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      09-04-2010, 10:37 AM   #1
Silver-Bolt
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Sultry Redhead is home.

Yesterday we picked up our 35is finally. It was a dealer demo with 264 miles on the clock. We stopped to eat and wait for traffic to clear then hit the road for some topless cruising. For the local Portland area people do yourself a favor and head down I-5 to Wilsonville and take Wilsonville Road out to Newberg. When you hit Newberg get on Hwy 219 and head out to Hagg Lake. Epic road for the Z. So we did about 100 miles and headed back home enjoying every minute behind the wheel. First impression, love the car. I was able to push the handling pretty hard on the roads we were on. Lots of tight 20 mph sweeping turns and I can see how/why the mags give it low marks on handling. My normal driving style is to go in deep, late brake, and come out hard. By doing that the car understeers and has a wierd dead spot in the steering. After trying that I slowed my entry and accelerated hard at the apex and she railed around the corner. It seems to like a little finesse and lots of throttle on exit. Once I had that figured out it was a different car. It still needs a stiffer rear sway bar but that is it besides ditching the RFT's. We had a blast. Pic's are coming.

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      09-04-2010, 10:45 AM   #2
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Congrats!
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      09-04-2010, 01:02 PM   #3
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      09-04-2010, 05:33 PM   #4
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Yup, the Z4 is not a finesse car. You need to get on the gas early and manhandle it through the turns. I like the power on the street and the track but a more balanced car will turn faster laps.
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      09-07-2010, 09:33 PM   #5
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Ditto what Memphis said. Where are the pics?
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      09-07-2010, 09:41 PM   #6
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I'm glad you 'learnt' how to drive and adapt to the car. When I first drove my Lotus Elise..no power assisted brakes..heavy rear weight bias..easy to oversteer..NIL electronic safety gadgets...geez...all I can say is that car taught you how to drive. Some cars (like a WRX) can make an average driver look fantastic but some cars (like the little Lotus) can embarrass you!
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      09-07-2010, 10:19 PM   #7
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We spent all weekend driving and learning the car. Now it raining like crazy. Pics by the weekend.

Learning the handling on a new car car is not something new for me. I have a little over 30 years of racing experience both as an amatuer and profesionally. I have also built complete chassis for what used to be the Trans-Am series. With my background I have been very fortunate enough to be tapped to test many different road cars during the development phase of the vehicles. It has given me a respect for cars and how individual each car is. The Z is very different in the handling department and I can see how a jounalist could get the wrong impression from the car. If they had more time with it I have little doubt the negative press would be at a minimum. With just street driving I think the Z would benefit greatly from a stiffer rear sway bar. It just needs a little more to get it to rotate through the turns. I recently drove an e92 M3 and the two cars are night and day different in the handling department. Some I expected some not. Not better or worse just a completely different feel. I will enjoy getting to know the Z and sorting things out to my liking. It won't take much to make this an incredible all around car.
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      09-07-2010, 10:51 PM   #8
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I recently drove an e92 M3 and the two cars are night and day different in the handling department.
I'd be curious to hear you expound on this, if you'd be willing.
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      09-07-2010, 11:31 PM   #9
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It won't take much to make this an incredible all around car.
This is what I have been suspecting.

It is good to hear a positive endorsement from someone as experienced as yourself. Can't wait to get mine now!

I understand what you say about it getting negative reviews from some journalists simply because they hadnt adapted to a style of driving the Z4 needed to get the most out of it. I remember Clarkson driving the Elise 111S on a episode of Top Gear and making a total hash of it. He wasnt happy with the handling at all - he just didnt understand it and got it all wrong. Then the chief chassis engineer at Lotus took the reins and gave Clarkson a ride around the track and showed him how it's done. He was amazed.
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      09-08-2010, 12:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver-Bolt View Post
I was able to push the handling pretty hard on the roads we were on. Lots of tight 20 mph sweeping turns and I can see how/why the mags give it low marks on handling. My normal driving style is to go in deep, late brake, and come out hard. By doing that the car understeers and has a wierd dead spot in the steering. After trying that I slowed my entry and accelerated hard at the apex and she railed around the corner. It seems to like a little finesse and lots of throttle on exit. Once I had that figured out it was a different car. It still needs a stiffer rear sway bar but that is it besides ditching the RFT's.
How was the DCT and how deep you go with the gears in the tight turns?

FYI - I got hooked on TransAM back in the late 60's and early 70's, Just a punk kid in those days, but I was crazy for the Penske-Donahue Javlein/AMXs. I've got a couple of Javelins/AMX now. A high school friend that I mechanic'd for had a Boss 302s that was pretty good on the street. Lucky I'm still alive.
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      09-08-2010, 01:39 AM   #11
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With just street driving I think the Z would benefit greatly from a stiffer rear sway bar. It just needs a little more to get it to rotate through the turns. I will enjoy getting to know the Z and sorting things out to my liking. It won't take much to make this an incredible all around car.
A set of swaybars by H&R is what you want! The front one is 27mm (original 26,5mm) and the rear one is 21mm (original 19mm) and adjustable in 3 positions. So, this comes down to what you say that the rear needs to be a bit stiffer. Everybody who has the set on the car is enthousiastic about it, it seems to feel less heavy on the nose and makes it rotate easier. Now most of them (if not all) have a lowered suspension either by H&R, Schnitzer or Eibach. Some of them have the setup with the M-adaptive shocks and this seems to work well also.

