Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

Discussion in '2005 Mosler MT900 S' started by SSwannabe, Dec 17, 2002.

  1. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    More drivel from Mr. Gwynne...
    "I mean the fact that the M5 engine is more refined, has better throttle-response and is more reliable than the LS engine."

    Show me where the M5 engine has definitively proven to have better throttle response and reliability.

    Just out of curiosity, do you know how much an M5 engine costs? How about an LS6?


    "Look at Ultima, a company similar to Mosler in that they are a small group of people who build lightweight, powerful cars for track and road use using other people's engines. They offer the Chevy engine as well. But for those customers who are willing to spend a little more, they'll also use a Ford quad-cam V8 which produces more power from less displacement and approximately the same weight."

    And notice how on their website, they list the most impressive performance figures from the Chevy 350. The Ford quad-cam V8 is approximately the same weight? Says who?


    "About 400 lb/ft if you're talking about the Red Rose version of the 4.5 liter. Admittedly the ordinary 4.5 liter incarnation only produces about 380 lb/ft but that's still better than the LS1 engine that is fitted to to Mosler. And that was the one we were discussing, was it not?"

    The Cerbera does NOT produce 380 lb/ft. That's TVR's marketing rubbish at work again. It's closer to 330 lb/ft. Take a look at the power graphs below.
    1st one is of an early Red Rose (there's only been one on record that has produced over 430 hp): 340 lb/ft.
    2nd one is of a standard Cerbera 4.5: 301 lb/ft
    3rd one is of an above average standard 4.5: 343 lb/ft
    UNLIKE the TVR, the LS1/LS6 puts out what it says on the tin.


    "The Mosler uses the LS1."

    It uses the LS6.
     
  2. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    Site's acting up.
     
  3. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.
     
  4. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.
     
  5. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    I see Guibo is still cheerfully recycling third-hand rumor and innuendo about TVR engines.

    Meanwhile, people who know better say things like the cover story on the May 2004 issue of "Classic & Sports Car" magazing which calls the Cerbera the "Best Ever TVR - It's true! The £25k, 175mph Cerbera is practical and reliable"

    I think Guibo is just jealous because the US government won't allow TVR to sell their cars in America and they won't (like every other civilized country in the world) allow their citizens to import them privately. He can't have a TVR so he has to slag them off.

    The fact remains that TVR owners take their cars out to track days and unlike other makers of so-called "sports cars", TVR won't invalidate the warranty for giving their cars a workout.

    If these cars were as unreliable as Guibo would like us to believe, it wouldn't be practical for exotic car-rental places to offer them and they wouldn't last ten minutes under heavy track use.

    I notice he also conveniently ignores the discussion in those threads of bad problems with BMW engines that were attributed to British fuel additives that BMW could have fixed with a simple recall and replacement of the silicon liners with steel but they choose to clam up about it and let their customers' cars fail.
     
  6. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

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    More drivel from Mr. Gwynne...
    ---

    People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. ;->


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    Show me where the M5 engine has definitively proven to have better throttle response
    ---

    Ask anyone who's driven one.


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    Just out of curiosity, do you know how much an M5 engine costs? How about an LS6?
    ---

    Are you still off in this fantasy world where DOHC engines cost lots more than pushrod engines? I read an article the other day which stated that if Chevy designed and manufactured a DOHC version of the LS engine, it would add approximately $400 to the cost. I wish I'd saved it for you. I'll keep an eye out for it and post it if I can.


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    The Cerbera does NOT produce 380 lb/ft. That's TVR's marketing rubbish at work again. It's closer to 330 lb/ft. Take a look at the power graphs below.
    ---

    Ah, more unsubstantiated fluff from Guibo. These graphs show nothing about what state the cars are in or why they make less than TVR claims for the engines. But since you seem particularly dense on this subject I'll explain to you YET AGAIN that the British government has, as ones of its many branches, a bureau of trading standards whose job it is to make certain that when you buy a pint of beer at a pub, you're getting a full pint and if a manufacturer claims that a car makes 440bhp that it has to actually do so.

    Put another way, TVR can't claim they make that power unless they can prove that they do. They make the claims, ergo they have been proven to the satisfaction of the standards people.
     
  7. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    For what its worth...one person I know, that has driven TVR's said they didn't have a very good build quality, and they said the Mosler MT900 was built better.
     
  8. Re:

    i just want to clarify a few things about the MT900.

    first of all, when the MT900 prototype was first relased in 2001, it had an LS1 that produced about 350bhp and 350lb-ft used in the C5. Mosler Automotive coninued using the LS1 in their racing R models. they didnt start using the LS6 until about a year later and today most of the MT900 cars use an LS6. instead of the regular 405bhp that the LS6 makes in a Z06, Mosler increased the output by +30bhp simply by adding a cold air intake and Corsa exhaust, other than those two minor mods its pretty much an honest to goodness stock LS6.

    as for why the MT900 cars use an LS6...well it should be pretty obvious. GM's LS6 is...

    affordable - great power for a good price. Mosler Automotive being a small business dont have the money to spend on buying, importing, modifying, installing, and maintaining the more exotic engines.

    reliable - it got a great engine life that no one can really complain about.

    servicable - if and when the engine ever does breakdown, you are not going to have to go through the process of finding someone to fix it and shell out the money needed to repair an exotic engine. where in the US are you going to find someone to fix your TVR engine? how much would it cost to simply replace a Ferrari spark plug? meanwhile someone that can repair a GM engine probably has a garage just off Main St.
     
