General Car Discussion

Discussion in 'Automotive' started by HadACoolName, Mar 6, 2015.

  1. redrobin

    redrobin
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    I once had an S-10 (Well, Sonoma, but same thing) with the 4.3 in it. They don't make power, they shake, and they drink fuel like it's going out of style, but the OG 4.3 is about as unkillable as it gets. Hell, iron-block pushrod V6's were GM's bread an butter for the longest time. Everything from the 4.3 to the Buick 3800 to the 60 degree (3100, 3400) and even the High-Value 3.5 and 3.9 are all cockroaches.

    The current LV3 4.3L V6 from GM shares nothing in common with it's old Vortec SBC based counterpart outside of how it came to be. Where as the old 4.3 was a 350 with two cylinders lopped off, the new one is the Gen-5 5.3L with two missing cylinders and a slightly longer stroke. Results are 300HP/330lb-ft on E85 pump gas, or 285HP/305lb-ft on regular fuel. This is not a large enough deficit in power from the 2.7L turbo food blender to be discontinued in any guise, tbh. The engine is also low stress, so in typical GM pushrod motor fashion it'll undoubtedly run absolutely forever.

    A 4-cylinder full-sized truck should not exist. You have to turbo them to match the performance characteristics of a larger N/A engine, and in gas engines this adds unneeded complexity and unreliability. Diesels are a different story, of course. N/A diesel engines are just abysmal in every conceivable metric outside of longevity.

    Put the 4-bangers in the sub-compact and compact trucks and keep at least turbo V6's in full-sized half-ton.
     
  2. NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck

    NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck
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    The really funny part is, just going by the spec sheet, that four shouldn't even be that bad - it has marginally more power, and significantly more torque than some of the 6.0L engines from 15-20 years ago, and modern turbos are genuinely pretty friendly to drive. But everything I've heard about the engine, from the disappointing real-world fuel mileage to the Goldbergian trying-to-emulate-a-CVT-without-actually-using-one computer setup, tells me they went horribly, horribly wrong somewhere. Maybe, if equipped with cable-actuated throttle or at least a more conventional electronic setup, it could be a decent performance engine in a smaller vehicle, but I doubt anyone will bother to find out when GM has so many other engines that are just better in every possible way.

    Meanwhile, my search for fun-to-drive cars that aren't wildly overvalued continues, though according to the prices listed in Old Cars Report Price Guide, the 1966-67 Pontiac GTO might actually still be (almost) realistically valued relative to its performance, albeit you'd have to get one in slightly ratty condition to have it truly cheap. This both surprises and confuses me, given that it's both one of the best-known and straight up one of the fastest, best-driving cars of the 1960s, not just among muscle cars or American cars, but against all the cars available at the time, full stop. If any muscle car is going to go for $20K+ in basket case condition and $80K+ running, it should be that one, but you know, I'm really not complaining.

    I mean, it is still appreciating - coupes and hardtops start in the low $20K range in "Very Good" (read: decent used car) condition, and you can kick that up to at least $27-30K if you want the engine, transmission, and styling options that everyone just sort of associates with the car by default, but at the same time, based on what I've heard about it, it might be one of the very few cars of the time period that's even close to being worth it.

    Performance-oriented Nash/AMC products that aren't the AMX, the Hurst SC/Rambler, the Rebel Machine, or the second-generation Javelin also seem to be very attractively valued now, bordering on wildly undervalued relative to their capabilities, assuming you can actually find one.
     
    #18822 NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck, Apr 26, 2022
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2022
  3. Harkin Labs Gaming

    Harkin Labs Gaming
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    For a cheap and fun to drive car I'd say 2003-2007 Accords are good. My brother just got one. Cheap, double wishbone front suspension, direct cable throttle, and revvy engine is not a bad combo. Honda manual transmissions tend to be great in my experience, so if it had one it would be an exceptionally fun daily driver handling car. The aftermarket is great too. My only dislikes are the styling and the seating position is too high for me.
     
  4. NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck

    NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck
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    For this would you recommend I4 or V6, and sedan or coupe? I ask because there seems to be a pattern with Asian cars sold in the US (except the Hyundai Tiburon, apparently) where, if the car is available with both four- and six-cylinder engines, the four-cylinder will (annoyingly) almost always be the tougher, more-reliable, more mod-friendly engine with better aftermarket support and higher overall power potential. Is that the case here?
     
