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Old 12-18-2011, 04:47 PM   #1
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3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

There isn't really a thread for weight/weight reduction, but I figure chassis is the closest thing to throw it under, anyways, just wondering if anyone knows why the 4th gens weigh more than the 3rd gens, seeing as to how half their body is SMC or whatever plastic like stuff it is.
Just seems like the 4th gens should be lighter, not heavier, Kind of struggling to figure out where they put all those extra lbs.
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Old 12-18-2011, 06:14 PM   #2
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Just guessing, frame reinforcement, door reinforcement, heavier transmission, bigger wheels, bigger brakes.
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Old 12-18-2011, 08:03 PM   #3
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

I've been contemplating that it might be frame reinforcement, it sure feels a good deal more rigid than my floppy 3rd gen, the doors are that SMC crap too though, they are quite light actually, especially compared to a 3rd gen door. I mean, my 96 5 spd hard top, with like no options weighs 3358, I can't remember, but my 85 weighed 3300(wanting to say 3307) something I think, and that one had an auto, and t-tops.
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Old 12-19-2011, 07:16 AM   #4
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Others things too like double a-arm front suspension add weight.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:19 AM   #5
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Keep in mind newer car's have much higher crash safety standards, which adds more structure in the cockpit. My wife's little 06 Jeep Liberty weighs 4222 lbs. empty. Her last one (same year) took a head on with a 19 year old in a c-6? Pontiac, although it was totaled the cockpit survived very well.
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Old 12-23-2011, 11:25 AM   #6
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

That is what we need stronger and stronger cars that smash people in old cars. The government has to keep the weight up to keep the gas mileage from improving too much, taking away gasoline tax money.
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Old 12-24-2011, 06:40 PM   #7
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Let's not forget all of the additional doohickeys on the 96 such as the dual air bags, dual coolant fans (if they're on the V6), and all of the additional wiring for these things, along with the increased mass of the dash (it's a bit deeper, from what I've seen, and plastic adds up) that your 85 didn't have.
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Old 12-24-2011, 08:12 PM   #8
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

'92 z28 5speed fully loaded pleather weighed in at 3690 w/me in the car
'88 Iroc 5speed fully loaded was 3614 w/me
'92 TA a4 vert loaded pleather w/me was 3830
'95 formula 6speed loaded w/me was 3540
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Old 01-27-2012, 01:18 PM   #9
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

I'm starting to doubt the ls1 4thgen really does weigh that much more. (maybe the lt1 with iron block)
If it does weigh more it does it in easier places to unbolt where as our cars will have heavy body panels we can't easily replace.

I only say this because I have a couple 4thgen friends. One weighs 2900lbs and while gutted in places like the hood, bumpers, wheels, etc so to speak still has complete interior minus rear seat backs so he could make it lighter.
Other friends is even lighter.
I would love to be able to get my 3rdgen anywhere close to that. I was 3480 last time on the scale. Granted nothing about my car is close to stock, but I still won't be able to drop another 500lbs like they did and look even close to stock.
BTW at 2900 lbs with stock heads and cam ls1 he went 11.05@119. So at some point weight is worth more then the 100lbs a tenth people say. His car dyno'd 324rwhp and the other guy dyno'd 363 and went 10's.

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Old 01-28-2012, 02:11 AM   #10
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

4th gens typically weigh more but will depend on the options and models.

My 89 Irocz weighed 3400 lbs stock with factory 16x8 irocz rims. Leather interior/full power everything. Suspension bolt ons, stealth ram intake instead of tpi, no ac, no spare tire, 1/2 tank gas. WITHOUT ME IN IT.

My 89 irocz but with 383 with aluminum heads/waterpump, ministarter, NO INTERIOR at all except for 2 corbeau forza seats with power everything still, power seat, windows etc, and 8 pt roll bar was 3300 lbs. These are truck stop scales so not sure how accurate and what the nearest lb measurement is taken.

My 99 LS1 auto TA in street trim with heavy 17" zr1 wheels and 1/8 tank gas weighs 3506 lbs without me in it. This was at the race track and it measured down to the nearest lb.

