive. The heat and noise generated by the V6 in the rear are particularly unfriendly to the driver. If there is any mistake or abnormal operation, the driver can only pray with his hands together.

However, such an interesting car would never happen in today’s car world. This was a crazy idea that was only seen and implemented 20 years ago. It was so crazy that interesting sports cars such as the Honda S2000 and Audi TT at the same time were Become as boring as a mop and a broom.

What is surprising is that there are actually people in China who spent a lot of money to buy one in that era through some unknown means. Now the owner has refurbished the car and plans to turn it into a racing car.

Racing cars: the best cars on the planet

Many people don't take it seriously when they see factory cars in touring car competitions. They think they just dismantle the interior and install a roll cage, and finally make some adjustments. Because the aerodynamic kit is not very radical and the power is only slightly improved, it "looks" It's not as exaggerated as the folk racing at the same scene.

The reality is that the gap between professionals and civilians is unimaginable, it’s just that we can’t understand the internal changes in professional racing.

For example, the Macau Guia Circuit previously held the Road Car Challenge and the WTCC World Touring Car Championship at the same venue. The former was participated by private modification factories. The racing cars usually have 600 or 700 horsepower, and are equipped with wind blades, wide bodies and large cars. Mitsubishi EVO, Nissan GTR and Honda NSX with rear wings, etc.

Even the famous Japanese driver Orito Manabu, a two-time GT300 annual champion, drove an 800-horsepower R35 civilian racing car and ran a time of only 2 minutes, 32 seconds and 9; while Muller drove a 300-horsepower car, and the surface was unremarkable. The Cruze factory car ran directly to 2 minutes and 28 seconds under load.

To put it bluntly, whether a modified car is fast or not, whether it is powerful or not, cannot just be judged on the surface by which brand of parts has been replaced, or how many book data there are. Behind the scenes, there are also adjustments, gear ratios, weight balance, data flow and power curves. A key factor that is invisible but has a huge impact on car performance.

This is also one of the differences between car manufacturers with professional background and private modification factories. Of course, after all, the human and material investment between the two is not at the same level.

Therefore, the official street car based on racing cars is destined to be one of the best in terms of foundation and performance among modified cars/street cars that are allowed to go on the road.

Since we are talking about GTR, let me introduce the most powerful street car in Nissan history. It is definitely not the current R35, but the 1998 street car version R390 GT1.

There are currently two street car versions known in the world. One is on display at Nissan's Kanagawa office; the other is a short-tail version sold to a mysterious buyer in the UK at a mysterious price. Its performance is almost the same as that of a racing car, except for the tuning. Reduced horsepower and increased weight.

The racing version R390 GT1 was born in the era of real "technical Nissan". It is equipped with a racing engine VRH35L. With the support of twin turbines, it has 650 horsepower and 706 Nm. It propels the 1029kg carbon fiber monocoque body and easily reaches a top speed of 354KM. /H.

With its powerful performance, the R390 GT1 was faster than the favorites Porsche 911 GT1 and Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR in the two Le Mans qualifying races in 1997 and 1998.

Unfortunately, in the race, due to mechanical failure in 1997, only one car finished the race in 12th place. 1998 was the year with the best chance of winning the championship, but unfortunately, it ended up losing to two 911 GT1s and ranking third.

What is even more regrettable is that the organizing committee revised the rules after the 1998 race, causing the R390 GT1, which had only competed for two years, to become an illegal car. At this time, Nissan was on the verge of bankruptcy and had to decide to switch to the low-level LMP group. The R390 GT1 was destined to be forgotten by the world.

Sports car: a lightweight car that focuses on handling

Compared with performance cars, sports cars have weaker power output and are positioned more towards lightweight cars built for handling.

The selling point of these cars is usually the fun of driving. They may not be able to outperform others in straight line acceleration, but they have the ability to amplify happiness. The well-known ones are Mini and MX-5, and the niche one is Alpine A110.

Alpine here does not refer to Alpine audio, but a car company founded in 1954.

The founder, Jean Rédélé, is a Renault dealer in the northern French city of Dieppe. When he has nothing to do, he likes to drive his modified Renault 4CV to the Alps. Later, he built several Renaults with aluminum bodies to participate in competitions. After winning many awards, he attracted everyone's attention. Attention, they came to have their cars modified one after another.

In order to meet the expanding market demand, he simply established Alpine in 1954. The relationship with Renault is similar to that of Ruf and Porsche. The most famous model is undoubtedly the rally-winning A110 produced from 1961 to 1977.

So Renault re-launched a new generation of A110 40 years after the A110 was discontinued. The new car is developed for fun. It adopts a rear-wheel drive layout with the center of gravity just between the two seats. It is equipped with a 1.8T engine with 250 horsepower and 320 Nm.

From the data point of view, the A110 priced at 55,800 euros is not as good as the Golf R with a price of 47,600 euros. The latter is 64,000 yuan cheaper and has 40 horsepower and 60 Nm more power.

However, the essence of the A110 lies in its lightweight and manufacturing pleasure. After using an all-aluminum suspension and body, the entire car weighs only 1,103 kilograms. It is matched with a 7-speed wet dual-clutch gearbox and can accelerate from 0 to 100 kilometers in just 4.5 seconds.

According to the test drive conducted by foreign media, the tail of the A110 is particularly restless. If the accelerator and brake are not controlled well, there is a possibility of drifting when entering a corner in the next second. This kind of fun is not the stability of the Porsche 718 where ordinary people can drive well and fast, but the sense of achievement of getting precise control from the edge of losing control every time you lap.

In addition, A110 chief engineer David Twohig said that this is a sports car that is friendly to passengers buttocks, with both sensitive steering and daily driving comfort, rather than being as hard-core and extreme as Lotus.

Keep your eyes open and improve your knowledge level

Since there are various consumer groups in the world, this has also given rise to a variety of "sporty" cars. A large part of the reason is that it has been 74 years since the last world war. Common people have also accumulated a certain amount of wealth. It is rare for this generation of young people to live a carefree life and have money on hand to spend.

If it were like every time before, household brands would have to start with cheap cars that cut down costs as much as possible, while luxury brands would consider the aesthetics of Old Money and not care at all about young people who don’t have steel and it would be impossible to produce them. New Money.

So we must cheer for peaceful times and cheer for the movement toward sporty cars.

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