  5. redrobin

    redrobin
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    Tbh, anything outside of their pushrod stuff is pretty junk, imo. The Ecotec 4's are still an unreliable oil burning disaster, the High-Feature V6 still has timing related issues as well as excessive oil consumption, this stupid 2.7 is a crime against humanity...

    The Duramax diesel V8's are underpowered compared to competition from Ford and Cummins but seem pretty okay reliability wise and I've heard that 3.0 inline six diesel is good as well.
     
  6. GearHead1

    GearHead1
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    The current 4.3 is the same- 5.3L V8 with 2 cylinders chopped off and bored out a bit (3.78in vs 3.921in). Modern DOHC turbo engines aren't really all that unreliable anymore, as even pushrod motors have VVT and direct injection.
     
  7. redrobin

    redrobin
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    Oh, don't get me started on direct injection. For longevity purposes it really should be paired with port injection to keep the intake ports clean. Carbon build up in modern DI engines is almost diesel levels of bad.
     
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  8. GearHead1

    GearHead1
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    Um...no?

    What is wrong with a small, (relatively, all turbos suck in this area) low stress turbo? The 2.7 is considerably more powerful and probably a little more efficient. Also, what make turbodeisels different? I have nothing against the LV3- I had a truck equipped with one for a bit. It was a genuinely good engine.
    LV3 =/= Turbo V6
     
  9. ThatCarGuyDownTheStreet

    ThatCarGuyDownTheStreet
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    Real world efficiency tends to land on throttle position. In a place like Pitttsburgh (where I live) a larger, naturally aspirated engine is much more efficient. My 2.4L 2007 Honda Accord gets wayyy better gas mileage than my stepdad's Jetta GLI, even though his is a manual and mine is an automatic. To be in the powerband, he has to keep his car from 2500-3500, while my car has torque from 1500. When the turbo in a turbocharged engine spools, the ECU has to put in much more fuel to keep it in the proper air-fuel ratio to comply with emissions. So while at very low load, perhaps highway cruising the turbo engine may be more efficient, the naturally aspirated counterparts will get better city economy.
     
  10. redrobin

    redrobin
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    Umm, yes? The GM High-Value engine is a 60 degree pushrod V6 with a cast iron block and aluminum heads. It's is heavily based on, and is a direct descendent of, the GM 60 degree V6, which were the 3100 and 3400 among other variants. Perhaps you're thinking of the High-Feature engine? That one is all aluminum and DOHC.

    The High-Value engine is also fantastic in my experience. VVT and good power in the 3.9L variant.

    My mistake; as a top engine. Chevy also doesn't offer the LV3 in the Silverado anymore so point still stands even if N/A. Keep the V6 motors in the full-sized truck.
     
  11. GearHead1

    GearHead1
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    Yes. Sorry about that.
     
  12. combatwombat96

    combatwombat96
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    Could anyone tell me how to test the lights, wipers, switchgear etc in my car, i know im supposed to ground the negative to the body and make sure none of the positive connections are touching the body but beyond that im stumped, tried doing just that and nothing worked at all. The battery is about as charged as going to get (75%~) so i know its still got some life left. Electrics are real headfuck for me. Any advice ?
     
  13. Rainvest

    Rainvest
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    It's been awhile before I've posted an update. So, finally took my Mazdaspeed up to the dragon on Wednesday. Turns out she's a hoot on the curvy roads especially with that mechanical LSD. The turbo inlet pipe really brings out the intake sounds.



    Currently running Firehawk Indy 500s and dang do these things hook for the money. They're not quite TW 200 tires but they'll last a lot longer.

    IMG_0252.jpg

    The tire on the right is my front and the left is the rear. Only about 3 runs in and it's not all that bad, though there's some considerable wear.
     
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  14. default0.0player

    default0.0player
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    IMO, 4WD that without a driveshaft and with both differentials open are the worst 4WD for off-roading
     
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  15. NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck

    NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck
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    So apparently NASCAR held exhibition races in Japan in 1996-98. What's interesting is that Keiichi Tsuchiya himself raced in all three (in a Ford every time), then came stateside to run one K&N Pro Series West event per year in 1998 and 1999. Apparently, even after he'd torn it up in touring cars, open wheelers, and of course, drifting, racing in NASCAR was something of a dream of his, and he was finally able to do so in 1996 when NASCAR more or less came to him.

