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      02-15-2013, 05:52 PM   #1
rondocap
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Would you say a high revving car is almost always more exciting?

Without thinking about it, I stumbled upon an obvious truth for my own tastes. It's not necessarily tied with performance - but I've been thinking: In almost all cases, would you say that a naturally aspirated, high revving car is generally more visceral and exciting to drive than a car that has more torque and is perhaps turbo?

I draw my own comparison from my Porsche Boxster vs my 335i - the Boxster is significantly slower, but a lot more fun to wind out to redline as it just screams and feels like a racecar. The 335i is lame above 5k-6k rpm. The fun in that is short lived in the initial torque.

Now, I don't mean the usual daily drive, I mean when you have some nice road to open it up a bit.

Similar comparisons I drew even when driving other more powerful cars; i.e I was sort of bored in a 911 Turbo but very excited in a Carrera S, likewise with the M3.

This paints a picture of a trend: The new M5, for all its power, perhaps cannot make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up quiet like the old one or the current M3. This is similarly happening to many cars nowadays.

I don't know what it is, but it just feels to me that having to rev a car out and really drive it gives much more satisfaction than just a big torque wall hitting you. I used to think the opposite - but my tastes are evolving. And this also almost always means a naturally aspirated car, and not turbo or supercharged.
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      02-15-2013, 06:31 PM   #2
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Considering I just went from a 2006 GTO (6.0 liter LS2) with around 345 rwhp, to a 2009 e90 M3, I'd say yes, I agree that revving out is MUCH more satisfying and visceral. I got quite bored with the torquey LS2. Just me. I know some LOVE low end torque. I just needed a change, and am glad I made it :-)
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      02-15-2013, 07:38 PM   #3
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I totally get what you're saying. I've been around the mill and back. My first "fun" car was a 24v VR6 GTI. The car itself was soft, but the engine sounded awesome when you drove it hard. It easily goes down in my book as one of the coolest sounding engines ever made.

My next car was a 2.0T GTI, and while it was definitely a much better car all around, the turbo engine had a totally different feel. It was similar to my 135i in that the acceleration surges early, but then disappears.

I just test drove an M3 this week, and the high revving V8 reminds me why a high revving, naturally aspirated engine can be so rewarding.

There are pros and cons of each though. I love my 135i, and in an around-town scenario, it's incredibly hard to beat. Even with a 100 HP handicap, my 135i feels just as fast as the M3 on the streets, if not faster. I can leave the 135i in 4th or 5th gear and pull so hard. The M3 requires a downshift to really get moving. That doesn't make the 135i more fun; I'm just kind of reiterating your points. They're different, but I have a hard time deciding which is really better, because I drive on the street most of the time, ya know?
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      02-15-2013, 08:40 PM   #4
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Uh..yes
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      02-15-2013, 08:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Uh..yes
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      02-15-2013, 08:59 PM   #6
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I completely get what you're saying. I have a tuned 335d as my daily driver and before that I had a tuned 135i. The torque is great for in town driving and is addicting in its own right. But my Cayman S is way more fun to drive. Of course, handling plays a huge role in this but the naturally aspirated motor and sound tugs at me more than the big torque fix of the d.
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      02-15-2013, 09:22 PM   #7
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A high revving engine with a good power curve is one of the main reasons, if not the main reason, why I fell in love with M3s.

The balance, handling, looks are awesome. But theres just something about an 8k redline with perfect power output that just does it for me.

The next M3/M4 with probably not have a high redline. Nor will it feel like past M3s in its power output. I really hope it does, but I havnt seen a turbo car come close.

I drove a buddies new twin turbo M5 the other day. It was balls to the wall fast, gobs of torque, launches you when you get on it. However, it was quiet, it didnt rev high, redlining the car felt mediocre compared to the V10 M5 or even the V8 M3. It's plenty fast, but I cant say it excited or impressed me. Even if you throw an exhaust on it, its not going to scream, its going to burble like a boat. My brothers X6M needed an exhaust and now sounds better, but not like they used to make em. As a matter of fact, the X6M is much more thrilling to drive because you are sitting so high up, it feels super fast. It's just not common to sit that high up and go that fast that well.

If I wanted pavement eating torque, my last 5 cars would have been from AMG. I wanted the screaming thrill with an emphasis on chasis so I they were all BMW M cars.

We used to have 3 choices come out of Germany (not counting porsche)...

M cars for those who enjoyed balance and perfection.

AMG cars for those who enjoyed massive power and torque.

and Audis for those who wanted training wheels (just joking lol)


Now, the BMWs are starting to trade high RPMs for turbo power...

AMG cars are starting to really impress with offering more like the Black Series cars...

and Audi... Audi is making coupes with 8500 RPM V8s.



I am a supporter of BMW, always have been. And I'm super excited and eager to see and hear the specs on the next wave of M cars (M2/M3/M4). With that said, I really REALLY hope BMW comes through with not just being fast, but retaining that incredible thrill to drive.
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      02-15-2013, 09:48 PM   #8
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I LOVE a high revving engine. The three cars I had/have that were high revving engines are the M3, GT3, and the F430.

Love how you can make these cars sing in the high rev ranges. Especially the Ferrari. That thing is insane as it's screaming toward 8500.

Had a Turbo and that thing was stupid fast, but pretty boring.
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      02-15-2013, 10:04 PM   #9
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As you asked the question, No. Delete "almost" and my answer becomes a "Yes".

I also like torque, especially for off-roading, which led me to buy a John Deere (vert) that owns the lawn.
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      02-15-2013, 10:10 PM   #10
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In a word, yep. But as you say, true appreciation for a high-revving NA motor comes only when you can wind it out on some back roads (or a track). And the sad reality is that BMWs, even M cars, are relatively mass-produced and the vast majority of their miles will be on DD, where that benefit will be far less apparent and indeed the turbo torque may be preferred.