  9. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    They know nothing of the sort because it just isn't true. An I-6/V-12 will always be smoother than an I-4/V-8 because having six cylinders in a row eliminates the second-order vibration that plagues other piston configurations. That's why I-4 engines with high power and/or large displacement use counter-rotating balance shafts (q.v. Porsche, Lancia, etc.).

    According to an MB engineer who was interviewed by AutoWeek, the longer crankshaft of the V12 added vibration that more than offset that advantage, making the V8 smoother.
    __________

    As to the weights, I think we've both stipulated that he TVR engine is significantly lighter than the LS.

    We haven't established that yet, and even if it is lighter, that's only one engine. Is the LS6 not "decent" merely because it weighs more than an AJP8?
     
  10. Re: Re:

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    affordable - great power for a good price. Mosler Automotive being a small business dont have the money to spend on buying, importing, modifying, installing, and maintaining the more exotic engines.
    ---

    Surely it doesn't cost them anything... they just pass the expense on to the customer. Mosler's aren't cheap after all.


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    servicable - if and when the engine ever does breakdown, you are not going to have to go through the process of finding someone to fix it and shell out the money needed to repair an exotic engine
    ---

    I'm not sure this is as big a deal for someone willing to shell out six figures on a track-day car as it would be for someone who is stretching their budget to afford a Corvette.


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    where in the US are you going to find someone to fix your TVR engine?
    ---

    I'm sure that any knowledgable, specialist mechanic would be happy to take on the job. I think the question you meant to ask was "where are you going to find someone to fix a TVR engine under warranty?" and the answer is "nowhere in the US since TVR don't export them".

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    how much would it cost to simply replace a Ferrari spark plug? meanwhile someone that can repair a GM engine probably has a garage just off Main St.
    ---

    That's assuming Mosler use a bog-standard LS engine. Sure, an oil-change or a new set of plugs wouldn't faze a main-street mechanic but if you're talking about major service, I bet you'll find that it takes some specialist gear and/or expertise that only the dealer or big-time independent is going to have.


    I do agree with you about the insanity of Ferrari servicing costs/procedures though. I've spoken to guys who have parted with five figured for a 30k service on a Ferrari - they have to remove the engine to change the timing-belt or work on the clutch.

     
  11. #61 Jon Gwynne, May 1, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

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    According to an MB engineer who was interviewed by AutoWeek, the longer crankshaft of the V12 added vibration that more than offset that advantage, making the V8 smoother.
    ---

    Then there is something wrong with their crankshaft. Having six cylinders in a row has always been the idea configuration. Only the packaging difficulties that go along with it prevent of from being a far more widely-used design.

    Here is a reference for you:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V12

    It isn't the most comprehensive overview of the design but it gets the main points across.

    The packaging problems (which are more difficult to overcome that issues of cost or complexity which can both be address through the economy of scale) arise because V-12 engines are long. This is why the V-6 and V-8 engines became more popular in mainstream consumer cars. They are short and easier to place in smaller cars with limited logitudinal space for engines.


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    We haven't established that yet, and even if it is lighter, that's only one engine.
    ---

    Since neither of us work for either Chevrolet or TVR, I doubt that we're going to be able to provide incontrovertible proof regarding the weight. As I said before, we're simply going to have to take the respective companies' words for the engine weight.

    Yes, it is only one engine, but do you seriously think that a tiny (compared to most car companied - TVR employs only a few hundred people and makes only about 1000 cars/year) company in a quiet corner of England has accomplished something that no other car company in the world has done - to make a V8 engine lighter than the LS with equivalent power?

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    Is the LS6 not "decent" merely because it weighs more than an AJP8?
    ---

    No, it isn't "decent" because it is a "lowest-common-demoninator" engine. It is the typical product of an industry whose motto is "build it just good enough". Another term for that would be "mediocrity".

    The Chevy engine is the automotive equivalent of the PC. It isn't anywhere near the best in the world at its task because it wasn't designed to be. But, even if it was, it would still be hobbled by a combination of dependency on legacy technology and the fact that is has to be, above all things, open to outside technology. The is good if looking to buy or sell add-ons for it because you've got a huge market. It isn't so good if you want the thing to be the fastest, smallest or whatever other superlative you care to mention.

    The kindest thing that can be said about the design of either the PC or the Chevy LS engine is that is is "adequate". Not exactly high praise.

    If I'm speccing computers for an office full of paralegals then I'll buy PCs because they're cheap, ubiquitous, easy to buy easy to maintain and easy to upgrade. If I'm buying computers for a mission-critical environment where my professional reputation depends on these machines running 24/7/365, I wouldn't even think about PCs.
     
