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What is considered a Supercar

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by Ferrari 360 CS, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. Ferrari 360 CS

    Ferrari 360 CS F1 Veteran
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    Mainly the result of an interesting discussion on another thread I thought it might be interesting to start a general discussion on this point.

    My definition of a supercar:
    - some that looks exotic, so out goes any saloon
    - a high top speed.
    - stunning body design that captivates the eye.
    - ferocious acceleration
    - great engine sound.
    - great handling

    In reality supercars are hard to define and each individual might have a differant interpretation of what a supercar really is, I mean how did the world define the Miuria as a supercar but the 365GTB/4 wasnt? Or are in the minds a some front engined cars not supercars?
     
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  3. greyboxer

    greyboxer F1 World Champ

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    Since a supercar is not about practicality any car that has enough boot/trunk space for a set of golf clubs cannot be one

    By your definition I would argue that a Daytona does qualify
     
  4. mwr4440

    mwr4440 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    I looked at the term "'Super' Car" years ago, as a exotic, limited production, vehicle with a top-end in excess of 150 mph. I may be very wrong but I seem to remember R&T used that as a definition in some write-up years ago.

    But now with so many cars off the showroom floor going well over that speed, the 'SuperCar' today might might be defined as 175mph-200mph+.
     
  5. V-TWELVE

    V-TWELVE Formula 3
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    The Supercar is an 80's term we used to describe cars like the Countach and Testarossa
    I guess for a car to be a Supercar it would need the following:

    1) Exotic styling
    2) Extremely expensive
    3) Extreme performance for the era
    4) Rare ( you might never see one in person )
    5) It only seats two
    6) kids have to have posters of it on their walls


    If any of these requirements are missing, it is probably not a Supercar.
     
  6. scycle2020

    scycle2020 F1 Rookie

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    Well put....and the term is way over used now...its become a marketing ploy for every new sports car above $60k!!!!!
     
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  8. FQ340

    FQ340 Formula Junior

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    80s were supercar years, now there are hypercars as the top end.

    The way i see it,
    supercars nowadays may be described as:
    exotic looking
    accelerate to 62mph in and under 5sec
    top speed inexcess of 175mph
    expensive but not limited production

    however, hypercars are:
    exotic looking
    accelerate to 62mph in and under 4sec
    top speed inexcess of 200mph
    very expensive and limited production
     
  9. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
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    This probably sums it up as well as it can be, but the whole 'supercar' and 'hypercar' terminology is kind of useless.

    Take the Testarossa, which was one of the fastest and most expensive cars in the world in 1985. It meets all the criteria, but now you can buy one for under $60K, and it will be out-accelerated and outperformed by plenty of modern cars. Ditto the 308/328, which is equally rare, a famous poster car, and very fast in its day. So, are these supercars? Or were they? What date did they stop being supercars? etc.

    I tend to look at performance cars as exotics (Ferrari, Lambo, Aston Martin, Lotus -- low-volume cars, sparse dealer network), high-end (Porsche, BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar -- premium cars with a large market presence/dealer network) and tuner/niche (Saleen, Spyker, Shelby, Vector, etc.) Not a perfect classification, but I've noticed the car enthusiast world tends to congregate along those lines.
     
  10. sp330

    sp330 Rookie

    Dec 29, 2007
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    I would classify an R8 as a supercar, though in my eyes its practicality costs it some points. There's just something about buying a grossly impractical car just to put a smile on your face (Lotus comes to mind).
     
  11. FriscoRays

    FriscoRays Formula Junior

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  13. V-TWELVE

    V-TWELVE Formula 3
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    I think cars never loose the title of Supercar once they get it. Yeah a honda might walk it on the street today but in it's day it was special and that is what matters. Just like in boxing, once a world champ always a world champ.
     
  14. Pantera

    Pantera F1 Rookie

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    For me its starts with an orginal overall design, engine..extc all of that no barrowing parts from other cars.

    The power plant needs to be unique and sound great.

    the styling should be exotic.

    Performance should be untouchable from any avarage passnger vehicle.
     
  15. 2NA

    2NA F1 World Champ
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    A minimum of 12 cylinders, no exceptions.
     
  16. mwr4440

    mwr4440 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Pantera,

    Not quite sure what you mean here. My 308 (along with all others) shares parts with many different cars, GM, Porche, BMW, and God knows what else.

    But using my definition, the 1981 308 was NOT a "Supercar." Its top-end was quoted as only 147mph in all books I have read.
     
  17. WilyB

    WilyB Formula 3
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    So you do not consider a Pantera a supercar? ;)
     
  18. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
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    How would an F40 be classed? :rolleyes:
     
  19. 2NA

    2NA F1 World Champ
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    I wondered if someone would take the bait. LOL!

