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Unread 02-05-2012, 10:26 PM   #1
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Default Car Performance Comparison

Hello everyone.

I've been recently doing a little research on car performance, and comparing the different characteristics of several cars.

The main characteristics I have been comparing are:

Fuel System
Valves per Cylinder
Cylinder Alignment
Engine Displacement
Bore
Stroke
Compression Ratio
Transmission Gear Ratio
Final Drive Ratio
Drag Coefficient
Vehicle Curb Weight

Examples:

2012 Ford Mustang GT:
Fuel System...........................Indirect Injection
Valves per Cylinder...................4
Cylinder Alignment....................V-8
Engine Displacement...................4.9L
Bore..................................3.63"
Stroke................................3.65"
Compression Ratio.....................11.0
Transmission Gears....................6
Final Drive Ratio.....................3.15
Drag Coefficient......................0.35
Vehicle Curb Weight...................3651

Max Horsepower........................412 @ 6500
Max Torque............................390 @4250
Acceleration 0-60.....................4.5 sec
Top Speed.............................175 mph
Power to Weight Ratio.................8.862

Compared to a

2012 Dodge Challenger SRT8
Fuel System...........................Indirect Injection
Valves per Cylinder...................2
Cylinder Alignment....................V-8
Engine Displacement...................6.4L
Bore..................................4.09"
Stroke................................3.72"
Compression Ratio.....................10.9
Transmission Gears....................8
Final Drive Ratio.....................3.91
Drag Coefficient......................0.35
Vehicle Curb Weight...................4171

Max Horsepower........................470 @ 6000
Max Torque............................470 @4200
Acceleration 0-60.....................4.1 sec
Top Speed.............................180 mph
Power to Weight Ratio.................8.874

These two cars have very similar characteristics in terms of performance. Horsepower, torque, acceleration, speed, and power to weight ratio are both very close.

However, some characteristics such as engine displacement, bore, stroke, transmission, final drive ratio, and curb weight are quite different.

My question is, which of these characteristics has a greater influence on a cars performance?

Obviously all play a contributing factor, but say for example, if the final drive ratio for the Challenger was the same as the Mustang, would one greatly out perform the other?

Which of these characteristics has a greater contributing factor in your opinion?

Thank you very much for your help.

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Unread 02-05-2012, 11:25 PM   #2
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The biggest factor is weight. The Challenger actually has to substitute engine size and vehicle efficiency to make up for its disadvantage in weight in order to keep up with the lighter vehicle which has to work less for more pay off. That's also why the gearing and final drive are so different. If the mustang had the drive ratio of the challenger it would be quicker but have considerable less top speed. The heavier car even with bigger gearing tops out about the same due to a big increase in torque and HP. Keep the challenger numbers and drop 700 pounds and you would have a major performer. Now you also know why people spend so much time improving there vehicles. Honestly it's easier to take the lighter Mustang and add more power from the start then to try lightening the challenger. So from a performance stand point In would say the Mustang is a clear winner looking at those numbers, and a much more efficient vehicle.
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Unread 02-06-2012, 08:33 AM   #3
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Larry hit it right on.
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Unread 02-06-2012, 03:10 PM   #4
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Weight and power curve

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Unread 02-06-2012, 03:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike View Post
Larry hit it right on.
Yep you have to take into consideration your needs, if you need to carry passengers ever, the Challenger is probably a better choice because it is a much bigger car. Everything on a car has its tradeoffs.
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