  12. #62 mpg, May 1, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    According to an MB engineer who was interviewed by AutoWeek, the longer crankshaft of the V12 added vibration that more than offset that advantage, making the V8 smoother.
    ---

    Then there is something wrong with their crankshaft. Having six cylinders in a row has always been the idea configuration. Only the packaging difficulties that go along with it prevent of from being a far more widely-used design.

    Here is a reference for you:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V12
    -
    I've been having problems with my computer and that link doesn't work for me. Do you trust that website more than MB? I've long been aware of the theoretical smoothness of an I6/V12, but there are other factors, such as the length of the crankshaft.
    __________

    Since neither of us work for either Chevrolet or TVR, I doubt that we're going to be able to provide incontrovertible proof regarding the weight. As I said before, we're simply going to have to take the respective companies' words for the engine weight.

    Yes, it is only one engine, but do you seriously think that a tiny (compared to most car companied - TVR employs only a few hundred people and makes only about 1000 cars/year) company in a quiet corner of England has accomplished something that no other car company in the world has done - to make a V8 engine lighter than the LS with equivalent power?
    -

    You totally disregarded my comments about the weighing method.
    __________

    Is the LS6 not "decent" merely because it weighs more than an AJP8?
    ---

    No, it isn't "decent" because it is a "lowest-common-demoninator" engine. It is the typical product of an industry whose motto is "build it just good enough". Another term for that would be "mediocrity".

    The Chevy engine is the automotive equivalent of the PC. It isn't anywhere near the best in the world at its task because it wasn't designed to be. But, even if it was, it would still be hobbled by a combination of dependency on legacy technology and the fact that is has to be, above all things, open to outside technology. The is good if looking to buy or sell add-ons for it because you've got a huge market. It isn't so good if you want the thing to be the fastest, smallest or whatever other superlative you care to mention.

    The kindest thing that can be said about the design of either the PC or the Chevy LS engine is that is is "adequate". Not exactly high praise.
    -

    I admit that the LS6 is full of compromises. It wasn't designed for a track toy like a TVR. It was designed for the Corvette Z06, which is a combination track toy/daily driver, at an affordable price. That's what makes it a fantastic engine. It's not narrowly focused. It combines alot of power with longevity, low maintenance, incredible relative fuel efficiency, and low cost, all in a small and light package. You're right when you say that it's merely intended to be good enough, instead of some kind of superlative. It's not as powerful as a Bugatti Veyron, or even an Enzo. The Mosler doesn't cost as much as those cars either. There are many companies all over the world who would probably think that 435 hp is good enough for a car that weighs 900 kg and costs $190k. The bottom line is performance. This is one of the best handling cars in the world, and it does 0-100-0 mph in 12 seconds flat. You need a much more radical car like a Caterham or a Radical to beat that, unless you want to spend about a million $.
     
  13. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

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    I've been having problems with my computer and that link doesn't work for me
    ---

    Here are some relevant quotes:

    "When the two banks of six cylinders are angled at 60° from each other, this configuration has perfect primary and secondary balance, like a straight-6, but with power pulses delivered twice as often per revolution it is much smoother. This allows for great refinement in a luxury car; in a racing car, the rotating parts can be made much lighter and thus more responsive, since there is less need for the inertial mass in a flywheel to smooth out the power delivery"

    also

    "In automobiles, V12 engines have never been common, because of their complexity and thus cost. Their use has been thus confined to costly luxury and sports cars, in which they give superlative performance and smoothness characteristics.

    Prior to World War II, twelve-cylinder engines were found in many luxury models, including cars from Cadillac, Packard, Lincoln, Rolls-Royce and Hispano-Suiza.

    Postwar, the type lost favor in the United States, where the V8 became ubiquitous. Italian sports cars from such makers as Lamborghini and Ferrari used the V12 almost exclusively on their highest-performance vehicles, while Jaguar developed a V12 that was put into production in 1971 and lasted until 1997.

    In the early 1990s, the German manufacturers Mercedes-Benz and BMW both introduced V12 designs. The BMW-designed V12 also appears in Rolls-Royce cars, while the Mercedes engine is also seen in Maybach cars. Aston Martin introduced a V12 model in 2001, while Cadillac are re-introducing the V12 after 60 years with a V12 version of their Northstar engine range. This engine is to be available initially only in the Cadillac Escalade luxury SUV."


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    I've long been aware of the theoretical smoothness of an I6/V12, but there are other factors, such as the length of the crankshaft.
    ---

    The only real objection to crankshaft length that I can think of off the top of my head is that a longer shaft is going to be heavier and will have to be stronger in order to stand up to the torsion imposed on it (which, apart from the packaging issues, is why I-8 and V-16 engines once used in pre-war US luxury cars fell out of favor).

    But, some of the extra weight can be offset by lightening the flywheel which will also improve throttle response.