    The F40 is quite a car but it just doesn't do it for me.

    A little too stripped down for my liking. If you want to include "racecars" in the group or anything really fast you'll end up with things like "General Lee".

    I wouldn't include anything with 4 or 6 cylinders for sure (I've worked on too many Lotus Esprits, they barely qualify as a car but are amazingly fast).

    To me, "Supercar" assumes exotic. To be really "exotic" you need at least 12 cylinders.

    Feel free to disagree.

    I guess watching Barrett-Jackson all week I got my fill of anything with a V8.
     
  20. WilyB

    WilyB Formula 3
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    Some UK magazine used to say "any car able to do the 1/4 mile under 15"" but today I would say any car doing the 1/4 mile in the 12s?
     
  21. V-TWELVE

    V-TWELVE Formula 3
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    Wow tough crowd. A twin turbo V-8 not considered exotic, I have to disagree. Your 12 cyl. requirement would discount many cars such as the 959, 288 GTO and F40. Also practicality and comfort was never part of the deal. It's all about racecars for the street that you would never consider or could even use for daily transportation. I don't think a V-12 boosts the "exotic" feel of a BMW 850 or XJS Jaguar.
     
  22. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
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    I've always thought of the Esprit as an exotic, although it was best when it finally got the V8. How many of those did Lotus sell toward the end, 150 a year or so? It makes the 360/430 seem like a BMW 3 series in comparison. It's never been at or near the top of my list, but I don't think I saw one on the road all of last year, and I live in San Diego. I guess I'd put rarity ahead of cylinder count in this case.

    True about the F40 being stripped down, but I wouldn't consider stuff like power windows, power seats, seat heaters, etc. to be essential for a supercar. In fact, I think the Countachs all had manual windows and seats that didn't adjust...
     
  23. rosso_fanatic

    rosso_fanatic Formula Junior

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    There are supercars without great engine sounds as hard as that is to beleive. Ever heard an XJ220? It's definately no V12 sound.
     
  24. Night life

    Night life F1 Veteran
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    As I remember a super car was a term for the early 80's cars that were in production with no modification that did 0-60 in 6 sec or less then it moved to 5 seconds or less and as of lately it has been 4 seconds or less.
    Where will they stop I read of an electric car that does 0-60 in less than 2 sec talk about eyes in the back of your head...lol
     
  25. laminator

    laminator Formula Junior

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    I know of Holdens here that can do the 1/4 in the 10s.

    Supercars are cars such as:

    Bugatti Veyron
    Ferrari 599 GTB (Just)
    Gumpert Apollo
    Gemballa Mirage GT
    Ferrari Enzo Ferrari (Hope I got that right!)
    Gillet Vertigo
    Koeniggsegg CCR/CC8

    Anything that can't be seen on the street quite easily, or anything parked out the front of a casino in Monte Carlo is a supercar. Having said that, I'm sure there are cars that were limited production that were crap.
     
  26. James_Woods

    James_Woods F1 World Champ

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    Like a Mercedes 300SLR; just doesn't quite make the grade.

    Seriously, is everybody still aware of the ugly fact that back in the day, R & T wrote an editorial to say that the Daytona was every bit as much a supercar as a Miura even if it was a front engine -

    And, that an ordinary C6 Corvette could easily overcome either one in most any conceivable test of performance (except B & J auction, of course)?
     
  27. J. Salmon

    J. Salmon F1 Rookie
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    Limited production must be more of a factor - it is inherent in the term "exotic." You simply cannot define it on performance, because many cars will eventually eclipse the supercars of today. Look at the Enzo - which is unquestionably a supercar - now being matched by the Scud. I think the CS and Scud are incredible cars, but neither is what I think of as a "supercar". The modern supercars are the Enzo, the heinous MB SLR, Veyron, S7, CGT... if you have to ask, it ain't one.
     
  28. 2NA

    2NA F1 World Champ
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    I didn't suggest that 12 cylinders guaranteed admission to the club. The Jaguar V12 is more "boat anchor" than engine (keep in mind that I own a couple). Smooth running (when everythings working) but not overly powerful.

    In my experience I've found the Esprit is poorly made (the body reminds me of a kit car, a big piece of plastic) and the "sewing machine" sound is enough to make me hurl. I've never driven the V8 but I've been told that the 4-banger is actually a faster car.

    That went down maybe 3 inches

    Hey, it all comes down to personal preference.

    Some poor sap paid $80K for a Maserati BiTurbo yesterday. He must think that it's a "supercar". ;^O
     

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