In my experience....
I've had two road encounters with GTO's, and in my experience they've been pretty formidable competition against my PROceded 6MT 335i coupe.
In my first run in, we agreed to run from a dig for one block. His car was auto, and with my bad start (didn't feed the clutch properly) he gained about 1.5 car lengths on me very early, and from there my car kept pace dead even.
In my second run in (with a different GTO), it was clear the guy's GTO was modded, because when he blipped his throttle (6MT) his exhaust gurgled like an old muscle car. I'm guessing at the least he'd played with his exhaust. We did a rolling start from about 20mph, and i immediately took 2-3 car lengths on him, at which point he ended up keeping pace and never letting the gap increase.
I'd like a few more run ins for a better approximation of how these cars really match up, but so far it seems to me that in the higher gears the cars are pretty evenly matched, it's mostly a lower gear race.
i understand that there has been an engine upgrade since 2004, but are there different engine variants available for the current 2007 models? from what i can tell, all post 2004 GTO's are running the same engine. somebody please correct me if i'm wrong. i'm curious to know what exactly i'm running against.
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