Car and Driver: Lightning Lap Comparison

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by camarosc86, Jul 6, 2007.

  1. camarosc86

    camarosc86 New Member

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    In the August issue, they feature the 2nd annual Lightning Lap competition at Virginia International Speedway. Last year, a Ford GT was the fastest competitor, with a near 3-minute flat lap time. This year, there were a few new entries, split into 4 categories by price. L1 is the cheapest (under $30,000), L2 is $30K to $60K I think, L3 is $60K to $100K, and L4 is $100K to $130K.

    In the L1 category, the Pontiac Solstice GXP was the fastest.

    In the L2 category, the Corvette w/ Z51 package was the fastest, and it also beat an L3 and L4 competitor, the Audi R8 and Porsche 911 Turbo. IIRC, it rana 3:03-minute lap time.

    In L3, the Corvette Z06 was the fastest, as well as being the overall fastest car. It ran a 2:58-minute lap time. The Porsche 911 GT3 was in this category also, and ran a 3:01-minute lap time - faster than the Porsche 911 Turbo.

    In L4, the only competitor was the Porsche 911 Turbo. It ran a 3:05-minute lap time.

    I had to post this after reading the pushrod debate thread. Darn GM using out-dated technology to sweep this whole competition.

    I'll list all of the competitors in a little bit.
     
  2. camarosc86

    camarosc86 New Member

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    here are the competitors,

    LL1: Under $30,000
    Pontiac Solstice GXP - 3:15.7
    Mazdaspeed 3 - 3:16.0
    Mini Cooper S - 3:22.9

    LL2: $30-60,000
    Chevrolet Corvette (Z51) - 3:03.6
    Ford Shelby GT - 3:05.9
    BMW 335i coupe - 3:10.5
    BMW Z4 M coupe - 3:11.7

    LL3: $60-120,000
    Chevrolet Corvette Z06 - 2:58.2 (Overall Winner)
    Porsche 911 GT3 - 3:01.8
    Lotus Exige S - 3:04.5
    Audi R8 - 3:04.6
    Audi RS4 - 3:11.2

    LL4: $120-240,000
    Porsche 911 Turbo - 3:05.8
     
  3. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    I've posted this before but....
    In the November 2006 issue of Car and Driver, we invented the “Lightning Lap,” wherein we took a bunch of sporty automobiles down to Virginia International Raceway to benchmark their overall performance—not just how they accelerated, braked, gripped, or handled, but how they combined these tasks.

    To think of it another way, our Lightning Lap test showcases a car’s ability to quickly and safely traverse a challenging section of pavement without running the risk of putting a car through someone’s front yard. Automakers such as Porsche, BMW, GM, Mercedes, and Audi perform a similar test by running cars on what is widely considered to be the world’s most demanding racetrack, the 12.9-mile Nordschleife of the Nürburgring near Cologne, Germany.

    The Ring is 5000 miles from our Ann Arbor headquarters, so we settled on what we feel is a worthy substitute, the 4.2-mile Grand Course at Virginia International Raceway (VIR), located near Danville, Virginia. The Grand Course is the longest layout available at VIR and possesses a testing combination of elevation changes, long straightaways, and a scintillating mixture of high-, medium-, and low-speed corners. It’s not a track that can be mastered in a few laps.

    Our measure of overall performance is simply the lap time a car achieves on the Grand Course. Last fall, the quickest of 17 cars was the Ford GT, which ran a lap in a tick over three minutes (3:00.07). This second batch of 13 cars features several interesting new models as well as a few repeat performers that experienced problems last year (the Ford Shelby GT500) or have had a significant mechanical change (such as the ’07 Chevrolet Corvette Z06’s new shocks).

    As we rolled up to the track in May, bets were placed as to whether the improved Z06, the Porsche 911 GT3, or the Porsche 911 Turbo would be the first to break the three-minute barrier. Read on to see whether any of the cars broke the record.
    Chevrolet Corvette Z06 2:58.2
    Porsche 911 GT3 3:01.8
    Chevrolet Corvette 3:03.6
    Lotus Exige S 3:04.5
    Audi R8 3:04.6
    Porsche 911 Turbo 3:05.8
    Ford Shelby GT500 3:05.9
    BMW 335i 3:10.5
    Audi RS4 3:11.2
    BMW Z4 M Coupe 3:11.7
    Pontiac Solstice GXP 3:15.7
    MazdaSpeed3 3:16.0
    Mini Cooper S 3:22.9


    the 07 z06 does not have new shocks
     
  4. The GT3 is undoubtedly a great car, but if you are really interested in not only maximum performance for dollar, but maximum performance PERIOD, the only choice is the Z06.

    EDIT: I just also noticed that the Z51 corvette lost to the GT3 by under 2 seconds!! That's impressive!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2007
  5. Mjolnir

    Mjolnir WHM6D > *

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    Where are all the GT500 haters, and has this been copied to the main forum?
     
  6. you know me

    you know me OT where the douchbags play

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    i posted it there in other threads before
     
  7. Ronin

    Ronin Guest

    :rofl: i didnt know the gt500 would be THAT fast, woot

    american sports cars are pretty decent it seems :dunno:
     
  8. Mjolnir

    Mjolnir WHM6D > *

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    You been readin too much OT.

    It's a heavy pig, but it does have 500 horse and an upgraded suspension.

    On a 4.2 (?) mile course with several decent straights and long sweepers it's going to make up the time it loses in the tight spots.

    Although the 4 or 5 seconds between it and the similarly priced euros makes it a drivers game.
     
  9. camarosc86

    camarosc86 New Member

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    It doesn't seem like it would because of the weight, but that motor it is like killing a fly with a sledgehammer. Total overkill.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. pathOFdisaster

    pathOFdisaster Resident Ford Troll OT Supporter

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  11. Ronin

    Ronin Guest

    its good to know americans can still make fast cars

    i think if i had the money id just get a standard GT and just dump 25 grand into it instead of getting a shelby
     
  12. Mjolnir

    Mjolnir WHM6D > *

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    You'd end up with a faster car, but it wouldn't hold it's value as well.
     
  13. Ronin

    Ronin Guest

    i dont buy cars to make money off of them
     
  14. Mjolnir

    Mjolnir WHM6D > *

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    Okay. I'm just pointing out that some people do.

    FWIW, I'm with you.

    $20,000 + used 2006 GT >>>>>>>>>>>>> GT500
     

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