Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Gran Turismo Sport' started by Racer283, Sep 4, 2018.
For COTY and BOTY you can send those nominations to me.
List of all this years featured cars (50):
Renault R.S. 01 GrX
Lancia Delta HF Integrale Evo
Toyota Crown Athlete G
Aston Martin One-77
Citroen DS3 Racing
Lamborghini Huracan GT3
Aston Martin DBR9 GT1
Lexus Tom's Petronas SC430 '08
Nissan 180SX Type X '96
Honda Civic Type R '98
RE Amemiya FD3S RX-7
Ferrari GTO '84
Gr. 4 WRX vs. Evo
Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport
Nissan Skyline R32
Audi E-Tron Vision GT
Peugeot Vision Gran Turismo Gr.3
Honda NSX '17
Corvette Stingray Sport Coupe '63
Mazda RX-7 GT-X 1990
Pagani Zonda R
Super GT Honda NSX '08
Honda Beat (old)
BMW M3 Coupe '03 E46
Mitsubishi XR-PHEV Evo
Gr.3 Lexus RC F GT3
Ford GT '17
Lexus RC F
Dodge Challenger R/T '70
Ford GT40 MK IV
Ferrari 330 P4
Subaru WRX Gr.B Road Car
Nissan GT-R GT3
VW Golf GTI '83
Alpine A110 1600s
Ford Mustang Gr4
Porsche 356 Carrera Speedster
Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary
Alfa Romero 4C Gr.3 Road Car
Porsche 911 RSR Gr.3
Toyota GR Yaris
Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3
Pontiac Firebird Trans Am 1978
Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren
Mazda RX-7 Spirit R Type A (FD) '02
Best sounding car: Mazda 787B
Best Looking: Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary
Worst Looking: Porsche 356 Carrera Speedster
Most American: Dodge Challenger R/T '70
Member's award: XSquarestickit
Sky High Roller's award (cars costing more than 500K?): Ferrari Enzo
Crayola Arts and Crafts award (quality of liveries and stuff done by drivers):don't know
Ted Thomas Memorial award (most improved driver over the year):don't know
Driver Of The Year: VICReign
2020 BEATER OF THE YEAR: Honda Beat
2020 CAR OF THE YEAR: Nissan Skyline R32
Why the Beat is a beater:
A current list of all not yet used cars for COTW:
1500 Biposto Bertone B.A.T 1 1952 (N100)
ALFA ROMEO (5)
4C Gr.3 (Gr.3)
4C Gr.4 (Gr.4)
4C Launch Edition 2014 (N200)
Giulia TZ2 Carrozzata da Zagato CN.AR750106 1965 (Gr.X)
MiTo 1.4 T Sport 2009 (N200)
Vision Gran Turismo 2017 (Gr.1)
Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Vision Gran Turismo Race Mode (Gr.X)
ASTON MARTIN (5)
DB3S CN.1 1953 (Gr.X)
DB11 2016 (N600)
DP-100 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Vantage Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Vulcan 2016 (N800)
R8 4.2 FSI R Tronic 2007 (N400)
R8 LMS Audi Team Sport WRT 2015 (Gr.3)
R18 TDI Audi Team Sport Joest 2011 (Gr.1)
R18 TDI Le Mans 2011 (Gr.1)
R18 e-tron 2016 (Gr.1)
Sport quattro S1 Pikes Peak 1987 (Gr.B)
TT Coupe 3.2 quattro 2003 (N200)
TT Cup 2016 (Gr.4)
TTS Coupe 2014 (N300)
Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.1)
M4 Coupe 2014 (N400)
M4 Safety Car (Gr.X)
M4 Gr.4 (Gr.4)
M6 GT3 Walkenhorst Motorsport 2016 (Gr.3)
M6 GT3 M Power Livery 2016 (Gr.3)
Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Z4 GT3 2011 (Gr.3)
Z8 2001 (N400)
Veyron Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Vision Gran Turismo Gr.1 (Gr.1)
Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Chevrolet Chaparral 2X Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Camaro SS 2016 (N500)
Corvette Stingray Race Concept (C2) 1959 (Gr.X)
GT by Citroen Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Copen Active Top 2002 (N100)
Copen RJ Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Charger SRT Hellcat 2015 (N700)
Charger SRT Hellcat Safety Car (N700)
SRT Tomahawk VGT Gr.1 (Gr.1)
SRT Tomahawk VGT Racing (Gr.X)
SRT Tomahawk VGT Street (Gr.X)
SRT Tomahawk VGT Technology (Gr.X)
Superbee 1970 (N300)
Viper Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Viper SRT10 Coupe 2006 (N500)
Viper SRT GT3-R 2015 (Gr.3)
250 GT Berlinetta passo corto CN.2521 1961 (N300)
250 GTO CN.3729GT 1962 (Gr.X)
458 Italia 2009 (N600)
458 Italia GT3 2013 (Gr.3)
Dino 246GT 1971 (N200)
F40 1992 (N500)
500 F 1968 (N100)
500 1.2 8v Lounge SS 2008 (N100)
Focus Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
GT 2006 (N600)
GT LM Spec II Test Car (Gr.3)
Mustang Gr.3 Road Car (N500)
Mustang Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
Mustang GT Premium Fastback 2015 (N400)
Mustang Mach 1 1971 (N300)
GRAN TURISMO (6)
Amuse S2000 GT1 Turbo (N600)
Chris Holstrom Concepts 1967 Chevy Nova 2013 (N700)
Racing Kart 125 Shifter (Gr.X)
Red Bull X2014 Standard 2014 (Gr.X)
Red Bull X2014 Junior 2014 (Gr.X)
Red Bull X2019 Competition (Gr.X)
Fit Hybrid 2014 (N100)
NSX Concept-GT Raybrig 2016 (Gr.2)
NSX Gr.3 (Gr.3)
NSX Gr.4 (Gr.4)
S660 2015 (N100)
S800 1966 (N100)
Sports Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Genesis Gr.3 (Gr.3)
Genesis Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Genesis Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.1)
N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Concept Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
D-Type 1954 (Gr.X)
E-Type Coupe 1961 (N300)
F-Type Gr.3 (Gr.3)
F-Type Gr.4 (Gr.4)
XJ13 1966 (Gr.X)
XJR-9 1988 (Gr.1)
Vision Gran Turismo Coupe (Gr.X)
X-BOW R 2012 (N300)
Aventador LP700-4 2011 (N700)
Aventador LP750-4 Superveloce 2015 (N800)
Countach LP400 1974 (N400)
Huracan Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Huracan LP610-4 2015 (N600)
Miura P400 Bertone Prototype CN.0706 1967 (N400)
Veneno 2014 (N800)
Stratos 1973 (N200)
LC500 2017 (N500)
LF-LC GT Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
RC F au Tom's 2016 (Gr.2)
RC F Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Atenza Gr.3 Road Car (N500)
Atenza Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Atenza Sedan XD L Package 2015 (N200)
Demio XD Touring 2015 (N100)
LM55 Vision Gran Turismo Gr.1 (Gr.1)
LM55 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Roadster Touring Car (N200)
Roadster S 2015 (N100)
RX500 1970 (N300)
RX-Vision GT3 Concept 2020 (Gr.3)
650S Gr.4 (Gr.4)
650S GT3 2015 (Gr.3)
F1 GTR BMW Kokusai Kaihatsu UK Racing 1995 (Gr.3)
MP4-12c 2010 (N600)
P1 GTR 2016 (Gr.X)
Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo Gr.1 (Gr.1)
Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
A45 AMG 4MATIC 2013 (N400)
AMG F1 W08 EQ Power+ (Gr.X)
AMG F1 W08 EQ Power+ Color Variation (Gr.X)
AMG Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
AMG Vision Gran Turismo LH Edition (Gr.X)
AMG Vision Gran Turismo Racing Series (Gr.X)
Sauber C9 1989 (Gr.1)
SLS AMG 2010 (N600)
SLS AMG Gr.4 (Gr.4)
SLS AMG GT3 2011 (Gr.3)
Cooper S 2005 (N200)
Clubman Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Lancer Evolution IV GSR 1996 (N300)
Lancer Evolution Final Edition 2015 (N300)
Lancer Evolution Final Edition Gr.3 (Gr.3)
Lancer Evolution Final Edition Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
Lancer Evolution Final Edition Gr.B Road Car (N500)
Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
Fairlady Z Version S 2007 (N300)
GT-R Gr.4 (Gr.4)
GT-R Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
GT-R LM Nismo 2015 (Gr.1)
GT-R Motul Autech 2016 (Gr.2)
GT-R Premium Edition 2017 (N600)
GT-R Safety Car (Gr.X)
GT-R Xanavi Nismo (Gr.2)
R92CP 1992 (Gr.1)
Skyline GT-R V-spec (R33) 1997 (N300)
Skyline GT-R V-spec II Nür (R34) 2002 (N300)
208 GTI by Peugeot Sport 2014 (N200)
908 HDI FAP Team Peugeot Total 2010 (Gr.1)
RCZ Gr.3 (Gr.3)
RCZ Gr.3 Road Car (N500)
RCZ Gr.4 (Gr.4)
RCZ Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
L500R Hybrid Vision Gran Turismo 2017 (Gr.X)
L750R Hybrid Vision Gran Turismo 2017 (Gr.1)
Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
911 (993) Carrera RS Club Sport (N300)
911 GT3 (997) 2008 (N400)
911 GT3 RS 2016 (N600)
962C 1988 (Gr.1)
Taycan Turbo S 2019 (Gr.X)
R8 Gordini 1966 (Gr.X)
RENAULT SPORT (4)
Clio RS 220 EDC Trophy 2015 (N200)
Clio RS 220 EDC Trophy 2016 (N200)
Megane RS Trophy 2011 Safety Car (N300)
R.S.01 GT3 2016 (Gr.3)
Cobra Daytona Coupe 1964 (Gr.X)
BRZ S 2015 (N200)
BRZ Falken Tire/Turn 14 Distribution 2017 (Gr.X)
Impreza Coupe WRX Type R STi Version VI 1999 (N300)
WRX Gr.3 (Gr.3)
WRX Gr.B (Gr.B)
WRX STI Type S 2014 (N300)
Model S Signature Performance 2012 (Gr.X)
2000GT 1967 (N200)
86 Gr.4 (Gr.4)
86 Gr.B Rally Car (Gr.B)
86 GRMN 2016 (N200)
86 GT 2015 (N200)
86 GT Limited 2016 (N200)
Corolla Levin 3door 1600GT APEX (AE86) 1983 (N100)
Crown Athlete G Safety Car (N300)
FT-1 Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
FT-1 Vision Gran Turismo Gr.3 (Gr.3)
GR Supra Racing Concept (Gr.3)
GR Supra RZ 2020 (N400)
MR2 GT-S 1997 (N200)
S-FR 2015 (N100)
Sprinter Trueno 3door 1600GT APEX (AE86) 1983 (N100)
TS030 Hybrid 2012 (Gr.1)
TS050 Hybrid Toyota Gazoo Racing 2016 (Gr.1)
Tundra TRD Pro 2019 (N400)
1200 1966 (N100)
Scirocco Gr.4 (Gr.4)
Golf VII GTI 2014 (N200)
GTI Roadster Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
GTI Supersport Vision Gran Turismo (Gr.X)
GTI Vision Gran Turismo Gr.3 (Gr.3)
Samba Bus Type 2 (T1) 1962 (N100)
IsoRivolta Vision GT 2017 (Gr.X)
Last day to get your nominations in for the awards.
