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Registered '07 SLK55
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
...makes me want to swap 125 tires onto the SLK!

 

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aka John
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13,012 Posts
I take exception to "On the street fun is better than speed" using this as an example. Dead sideways is better than dead straight on?!

I think I'm just missing the point - when I'm on the road I want a car that's not going to kill me. On a track, I've driven a C63 with ESP off, and on stock tires it had no problem kicking the tail around. In dyno mode, I just ended up looking in the wrong direction. What's the point of comparing stock with ESP to tiny tires with no ESP?
 

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Registered '07 SLK55
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I think his point wasn't so much that massive oversteer with skinny tires is better on the street, but more about how most manufacturers these days are so concerned about track performance and lap times that the cars become so perfect that at street speeds, they have too much mechanical grip and too well balanced to have a little fun before breaking the speed limit.

Cars like the C63, with "narrow" tires in comparison to their torque and horsepower numbers, allow some fun without having to break the speed limit or get too dangerous.

The point is: Certain cars can have brilliant performance on the track, put down amazingly quick lap times... but in the end, are they fun to drive? Maybe imperfection can be more fun than perfection.

Example: Nissan GT-R. Absolutely phenomenal performance on a track, but reportedly quite boring on the every day drive.
 

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Registered '07 SLK55
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Another example that's a bit more personal to me:

The BMW M3. Great car. Handles very well, accelerates well, even sounds quite good. The problem is, on the street, the car feels very... blah. The 4.0L V8 in the M3 is great on a track where one can use all of its revs. On the street, around 2000 rpm, the engine is worthless. I drove a friends 2010 M3 with the dual clutch transmission and a full 8500$ name brand exhaust system. It looked great, sounded great, but when it came to driving at 40mph, it didn't wow me. Especially when I had to downshift from 5th to 3rd just to accelerate enough to pass a Prius to change lanes. My 135i at the time had enough low end torque to not require downshifting to accelerate.

If I drove on a track all day long, I would love to own an M3... but since I drive on the street every day, I would be forever bored.
 

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aka John
Joined
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13,012 Posts
I think his point wasn't so much that massive oversteer with skinny tires is better on the street, but more about how most manufacturers these days are so concerned about track performance and lap times that the cars become so perfect that at street speeds, they have too much mechanical grip and too well balanced to have a little fun before breaking the speed limit.

Cars like the C63, with "narrow" tires in comparison to their torque and horsepower numbers, allow some fun without having to break the speed limit or get too dangerous.

The point is: Certain cars can have brilliant performance on the track, put down amazingly quick lap times... but in the end, are they fun to drive? Maybe imperfection can be more fun than perfection.

Example: Nissan GT-R. Absolutely phenomenal performance on a track, but reportedly quite boring on the every day drive.

Yeah, I guess I can sorta see that - but I can only assume you've driven your '55 with the ESP off - that's a pretty fun experience at low speeds!

And yes, a GTR sucks as a DD - it's more than boring, it's dull.
 

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Registered '07 SLK55
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I've driven with ESP off a lot, autocrossed it once that way too. A lot of good predictable fun. (And safe, since we all know it's not really OFF off.) Now that I've swapped in an X-Pipe for the center resonator, I could drive the car all day with a giant grin on my face. That, to me, is more important than having a car that can break Nurburgring records.
 
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