    On a semi-related subject, VW has brought back the 16-cylinder engine in an interesting format - they've designed a "VV" engine which is essentially two narrow-angle V-8s joined to a common crankshaft. Four banks of four cylinders. Thus, it has the longitudinal dimension of a V-8 engine but is a bit wider. In the Bugatti Veyron where it is scheduled to make its first public apearance, VW has reportedly coaxed 1000bhp from 8 liters of displacement and has an ideal platform for their new high-efficiency fuel-delivery system. Without it, they Veyron's fuel efficiency would be truly appalling but with the new system, we're told to expect over 20mpg. If it proves successful, we should see the system trickle down to mass-produced cars within the next 5-10 years.


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    You totally disregarded my comments about the weighing method.
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    I don't think I did. My point was that since neither of us is in a position (as employeed of the respective companies) to give a definitive weight for the engine (i.e. putting an engine on a scale and observing the results with our own eyes), we'll have to take the manufacturer's word for it.
     
  14. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    None of those quotes directly contradict what the MB engineer told AutoWeek. I also tend to give alot of credibilty to that engineer because he wasn't even defending MB's decision to put V12s in their cars from an engineering point of view.

    I don't doubt Chevrolet or TVR, but we still don't know the weighing methods. I'm pretty sure that Chevrolet weighs their engines with the driveshaft and transmission. If TVR said that they also weigh their engines that way, I'd believe them.
     
  15. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

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    I admit that the LS6 is full of compromises. It wasn't designed for a track toy like a TVR
    ---

    To be fair to TVR, the only "track toy" they currently make (I'm not including the upcoming Sagaris and Typhon models) is the Tuscan Racer which I've never seen on the road - I don't even know if they're street legal. The Cerbera, on the other hand, is very much a road car first and a track-toy second. I would even contend that it is a more practical daily-driver than the Corvette because it not only has rear-seats but there is an optional strap-in baby-seat available. It is very much the "family supercar". How that for a contradiction?

    ---
    It [the LS engine] was designed for the Corvette Z06, which is a combination track toy/daily driver, at an affordable price. That's what makes it a fantastic engine. It's not narrowly focused. It combines alot of power with longevity, low maintenance, incredible relative fuel efficiency
    ---

    Seriously, how many Corvettes actually see a track day. I'm not sure you could argue that they are really designed for this just as you couldn't really argue that a Ford Explorer is designed as an off-road vehicle. These vehicles are designed as affectations for those who want to put on the appearance of having a sports car/off-roader but don't actually want to pay the full admission price in terms of expense, lack of refinement, etc...

    Also, you keep mentioning fuel efficiency. According to Edmunds, the EPA highway estimates for the 2004 Corvette at 28mpg for the manual and 25mpg for the auto. Which, in actual driving will probably translate to mileage in the teens. That's not horrible but neither is it anything to brag about. Plus, what do you want to bet that a big portions of the mieage being as high as it is comes down to the final drive and top-gear ratio. What does it do in top gear? 30mpm/1000rpm? 35? Compare that to most cars at around 25...

    Regarding low maintanence, Edmunds also lists projected maintanence costs (presumably based on the car's scheduled service performed at a dealer). The first three years are what you'd expect from a performance car (average about $500/year - again, not horrible but hardly praiseworthy). Then at year 4 there is a bill for amost $1,100 and the year after that is $2,225, more than double. What the hell happens?

    I used to own a Delorean and when I took it into the specialist I had working on it for the 30K service (the biggie), it cost me about $600. The minor services were less than $100. And that's for an exotic with lots of hard-to-find parts. I also used to own a Mercedes 450SL and while Mercedes are known for scary service costs, the 30k visit cost me about $800. What's with the Corvette?


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    There are many companies all over the world who would probably think that 435 hp is good enough for a car that weighs 900 kg and costs $190k. The bottom line is performance. This is one of the best handling cars in the world, and it does 0-100-0 mph in 12 seconds flat. You need a much more radical car like a Caterham or a Radical to beat that, unless you want to spend about a million $.
    ---

    Sorry, but according to an issue of Autocar magazine in my bookshelf, last year they tested several cars that came in at or near a 12 second 0-100-0 time. None of them cost a million dollars. In fact, only one of them was more expensive than the Mosler and that was the Pagani Zonda.

    Gardner-Douglas builds a Lola T70 replica (powered by a 5.7 liter Chevy engine) that makes 482bhp and 430 lb/ft of torque. It did the dash in 12.12 and only costs about £40,000. Thunder Road's Cobra replica was more powerful (637bhp and 530lb/ft) from a 6.6 liter Chevy V8 and while it took 12.4 to do the deed (presumably because of its smaller brakes and 4-speed transmission) but it only costs £30k.

    Not to keep mentioning the name, but a TVR (Tuscan S) made it in 12.52 and it only costs £50,000. They didn't test a Cerbera 4.5 but with its more powerful engine and virtually identical weight, it would porbably have done just a bit better.

    And since you mentioned Caterham, the R500 that did the deed in 11.25 seconds(0-60 was 3.47, 0-100 was 7.26, 100-0 was 3.68 without ABS), only costs £36k - and is powered by a 1.8 liter 4-pot.

     
  16. #66 mpg, May 1, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    I never should've said that TVRs were merely track toys. That was wrong.