COTY - 911RSR GR.3
BOTY - PAGANI ZONDA R
BEST LOOKING - 330 P4
WORST LOOKING - XR-PHEV EVO
AMERICAN - CHALLENGER 1970
MEMBERS AWARD - XSQUARE
HIGH ROLLER - 330 P4
LIVERY DESIGNER - NISMO
MOST IMPROVED - RACER 2833
DRIVER OF THE YEAR - VIC
How did it hurt you?
Haha, just couldn't drive the thing, handled like a shed with a million horse powers
I found the Zonda extremely twitchy but as long as I kept a cap on it and didnt try to showboat it was fine. But too much stress.
ALSO I like the Amemiya RX7 over the normal FD3S RX7... but its more ugly but its faster everywhere.
Car of the Year Awards
Every year we give out the prestigious awards such as the Car of the Year or the not so prestigious Beater of the Year. Besides those top awards we like to hand out the smaller ones to the others.
Best Looking Car:
Pagani Zonda R
Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary
Ferrari 330 P4
Ferrari 330 P4
Worst Looking Car:
Subaru WRX Gr. B Road Car
Porsche 356 Carrera Speedster
Mitsubishi XR-PHEV EVO
Mitsubishi XR-PHEV Evo
Most American Car:
Dodge Challenger R/T ’70
Sky High Roller’s Award:
Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren
Ferrari 330 P4
Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren
Best car of Gran Turismo’s Super Six:
Nissan 180SX Type X
Livery Designer:Livery Designer can be a bit of a subjective choice as each person has their own taste or artistry to making their own creation on their car. In this category it comes down to a tie between the two of them and both deserve this title.
Most Improved Driver:Every year there is someone that always does their best and learn a few things or two and just trudges along in the Tuesday night races. By the end of the year the group notices someone that has improved and can compete with faster people in the group.
Driver of the Year:This person is one of our aliens in our group that can drive as fast as the Stig but there are a few coming up and coming that is giving him a run for his money.
Second year Vic has earned this title.
Now for the main event and the prestigious and less than prestigious award.
2020 Beater of the Year:
We know that 2020 has been a horrible year but we can also send this car with 2020 as it leaves the door.
Subaru Viziv GT Vision Gran Turismo
Pagani Zonda R
2020 Car of the Year:
Toyota GR Yaris
Mercedes Benz 300 SEL
Honda Civic Type R ’98
911 RSR Gr3
Toyota GR Yaris
Should post this to Toyota and Kaz' twitter pages.
Obviously the GR Yaris would win. It's a good car though, so all's good.
Thanks for voting me for The Member's award! I thought I'd share my nominations and my reasoning behind them.
Best Looking Car Award:
Pagani Zonda R
My first two candidates for the Best Looking Award were the Spirit R RX-7 and the Amemiya FD, but I also knew it'd solicit that very look you now wear on your face, and so I had to think of something else in the interest of professionalism. It was a genuinely tough pick between the 2017 Ford GT and the 2009 Zonda R, but ultimately, the Zonda edges out the GT for me, because it's actually offered in bare carbon, and it's the car that made me attempt a super cheesy storytelling style of review because I thought the shock and awe factor of seeing it for the first time live, and comparing it to a Mercedes GT3 race car would be the best way to put across how special it is. Not to mention, unlike the GT, the Zonda's interior is just as beautiful as the exterior. But god damn the GT is one hell of a looker all the same.
Still, neither are better looking than an FD RX-*shot*
Worst Looking Car Award:
Subaru WRX Gr.B Road Car
My first two thoughts were the 1994 R32 GT-R and the 2014 RC F. The R32 is, as I noted in my review, so bland and impossibly flat looking that I had trouble shooting photos of it for the review. I also said it looked like something a 3 year old might doodle out if asked to draw a car. But being bland looking isn't necessarily a bad trait, especially if you've the performance to cheekily hide under the sheep's clothing. I then thought of the RC F, which has such an ugly front grille that it's immediately offensive, but looks fine from pretty much any other angle that doesn't reveal said grille. The Ugliest Car Award therefore goes solely to the WRX Gr.B Road Car, for having tasteless bulges, overextending aero bits, stupidly low ride height for a rally car, awkward proportions, and rear doors that can't even be opened. It just looks hopelessly stupid and utterly ridiculous from any angle, from the inside AND out.
Most American Car Award:
Dodge Challenger R/T '70
Not that we tested many other American offerings, but even if we did, you simply don't get more American with a early 70s pony car. Yes, we tested the 2017 Ford GT and the Mustang Gr. 4, but no matter how much America tries to fight its stigma of being associated with cars that are hopeless at anything other than quarter mile times, the obsession with power is forever ingrained into American car culture, and in turn, what we outsiders tend to expect from them. And cars like the 1970 Challenger is the root cause of it all.
It is also because of that line of thinking that I was VERY tempted to nominate the NC1 "NSX". Let's face it: it's an Acura, conceived and designed in America, and that's how I've chosen to cope with the besmirching of the legendary NSX name.
The Member's Award:
I'll be honest, I don't really know what this award means (coming from the guy that won it). "Contributes to the atmosphere"? I guess I'll just thank everyone for contributing to the atmosphere. Nismo and Vic for hosting the lobbies most days, Racer for maintaining this thread, and Alex and Tony for keeping the thread side of things alive.
Sky High Roller's Award:
Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren
Aside from the Zonda, the SLR is the only car costing over 500,000 Credits that I actually liked. The Zonda is a bit too much for me, and the fact that the SLR is road legal is a HUGE plus in my book.
Crayola Arts and Crafts Award:
This is legitimately the hardest pick for an award among all of these awards, and it's ridiculous because there are only two candidates, Rob and Rick! These are the only two candidates because I feel like everyone just grabs an existing design off of Discover instead of coming up with their own bespoke design within a day like these two do every week, or just show up in a plain body car *conspicuous nervous eye twitching*. I legitimately look forward to seeing what sort insane work is possible in just a day's time, and the results astound me every time, some of which are so good I'm tempted to grab them for my own use! The improvisation required to make a full on livery in a day speaks volumes about the creativity of these two, and it's very difficult to pick one over the other, especially as someone with a net artistic talent of -255 Arts.
Ultimately, I had to give the award to Rob, simply because his Coffee Mate RC F GT3 really stuck out to me, perhaps because I was sleep deprived on the day we raced it, or perhaps the design is so good that I'm considering replacing my livery with his, even though creator bias. Not to mention, his Copper 356 Carrera has been noted by someone else (Alex) as being beautiful, and you can't argue much against numbers.
Of course, that doesn't mean you shouldn't go check out Rick's profile sometime. He shares more of his weekly work than Rob, and has an impressive collection of Mustang Gr. 4s, along with alt colours of his weekly weapons that is more than worth a look, especially if you've been racing with us. You might even find some of his daughter's handiwork there!
Ted Thomas Memorial Award for the Most Improved Driver:
This one's pretty obviously Rick. After he laid off on the alcohol before race night, he very evidently improved not just in pace, but also making less mistakes. This has allowed him to tussle with Vic for the lead on more than a few occasions, and even come out on top sometimes!
Honourable mention goes to Racer for his performance on Week 116, when we raced the FD RX-7. He not only set some purple times, but was constantly within slipstream range of me, making sure I couldn't relax. He even had a super close race at Laguna Seca with Vic as well!
Driver of the Year:
In other news, most living organisms like to breathe.
2020 Beater of the Year:
SUBARU VIZIV GT Vision Gran Turismo
The Beat, on paper, looks like the easy candidate for Beater of the Year. It's downright dangerous even at responsible speeds, and has all the practicality of an old, beat up drum (aha?). To list the demerits of a Beat would be beating a dead horse at this point (aha aha?), but it has an odd, indescribable charm that it has that lets it just beat out the other contenders (aha aha aha okay I'll stop) to save itself from being Beater of the Year. Not to mention, it provided for some MEGA racing in the group. The tail happiness of the car meant that driving it was a challenge in itself, putting a difficult and unusual twist to racing. And I simply can't resist the deadbeat puns whenever the topic of the Beat comes up (I'm sorry, I lied).
