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Unread 11-28-2015, 02:12 PM   #1
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Default Couple of basic questions.

I know the basics when it comes to cars, but not much more. I am looking for a first car, but am not quite sure how to proceed. I have only driven two cars more than a few times, a 97 Jeep Cherokee and an 02 Chevy Malibu. One of my main concerns for choosing a new car is acceleration performance, and while that could be answered purely by a 0-60 time and HP, it isn't because of one thing. The Malibu has a 0-60 of over 9 seconds, HP of 170 and torque of 155. The Cherokee has a 0-60 of over 7 seconds, HP of 190 and torque of 255. Obviously the Jeep is faster...but it doesn't seem like it. The Malibu seems to have so much more power and takes off so well, but the Cherokee seems sluggish and unresponsive, especially when going over 50 MPH. Could this be because I am sitting closer to the wheel in the Malibu and or that it is a V6, or is it a different reason? Also, does this change what I need to look for when looking for a car? I know a higher torqe is going to offer better get up and go, but this experience makes me doubt that...especially considering that the Malibu is larger.

Also, I could use some advice on what to go for in regards to brands.I am looking at a 2016 Infiniti Q50 hybrid (when it comes out) as it has 360 HP and still has great gas mileage, but am not quite sure. Would ask in the proper thread for this question and expand upon it, but don't want to make a another thread if I don't have to. Looking for a luxury sedan with emphasis on comfort, safety, and features on the base or trims with lease offers.

Thanks in advanced for any and all help.

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Unread 11-30-2015, 04:20 AM   #2
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As for 0-60 times, you really need more data to understand how a car reaches the time that it does, namely power to weight ratio but also the entire torque curve, the aerodynamic profile, drivetrain layout, tyre grip, suspension setting and height of CG.

Part of this also has to do with how your senes are misleading you into thinking that the slower car actually accelerates faster. Throttle response alignment, height of CG, suspension and even seat quality and position, not to mention engine tone - can all contribute to this.

However, have you considered what this data actually means? 0-60 times have little relevance to on-road (or off-road) progress.

Making progress depends more heavily on driver observation, handling, tyre grip and the proper use of it, brakes, and acceleration capability at speed (in mid-range RPM), by that order.

If anything, using a car that is too powerful in absolute terms is going to slow you down, because you will have to deal with so much more power being thrown at the wheels whenever you hit the loud pedal.

As for your other questions, I'd avoid looking in terms of brands and look individually for the car (not the brand) that suits you. The Infiniti sounds well enough, but I'd look for alternatives as well.

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