    If you go to a track day event in the USA, Z06s are one of the most popular cars.

    Those EPA #s really are amazing for a car with 405 hp. Nothing else comes close. Ofcourse it's partially because of the gearing, but the torque of the LS6 makes it possible to have tall gearing and still have great acceleration. It does the 1/4 mi in 12.4 sec, yet owners claim to get over 30 mpg on long trips.

    How much does it cost to maintain a TVR if you drive it everyday?

    I exaggerated when I said a million $. http://speed.supercars.net/Board?viewThread=y&fID=6&tID=115320
    Isn't the Zonda around $350k?
     
  17. Re:

    "Surely it doesn't cost them anything... they just pass the expense on to the customer. Mosler's aren't cheap after all."

    Mosler cant just simply "pass on the expenses" to the customer. Mosler is also paying for these engines when they buy them from GM. if they decide to drop in a super-powerful, expensive engine, they wont have money for anything else. they have this little thing called a "budget" and being a small business, their's is rather small.

    "I'm not sure this is as big a deal for someone willing to shell out six figures on a track-day car as it would be for someone who is stretching their budget to afford a Corvette."

    if these same people could afford an Enzo or Carrera GT, they would have. if they settled for a Mosler, its probably because its just as fast but also cheaper. maintenance costs are a concern even for a $159k car...even more important if you opted to race competitively with an R model. however you are correct if this was a $600k car owner, but thats irrelevant here.

    "I'm sure that any knowledgable, specialist mechanic would be happy to take on the job."

    oh, really? i would like to hear you say that with confidence when you take your NSX to Miguel in the Bronx. even if Miguel is bonified in every way, you might be a little worried when you entrust your $80k car to someone who has never experienced something like it before.

    "That's assuming Mosler use a bog-standard LS engine. Sure, an oil-change or a new set of plugs wouldn't faze a main-street mechanic but if you're talking about major service, I bet you'll find that it takes some specialist gear and/or expertise that only the dealer or big-time independent is going to have."

    were you not reading carefully when i have said that the LS6 used in the MT900S models are virtually stock other than the CAI and Corsa exhaust? with that, an owner can literally take his car to his local Chevy/GM repair center. finding a mechanic to fix the engine your Mosler is no more difficult than getting one that will fix your Z06 engine because they are the same thing!!

    using an LS6 is a logical choice for any small company in Mosler's position. are their engines that can make more power? of course. are they just as reliable? maybe. are they just as cheap? its possible.

    ...but do they have a balance of all these attributes like the LS6 does? thats not very likely. if there is one, i would like to hear it.
     
  18. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    Keep in mind the cost to EPA certify an engine. Even though Mosler has to get the MT900S certified with EPA, the cost is significantly lower, because the engine has already passed the certification on GM's dollar. To certify a brand new engine can run you millions.

    As for service, any GM dealership can work on the MT900S engine, infact Tommy Morrison needed service on the original silver streetcar while in Daytona, and he took it to the local Chevrolet dealer.
     
  19. #69 Guibo, May 4, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    John Gwynne:
    I asked you *specifically*: Do you know the price of an M5 engine vs the price of a Z06 engine?

    Was this the article you're talking about?:
    http://www.autoweek.com/search/search_display.mv?port_code=autoweek&cat_code=carnews&content_code=01028000&Search_Type=STD&Search_ID=2104786&record=4
    Works out to about a $2.7B savings per year doesn't?

    Or was it the C&D article you're talking about? None of which matters because I asked you specifically about the price difference between an M5 and a Z06 engine (which were directly being compared in this thread); not about a cost savings between a Z06 LS6 vs a theoretical GM-built DOHC version (which may or may not meet the hp and durability requirements of an LS6, and the cost of which may or may not reflect thousands of hours of testing and emissions certification).
    Speaking of which, remember the $70K (in the late '80's early 90's) ZR-1? That had DOHC. A few years ago, those crate engines were going for $15K+...you can still find a few that don't meet their $25K reserve on ebay. You don't suppose the DOHC layout of that engine had anything to do with its price, do you?
    I know you're hard of hearing, so I'll repeat again: what's the price difference between an LS6 and the BMW S62? Maybe, just maybe, we might get a straight answer time time?


    3rd-party rumour and innuendo? If you'd open your eyes, you'd see those guys aren't saying:
    "I heard about a guy with 3-4 TVR engine rebuilds..."
    They're saying:
    "*I* have had 3-4 TVR engine rebuilds..."
    You might want to look into what it means to say 1st-party vs 3rd-party.