The Lexus RC F and FC RX-7 are both horrendous cars on the track in my opinion, and it's not like they're super practical to live with, either. I genuinely struggled to come up with anything even remotely nice to say about either in my review, which should make for easy BOTY awards, but neither are downright offensive... No, BOTY has to be more than awful: it has to be awful to the point of being downright insulting and puke inducing at first glance, which is why I've turned to the Pug VGT and the Vijizz: both look stupid to the point that even a grade schooler could tell you why neither could even vaguely resemble a functional car, with both lacking an interior, the Pug lacking side windows and being an entirely needless inclusion in GT Sport, and the Vijizz having brain aneurysm as a hobby, scraping on its own shadow on a smooth, paved road, lacking reverse lights, all on top of being god forsaken ugly. Ultimately, I chose the Vijizz, simply because the Pug VGT has been a leaderboard darling when the track and BoP favoured it, whereas the Scooby has been irrelevant garbage since the day it was dreamt up in a toilet cubicle somewhere. It is, as I concluded in my "review" of the car and concurred by Nat, "irredeemable garbage". At this point, need I further mention it costs a million credits?
Dishonourable mentions go to the NC1 "NSX" for being so bad it's downright insulting, though not nearly on the same levels of the Vijizz. The digital 787B too, for being a horrific con job of a legendary race car, and the LaF for understating its mass and overstating its power, and still being hot garbage even then. But at least I can feasibly be swayed by arguments that it looked good.
2020 Car of the Year:
Toyota GR Yaris 1st Edition RZ "High performance"
Yes, I chose a Yaris as the "2020 Car of the Year". Does this make me look somewhat more like a real world, credible journalist now?
As I mentioned in my FD RX-7 review, Sports cars are an ideology on wheels. It's impossible to not respect and lust after the sheer passion and earnestness of the folks behind the GR Yaris, and it comes across in spades behind the wheel. Quite simply put, the GR Yaris is the single best handling, most thrilling road car I've ever driven this year aside from the FD RX-7, heads and shoulders above everything else. It ticks all the right boxes, being a limited homologation model, costs quite a bit, handles like a dream, weighs just the right amount and has just enough power, adequately distributed and spread out through delightfully short ratios. Toyota's massive balls the size of the Aichi prefecture should be applauded and celebrated, and I only wish more manufacturers would be as daring as them. The Yaris probably did more to reignite the car community's passion than the GT86 did, and is a bigger middle finger to what people usually think of Toyota than the A90 Supra could ever hope to be. Not only does it drive well, but nothing else really comes close to the sort of impact off the track the GR Yaris puts out, as well.
Of course, my first choice was the FD RX-7, but that'd be too unprofessional.
Car that Provided the Best Racing:
Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport
I'll be honest, I probably just came up with this award because I want to award something to the Cayman GT4, it being what I consider "Driving Nirvana" and me genuinely loving it immensely. It's exactly the sort of car that just does what you ask it to, and nothing more. It's the sort of car you can place exactly where you want to, and it never complains or whines. It allows you to concentrate on fighting others instead of the car itself, and the degree to which you can trust this car at speeds is downright unhealthy. Not to mention, every time I drive this car, I just crack the widest and silliest of smiles, and that is simply priceless to me.
I ultra dislike high downforce cars when it comes to racing, as I believe they ironically destroy the actual act of racing by chasing needless speed, when in reality, it's the slowest crap boxes that create the most fun. The Cayman GT4 Clubsport earns the "Car That Provided The Best Racing" Award from me is because it isn't an outright speed demon, but is fast enough to excite. It doesn't have enough downforce to drive upside down, either, so races aren't destroyed by dirty air. And while those are true among all of Gr. 4, what sets the Cayman apart from its peers is its sonorous Flat 6 NA Boxer engine, its impeccable balance, it's willingness and playfulness, and its ability to use a wide variety of brake biases. For a one make race, there is truly nothing else I'd want to race more than a Cayman GT4.
Honourable mentions go to the Beat for the aforementioned mega racing, and the E46 M3. The E46's well mannered demeanour not only won me over against my preconceived biases, but also provided for excellent racing anywhere you looked on the grid. Which conveniently leads me to...
Best race of 2020:
Vic (E46 M3) vs Me (R34 GT-R) at Bathurst
Call me biased, but this race was truly unforgettable for me. Four laps around my favourite racetrack in the world. Me, role playing an utter butthole, in a car 1.5 seconds a lap quicker than the M3, hounding Vic in his M3 sticking onto his bumper as though we were hitched together unable to make a pass. The race was a nail biter from start to finish, and even as I crossed the line, I had to keep my eye on the HUD to ascertain who even won!
Thank for the kind words XSquare, I really enjoy making my COTW liveries each week. But, I hope to improve on my driving next year the most.
Not COTW related:
Last year, I joined a rally cross league. Group B cars on sport tires. 4-6 lap races with joker laps (pit visits) on short tracks. Had a bunch of fun. The new season is coming up. It’s moderated by a Brazilian friend, who lives in Japan.
if you’re interested, check the link.
Hopefully 2021 will be as electrifying as this car. This weeks car we are testing the Porsche Taycan Turbo S. This weeks car is chosen by @Vic Reign93
I won't be here for this week's racing. I'm having my annual beachside getaway, won't be back till Sunday.
I havent driven the Taycan much and I've only started to drive it recently. I read the comments when it came out and it wasnt good.
To my ear it doesnt sound like much.... some people hate the pitch. I'm pretty sure mine has a tune in it. The car tends to work well on the bigger circuits but not the high speed circuits as it tops out at 265km/h. You're going to get bored at Route X. Le Mans, Monza etc.
The car feels like... like it doesnt want to turn. I would say the handling doesnt take long to get used to... I had maybe 1-2km where I had the car too sideways or whatever simply because the car feels too long, too long wheelbase and the steering feels dull.
The car is 4wd but it does step out if you jump on it too hard and/or while you have lots of steering input. OK steering, brakes are better than I thought... I think brakes were a sticking point on most early drivers.
The car gets out of corners quicker than you would think for a 2,5 ton car but there *feels* like its slow from say 100km/h to 265km/h simply because there is no drama, little noise and no manual gears... about that it auto kicks into 2nd quick.
End of the day I feel like... what's the point on this in a game? It doesnt drive in any kind of visceral way... in a Gr.X race its boring since the motor and entire experience does not lend well to any kind of 'fun' racing. The motor is also linear to a point where its boring.... like the fact the motor has no "bump" you feel like you run out of power when you overtake your brothers. You do get in a "flow" on the track in that you can be consistent because there's not much for you do to.
Completely souless dull and uninteresting drive and racing. Also there's no fuel consumption.
TO be fair, the car in the real world is extraordinarly fast. I have driven EVs in real life and they do have an 'personality'... I have no doubt we'd be all blown away in the real world in a P100D or a Taycan S but none of that translates well to GT Sport.
GTS Nordschleife hot lap STOCK Porsche Taycan Turbo S '19: 07.21.145
I was on a sub-20 flyer, but messed it up. Well, a 07.21.145 is still an incredible time for such a car. I was very much surprised at what this thing could do cornering wise, when driven right. The acceleration is brutal of course, the top speed less so (264 km/h - 164 miles per). I don't know if the brakes are bad, but you really needto break early. That said: yes, you do feel the weight of the car very much and need to really adapt your driving to it (it being fully electric also plays a role in that). All in all it's a very impressive car I think.
Driven stock on hard sport tyres without any driving aids, except ABS. First lap in third person view, second one in cockpit view and third one in cinematic replay view. All driven laps are the same lap.
With its driven time, it is the 20th fastest car of all road legal cars. Its closest rivals are the Dodge Viper GTS '13 with a 07.20.606 on the 19th place and the Nissan GT-R '17 with a 07.22.512 on the 21st place. It can reach a top speed of 264 km/h=164mp/h in the game (real life top speed being 259 km/h=161mp/h), and is thus sharing the 85th-82nd place top speed wise of all road legal cars with the Toyota MR2 GT-S '97, the Ford Focus ST '15 and the Nissan 180SX Type X '96, while its closest top speed rivals are the Alfa Romeo Launch Edition '14, BMW3 Sport Evolution '89 and the Mazda RX-7 GT-X (FC) '90 all three with 260km/h=162mp/h on the 88th-86th place respectively and the DE TOMASO Pantera '71 with 265km/h=165mp/h on the 81st place.
Comparison with close rivals:
Verdict: Somewhat a sleeper, because considering its weight and low top speed, it does remarkably well on a track!
The car is fast because it has 768hp and the acceleration from its narrow envelope (ie. 0-265) is insane. Further I think the brakes are better than I give them credit for because it has carbon (I believe) and regen and something stupid like 8 piston.
Also the corner speeds can be fine as long as you're by yourself and you place the car well as its large and it can feel ponderous... ie. make wide turns, hit the apex, take all the track to exit wide. A car like this feels artificial because all the weight is unusually low and you rely on tyres.... also tyre wear can be silly with 2.5 ton onboard.
Racing is dumb, with 16 cars every track feels too crowded. Further the AI sucks. I think in a 7 lap test race at Bathurst I finished with a 2'10" and something like 1'30" margin to #2. On a narrow track like Bathurst you will have issues making enough overtake room in your Porsche electric spa bath sized car.
One other thing I noticed is that how the car forces power to the front and back is a mystery. It does feel RWD mostly but there is some times when I get the car to misbehave I can see the front get power for some odd reason. I think the car in real life uses mystery "Kraut Space Magic" to keep 768hp on the road.
The "Kraut Space Magic" is an in-house Porsche developed system, which, according to Kazunori Yamauchi, is simulated in GTSport.
Time to shamelessly plug my work into this. It will still be a review, albeit in a story form, nonetheless.
Location: Gottlieb Electronic, Stuttgart, Germany
Time: 8 am
A young man is walking among the employees entering one of Germany's largest tech firms, eager to start another busy day. He straightens up his crimson blazer and necktie, smiling as he greets his peers.