So it seems, 100-200 lbs difference is possible but REALLY depends on what you have in the car
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Old 01-30-2012, 12:05 AM   #11
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

my car weighs 3460 pounds without me and a half tank of gas... it consist of full interior, sound system, two sets of frame connectors, wonderbar and tubular suspension, iron heads and block.... but ive also deleted a ton of things out of my engine bay... so even tho i deleted alot of stuff, ive put back on the wieght with suspension mods and my sound system.. my gta is a heavy pig but it hauls *** like nobodies business tho...
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Old 01-30-2012, 12:14 AM   #12
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

heres a graph of the camaro weight through the generations
Click the image to open in full size.

And heres the link http://jalopnik.com/5140813/model-bl...37-model-years
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Old 01-30-2012, 08:53 AM   #13
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

See it depends on your options. My car stock was 3400 and that chart says 3250. That chart is abit low or assuming base models
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Old 01-30-2012, 11:08 AM   #14
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

the chart shows weights for V8 cars, as stated in the Standard Catalog Of American Cars
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Old 01-30-2012, 12:34 PM   #15
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Yeah you can get a stripped out low option z28 4th gen and it will run circles around the same motor in a fully options WS6 package firebird that weights 200 lbs more. Weight greatly varies between models
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Old 01-30-2012, 02:28 PM   #16
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Chart is way off... I think they are right in general about the lightest generations but no where close on some of those.
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Old 01-31-2012, 09:54 AM   #17
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

I get the feeling that chart is accurate. There were SO MANY OPTIONS on msot 3rd gens that they could have or not have that would dramatically change the weight. A v8 t5 hardtop car with no AC vs an automatic fully optioned 92 Z28 with power everything... it makes a difference.

I also think it's interesting to notice that everyone has mentione dtheir 94-96 fourth gens are as light as some thirdgens... the chart seems to corroborate that the earlier fourth gens were lighter. The LS1 chopped off a bunch of weight but clearly it was offset by them tweaking the rest of the car.

Also my car weighed 3350 when it was near stock. Right on with the chart. It was a 305 Automatic car. Mw66nova's sport coupe weighed in at 2900 at one point. It's a 1990. I've seen more than one 1990 car come in way lighter than you'd expect a thirdgen to be able to go.

Now here is the question... is that because they simplified things down in 1990? And then 91 and 92 they spent their time beefing up parts and reinforcing the frame and adding more sound deadening and so forth? Or do you think 1990 is thrown off because they stopped making IROCs, and the only v8 cars that went out for the rest of the 1990 model year were base models? Hmm? Just a thought... might shed some light on how they arrived at those numbers, but Im not sure if they even continued 1990 production after Dec 31, 1989. Maybe they just went straight to 1991.
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Old 01-31-2012, 10:41 AM   #18
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

what year did they start getting air bags? late 90? 91?
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:34 AM   #19
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

firebird started in 1990... not sure about camaros..
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Old 02-08-2012, 12:53 PM   #20
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

My 86 weighs around 3350 with TONS of weight reduction. Some stuff has been added but for the most part removed. So, it is safe to say that the chart is underestimating, atleast for my year.. But the options really differ greatly on our cars.. Mine's a t-top, 700R4 auto with two sets of subframe connectors, strut tower brace, and all power options (except seats).. 3350 is pretty light compared to most but this is with massive weight reduction and expensive LIGHTWEIGHT parts.
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:46 PM   #21
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

My 98 z28 weighs 3550 with driver according to my local scrap yard scale. Only thing missing is the spare tire and the jack (wasnt in there when I got the car) and the air bags.

It went 7.99 @ 89mph in the 8th last summer with stall, bolt ons and good tires.
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:13 PM   #22
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by giovanhalen View Post
That is what we need stronger and stronger cars that smash people in old cars. The government has to keep the weight up to keep the gas mileage from improving too much, taking away gasoline tax money.
Wrong. Ever looked at the CAFE standards lately??? You'd be shocked if you saw that GM was mandated to have a CAFE of 32.5mpg this year but do it with the crash requirements of tomorrow as well.