    Ah, yes, that new Cerbera article. Maybe you should consider what an OWNER of the car says about the article (instead of the insane rantings of an internet fanboy):
    "i liked the artical but do think that they have overlooked the FACT that the speed 6 engine is not very reliable, i have got one and the engine has had to go back to the factory 3 times now. but i still agree that the car is brilliant."
    http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=96721&f=6&h=0
    Brilliant, yes. Reliable? Uhh...err... "They all do that sir!"
    If it's true that they've overlooked the fact that the speed 6 engine (found in many a Tuscan) is not very reliable (to put it mildly), then you've simply eaten up an article that yet again glosses over a very real quality control issue at TVR. One that is quite familiar to other publications that know a thing or two about TVR reliability over the years. But then again, maybe that article never considered reliability as a major factor in its vehicle evaluation.
    Haha, you want to talk about Tuscan engine maintenance vs Corvette engine maintenance? You previously assumed (erroneously) that your beloved TVR would do better in its home country against the Chrysler Viper, in a foreign country. Funny how that worked out, eh?
     
  20. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    "Ah, more unsubstantiated fluff from Guibo. These graphs show nothing about what state the cars are in or why they make less than TVR claims for the engines. But since you seem particularly dense on this subject I'll explain to you YET AGAIN that the British government has, as ones of its many branches, a bureau of trading standards whose job it is to make certain that when you buy a pint of beer at a pub, you're getting a full pint and if a manufacturer claims that a car makes 440bhp that it has to actually do so.
    Put another way, TVR can't claim they make that power unless they can prove that they do. They make the claims, ergo they have been proven to the satisfaction of the standards people."

    Ah, this old chestnut again. How many people actually go through the trouble of suing TVR for false advertising? Hardly any. And they wouldn't win anyway. Do you know why? It's not because any claimed 400 hp from any TVR is the same as the 400 hp of a BMW M5 or Corvette Z06. If TVR tested some S6 or AJP8 engine (who says it has to be fitted with full ancillaries and with a standard intake?) puts out the quoted bhp on THEIR dyno, then they are not in breach of any false advertising laws.
    But to say that the 400 hp from such a TVR is the same as the 400 hp from another manufacturer is rather silly; especially in light of proven customer dynos.
    So your Trading Standards BS doesn't fly yet again.
     
  21. #71 Guibo, May 4, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    LOL, it appears there are even more Cerbera OWNERS (yeah, that would exclude, uh,...*YOU*) who think that article was utter rubbish:
    "This month it features a writeup of the Cerbera as an 'affordable' classic, with prices starting at early 20Ks and reasonable running costs (yeah, right).
    After not buying this mag for years, I bought this edition for this article alone, and was rather disappointed. It's fairly short, the author clearly knows very little and there are factual errors.
    In short, it's pants."
    "Well, it just goes to show what tosh gets written by so-called 'experts'. First off, their contention is that the Speed Six Cerbera is definitely the pick of the bunch (questionable, yet arguable if a GT is what you're after), and then proceed NOT to mention once the significant issues with the early S6 engines (even though they contend that the fact that the 'bulk of Cerberas built in 1999/2000 came with the S6 engine' is in some way a good thing).
    Even the guy from David Gerald fails to mention it, talking instead about electrical niggles being the major reliability concern. The two owners (one of whom has a V8) also make little or no reference to the cost of running one of these cars.
    Now I'm not one of these AJP owners who habitually knocks the S6 engine (even though my brother's 2003 T350c blew up catastrophically at Croft yesterday!!), but I do think that some acknowledgement of the issues, if only to make the point that most if not all will have been successfully rebuilt/upgraded by now, would do more good than harm."
    "Well I've just read the article and didn't really think it was that bad. Yes is doesn't mention nitty grittys and the allusion to low running costs is obviously a bit off. The fact that Cerbera's don't seem to exist before '99 also seems slightly askew."
    http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/Search.asp?mode=doit&h=0

    Oh dear, a 2003 T350c blew up at Croft? (Guess that's what the warranty is for.) And no mention of it yet on Pistonheads? Of course: Not everyone with a failed engine writes in to PH.
    See, this might very well qualify as your "3rd-hand" rumour and innuendo (although checking out that owner's vehicle profile leads one to believe he doesn't have a vested interest in slagging off TVR just for the sake of it). This isn't 3rd-hand (head gasket failure of a 2003 Tuscan engine, which you said were fully sorted now):
    http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=88556&f=5&h=0
     
  22. Re: Re:

    ---
    Mosler cant just simply "pass on the expenses" to the customer. Mosler is also paying for these engines when they buy them from GM. if they decide to drop in a super-powerful, expensive engine, they wont have money for anything else. they have this little thing called a "budget" and being a small business, their's is rather small.
    ---

    You make it sounds as if the budget is coming out of someone's pocket and that there isn't any profit coming in from the sames of cars to refill the company coffers.

    BTW, doesn't Mosler have some custom components made for them out of titanium, carbon-fiber and other expensive, high-tech materials?


    ---
    if these same people could afford an Enzo or Carrera GT, they would have. if they settled for a Mosler, its probably because its just as fast but also cheaper. maintenance costs are a concern even for a $159k car...even more important if you opted to race competitively with an R model.
    ---

    I'm not sure that someone "settling" for a car that costs between $150k and $200k depending on configuration and yet is impractical (and possibly even illegal) to drive on public roads could be described as a penny-pincher.

    Also, don't competitive racing teams have their own full-time mechanics? In that case, maintanence costs wouldn't really be an issue.