His name is Kevin Kern, born in Berlin but grew up in Stuttgart. A race car driver but also an avid anime and superhero cosplayer. Part of his job is actually working as a lead developer in the said firm, as his boss - Uwe Gottlieb - is also the owner of the racing team he belongs to.
After ascending to the floor same to his boss, he enters his own office space, opens up his personal computer. His day begins. However, Uwe knocks on the door.
"Coming!" Kevin said. He then opens up the door, greeted by an equally happy boss.
"Good morning, Mr. Kern." Uwe greeted.
"Good morning, sir!" Kevin returned the greeting.
"Today, we'll have a special day together. Just the two of us." Uwe said.
"Really? But... I have still have to trace who stole the data." Kevin said in a hesitant tone.
"Ah. No worries. We are actually getting close as to who done it. Someone will take over your work today. Let's go." Uwe replied.
Kevin shuts down the PC and the two men descend to where Uwe's car is parked.
A Porsche Taycan Turbo S donning one of Porsche's Paint-To-Sample colors, along with the optional side stripe. Next, Uwe hands over the key fob to Kevin, prompting the latter to react.
"Uh... I'm the one driving?" Kevin asked.
"Yes. You deserve it. And only a few of my trusted employees enjoy this privilege." Uwe responded.
With a hint of hesitation, Kevin unlocks the car. After strapping in, he pushes the starter button. Knowing that it's an electric vehicle, the car springs up to life discreetly.
"I haven't driven this one, sir. But where are we going?" Kevin asked.
"The Nordschleife." Uwe replied with a smile.
Kevin is once again jolted. What will be the purpose of such trip?
"The Green Hell, sir? But why?" Kevin asked.
"Life is more than just work, Kevin. You of all people should know that." Uwe replied.
"If you say so..." Kevin said, as he pushes the throttle, departing the premises.
After a four-hour drive, the pair arrives at the Nurburgring compound.
After paying the fee, they enter the track.
"Put it in Sport Plus. Drive like you always do. I truly want to see in my own eyes why you should be part of my team." Uwe commanded.
"Yes sir." Kevin complied with the instruction, tilting the knob until in few clicks until the car switches to Sport Plus mode.
Kevin floors it, and the car instantly switches to second gear.
"So... it does have a gearbox." Kevin said.
The Taycan takes the first corner without issue, albeit missing the apex.
"First impression, sir? Well, it's a Reichstag on four wheels." Kevin commented in his usual snarky but also in a respectful manner.
"It weighs over 2000 kilos. No surprise." Uwe said.
But then, Kevin notices how the nose darts in the inside line, following the ideal racing line of the track. His modulation of the throttle pays off.
"But strangely, this is a Reichstag that actually turns! As expected from Porsche peeps, they make even the heaviest tanks into track day athletes." Kevin commented on the car's handling.
"I can even hit the apex with little effort." Kevin further commented.
The car immediately hits it top speed of over 260 km/h, and despite the weight, it slows down enough to make it in a dangerous high speed corner approaching Aremberg.
"Okay. Never thought a parliament building can glide through this turn at over 200 km/h." Kevin said.
"Is that what you really think? Remember when I chased you down with this car?" Uwe asked.
"Of course... you were breathing down on my neck. I was driving a 400 horsepower death trap..." Kevin reminisced.
"I was just being careful not to crash my father's car. If he was still alive, he would have given me a beating. Hehe." Kevin said, as he remembers the day he was chased down by Taycan, driving his father's 930.
"I was under heavy pressure. And it was the first time seeing you drive." Kevin said.
"I wish... he was still alive...." Kevin said in a depressing tone, but not until he almost lost his focus in the Fuchsrohre.
"Woah!" Kevin exclaimed.
The carbon ceramic brakes averted a potential disaster. Kevin breathes a sigh of relief.
"Whew. Sorry about that, sir. I was just emotional on that moment. I haven't even met my father... and will never be." Kevin said.
"Stay focused. Do not let the past weigh you down. Only look at the front." Uwe said.
Kevin could barely speak as the car demonstrates its full potential. Could that render his previous comments null and void?
"It's... a wonderful achievement. To think something this heavy can be competent. This will make it into history books." Kevin said.
With early braking and weight transfer techniques, the Taycan glides through the turns similar to that of lighter sports cars.
"This is a great car, overall. I think this car will pave the bright future of performance cars, same as what I hope of mine." Kevin said, as he wraps up the session.
"Thank you, sir. This day has been refreshing so far. It will help me think clearly about my future plans." Kevin said.
"I'm glad I am able to help clearing your mind today. I will always steer you into the right path, Kevin." Uwe responded.
After the track session, they enjoyed a hearty lunch while the car's batteries were being charged.
As the sun sets, Uwe returns to his mansion in Stuttgart after dropping off Kevin to his home. The day has been meaningful for both of them.
As he exits his car, his butler Albrecht anticipates him on the front foyer.
"Good evening, sir. How was your day?" Albrecht asked.
"I had a very meaningful day with my son. Oh you could have seen how I enjoyed the day with him. This is how it feels to bond with him. It feels... euphoric." Uwe said.
"When will you tell Kevin the truth, Mr. Kern? It has always been boggling my mind." Albrecht asked.
"That time is drawing near. But for now, I must steer him away from his potentially dangerous path of revenge. Revenge is a forest thicker than Schwarzwald." he replied.
If only the rear wheel steering feature is present in the Taycan Turbo S, it will handle much better. Isn't that a standard feature on that trim level?
The third, FD generation of the Mazda RX-7 is my childhood dream car. It is the car that introduced me to video games and made me into a petrolhead. It has shaped me from a young age, and thus I am very biased towards it. This is not a review — this is me gushing about my childhood hero, my be all end all dream car, and it is going to be long, dry, perhaps a bit too personal and maybe even a bit cringe. You've been warned.
Mazda has always been largely synonymous with the Wankel Engine, even in the company's early years as an automobile manufacturer. Post WWII, the Japanese government was looking to consolidate part manufacturers to cut down on competition and reduce costs, and Mazda had to carve out a niche for itself as a company to avoid being consolidated into Toyota and Nissan, and thus turned to Germany, where Felix Wankel had been pioneering a revolutionary new engine. While Mazda was neither the first to the party, nor made the most power out of the curious contraption, it was the only one that achieved any sort of longevity with the novel engine, with the 1967 Cosmo Sport being an instant classic in the showrooms. To prove that they have solved the riddle of the Wankel Engine's inherent problems that had plagued all other adopters of this new technology, Mazda entered two Cosmo Sports into the grueling 84-hour Marathon de la Route held at the daunting Nürburgring, with one car failing at the 82nd hour due to axle failure, and the other car going the full 84 Hours, finishing fourth overall — not bad for a conceptually fresh and unproven engine.
Owing to this breakout success, Mazda managed to remain independent as a manufacturer, but more exciting perhaps is how the newly proven Wankel Engine seemed to be the logical next step to replace the traditional Internal Combustion Engine, just as EVs are now threatening the same. The Wankel Engine is more compact, lighter, ran quieter, and was smoother than a traditional piston engine of equivalent power output, but still had reliability issues any new tech is expected to have despite Mazda's success with it, and was notoriously thirsty. That last point relegated the Wankel Engine mostly to sports car applications when the 1970s oil crisis hit — an application where it felt most at home, being a lightweight, rev happy engine that needed to be wrung out to produce power — though it didn't stop Mazda from sticking it into all sorts of other vehicles such as a Familia Sedan, a 3 Rotor Cosmo luxury coupé, a pickup truck of all things, and even a freaking bus!
The first generation Mazda RX-7, chassis code SA22C and later FB3S, bowed in 1978 with the worldwide market in mind. Cheap, light, and fun-to-drive Japanese sports cars were just starting to gain traction in the US thanks to the 240Z, and even though the RX-7 was late to the party, it provided an exciting alternative to its already bloating rivals, characterised by, of course, its unique Wankel Engine. Then the second generation FC3S happened, and I don't want to talk about it more than I already have. In my review of the FC, I said that the third generation, FD3S RX-7 "is leaps and bounds better than the FC in every respect, objective and subjective", and that "It elevated the standards and definition of what a sports car should be and can be". And now it is finally time for me to back up and explain those claims.
The third generation RX-7, chassis code FD3S, was launched in October 1991 in its home market of Japan. While sharing the same name and a familiar chassis code, the FD is such a far leap from the FC that it's very difficult to think of the two as even related. While the FC is a soft, bloated, and boxy knockoff 928, the FD is a low, sleek, curvaceous and seductive beast unlike anything on the road, before or since. Even though the overall length, height, and wheelbase of the FD are all shorter than the FC, the increased width of the FD put the RX-7 for the first time in Japan's larger Class 3 category, to give you an idea of how serious Mazda were about designing the ultimate corner carving machine. Fully capitalising on the Wankel Engine's unique compactness and light weight, the entirety of the 255PS capable powerplant (251HP, 187kW) is situated aft the front axle to finally achieve the perfect 50:50 weight distribution, allowing the stiffer sprung 1,260kg (2,778lbs) package to gracefully dance through corners in conjunction with the precision offered by the Double Wishbones on all four corners (1991 Type R specs, taken from Gran Turismo 6). Tyres were also upsized to 225/50ZR16 front and rear, up from the 205/60VR15 shoeing the top of the line Turbo FC. Standing at only 1,230mm (48.4in) tall, the low, organic, and curvaceous body cuts through opposing air at only 0.31cd, which when coupled with the low frontal area of the sleek FD, puts the bloated and heavy cars of today to shame, as unfair a comparison as that may be to make.