Do a little research and you'll clearly see that engines have greatly improved in efficiency over the last 25+yrs to the point that no engine (except for maybe the big bore factory big blocks) should be incapable of getting 30mpg. However; the crash standards have become insane in that same time frame to the point that the new 5th gen weighs as far more than the original Camaro which was all steel & iron. In order to make the cars safer, they add more structure which adds more weight. In order to meet CAFE, them make the engines as efficient as possible. The problem is that the crash standards, not CAFE, will be the death nell of the V8. Full size cars will become so heavy that even the best LS V8 won't have fuel economy worth a crap when moving a 5000lb+ 5 star all aspect rated car.

Its a trade off that the V8 is loosing. The engines are as efficient as ever, but the cars they power are heavier than ever.
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:02 AM   #23
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by 89_RS View Post
Wrong. Ever looked at the CAFE standards lately??? You'd be shocked if you saw that GM was mandated to have a CAFE of 32.5mpg this year but do it with the crash requirements of tomorrow as well.

Its a trade off that the V8 is loosing. The engines are as efficient as ever, but the cars they power are heavier than ever.
This is what I've been saying for some time now (and yes, I know it's a bit off topic). Not only are the engines more efficient and the frames heavier, but if you look at each and every car on the road, the bodies themselves are more aerodynamically INefficient. It's like every car manufacturer decided in unison, in the late 90s and early 00s, to make the bodies less aerodynamic. It seems ridiculous that a 4-banger now, being more efficient and powerful, coupled with a more efficient transmission, gets just the same mileage as, if not slightly worse than, the cars built 15-20 years ago (as an example). They wouldn't need the hybrid garbage to add 20K to the price of the car if they would find a way to take some of the bloat out of the bodies, just to get the same (or only mildly better) fuel efficiency that they got 15-20 years ago.

And, I agree that the V8 will die under the standards for crash resilience and fuel economy.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:12 AM   #24
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

The Geo metro got insane MPG didn't it? That little thing was a crap car tho except for the efficiency. At the end of the day, because of the government regulating these things the car companies will keep getting worse and worse in regards to weight and crash standards. Engines get more efficient not to save us gas really, it's just to meet some number that some agency decides is adequate. I'm sure, with so many 'green people' out there now-a-days, if they made a car that was small, cheap, efficient, maybe fully electric (one that can travel more than merely 50 miles or wtv the volt can do) then I'm sure that million would jump on that car right away. Most people just need a point-a to point-b car, not a pickups or muscle/sports car IMO.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:23 AM   #25
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

I wasn't exactly referring to the Metro... I was referring to the 93 Cavalier we used to have that we swore got close to 40 MPG after the engine work was done (needed cylinder head work because my father couldn't afford to have the head gasket done). That's almost Prius level, right? And that was in a sedan that had a decent amount of stuff in it and a rather heavy driver. Not to mention that particular car was only about $13K, as opposed to the 40K or whatever it is for the friggin Prius.

Problem nowadays is that people are having bigger families again, because it's the "in" thing to do, so a small junk box of a car isn't going to do the job. Which is why people gravitate to the vans, crossovers, and the SUVs. Which is also why the Mini Cooper, that dumb Smart Fortwo, and the others like them (the Aveo, for instance) aren't selling very well. Not to mention that we as a country are getting fatter (just look at the studies) and most people can't fit in a dinky car... (Sorry, had to point it out)

:edit: And I forgot to mention that I saw an article somewhere not too long ago that said GM was possibly thinking of putting a TURBO V6 in the next gen base model Corvette, just to try to keep up with the CAFE junk .

And I also believe the Volt can get 100 miles per charge before the engine has to charge the battery. Which is a lot better than the EV1 of the early 90s, which I believe got around 20-30...
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:31 AM   #26
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

If the regulators had any clue they would better regulate the bumper heights (metal reinforcement) to a maximum bottom height and a minimum top height (if that makes sense). This way the bumpers will have a chance to to their jobs in a collision, even if that collision is between a corvette and a pick-up. The side crash beams could also be properly adjusted for the bumper range.