My car has the M-adaptive suspension and next week I'll have a new set of H&R springs to lower the car by 2cm (front and rear). I mainly do this for cosmetic reasons but I suspect that it will also have an positive impact on the handling of the car. Let's see how this comes out and most probably I'll go for the swaybars in the near future.

Gtrzzzz
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      09-08-2010, 07:24 AM   #12
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It still needs a stiffer rear sway bar but that is it besides ditching the RFT's. We had a blast. Pic's are coming.

Melbourne Red, black interior, Premium pack, Premium Sound, Cold weather pack, 326M wheels, Comfort access, and 3M clear bra.
YES, ditch the RFTs soon. We did after 8,000 miles and we should have done it much sooner. If you think you have a great car now, wait until you put real tires on it! Congratulations and enjoy.
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      09-08-2010, 08:27 AM   #13
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Silver-Bolt .... your 12 hours are long up!

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      09-08-2010, 08:31 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver-Bolt View Post
We spent all weekend driving and learning the car. Now it raining like crazy. Pics by the weekend.

Learning the handling on a new car car is not something new for me. I have a little over 30 years of racing experience both as an amatuer and profesionally. I have also built complete chassis for what used to be the Trans-Am series. With my background I have been very fortunate enough to be tapped to test many different road cars during the development phase of the vehicles. It has given me a respect for cars and how individual each car is. The Z is very different in the handling department and I can see how a jounalist could get the wrong impression from the car. If they had more time with it I have little doubt the negative press would be at a minimum. With just street driving I think the Z would benefit greatly from a stiffer rear sway bar. It just needs a little more to get it to rotate through the turns. I recently drove an e92 M3 and the two cars are night and day different in the handling department. Some I expected some not. Not better or worse just a completely different feel. I will enjoy getting to know the Z and sorting things out to my liking. It won't take much to make this an incredible all around car.
Perhaps you can design a Mod-Add-On and go into business

so lets get them pictures up even wet the car looks sexy so get out there and take a picture
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      09-08-2010, 09:22 AM   #15
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The e92 M3 has less understeer but seemed to have more body roll. Part of that could be attributed to how different the two driving positions are.

I have ordered the Continental DWS all-season tires however the 235-35-19 fronts are on a nation wide back order. May be a few weeks for those.

I found the H&R sway bars but I am hoping I can convince the boys at Hotchkis to devolp a set of tubular sway bars. Hollow bars have a couple of big advantages. They are lighter and the react faster than a solid bar. Don't get too caught up on the diameter of aftermarket bars. More important is the material and spring rate compared to stock.

This photo is an old shot of Tommy Kendall from my era of Trans-Am. I built a total of 3 cars. Sold two and drove one until the money tree dried up. lol.

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      09-08-2010, 10:10 PM   #16
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Cool info

Love to see those sway bars developed.

My era predates yours a bit. Here's a couple of old photo images that were swirling around in my head as a kid. The racing I did, however, was all on the street. Of course I was crazy about Can-Am, F1, etc., but this was a little closer to home and something I could own.

.
Attached Images
  
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      09-09-2010, 03:21 AM   #17
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I have ordered the Continental DWS all-season tires however the 235-35-19 fronts are on a nation wide back order. May be a few weeks for those.
I recently changed my rear tires (Conti CSC2) to the all new Conti CSC5 but front tires are still the CSC2's. The CSC5 has a dedicated front tire and a dedicated rear tire.
And what a difference they make. The CSC5's seem have a little less grip than the CSC2's but they are a lot more fun to drive. They allow the back to break out a bit easier but very smooth and controlled. They really make me think of the Michelin PS2's that I had before on this car. It is a real plus for this car.

Quote:
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Don't get too caught up on the diameter of aftermarket bars. More important is the material and spring rate compared to stock.
The diameter is often an indication but as you say the material and the amount of torsion are also important in this matter.

Same goes for a set of springs. For example, lots of people say that the Schnitzer and Eibach springs are the same because the both come from the Eibach factory... of course this is not true.

Didn't know that tubular swaybars existed, but then again I'm a noob in real racing gear.
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      09-09-2010, 08:47 AM   #18
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Here is the Hotchkis front bar for the 335i. Anyone in SoCal willing to volunteer your Z as a prototype? Basically they will use the car to test fit the bars and determine the ideal torsion strength of the bars. 10 years ago I helped develop their suspension for the Ford Lightning. Mine was the first truck to pull over 1g on a skid pad.

http://www.hotchkis.net/cart/view_pr...php?ItemID=395
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      09-09-2010, 08:48 AM   #19
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Teague,
That is truly the golden era of racing.
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      09-09-2010, 09:41 AM   #20
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Don't try to change the subject we need pics,
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      09-09-2010, 11:51 AM   #21
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      09-09-2010, 04:34 PM   #22
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Go find your camera or we get after you with a wet noodle
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