The FD is a very pure, raw, and honest vehicle, if one can make such an assertion without sounding like a moron, and how it looked on the outside is a statement of intent, wholly representative of what lies underneath that immaculately curvaceous sheet metal. In fact, I daresay that the design of the FD is peak sports car design; never again will we be able to have a sports car as light, low and curvaceous as this, due to consumers now wanting everything in their cars, and how lawmakers feel the need to protect people who don't look left right left before crossing from idiots that drive when they shouldn't. Unlike the cars of today, nothing on the FD is fake, or are there only for aesthetic purposes; there are no fake vents, no fake exhaust pipes, no bogus audio piped into the cabin, no pretentious stamped in creases or chiseled out "character lines" that today's mundane and samey cars need to resort to to stand out. Everything on it is functional, and they all blend together so flawlessly, cohesively, and "flow" so well, it leads your eyes around it endlessly, without ever once feeling pretentious or ingenuine. It's like a girl that doesn't need a loud crop top, short skirts, or 10kg of makeup products to stand out; she's just pretty, as-is. As hard as it is for me to pick a favourite angle of the FD, the Series 8 (1998–2002) FD dead on from the rear is probably my favourite. The wraparound light cover with three circular lights on each side almost resembles a weighing scale indicating balance, binding the left and right sides together to also create a sense of cohesion. The four rounded red lights on the unified rear light cluster gives the car a very buttoned-down look, and the adjustable rear wing gives a very real sense of weight visually, suggesting a well put together drive. Coupled with the low and organic looking body of the FD, the unified rear light cluster gives the FD an unmistakable visage that is instantly recogniseable even from a distance.
Impressively (to me at least), the Series 8 RX-7's stock rear wing is an adjustable unit that actually produces downforce! It is possible to change between four angles of attack with the stock wing, at 1, 5, 10, and 14.5 degrees by removing the wedge shaped piece on each wing stand manually, which has four keyholes on the inside leading edge to accommodate the four preset angles of attack. Unfortunately in the Gran Turismo series, the wing doesn't change in appearance even if you change the downforce value, and the keyholes aren't modeled in in the game.
Because the engine is so compact, and because this is 1991 and there hadn't yet been a law that states you need a bit of a "cushion bubble zone" between your bonnet and the engine header, the bonnet line of the FD is set super low, thanks in no small part to the compact Wankel Engine. This in turn necessitated the pop up headlights, since laws at the time at least did require headlights to be a certain height off the ground, meaning that even the flamboyant pop up headlights are actually functional and not just vanity items. Personally speaking, I ADORE pop up and hidden headlights. I can't really explain why. Seeing them just connects my jaded adult self to the 8 year old kid inside me, and it just fills me with such unconditional joy every time I see a set. I love how sleek and cheekily stealthy they look, how they seemingly promise an imminent transformation, and even just tracing the panel gap lines to the beautiful headlight covers fill me with an inexplicable joy. In fact, you could say the same about the entirety of the FD RX-7's body.
Other stylistic standouts are the front bumper of the JDM only Series 8, which have the opened up light cluster below the pop ups. These position lights and turn signals have a mirror finish inside the cylinders, which make the "eyes" glisten in the daylight even when they're off. The car always has a confident, yet gentle look, almost as if it were smiling, without being too in-your-face about it like mid to late 2000s Mazda cars.
The doors too, look like teardrops pulled and stretched back, to give that sense of built up power. The window glass is properly framed, too, unlike those nonsensical frameless windows that need to pop up and down with each door opening. The door handles are flush with the car's body, which was almost unheard of back in the '90s, and it took about twenty years before other manufacturers started to adopt flush door handles in their performance cars and mileage conscious EVs.
(Also, yes, the white Spirit R in the reflection has modified scissor doors)
It is always such a delight to watch light dance across the subtle curves of the clean, widespread front bonnet of an FD as you move around it or as it moves, giving it a surreal sense of motion even if it's standing perfectly still.
The FD RX-7 is so beautiful that I simply cannot find an angle that isn't drop dead gorgeous and just somehow soothing to look at. It's the sort of car that is so charismatic and photogenic that you could point a phone camera at and just shoot for a great photo. While the SA, FB and FC generations that preceded the FD look very much like products of their time, the FD I maintain is the single best looking car to ever be mass produced, in my obviously biased opinion. Even though it was penned in the late 80s to early 90s, it never looks its age. It has an implicit, visceral feel to it that just appeals to something innate in all of us, which is perhaps why it still looks modern today. When I show photos of the car to my non petrolhead friends and family, they are all surprised to learn that the design is older than I am!
Don't worry, this is the first and last time I'm showing my face. I know how ugly I am.
It may surprise some to learn that the FD RX-7 is technically a hatchback! Almost the entire width of the car lifts from wing to the rear greenhouse glass. Even though it has a wide opening and surface area, it's lacking in depth, resulting in a boot that's almost like a kiddy pool in appearance. I think most will still be surprised by how much stuff the FD can carry, however.
Now, I want to know what is up with the discrimination against my FD RX-7 Gran Turismo Sport has, not letting it enter the Hot Hatch Challenge in GT League!
The stylistic theme continues on the interior of the FD: curvaceous, genuine, pleasing to look at, but never obnoxious or distracting. One might find the interior to be rather bland, admittedly, given that the interior is typical 90s Japanese sports car: swathe with nothing more than soulless, black plastic parts typical of cars of its era and price point, with the only reprieve from the monotony being special, limited edition cars with glaring red seats and complementary red stitching.
2002 Spirit R Type A interior.
While lacking in any fanciful materials of today's cars like Alcantara or Carbon Fibre, its appeal being a focused, pure driving machine carries over from the exterior, continuing that sense of cohesion and purity of purpose in design; the dash wraps around the driver, with everything within easy reach and glance, bringing focus naturally to the big, clear gauges on the instrument panel while creating a sense of coddling the driver. The tachometer sits dead centre in the dash and is the largest of the dials, with redline being at about 2 o'clock for easier viewing in the Series 8. Next to the dominating tachometer is the equally sized speedometer, which maxes out at 180km/h (~112mph), where the car is electronically limited to as per the weird jishu-kisei, or "mutual self-restraint" gentlemen's agreement between Japanese manufacturers at the time. The speedometer maxing out at mid 4th gear really makes me feel like a superhero doing insane speeds when in reality, I'm puttering along quite slowly, because of how much it travels in a small speed range, which I'd go as far as argue makes it easier to tell at a glance what sort of speed you're doing without having to read the numbers, though it admittedly is useless past mid fourth gear, and is probably on the top of the list to change for anyone looking to modify their cars. The only button on the steering wheel is the horn, and nothing else to distract you when you're driving, which is something I personally wish more car manufacturers had the sense to do. Amenities and creature comfort include air con, stereo, a cigarette lighter, a few pockets of cubby holes aaaand... that's about it. Anything else would be extra mass, y'know!
Despite the cramped dimensions, the car does feature a double bubble roof design, originally intended to accommodate racing helmets, meaning that, comfort and dignity notwithstanding, even slightly larger Westerners should be able to fit into the car. Once in, the car does an astounding job of lending its occupants an airy, wide open feeling, offering a panoramic view that's almost not an exaggeration to say. There really is a lovely sense of light in the cabin of the FD — even in models not equipped with a sunroof — no doubt helped greatly by the toothpick thin A pillars that could've only been possible in the yesteryear, along with the gigantic rear greenhouse glass that, while beautiful inside and out, probably hurts the chassis rigidity, and I imagine also a manufacturing nightmare, hence why they've become just about nonexistent today. Still, I ADORE the rear greenhouse glass. It gives off such a fighter jet inspired look, affording such a freeing sense of light, and it minimises blind spots and makes parking a breeze.
Lastly, because the later models of the FD RX-7 were never meant for export outside Japan, the car's interior has some... shall we say, quirks and features.
Push LOAD buttin
Insert duscs after"IN" is displayed
The FD RX-7 is considered by many to be the pinnacle of Mazda sports cars. It is, at the very least to me, the pinnacle of creative liberty for Mazda. It was born when technology was adequate, but regulations weren't nearly as strict. It was only with the backing of a rapidly inflating, yet ill-fated economic bubble could a relatively small and independent car company like Mazda finance the development of something to really challenge the larger automotive giants of Honda, Nissan, and Toyota, and perhaps even established brands worldwide. It is often said that the FD RX-7 was designed by a team of passionate engineers when all the accountants and marketing department were away on a vacation, and somehow got greenlit for production. That is what I mean by the car being very "honest". It just oozes and shouts purity of purpose, perhaps even to a fault, so focused on being an engaging, exciting drive, and so little else. It felt like no one but the engineers had a say in the car. It was never offered with any engine other than the Inline 2 Rotor 13B-REW, even when there was a bigger, more powerful 3 Rotor Mazda could've dumped into it, but would've upset the perfect weight balance of the FD. It never came with a convertible, despite the FC's success with it, because that adds extra mass and takes away from chassis rigidity. It was only offered with a 5 Speed Manual, with only two exceptions that I don't want to acknowledge the existence of, let alone talk about. It is a car that knows what it is and what it wants to do, and doesn't bother to try to be anything else, and I love it for that. Cars nowadays simply aren't built with this sort of purity of purpose, this cohesion of a big picture dreamt up by a small team of passionate engineers anymore. It isn't a product separated into tiers based on cost and market trends and demand; rather, it is a sports car, pure, plain and simple. The best that Mazda can give you at the time. And I love it for that.
