Part 2 of TorqueCars best drivers cars.
"The rest of the best to drive before you die"
Welcome to page 2 of the best drivers cars according to TorqueCars for 2008. (If you missed part 1 of this article click here to see what the rules were and which were our favourite Sports, Track day, soft top and the best saloon car.
Best Sports Coupe
So thinking about the best Sports coupe we are again spoilt for choice. We are thinking more of a Grand Tourer than a small coupe here. We needed a coupe that would be practical enough to keep 2 small children happy on short journey but practicality is by no means the major consideration here - it needs to be a rewarding drive.
The Coupe needs to look good and handle nicely and will need a very powerful engine to deliver major Gee's of acceleration. Again this is a very difficult choice but the Aston Martin DB9 Volante coupe is, in our humble opinion, the finest drivers car to come out of Aston Martins production plant.
It just pips the DBS in its driver appeal as it has a slightly more powerful engine and seems slightly more responsive, although we are splitting hairs over this one.
On paper the DBS has it but on the road there is just a little something offered by the DB9 that tips it in our favour.
Best Classic car
We also feel that we should include a Classic car in our list. Retro is cool and by going back to our roots we get to see how much the car has developed over the last 30 years or so. We also wanted a car which could still show a clean pair of tailpipes to modern efforts.
With this in mind we needed to choose something iconic and powerful and have gone for a '67 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 as popularised in the film Gone in 60 seconds. The styling remains timeless, the engine note still turns heads and the lack of gadgets make this a car for real drivers.
It has its quirks but in a car like this they are regarded as character rather than faults and what car of this age is without it's faults and blemishes. The real bonus of choosing this Mustang is that it covers our need to include a real muscle car which no list of the ultimate drives should leave out.
People seem to have a love it or hate it relationship with automatic transmissions. Most stick (if you pardon the pun) with whatever they learnt to drive in. Automatics have come a long way and the Ferrari F430 Scuderia Auto coupe remains one of the best autos around. It is so good that it is humanly impossible to change gear as quickly and as smoothly as the F430.
The car seems almost telepathic delivering the perfect gearing for every moment of your drive. Technology still warm from F1 finds it way into each and every Ferrari and we simply couldn't provide a list of the ultimate drives without including one from the most iconic car producers in the world. If all automatics were this good there would be no room for debate over which is better; we would all be driving an automatic.
Until recently Diesels are loud and smelly and just as you wouldn't choose a loud smelly person as your best friend people seem to shun all things diesel. Recently Diesel powered Le Mans racers have started winning and placing respectable times.
Le Mans drivers, although reticent at first, quickly adapted to the narrow but very high torque band the diesel cars delivered and the fuel economy is a big plus in a 24 hour race. TorqueCars members often discuss the many merits and benefits of the diesel engine and with the modern engine management and supreme efficiency we have to admit that they are now every bit as good as a petrol engine.
The big plus with a diesel is the bags of torque that they deliver. We have to select a diesel that stands out from the rest, the definitive diesel that will change your mind about oil burners forever. The current best diesel engine in our opinion is the BMW 330D M Sport coupe which puts out 228bhp and 369lb ft of Torque.
However we are looking at the overall package here of a drivers diesel so we have to go with the lower powered and hot off the press Alpina D3 with a bi-turbo engine from the 123d liberally sprinkled with a little Alpina magic dust.
We are sure you will agree that this is one of the most sporty diesel engined cars around and delivers supreme levels of power and handling. The chassis tweaks and Alpina magic have truly created one of the best diesel cars around.
And finally, one for the road
Finally, to end our car fest we think it should take us down to earth again. Its not until you drive an unbelievably slow and underpowered car that you appreciate what some drivers have to put up with.
After the smoking rubber and grit has settled it will be time to go back into your daily drive and you will be left feeling that it is inadequate and sorely lacking. So what car should let us know how bad things can really get for a driver?
Our aim here is to help us feel better about our cars. The car we have put in this category is the Perodua Kenari 1.0 EZ SE Automatic.
It actually takes a full 17.7 minutes (sorry we mean seconds, it does feel like minutes) to get to 60. The whole interior exudes cheapness and the styling seems to be based on a small potting shed with wheels. After you drive one of these you will start to feel a whole lot better about your car. You will also develop a little sympathy for drivers who have to drop down to second and third gear in order to traverse a hill.
Join us in our friendly forum to see which cars our imaginative and well informed members have selected.
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