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Thread: Fun - Sports car, supercar, lightweight, replica?

  1. #51
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    Having built a factory five Cobra replica, I'd recommend not.


    They are SMALL. I am 6'2" and 160lbs when I was writing on it and drive it and felt seriously cramped even with a drop floor, etc.

  2. #52
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    I have zero experience with these replica cars… I think when I get older and if I have the extra money, I might want to get a cool replica fun car so that I can not only drive but also service it myself!

    However, it’d suck if I can’t fit in it though.

    I have a cousin who’s 6’2” and was having difficulties fitting into my S2000.

    So I hope my average 5’10” height can fit inside a Cobra…
    Last edited by Crazed_Insanity; May 22nd, 2022 at 09:09 PM.

  3. #53
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    I daily drove an s2k, just as a friend did who is 6'4 and 190. We fit, so, *shrug*

  4. #54
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    My cousin’s legs are probably too long. They were touching the bottom of my steering wheel the whole time…

    Anyway, sounds like Cobras a really small…

  5. #55
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    I understand the above Cobra coupe is a kind of continuation car, albeit with Peter Brock's continued input, which has IRS and is 2% larger. 2% doesn't sound a lot, but 2% of 4m would be 8cm, which if it was all in the cabin would be a small but meaningful chunk of extra legroom. At least, I'm not planning on buying anything sight-unseen, and cabin fit is a fairly easy thing to check. I actually declined the first RX-7 I tried because I didn't fit, but later worked out I could fit a smaller wheel, which panned out fine.


    Anyway... today I got a test drive in an A110. I had an hour with the car, which was enough to take a pre-planned route out of Cambridge and down some reasonable bits of country road.

    First impressions were very favourable. In a dealership carpark full of Renault SUVs, it has the same kind of 'smallness factor' that the RX-7 does, which I love, it marks it out as special and different. The shape is really good, the styling elegant and restrained, letting the proportions do the talking. It looks great in the Alpine Blue or the darker Abyss Blue. It feels great inside too, with alcantara and aluminium on key touch points. Some people might wonder whether a car with a 1.8L Renault four-pot can be worth £50k+, but in the metal it absolutely feels it to me.

    Leaving the dealership the good vibes continue; the steering is very immediately responsive, and the car soon feels utterly intuitive to drive. The DSG gearbox works well in Auto, visibility is ok-ish, but I felt comfortable in the car.

    Accelerating to pass slower cars, it lacks the midrange torque of the RX-7 or Merc. The gearbox in the A110 is right up against its rated torque limit, which means the turbo has to breathe quite lightly. The upshot is that it lacks that weightless, effortless sense of acceleration that my two cars have; rather, you have to wind the engine out, using power rather than torque, to make speed. However, it is a sports car, and additionally the gearbox gives you easy access to the revs, whether you bash down through the gears with the paddles or leave it in Auto - the power is perfectly accessible in a way it might not be if you were working through a manual box. The engine doesn't sound great, but it's fine.

    At speed on an uneven B-road, the chassis feels great; it floats over the bumps yet feels entirely in touch with the surface, a bit like a martial arts stance - not locked down, but fully in control and ready to move in any direction. The chassis also feels absolutely anvil-solid under any condition, noticeable compared to the creaky old cars I'm used to.

    However, when trying to carry some speed through a corner I hit a slightly odd phenomenon - I couldn't seem to get the car smoothly loaded up laterally, rather the G-force built rapidly, ebbed, and built again, as if I was tracing a rounded polygon rather than a smooth curve. This happened two or three times when I attacked corners at maybe 40-60mph, turning moderately hard but not near the limit. The car had plenty of grip and never felt like it was going to unstick, I just couldn't turn it smoothly at speed.

    I have a few theories;
    I might have been putting in too much lock and winding it off again repeatedly without realising
    These roads were quite bumpy, perhaps the bumps rocked the car, my arms moved, and I was putting in unwanted steering inputs.
    (Both the above could be due to the steering being fairly light and quick).
    The demo car's geometry may have been out, leading to bump steer
    It's just inherent in the car / MR cars, and other drivers learn to manage it?
    I was driving faster than I realised and hitting the ESC
    I had the nearside wheels closer the edge of the road without realising than I would normally, so the bumps were worse.

    The other significant negative is the steering, which has the typical numb / dead EPAS feel on-centre, which I dislike. I feel I could probably live with the steering if I had been able to get the car loaded up laterally and feel the balance, but absent that, I feel I'm not really able to access the great handling that's the whole point of having an A110 for me.

    I'm perfectly open to the problem being me, not the car, but I've never hit this sort of thing in any of my other cars, even when driving on the same roads.

    So yeah, I like the car overall, and I'm full of admiration for the people who gave the green light to develop a clean sheet all-aluminium mid-engined double-wishboned lightweight sports car with an unknown badge, it really is a lovely thing in many ways. But unfortunately, my actual experience so far has been less fun than driving the RX-7 down the same road, and it makes little sense to spend £60k on a new car just to save a few bob on petrol.

    It's been suggested I could buy a secondhand car privately and get the geometry done (Life110 have some recommended settings which are considered an improvement on factory). That way if I still can't get on with the car, I could likely sell it for minimal loss and get something else; or if I do like it I could always then order a new one.

  6. #56
    Junior Potato
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    Ahh well that's slightly disappointing. What else was on the short list? The Lotus? And you have a day with the McLaren next month.

    It may be outside of your original brief, but that 570S in papaya orange does look like a fucking tasty weapon to park in your garage.

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