Of course there is an Option #3 -- a large displacement torquey NA motor in a well-handling car. I'm thinking at the moment of the C6 Z06. I've never piloted one, but I caught a ride in one at the track, and based on that experience I think there's a good chance I could be just as happy overall with that engine setup (not with that car overall, just the engine). Sure it doesn't wail like a banshee the way the M3 can, but that rocket-like acceleration fills some of that void, and the fact that it's still NA allows it to retain that linear delivery and ability to make precise adjustments even mid-corner. Now we just need someone to make a car with that engine that has a balanced chassis (Corvette, but not AMG) AND a nice interior (AMG, but not Corvette). Why hello there, C7 Vette.... (maybe)

Waiting for people to jump in with "You can get that with a supercharged M3!".
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      02-16-2013, 12:10 AM   #11
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I've owned a couple S2000s and a V10 M5 and while I love winding out a high reving motor (especially the V10 ) I always find myself wishing they had more torque. When I've owned my N54 equipped and other older turbo cars I find myself wishing the engine had more character.

Maybe a supercharged M3 will be the best of both worlds : ....
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      02-16-2013, 12:14 AM   #12
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After this car I don't understand why other high performance NA cars don't rev that high. It's like perk "my car can rev to 8250 how high can yours rev?" Hahaha kidding but I love it
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      02-16-2013, 12:48 AM   #13
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As a counterpoint, it is a mind blowing experience when the boost comes on in my cousin's 650whp Supra. The lag before 3000 RPM is like foreplay!
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      02-16-2013, 12:53 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rondocap View Post

I draw my own comparison from my Porsche Boxster vs my 335i - the Boxster is significantly slower, but a lot more fun to wind out to redline as it just screams and feels like a race ar. The 335i is lame above 5k-6k rpm. The fun in that is short lived in the initial torque.

.
Yes, I would say so..... Even my old FX35 is more exciting above 5k rpm than my former 335i was.
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      02-16-2013, 01:31 AM   #15
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Yep, *35i are pretty boring, fall on their faces quickly. Not having high hopes for the new M's.
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      02-16-2013, 01:43 AM   #16
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I wish my engine rev'd like a F1 car
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      02-16-2013, 03:52 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BimmerRob08 View Post
I wish my engine rev'd like a F1 car
And a new engine after each 1,000 miles
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      02-16-2013, 04:34 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3XTR3M3 View Post


and Audis for those who wanted training wheels .
,
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      02-17-2013, 09:55 PM   #19
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High revving screamer means everything to me! By far the biggest reason I always wanted an M3. Everyday I drive I play in the 6-8600 range and the funny thing is when I am at 5500-6k I feel I am out of the power and not even in the fun zone yet which when you think about it is absolutely insane for a street car to be just at the beginning of the fun at 6k rpms! To me there is way more enjoyment driving than power but with the m3, if you drive it correctly you get more of a thrill and pushback into your seat by far with the M over any of the N54 cars. Only problem is you need to play in the 6k and above range which frankly most people do not or don't want to do.

For me and especially with DCT its so easy and the sound is just so enjoyable that it is second nature to be up in that range.
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      02-18-2013, 05:00 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thebigbus View Post
Considering I just went from a 2006 GTO (6.0 liter LS2) with around 345 rwhp, to a 2009 e90 M3, I'd say yes, I agree that revving out is MUCH more satisfying and visceral. I got quite bored with the torquey LS2. Just me. I know some LOVE low end torque. I just needed a change, and am glad I made it :-)
Same here just bought a 2010 E90. Previous car was a twin turbo ls2 producing 546rwhp. Head snapping acceleration but I wanted a car which had the combination of moderate power with a chassis that could utilise it properly. The M3 does that.
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      02-18-2013, 07:37 AM   #21
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High revving is where it's at.
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      02-18-2013, 09:12 AM   #22
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As so many comments show, it really comes down to personal tastes/desires/feelings coupled with intended usage for the car(s) you own, etc.

In the dirt bike motocross world, think 2-stroke versus 4-stroke engines -- at least in many years gone by as I imagine modern 4-strokes are pretty nasty now, but in the very old days (mine), something like a 125cc MX bike cranked out 25hp but had about a 1/4 of that from 2k to 7k rpms, and then all hell would break loose as it "came on the pipe" (1970s 2-storke speak when the engine porting and rpms line up with the design of the expansion chamber (exhaust) design).

Was that fun and exciting? Hell yeah it was. I still have my 1975 CanAm 125MX2 bought new in June of '75 and actually rode it about 5 years ago. Anyway, that powerband from 8k to 11k rpms of that thing is wicked fun, and you just keep grabbing the next gear almost as fast as you can think about it. All fine and dandy on a nicely groomed track or decent trail. However, change the environment and you don't even want to think of dealing with it anymore (i.e. slimy mud -- impossible to modulate power, slow trails with lots of steep climbs with no runup room -- bogs engine then uncontrollable wheelspin when you hit the powerband, etc...).

Similarly, people in the Porsche world have these discussions when comparing driving a GT3 versus the Turbo (only speaking here of engine performance, not handling). The GT3 is scintillating in its powerband, just like the S65 (although imo the S65 has a much nicer overall powerband/torque delivery) whereas the Turbo is the gut-hut brutal torque monster. Two totally different driving experiences, and neither is "right" or "wrong" no matter how many Internet based proclamations exist on each side of that argument.

So the best deal is to have both I guess. Perhaps one of the many reasons I'm not selling my S62 M5 that I've had for 10+ years now after recently buying a 2011.5 E90 M3. Two totally different engine experiences between the S62 and S65, and damn if I don't love them both.
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