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Old 21 Jun 2008, 09:21 (Ref:2233933)   #1
isynge
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Sportscars that were worse than their predecessors

Since Le Mans there's been a palpable sense that Peugeot fluffed what was likely to be their best chance to win, as the consensus is that there'll be a new Audi next year and it will inherently be quicker than its predecessor, with a few questioning whether that's a given.

This set a few cogs rumbling in the back of my mind over Friday night Chinese food and completely off the top of my head I can come up with the following distinct backward steps in terms of results and overall competitiveness

- Panoz LMP07
- Rondeau M482
- Mirage M6 Weslake Coupe
- Ford P68

I'm absolutely certain there'll be lots more, any takers for the classic British activity of pointless list building?
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 10:08 (Ref:2233964)   #2
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The flying Mercedes-Benz didnt do much .
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 10:09 (Ref:2233967)   #3
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Porsche 917 (the original scary version before JWA re-did the aerodynamics).

Nissan R390 (never as quick in relation to the opposition as the previous Group C cars)

Group C Chevron's (poor effort compared with the superb sportscars they had in the 60's/70's)
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 11:04 (Ref:2234007)   #4
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Originally Posted by isynge
Since Le Mans there's been a palpable sense that Peugeot fluffed what was likely to be their best chance to win, as the consensus is that there'll be a new Audi next year and it will inherently be quicker than its predecessor, with a few questioning whether that's a given.

This set a few cogs rumbling in the back of my mind over Friday night Chinese food and completely off the top of my head I can come up with the following distinct backward steps in terms of results and overall competitiveness

- Panoz LMP07
- Rondeau M482
- Mirage M6 Weslake Coupe
- Ford P68

I'm absolutely certain there'll be lots more, any takers for the classic British activity of pointless list building?
Of those cars mentioned, 3 were privateer efforts with little to no factory support(the Panoz, Rondeau, and Mirage Coupe), or were toe in water efforts that the factory didn't take seriously(the Ford P68, as Ford hedged their bets on the GT40, and the Panoz program was meekly and half-heartedly supported by Ford, too).

Factory teams rarely screw up, especially if they know where they're stuggling, and where the opposition is better. IE, if the Audi R10 was made to have a better weight disribution(which is done in the ALMS where it has to carry more weight-925kg vs 900kg), it would be better now, and would probably be on par with Peugeot.

It's simple evolution-only when big leaps are made do even factory teams messup, or if they don't take advantage of the "next big thing"(ie, Ferrari with ground effect technology in F1 in 1980).
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 11:19 (Ref:2234012)   #5
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Perfectly fair points Chernaudi - and I guess what I was trying to think of was an example of a factory getting it wrong to a serious extent -at risk of mentioning a bad word the McLaren MP4/18 in F1 is an example of this. Perhaps the Matra MS640 coupe that Henri Pescarolo crashed might be a possibility, I also seem to recall there was an Alfa blind alley somewhere in the early '70s, but right now lack the enthusiasm to pop downstairs and wade through Time and Two Seats.

I'd still stand by the privateer examples as being illustrative - Rondeau's 482 was so far inferior to the 382 in 1982 that you could argue it cost them the titles that year. While the question about whether the R10's successor will be a great leap forward is interesting, the same question could be asked about whether the next Courage/Pescarolo/Creation etc will be substantively better than their predecessors is interesting too.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 11:33 (Ref:2234025)   #6
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Kremer K4
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 13:26 (Ref:2234063)   #7
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Originally Posted by isynge
Perfectly fair points Chernaudi - and I guess what I was trying to think of was an example of a factory getting it wrong to a serious extent -at risk of mentioning a bad word the McLaren MP4/18 in F1 is an example of this. Perhaps the Matra MS640 coupe that Henri Pescarolo crashed might be a possibility, I also seem to recall there was an Alfa blind alley somewhere in the early '70s, but right now lack the enthusiasm to pop downstairs and wade through Time and Two Seats.