Powering the flagship sports car of Mazda in the early 90s is of course the company's pièce de résistance: the Wankel Engine, better known by its fans by its in-house name, the Rotary Engine. A close relative to the R26B engine used in the legendary 787B racecar, the Inline 2 Rotor engine in the FD quoted at 1,308cc redlining at a stratospheric 8,000rpm may sound exactly the same to those who are familiar with the FC, but in the FD, they are all sequentially twin turbocharged; only the third production car to feature such a system, after the Porsche 959 and Mazda's own JC Cosmo. A smaller turbocharger with less inertia and less power would come online from near idle to 4,500rpm, and from there, the system would seamlessly switch to the bigger, more powerful turbo once the exhaust gases start seriously flowing, all the way to the redline of 8k. It is a massively complicated system, and as with everything on the FD, was prone to breaking. Diagnosis of the engine, with its miles upon miles of pipes from the twin sequential turbo system, was and still is a nightmare for many owners, with many opting to swap for a much simplified single turbo setup, sacrificing low end torque for reliable top end power. While many Rotary fans are quick to defend the reliability of their engines, saying things like, "they're reliable if you know how to take care of them, bruh", and "well the 787B's engine went full tilt 24 hours straight with no issues", the twin sequential turbo system is perhaps a bit too complicated for its own good, and has been cited to kick the rear end of the car out when the bigger turbo comes online mid corner, which can catch out the inexperienced or unprepared.
Photo: Mazda Japan Facebook Page
But that is not to say that the turbos are bad, per se. Me personally, I love the twin sequential turbo setup of the FD, and wouldn't swap it for anything else. As is the theme of the rest of the car, they are brilliant when they do work. While Rotary Engines are traditionally known to be very peaky engines with pathetic torque figures, the twin sequential turbos give the 13B-REW some semblance of life in the low range, and enough of a kick in the mid range to bring the rear end outwards, especially in the models with the way too slim 225 section tyres at all four corners. Peak power and peak torque comes at 6,500rpm and 5,000rpm respectively. Yes, these figures still suggest a peaky engine. Yes, you will still need to wring the crap out of it to get it to give you the magic. Unlike the turbochargers of today, they aren't designed to compensate for a downsized engine, or to make torque down low so lazy drivers can pass cars without having to downshift in their automatic gearbox SUVs; but rather, they're here to make a very lopsided engine more well rounded for the racetrack. The end result is a car that is never caught unprepared on the track, with adequate revs and torque to propel the featherweight FD out of any complex of corners, even low 2nd gear corners of a tightly wound mountain pass, with the Rotary Engine's natural peakiness taking care of the upper rev range.
Of course, the numbers don't sound like anything special today; a modern FWD hot hatch makes more than what this highly ornate setup does. But I personally find that the FD's torque curve is a very natural fit to the car, as it makes it possible to lug the car out of apexes from as middling as 5,000rpm, and the torque is never surprising or disruptive, just a natural feeling surge that climbs with engine speed, giving you power just as you're ready and able to use it, making for a very cohesive, balanced, and easy car to drive fast. Throttle management out of apexes of corners in the dry is more for ensuring you don't understeer off the track rather than keeping the rear from peeking out in the 255 section rear tyre equipped FDs, which I find difficult to break loose with power alone in any gear higher than 2nd. The sequential twin turbo setup is, to me, an oft neglected aspect — yet a big core component nonetheless I feel — of the FD's central theme: balance and cohesion. It's an especially big help in Gran Turismo Sport, as manual gearboxes shift criminally slowly and awkwardly in this game, and being able to minimise shifting by lugging the car is a godsend.
For comparison to NA Rotary Engines, the NA FC RX-7s made peak power at 7,000 and peak torque at 4,000, redlining at 8,000. The RX-8 made peak power at 8,200 and peak torque at 5,500, of 9,000. As a result of the sequential twin turbos, the FD RX-7 actually goes faster if you short shifted it a little at around 7,500rpm, as heretic as it must sound. Me personally, I wouldn't forgo that sweet sound of revving it out completely, though, as it's not a very perceptible loss without the instantaneous deltas of a racing game, and the car is certainly capable of holding onto a lower gear if approaching a braking point. As was already tradition by that point, Mazda fitted a beeper that was programmed to come on 500rpm before redline, at the magical 7,500rpm. I've personally never found a need for the beeper, as I think the engine is communicative enough without it in the previous games when the beeper wasn't replicated. I can sort of understand why it's there, though, as the engine revs so silky smooth, it's hard to not get lulled into thinking it could go on forever. The beeper does keep the car in tradition and gives it character, so I'm glad it's still there, especially because it doesn't sound like a 1980s alarm clock passing gas into a soiled diaper like the one in the FC.
Photo: Mazda Japan Facebook Page
What's infuriating to me isn't the beeping, but rather, that the turbo gauge is bugged in Gran Turismo Sport: it only toggles instantly between no boost, almost full boost, and full boost, which is most evident when you're launching the car from a standstill like we do in our weekly races. It's so unresponsive that it doesn't even blip at all on downshifts, and it's just an eyesore in what should've been a perfect cockpit experience.
The early 90s in the Japanese sports car scene was truly magical, as every automaker, backed by a short lived economic bubble, vied to claim dominance with their equally daring and innovative flagship sports cars. Nissan had their "Godzilla", three generations of the GT-R. Honda had the now legendary and much revered NSX. Toyota would soon drop a bombshell with the A80 Supra. Mitsubishi and Subaru would go on to have the rivalry of a lifetime with their Evos and Imprezas. The comparatively small, independent automaker in Mazda swam with these sharks and not only survived, but thrived. The debuting FD, when tested and raced in the professional hands of Best Motoring, set the fastest lap both in the race and time attack around Tsukuba, beating out Godzilla and the NSX, both of which costing more. It only gets beat by the AWD Godzilla and the Mid Engined NSX in the 0-400m dash, and took top time in a slalom test. It even took Bathurst 12 Hours 3 years in a row, from 1992 to 1994. In the hands of private customers, the FD was truly the Swiss Army Knife of sports cars, a testament to how well its base design catered to anything motorsports. It partook in and excelled at multiple disciplines of motorsports, from D1GP, Touge runs, Bonneville Salt Plane top speed runs, and even won Super GT in the GT300 class in 2006. It was truly the Jack of All Trades, and even master of some, which is why the FD RX-7 is such a respected household name in the aftermarket, with support for the car is still thriving today. As brilliant as the car already is fresh out of the factory, the combination of a lightweight, low slung, low drag, wide spread 2 door body with a perfect 50:50 weight distribution and a rev happy, compact engine up front driving the rear wheels proves to be an irresistible and highly capable base upon which many tuners still choose to build upon even today, such as Fujita Engineering, Knight Sports, Pan Speed, R Magic, Racing Beat, and RE Amemiya.
While it debuted strong, I struggle to make a case for it having bowed out the same. Owing to lacklustre sales figures in export markets, the FD RX-7 pulled out of America and Europe with just four years, from 1992 to 1995. That means that the more refined, further improved FD RX-7s were JDM exclusives. And if you know how quickly Japanese cars in the 90s evolved, you'd know that this is a big deal.
In the 90s, Japanese car manufacturers were limited by the aforementioned gentlemen's agreement to advertise no more than 280PS for their cars. This meant that, instead of using raw power as a crush, manufacturers had to look to other means to better and improve their cars, resulting in frantic, almost yearly small updates that often decided which car had an edge over its rivals. Due to lacklustre sales figures in export markets and Mazda's rapidly worsening financial situation in the 90s, updates for the RX-7 were minor compared to its contemporary rivals. Mazda's financial situation was such that it had to turn to Ford for help, who in 1996 owned as much as a 33.4% stake in Mazda. Along with Ford came a frantic restructuring of the company to increase profitability, and it was clear then, even in the mid 90s, that the RX-7 — and Rotary Engines in general — were in the proverbial back seats as crummy as the ones some FDs came with; there more for formalities and insurance than actually being used to accommodate anything of value. In the 12-year lifespan of the FD in the Japanese Domestic Market, the GT-R spanned three generations with leaps in its ATTESA AWD and Super HICAS rear wheel steering systems, getting a 6 speed in 1998. The NSX got a "big minor change" in 1997 (yes, Japanese expressions are weird) that saw its engine bored out and paired with a six speed gearbox, and then a major facelift with much improved aerodynamics in 2000. The Evo and Impreza each had seven or so versions since their inception up to 2002, but honestly, who can really keep track of those two in the 90s? The RX-7 in comparison, had its power slightly bumped a few times and went through three different rear wing and badge designs, I guess?
While pale in comparison to its rivals' evolution, the RX-7 did get some very important changes, in addition to the aforementioned power bump. Most important and impactful of these I believe are the upsizing of tyres from 225mm sections on all four corners to 235/45ZR17 up front and 255/40ZR17 in the rear for the top of the line Type RS model and special editions, which were previously exclusive to the excruciatingly limited Type RZ. This finally gave the "normal" RX-7s the driving characteristics of a proper FR cornering machine. In addition to this, chassis rigidity was also strengthened, resulting in a car that not only approaches its limits more linearly, but also makes it less nervous at and past its limits. Perhaps to compensate for not getting a 6 speed manual, the shortened fifth and final gear ratios that were also originally exclusive to the Type RZ has been made standard across the 5MT range (except for the oddball Bathurst R), which, when coupled with the slight power bumps the FD received over the years, means you'll actually see fifth on Suzuka's home straight in a late model FD. Lastly, the single most beautiful colour in all of recorded human history, Innocent Blue Mica, was made available for the final facelift on almost all models, replacing the very, very odd Montego Blue Mica. Not that the endless creases and curves of the FD really needed fancy paint to show it off, but with these high contrast paintjobs like Innocent Blue Mica and the Spirit R exclusive Titanium Gray Metallic to further accentuate it, the FD becomes almost dangerously addictive to stare at on the road.