    ---
    i would like to hear you say that with confidence when you take your NSX to Miguel in the Bronx. even if Miguel is bonified in every way, you might be a little worried when you entrust your $80k car to someone who has never experienced something like it before.
    ---

    If Miguel has a reputation for excellence in working on exotic cars, I'd have no problems trusting him on my car - $80k or otherwise. Some of the street-racers out there bear little mechanical resemblence to the original factory versions of the cars they used to be.

    ---
    were you not reading carefully when i have said that the LS6 used in the MT900S models are virtually stock other than the CAI and Corsa exhaust? with that, an owner can literally take his car to his local Chevy/GM repair center. finding a mechanic to fix the engine your Mosler is no more difficult than getting one that will fix your Z06 engine because they are the same thing!!
    ---

    The problem here is that "virtually" is an odd term. It means the exact opposite of what it seems intended to mean. In other words, if I say that something has "virtually no sugar in it" what I really mean is that the is, in fact, sugar it it. When you say that the LS engine in the Mosler is "virtually identical" to the engine seen in a Corvette, you're really saying that it isn't identical at all - that it is different.

    The Mosler is a mid-engine car, right? THat means the engine is in backwards. It also means that things like the cooling system, most mechanical and electrical linkages are completely different and access to the various bits (original or otherwise) will not be anywhere near the same as it was in the original donor car.

    For routine procedures like plug/oil changes this probably wouldn't matter. You could probably take it to Jiffy Lube and they wouldn't be fazed by it for such things. What happens when it needs clutch work? It isn't a GM transmission but (IIRC) something transplanted from a Porsche. Is your local Chevy dealer going to have tools or expertise to work on it. What if it is a non-specific problem like the car is running too warm

    Remember, dealers take a very narrow view of matinanence matters and don't like to step outside what they know.

     
  23. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    "I notice he also conveniently ignores the discussion in those threads of bad problems with BMW engines that were attributed to British fuel additives that BMW could have fixed with a simple recall and replacement of the silicon liners with steel but they choose to clam up about it and let their customers' cars fail. "

    Haha, and what proportion of BMW's total volume did those V8's make up? Not even a drop in the bucket compared to their 4- and 6-cylinders (the latter of which many are available in the very same models that used the 8-cylinder engines). Not sure about in the UK, but in the States, BMW extended the warranty to 6 years and 100K miles on those cars, and even replaced a handful at their own expense from 2nd-hand owners who failed to bring them in under a certain "deadline".
    What's the warranty on a failed TVR Speed Six engine again? Wouldn't you say the S6 makes up a large proportion of TVR's total engine production?
     
  24. #74 Jon Gwynne, May 4, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2016
    Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    ---
    Was this the article you're talking about?:
    http://www.autoweek.com/search/search_display.mv?port_code=autoweek&cat_code=carnews&content_code=01028000&Search_Type=STD&Search_ID=2104786&record=4
    Works out to about a $2.7B savings per year doesn't?
    ---

    No, it wasn't the article in question - which reads like a marketing-department press-release to spin the idea of using antiquated technology in modern cars. But then GM has lots of practice spinning that particular shortcoming.


    ---
    cost savings between a Z06 LS6 vs a theoretical GM-built DOHC version (which may or may not meet the hp and durability requirements of an LS6, and the cost of which may or may not reflect thousands of hours of testing and emissions certification).
    ---

    OF course the price difference would reflect those things - they're part of the manufacturing costs (at least that percentage of the R&D that can't be made tax-dedictible).

    ---
    Speaking of which, remember the $70K (in the late '80's early 90's) ZR-1? That had DOHC. A few years ago, those crate engines were going for $15K+...you can still find a few that don't meet their $25K reserve on ebay. You don't suppose the DOHC layout of that engine had anything to do with its price, do you?
    ---

    It had very little to do with the price. It was so much more expensive because only a small number were made and they had to try to recoup the costs over that smaller number of units. Also, the price-premium had as much to do with the exclusivity of the unit as it did with the R&D costs. Take a look at Ferrari as an extreme example of this. What they charge for their cars has little to do with manufacturing costs and everything to do with the "charge what the market will bear" philosophy.


    ---
    Ah, yes, that new Cerbera article. Maybe you should consider what an OWNER of the car says about the article (instead of the insane rantings of an internet fanboy):
    "i liked the artical but do think that they have overlooked the FACT that the speed 6 engine is not very reliable, i have got one and the engine has had to go back to the factory 3 times now. but i still agree that the car is brilliant."
    http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=96721&f=6&h=0
    ---

    You didn't post the followup response I see...
    "Just unlucky, we all dread it, its the possibility we all have to live with... but hey, lifes too short to worry about the downsides... thankgod its not lamborghini, the costs of going back to the factory would entail selling your soul for us mere mortals.."

    Getting a lemon is a possibility with *every* car. Granted your odds are higher for getting a dodgy car from TVR but that doesn't change the fact that the cars they build are generally reliable.

    I've been reading/posting on PH for many years now and have come across countless threads from TVR owners (yes, even cars with AJP6 engines) who use them happily as daily-drivers and haven't been let down by them.

