Grip vs. Power – Part I

Most car manufacturers are defining their cars with two numbers: horsepower and seconds for 0 to 60 mph. They say, because the most customers are buying cars because of this numbers. And there are not unimportant things about the branding and design of the cars.

The last years a lot of cars where built with more and more horsepower. 10 years back it was supercar territory to have 600 bhp. Today the high tuned hothatches are about to reaching the power of an entry Porsche 911 modell. So if you want a station wagon with more than enough power you will find more than one.

The possibilities to build turbocharged V6 or V8 engines are very common. But what is about to handle the power?

And when we step down a bit: Power is only in the straight line relevant. In every corner you have to break down. Break down to the optimal speed to getting through the corner.

But the optimal speed within the corner is not only causing in the engine power. It is more the result from how much grip your tires have. How sticky to the ground your car is.

So the question is not about power or power delivery – both is nice – but nothing without grip. The limit of corner speed depends – with other factors as well – of good tyres… oh noh perfect tyres and better dry streets or race tracks.

So if you drive a car near the limit or you are drifting over it – after: you never will prefer only power.


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