The Spirit R that's in most modern racing games, such as Gran Turismo Sport, is the final model of the RX-7, meant to commemorate the end of its 25-year production run. Because the FD was on life support for the latter half of its life however, the Spirit R is simply a top of the line Type RS model with some mostly aesthetic bits thrown into it. However, one look at that list of special bits, and it's impossible to not salivate, as they're all from the best in the industry: Brakes are drilled rotors from Brembo, with special red paint and Mazda lettering on the calipers. Wheels are upsized to 17 inches, of immaculate BBS design. Seats are full on, bare Kevlar backed, thin buckets from Recaro in the Type A, in an attention commanding red, accompanied by red stitching in the steering wheel, shift knob, and parking brake lever. The steering wheel on all Series 8 RX-7s are Nardi items. And while not advertised, I'm sure Mazda fiddled with the breathing of the engine in the Spirit R, as not only is it ever so slightly faster, it also sounds distinctly different from the rest of its brethren, with its otherwise defining Rotary whine almost inaudible in the cockpit, offering only a generic, muffled exhaust noise to go along with your drive. The end result of all this produces what Gran Turismo Sport claims to be 296PS (292HP, 217kW) @ 6,500rpm and 332Nm (245.3lb-ft) @ 5,500rpm for the sportiest variant of the Spirit R, the Type A.
While extensive, the list of changes doesn't add up to a radically different driving experience in the Spirit R. The changes aren't as transformative as a Honda Type R or a Subaru 22B, but one look at a Spirit R, and everything just feels so... special, yet so naturally fitting. Nothing screams "90s special limited edition" like BBS wheels, and the red Recaro bucket seats make the regular ones look ghastly, so much so I almost wonder why they were locked behind special edition models. They seem to contrast and complement the body colours of the FD so well, though it does have the unfortunate side effect of making a red FD look... overwhelmingly red. Even though this is a limited edition model, these parts just look so right on the FD I wouldn't have the car any other way.
So here we are. I've bored you to death and back with the entire history of the FD RX-7. Now the question is, "how does it drive?"
It's worth noting that, as with most production cars in Gran Turismo Sport, the RX-7's stock settings are... very off. The spring rates are inconsistent across Gran Turismo 5, 6, and Sport, and the game defaults to -0.5° Camber for the front and -1.5° for the rear on almost all road cars, along with 0° toe up front and +0.6° for the rear toe. Gran Turismo 6 and the car's brochure both state the RX-7 has a 135mm (5.31in) ground clearance both front and rear, but Gran Turismo Sport instead mucks that up by giving the FD 120mm front (4.72in) and 130mm (5.12in) in the rear, throwing off the perfect weight balance of the FD. I've tried my best to look up the original alignment of the FD to no avail, and with the game's ambiguous units for damping, it's impossible to really replicate what the car would handle like if it were truer to real life. All of my driving impressions therefore are formed within the game, using the game's botched stock settings.
Even with all the muck ups, the Spirit R drives freaking amazing in the game.
Owing to its front midship layout, the lightness of the Rotary Engine, the resulting impeccable balance, and its impossibly low dimensions of its body, the car stops on a dime and slices into corners so effortlessly yet intuitively, that I'm forced to use the cliché of "telepathic" to describe it. It is an absolute delight in its precision and communication with the driver. The turn-in of the FD RX-7 I daresay is better than most bonda-fide rear mid engine supercars of any era, as I find that they tend to have a lot of "grandma hand holding understeer" built into them from the factory — not so in the FD. On corner exits, the steering feel never stops tugging away at you as you feel the weight shift over the rear, making for a very neutral and communicative corner exit.
Whether by design or just a happy coincidence, the diminutive dimensions of the cockpit mean that you're sat so low to the ground, with the gear lever shockingly close to the steering wheel, lending themselves so well to creating a sense that you really are in a racing car, and it's endless encouragement, affirmation, and drama, and it somehow always feels so fresh, just so right, every drive. In addition to the low seating position, you as the driver sit dead centre lengthwise in the car, and the car gives you a wonderful sense of rotation right about your bum whenever you take the steering wheel off centre, an intuitive feel the likes of which not many cars can give. You know exactly where each tyre is at any given point because of where you're seated, and you're never left to guess or be caught by surprise. Coupled with the car's perfect 50:50 weight distribution, the centre seating position really does give a phenomenally tactile sensation that the car is pivoted right between your feet, in the palm of your hands. Every little twitch of your every extremity results in an immediate and proportional change in the car, and it is such a joy to have a dance partner as capable and always willing as the FD.
What I find truly amazing is not only how the car never once breaks character in the entire sequence from braking for a corner and powering out, exhibiting an unshakable sense of balance and predictability, but also how engaging and rewarding the whole experience is. You feel everything in the car, and everything is within your control entirely. The car is such a playful, charismatic thing, making you as the driver pay attention to and be mindful of Every. Single. Thing. that goes on with the car when you chuck it into a corner. Braking for a corner? Yes, the front tyres are naturally the limiting factor in how well you decelerate, but make sure you don't turn the wheel too much, or the car will lean and elongate your braking distances, or worse still, slide the rear end out. The rear end of the car feels a little too soft for my liking, and there's excessive roll in the rear, which can very quickly unstick the rear end despite the ample 255 section tyres. On corner exits, everything comes into play; the chassis rigidity, the suspension setup that is now considered soft, the engine revs, the rear tyre grip, the front tyre grip, steering feel, road surface, balance and weight of the car... you can take nothing for granted in the FD, and as a result, you have to be on top of everything at all times in the FD, and it delivers in spades on all fronts, which is such an excruciating rarity among cars of any nationality and era.
I get that it all sounds very intimidating, requiring the utmost skill and dedication to drive. While the FD demands everything from its driver, it is at the same time, overwhelmingly cooperative and always predictable, and therefore never intimidating. It just takes it upon itself to keep communicating to you how every component is doing at all times. It never does anything unexpected or even slightly rude if you treat it right, yet at the same time, will happily oblige you and kick up a mess if you ask it to. Slides can be held at whim and corrected just as quickly, because the core ingredients of a pure sports car, those being light weight, balance, and communication, all come together to ensure that the car behaves in a predictable fashion even when tyre grip is lost. There are no electronic nannies aside from ABS and a wholly unnoticeable EBD to yank control away from you when you most need it or least expect it — not even Traction Control. Everything is in your control and yours alone all the time. The car simply never betrays the trust it so instantaneously builds in its driver, and any accidental whoopsie is 100% my fault or overeager zest. I love that. That brings SUCH a huge smile to my face every time I go for a drive in my FD. And every time I do drive it, I never, ever want to stop. Not only is it capable and fun to drive, but it's so easy I could do it for hours on end, especially because the lightweight car is gentle on its tyres and brakes, though the heat from the transmission tunnel might cook you alive first before anything else, as these cars run notoriously hot even at responsible, sensible speeds.
THIS is what driving is all about. THIS is the engagement, neutrality, communication, predictability, specialness I'm looking for when I drive a sports car. THIS is why I have probably inadvertently mentioned the FD RX-7 in every review I've done up to this point, because this is the golden standard to which any and everything that wants to proclaim themselves to be sporty has to be held. A sports car is supposed to engage and enthrall me. It is supposed to reward me for performing an art form well, and punish me when I fail to pay it proper respect. It is an excellent car for the beginners to learn the basics of driving fast, as the FD is such a effective communicator, and also for the more experienced to play with and hone their skill.
While all that sounds amazing, I really struggle to make a case for why someone would buy a nearly 4 million Yen FD RX-7 in the early 2000s (trust me, you want at least a Type RS if you're keeping it stock, the upsized, staggered tyres totally transform the car). The R34 GT-R has more power, more gears, and is a lot easier to drive, even if they're excruciatingly close in lap times in my own testing. The Impreza is a lot more practical and cheaper in addition — even in Spec C trim — and any of these AWD machines will make mincemeat of the FD in adverse conditions. The S2000 may be down on power compared to the FD, but it has more gears, revs higher, is lighter, also cheaper, has a stiffer chassis, a bulletproof engine, has a retractable top, and even handles way better! The NSX-R will, in every measurable aspect, outperform the FD, weighing the same, having more gears, much more advanced aerodynamics, and has a rear-midship layout better suited for the track. And if one looks globally for competition and alternatives, the picture becomes even more bleak, as non Japanese manufacturers weren't subject to the weird gentlemen's agreement. The 996 911 GT3 is an all out track weapon that can give you the rawest of track experiences, and is a lot faster everywhere. As I previously mentioned, the FD was on life support in its later years, and its age really shows when you compare it to its contemporary sports car rivals. The suspension setup in the FD is also notably soft for a sports car, and I'm not really sure what Mazda was going for there, especially since the rest of the car seems to scream, "no compromise sports car". If you're not careful with it, you can very easily and quickly find yourself... becoming very busy with the Nardi steering wheel, shall we say. It's not a car you can abuse around a racetrack, but rather, something you have to come to understand and work with, more akin to a 993 Carrera Club Sport in that sense.
Despite its competitive shortcomings however, I urge anyone and everyone who loves cars and loves driving to try driving an FD RX-7 if they ever get the chance. Taken on its own, enjoyed for what it is and what it can bring to the table, it is still a fantastic sports car, one of the best ever produced in my mind. It is the standard to which I hold all sports and modern cars, which at first glance might seem unfair, given how I was just singing praises for the car's uncompromising and focused personality. But, if you can't deliver a driving experience today that is as good as a chassis that's older than I am, or out perform such a granddad that was on life support in his last years, then what business have you in saying your car is sporty, or that it's even a sports car?
The FD has shown me that a sports car is an ideology materialised. It is passionate intent. With today's technology and much more financially able manufacturers, I cannot imagine it being difficult to put into production a 2 door rear drive sports car that weighs around 1.3 tons with about 300HP and electronic nannies that can be turned completely off. The problem is, do you want to make me such a car? Do you think it will make you a profit? Do you think it fits your brand image? And that's why I'm always so harsh in my car reviews, and why I have probably inadvertently mentioned the FD RX-7 at least once in every review I've written so far. If you want to make a sports car, make it better than this, then we'll talk. Benchmark this sense of balance. Make sure your sports car is as involving, predictable, playful, and communicative as this. It's entirely irrelevant to me what your 0-100km/h times are, your 0-400m times, or how many gs you can pull around a skidpad. Time and technology will keep marching forward and make whatever numbers you can conjure up now seem pitiful. Can you make me something that never gets old? Can you give me a dynamic experience that constantly demands my everything to dance together? Can you make something that is unquantifiable, yet so magical? Can it make me feel the things that the FD can make me feel?