    Speaking of which, you'll notice that the discussion I've been having with the Mosler fans hasn't been about the AJP6 but the AJP8 - so why are you back ragging on the 6?


    As to your posted exerpts from articles... More spin and misdirection.

    1. Yeah, a letter to the editor expressing an unquantified opinion is really compelling... next!

    2. The costs of maintaining a Tuscan are higher than an NSX but not that much. The main thing that will make the NSX-owner's eyes water is the astonishing speed with which his car will chew through tires as well as the tears of shame when he realizes how much slower his more expensive NSX is than the Tuscan. Oh yeah, and it isn't as good a daily-driver either considering the respective size of the boots.
    BTW, of course Detroits muscle-cars are cheaper to maintain, they're using technology from the 1940s. A toilet will always be cheaper to repair than a computer.

    3. So a Tamora's engine "let go" during a track session. Name another manufacturer who has never lost an engine during a torture test. I used to work with a guy who bought a new Mustang and had to bring it back to the dealer several times for a rebuild until, under threat of legal action, Ford finally settled the matter. I've known a couple of people who have gotten "lemon-fresh" Corvettes.


    ---
    How many people actually go through the trouble of suing TVR for false advertising? Hardly any. And they wouldn't win anyway.
    ---

    Hmmm... you seem to have answered your own question.


    ---
    Do you know why? It's not because any claimed 400 hp from any TVR is the same as the 400 hp of a BMW M5 or Corvette Z06.
    ---

    And you know this how?


    ---
    TVR tested some S6 or AJP8 engine (who says it has to be fitted with full ancillaries and with a standard intake?) puts out the quoted bhp on THEIR dyno, then they are not in breach of any false advertising laws.
    ---

    And you know this how?


    ---
    But to say that the 400 hp from such a TVR is the same as the 400 hp from another manufacturer is rather silly; especially in light of proven customer dynos.
    ---

    And who has inspected the machines that generate those "customer dynos"? How do you know that they're accurate and TVR's isn't?

    The only thing those dynos "prove" is the output for a single one of the thousands of TVRs made and have no way of showing us what state of repair those cars are in at the moment the test is made.

    Have you ever actually been to England? They're very serious here about things being "as advertised". Go into any pub and all the glasses have little white fill lines on them so that the customers know that when they pay for a pint (or a 250ml glass of wine or a 15ml shot of whiskey) they are getting exactly that. Those glasses are manufactured under license and inspected to see that they are accurate.

    They have speed cameras which bust people for going 32mph in a 30mph zone.

    This is the original "nanny state". If you think that they aren't going to have government bureaucrats crawling all over every claim made by a British manufacturer or retailer, then you don't know anything about England.
     
  25. Re: Who says Americans can't build exotic supercars.

    "You make it sounds as if the budget is coming out of someone's pocket and that there isn't any profit coming in from the sames of cars to refill the company coffers."

    That is 100% correct. Warren Mosler pays for the operation of Mosler Automitive out of his pocket, ever since the company was founded in 1985.

    "BTW, doesn't Mosler have some custom components made for them out of titanium, carbon-fiber and other expensive, high-tech materials?"

    The body is carbon fibre, and some other carbon parts are made inhouse (or out sourced to a mould shop), but the titanium parts, and many other parts are off the shelf items. We have gotten quotes on custom Ti parts though, and the cost was too high.

    "The problem here is that "virtually" is an odd term. It means the exact opposite of what it seems intended to mean. In other words, if I say that something has "virtually no sugar in it" what I really mean is that the is, in fact, sugar it it. When you say that the LS engine in the Mosler is "virtually identical" to the engine seen in a Corvette, you're really saying that it isn't identical at all - that it is different.

    The Mosler is a mid-engine car, right? THat means the engine is in backwards. It also means that things like the cooling system, most mechanical and electrical linkages are completely different and access to the various bits (original or otherwise) will not be anywhere near the same as it was in the original donor car."

    Allow me to clear this up...the engine in the Mosler MT900S is identical to the Corvette LS6, except for the oil pan. The engine is not backwards, only the upper intake is reversed. So far the GM dealers that have dealt with the car have had no problems.

    Tranny work can be done by any Porsche shop, its a standard G50, flipped upside down.

    "I'm not sure that someone "settling" for a car that costs between $150k and $200k depending on configuration and yet is impractical (and possibly even illegal) to drive on public roads could be described as a penny-pincher."

    The car will not be sold for use on US streets, until it passes an optional side impact test, and gets a couple more "checks in the box". So far all the crash testing has been done on 1 car. I'll bet you can't find another car in production right now, that has done that.

    As for the demographic that is looking at buying an MT900...its they guy that wants the feeling of driving a race car on the street. Some are people that own Mclaren F1's, and want a no-nonsense toy for the street. Some are guys looking to step up from a Vette or Viper. Its typically not the guy trying to decide on a Mosler or an Enzo, but the guy adding to his collection, so he has something bad azz to drive on a regular basis, and not have the high maintenance costs, or government restrictions on.

    Hope that helps.
     

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