    Just a strange little piece of information that I never really knew before.
     
  16. Harkin Labs Gaming

    Harkin Labs Gaming
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    I mean, the V6 is a J series iirc. Heard good and bad about them. The 4 cylinder is a K series, which seems very solid. My brother's is a 4 cylinder auto, so its slower than the Regal is, but it feels revvier and has better throttle response due to the cable throttle not being a progressive unit as it is on the Regal.

    Hondas are pretty interchangable afaik, so if you wanted to swap in a B series I believe it wouldn't be the most difficult thing to do. I prefer the sedans, simply due to me liking 4 doors, but the coupes seem nice too.
     
  17. redrobin

    redrobin
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    I mean, I don't know why you'd want to swap in a B-series when the K-series is just better. The J-series also has supercharging and such available for it in the aftermarket. It's a Honda, after all. Of course there's engine goodies for it.

    I still find it insane that Honda put double-wishbone up front on that gen. In a family car. Seems like needless expense to me, tbh. I remember my dad having a 2004 Camry that just has MacPherson struts up from with a multi-link out back and it's not like it was a rail car. It was also quiet and has a Toyota AZ engine in it which are torquey, rev happy, and relatively smooth for a 4-cylinder.

    TL;DR:

    I like and prefer Toyotas.
     
  18. NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck

    NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck
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    What have you heard bad about the J-series? The reason I'm asking all these questions is, I'm trying to start a car blog, and one of the things I want to do is highlight cool, fun cars that are still somewhat reasonably priced. So I'm trying to figure out which would be the best spec to recommend if the plan for the car is "start driving immediately, but also mod when and as funds become available". Same with coupe vs. sedan - considering aerodynamics, structural rigidity, weight distribution, and so on, which one is the better driver's car and which one is the better candidate for tuning? Is there some weird difference in aftermarket support between the body styles that someone might not expect?

    That's just how Honda used to operate, cramming cars full of driving joy that would have sold just as well with none at all.
     
  19. redrobin

    redrobin
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    Eh, I've driven a few Civics and Accords from that era and they drive like regular ol' cars. My ex-girlfriend had a 2007 egg Civic with an automatic and it was peppy but the transmission was absolutely abysmal on the highway. I recall going up a hill on the PA Turnpike in it and it did nothing but shift between 5th and 4th for 4 miles straight and I wanted to send it into a ravine. Another friend of mine has a 2006 egg with a manual and it's the best shifting manual I've ever driven. Honda used to do those right. The engines in them (R18A1) was COMPLETELY gutless. Accords feel like a Camry but not as fun to me because I prefer the Toyota AZ engine to the K-series in the Accord. The AZ feels more playful to me. K-series does sound better though, especially in VTEC.

    When it comes to driving joy, though, from that era of 2003-2007, Ford Focus or maybe a Mazda 3 or Mazda 6.

    Granted, I can have fun in just about anything so long as it has a transmission that shifts (so no CVTs). One of my favorite experiences was beating the shit out of a 105 1996 Corolla with an automatic.
     
  20. NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck

    NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck
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    2006 egg? Enlighten me.

    I'm pretty easy to please when it comes to manuals. I even thought my old 1996 Escort with dying clutch hydraulics was fun to shift - the clutch problems forced fast shifts both up and down, but the shifter itself seemed to take well to that. However, what I found when looking for a car around the beginning of 2020 is that most manufacturers have completely lost the plot. Strange, rubbery action, wonky clutch takeup, just... terrible. The Chevrolet Spark was the worst one I tried; the clutch and shifter were crimes against humanity both individually and in concert, and the salesman tried to blame it on everything but the car when I told him. But even if he'd been right, that wouldn't have explained the horrendous throttle lag, or the suspension setup that made my Escort, busted shock mount and all, feel more confidence-inspiring in the twisties. Some cars I drove, I wondered how the manufacturers could have gotten it that wrong. With the Spark, I had to wonder if they hadn't gotten it wrong on purpose.
     
    #18840 NGAP NSO Shotgun Chuck, May 3, 2022
    Last edited: May 3, 2022
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