I'd still stand by the privateer examples as being illustrative - Rondeau's 482 was so far inferior to the 382 in 1982 that you could argue it cost them the titles that year. While the question about whether the R10's successor will be a great leap forward is interesting, the same question could be asked about whether the next Courage/Pescarolo/Creation etc will be substantively better than their predecessors is interesting too.
The reason why I mention that Privateer teams have a lot of problems with improving their cars is a lack or resources.

The Rondeau M379 and M382 in reality shared the same chassis, which basically was a steel tube spaceframe incased in an aluminimum monocoque(think Ferrari 312 family and the origianl Ferrari 126), where as the 482 was a true monocoque chassis-but the car's aero was probably as bad as it looked, and the chassis wasn't as stong as it could've been.

Audi and Peugeot have tons of resources avialble to them-Paolo Cantone is the chief designer of the Peugeot 908, and the Courage C60 and LC70. Courage's budget is a shoe sting compared to Peugeot's, and the C60 and LC70 were intended as customer cars. Those things may've contributed to those cars lack of torsional rigidity and chassis flex, problems that Pescarolo and Oreca had to fix.

Is every car an advance on it's predecessor? Usually yes. But are those effects immediate? Not always. The Lotus 80, for instance, used Coke-bottled sidepods to reduce drag. Of couse, the Lotus 80 wasn't particulary successful, the when ground effects were banned(and even on ground effect Lola and Panoz Champ cars, and the Dallara IRL car), the Coke-bottle sidepods are a common feature on open wheel cars.

And as mentioned, when teams/manufactures take a big leap, they're taking a lot of risk, and their pioneering effors will likely(barring major rules changes) be topped by a competitor, or themselves just to maintain their advantage. The Audi R10 was first, the Peugeot 908 was at first far inferior to the R10, but has now equaled and exceeded it. Audi has made up a ton of ground at the shorter LMS circuits(where Audi and Peugeot were matched on pace, especially at Spa), but Audi knows that to truly regain the initiative, they'll need to look at the stuff that they've found out about racing the R10 for the past 3 years, and probably either:

A: radically modify the R10, or

B: Build a newly designed car-curing the R10's minor but noticeable problems would likely require a very big detail redesign of the R10 anyways, so why not bite the bullet, and build a new car?

If Darwinism it true, it definenitly applies to mechanical devices, race cars included.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 15:30 (Ref:2234140)   #8
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Jaguar XJR10/11: the Rover Metro V6-engined car was a big step backward for Tom Walkinshaw Racing, just when they needed something to fight the very strong Mercedes C11...
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 15:46 (Ref:2234146)   #9
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HORNDAWG should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridHORNDAWG should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridHORNDAWG should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
Ferrari 575


L.P.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 16:10 (Ref:2234154)   #10
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The Lancia LC2 never really lived up to the hype nor matched the results of its little brother the LC1.

But it was a lovely car car to look at, so maybe that made up for it!

Compared to the Ferrari 330 the 512 was a bit of a let down, but they bounced back with the 312P.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 17:14 (Ref:2234182)   #11
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Maybe the Porsche 911 GT1 evo 1997 edition. That one had more inferno's than the 1996 version and both Porsche AG didn't finish LM in 1997. (Didn't sell as good as the 1996 version)
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 17:27 (Ref:2234192)   #12
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Originally Posted by HORNDAWG
Ferrari 575


L.P.
The 575 was built to compete with the 550 not as a replacement.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 17:46 (Ref:2234208)   #13
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The 575 was built to compete with the 550 not as a replacement.

Right.



L.P.
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Old 21 Jun 2008, 19:09 (Ref:2234253)   #14
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The flying Mercedes-Benz didnt do much .
True, but they were one of the best looking race cars ever (when not airbourne). I hope the LMP1 EVOs look like them.

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Old 21 Jun 2008, 19:20 (Ref:2234262)   #15
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Originally Posted by HORNDAWG
Right.



L.P.
Different builders, so there is no sucessor in terms of the 550 and 575.
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