A sports car isn't supposed to make sense. It's something anyone of any age, from 7 to 77, takes one look at and think, "I want that!" Nobody needs a sports car, in the same way that nobody needs a 3000 dollar mechanical watch, a Van Gogh painting, to hit balls with bats, to design pixel art, or to practice Kendou with swords costing thousands of dollars. Rather, these are sports, these are art forms people pursue because they find meaning and satisfaction in doing them and doing them well. The acts and technology used may be outdated, but there still exists an appreciation for the workmanship of a watch, they can see the historic value in an old oil painting, and appreciate the technique required on display. I wholly believe that sports cars fit the description of all of the above and more. To draw upon the sword analogy (pun entirely unintentional), I don't want a sword that massages my hands and fires missiles and glows in the dark; that'd be missing the point of a sword entirely. I want a sword that is well weighted and balanced, is comfortable to hold, makes a "whoosh" sound when I angle a cut right, and is sharper than anything else. That's it. I don't want it to protect me, much less others. It is a weapon, I'll exercise the due caution and respect. I want to be careful about slicing my fingers off. I never want to be lackadaisical around it, because it should make me feel the exact opposite. It is much the same with cars. I just want it to drive well. I don't want it to help me keep lanes, brake for me, or be my phone... it is a weapon, I'll exercise the due caution and respect and be held responsible if anything happens. I never want to be lackadaisical around it, in the same way that I don't want others to be lackadaisical around my car, because safety I personally believe is a shared responsibility. I just don't want my sports cars to be so... complicated. To have its focus split so many ways. Instead of using technology to make me a sword that fires missiles, I want technology to make me a sword that is tougher and shaper. I don't want technology to take away from the actual act and feel of cutting with a sword. And if it happens to looks beautiful, then all the more better.
Of course I do want safety. I do want to be able to walk away from a crash and still be able to do it again. I believe in learning from mistakes. I want airbags, ABS, crumple zones, and rollover protection. That's it, really, and the FD I know for sure has the first two. I don't want the car to intervene and interject. I don't want it to intrude, and I don't want it to overwhelm itself. Thing is, with cars chasing horsepower figures, they need that kind of crap to keep themselves in check. No one is driving a 700HP car without aids.
I get that I'm in a shocking minority, which is probably why modern sports cars are such compromised, cumbersomely complicated and confused things nowadays. When I drive modern performance cars that do 0-100 in under 3 seconds with inane power that no one can possibly exploit even on a racetrack, held back by twenty million electronic nannies onboard that can't be switched off, meddling at every turn, I can't help but to wonder what cars the generation after mine will drive when learning how to go fast. I can't help but to wonder if they'll ever learn to perceive the nuances of a purely analogue sports car, know what they mean, and train up the muscle memory to react accordingly. I can't help but to wonder if they will then become the engineers of performance cars, and if they can understand how to make a car go fast or be fun to drive. I wonder if cars will be set up by computers more than people. Most importantly, I can't help but to wonder, in a world where instant gratification is quickly becoming the only affirmation in our lives, and where appearances and numbers mean more than anything else, if there's a place for old classics like the RX-7 and the highly refined art form it brings to our streets, if they will ever be understood even by the microscopic minority of the people who love cars. It will genuinely break my heart if one day a kid gets out of an FD RX-7 and tells me something like "it's slow sloppy and stupid I hate it".
I believe the FD RX-7 is an art form both in the tangible styling of the car, and the immeasurable sensations it delivers to a driver from behind its wheel. We're irrational creatures, some of whom buy expensive watches when their phones can tell them the time, some of whom hit balls for a living, some repeat a sword Kata in isolation thousands of times, and some of us love driving, even if just by ourselves. If we were rational beings, we wouldn't be so opposed to CVTs, and SUVs will be a niche market segment. Great cars like the NSX and the Viper wouldn't have a place in our world. A sports car is almost a celebration of irrationality, of the intangible. It's supposed to be unabashedly pandering. Raw. Communicative. Honest. Beautiful. Balanced. I should be able to trust it and take liberties with it, and it should duly slap me across the face if I take things too far. And it is these unquantifiable traits that make the FD RX-7 so, so beloved. I don't care about 0-100 times. I want an experience that will, like the styling of the FD, never get old. I want the car to talk to me. I want to daily drive it, to show everyone what I'm passionate about. I want to drive it. By myself. I want it to be special. I want it to be selfish. I want it to be made with my enjoyment its top priority. I want it to be uncompromising. I want to see, feel, someone's soul, passion, and intent in it, not profit margins and PR stunts. And cars like that are excruciatingly rare, if not extinct, by today's standards.
While I love the FD RX-7 more than I can possibly put into words, I'm... almost glad that Mazda hasn't tried to build a direct successor to it. Seeing the NSX and Supra name be dishonoured like they've been, I can't help but to worry about the same fate befalling the "next RX". Maybe we really can't have an excellent sports car in the same vein as the FD today. Maybe it's something that could only have been possible in the 90s. I can recognise when I'm in the minority, that I'm an ancient dinosaur when it comes to my tastes. I'm just glad to see that same spirit alive in modern Mazdas, and that they seem to be doing well for themselves. I'm glad my memories and my feelings towards the FD hasn't been insulted by a subpar product that shares nothing in philosophy with the original. And maybe that's good enough of a victory in a world where the Mustang has become an electric SUV, and half of Lamborghini's sales are from the Urus.
I apologise for the long, philosophical, and borderline political rant. This is just too near and dear to me. I promise this is the last time I'm going to ramble so much about philosophy and politics (until I review an electric car...). Just as is with sports cars, I believe the best writings and expressions come from honesty. And I want to embody that so much, it perhaps works to my detriment, as is probably already evident in my reviews and life choices. It is the reason I took up engineering and Japanese in college. It is the reason why I always fly to Hiroshima every time I visit Japan. To me, the FD is neither a good or a bad car. It's not a Beater or a Sleeper. It isn't simply the Car of the Week, or even the Car of the Year for me. It is, quite simply, The One.
This week we are testing the final Lancer Evo. We are taking a look at the Lancer Evo X Final Edition. This weeks car is chosen by @Alex p.
I dont like this car. This should have been a WRX vs EVO thing because the WRX blows this thing away if only because it has a variable center diff... and the 6 spd.
How Mitsubishi got away with a 5 spd back in 2016 is a mystery. I think they discontinued the dual clutch 6 spd etc.
The 5 spd is workable but I dont like the amount of chassis movt. this car exhibits. Its not in a terrible way. Like the car understeers but its like the WHOLE car understeers, not just the front end like on an FWD car.
I found you have to be at very low speeds for it to not understeer. And the car seems to pitch badly on most corners like as if it has good damping but the springs are too soft. PLUS there's some odd nose corner pitching on power delivery. ie. power thru a right hand corner the opposing hand nose corner rises but the back corner dips... like an old 1960s muscle car? Its rolly polly.
Its a smallish car that feels like a much larger car than it is. You have to use all the track and again, got deep into corners, hit the apex and then go wide out. Its not that bad at say N400 with some weight loss but its certainly not good.
The car is nothing against the old Evo 7-9. I'm sure its because it handles ok as a dirt car but since PD didnt bother to utilise the EVO vs WRX thing on dirt...
GTS Nordschleife hot lap STOCK Mitsubishi Lancer X Final Version 08.01.181
Very very stable car. Quite impressive what modern cars can do today regarding this quality. Can easily do a sub 8 minute, when driven to the absolute max. Driven stock on hard sport tyres without any driving aids, except ABS. First lap in third person view, second one in cockpit view and third one in cinematic replay view. All driven laps are the same lap.
With its driven time, it is the 76th fastest car of all road legal cars. Its closest rivals are the Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track '13 with a 08.01.368 on the 77th place and the Subaru WRX TYpe S '14 with a 08.00.667 on the 75th place. It can reach a top speed of 248 km/h=154mp/h in the game (real life top speed being basically the same), and is thus sharing the 98th-95th place top speed wise of all road legal cars with the Lancia DELTA HF Integrale Evoluzione '91, the Subaru Impreza Coupe WRX Type R STi Version VI '99 and the Toyota 86 GT '15, while its closest top speed rivals are the Honda Integra Type R (DC2) '98 and the Honda Civic Type R (EK) '98 with 247km/h=154mp/h both respectively on the 100th-99th place and the Citroen DS3 Racing '11 and the Peugeot 208 GTI '14 both with 249 km/h=155mp/h on the 94th-93rd place respectively.
Comparison with close rival on the Nordschleife:
Comparison with close rival on Tsukuba:
Verdict: Neutral. It does what it should do.
I actually think that it might be just a tad more capable on average, than the WRX. See my comparisons above.
I might make my own comparisons between the Lancer and WRX very soon.
Would love to see/read it.
I prefer the WRX. The 6 spd and the fact it has a 50:50 to 35:65 split makes the difference.
The chassis has its own issues but I would say I almost prefer the "issues" the Lancer has.
The Subaru isnt good under brakes, isnt good on curbs, the steering seems a bit wooly at 65% rear and it feels like it widens up at 50% but then you get understeer BUT you can control that by just being more mindful entering and exiting corners.
The WRX has its own lurching and body movt. issues that are different to the Lancer and I think, a bit worse overall?
I kind of dont like how PD depicts a lot of 'affordable' performance cars but it is what it is.
The Lancer with WRX drivetrain would be the best?
Does the Lancer stand a chance against the WRX?
Here's a few screenshots of the record times for a few tracks where I drive the Lancer and WRX. TCS was disabled, and only Sports-Hard and Dirt tires were used for their respective courses driven.
Looks like the WRX is performing better. Perhaps I should do more time trials later on and see if anything changes. *The Demio and Atenza were modified.