They should also not be forcing things like stability control to improve safety, although it is always better than none the real problem is the poorly designed giant monsters, not so much the cars. Keeping in mind even the cars have the extra weight trying to compensate for the bumper issue above and more and more need help staying on the road.

Simple things like this will mean less material and more safety, which means less weight and better fuel economy. Too bad the approach seems to be the opposite...
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:38 AM   #27
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Yes, but then the guys with their pickups wouldn't be able to haul 5000 pounds of crap in the beds of their pickups with their 30 inch tires on 20 inch rims...

I agree the stability control and most of the rest of the electronic garbage can pretty much get gone. That's another thing. People can't drive nowadays. Heck, may father almost got T-boned by a blasted SCHOOL BUS (no, he didn't get the bus number or where it was from, he was too busy trying NOT to kill a bunch of kids)! I can't tell you how many people I see blowing red lights and stop signs around here. Not to mention the jerk-offs that go down the road at 70 in their 4WD trucks in the middle of a damn blizzard, or passing on a double-solid line, etc... Government regulates because a majority of people are ignorant and stupid.

Let's just ...
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Old 02-21-2012, 02:15 PM   #28
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

Government regulating and handholding has reduced dependency on people's own judgment and induced dependency on trusting the government's judgment in lieu of our own. The result is we now have a bunch of idiots who cant take care of themselves and make their own decisions anymore without relying on the government for answers and solutions.
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Old 02-21-2012, 02:46 PM   #29
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

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Originally Posted by InfernalVortex View Post
Government regulating and handholding has reduced dependency on people's own judgment and induced dependency on trusting the government's judgment in lieu of our own. The result is we now have a bunch of idiots who cant take care of themselves and make their own decisions anymore without relying on the government for answers and solutions.
Exactly! The more your mommy takes care of you, the less you are able to take care of yourself! Ok ok, now lol
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:02 PM   #30
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

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the bodies themselves are more aerodynamically INefficient
Last bit of off topic for the thread. Its a bit of a give & take there. Modern cars can push through the air easier than they did 25+yrs ago, but they also drag more air behind them as well. The thirdgens probably aren't stellar in the ballistic coefficient department (how well they push through air), but they were the second best cars ever in the drag coefficient world (how much air they drug with them) with a .34 DC. The only car to ever top that was a the Ferrari (IIRC) F430 in the early 2000's with a .35 DC.

If one takes into consideration that air isn't compressable and moves around most objects the same at speeds below Mach .3 (about 225mph give or take), then the fact that the thirdgens weren't towing a thunderstorm behind them is why I can get 27-30mpg in my bone stock 305.
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Old 02-22-2012, 02:49 PM   #31
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Last bit of off topic for the thread. Its a bit of a give & take there. Modern cars can push through the air easier than they did 25+yrs ago, but they also drag more air behind them as well. The thirdgens probably aren't stellar in the ballistic coefficient department (how well they push through air), but they were the second best cars ever in the drag coefficient world (how much air they drug with them) with a .34 DC. The only car to ever top that was a the Ferrari (IIRC) F430 in the early 2000's with a .35 DC.

If one takes into consideration that air isn't compressable and moves around most objects the same at speeds below Mach .3 (about 225mph give or take), then the fact that the thirdgens weren't towing a thunderstorm behind them is why I can get 27-30mpg in my bone stock 305.
Can you elaborate on the difference between ballistic and drag coefficients? Ive never heard anyone building racecars yammering on about ballistics, always about drag.

And i thought a numerically lower CD was better than a numerically higher one?
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Old 02-22-2012, 02:54 PM   #32
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

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Last bit of off topic for the thread. Its a bit of a give & take there. Modern cars can push through the air easier than they did 25+yrs ago, but they also drag more air behind them as well. The thirdgens probably aren't stellar in the ballistic coefficient department (how well they push through air), but they were the second best cars ever in the drag coefficient world (how much air they drug with them) with a .34 DC. The only car to ever top that was a the Ferrari (IIRC) F430 in the early 2000's with a .35 DC.

If one takes into consideration that air isn't compressable and moves around most objects the same at speeds below Mach .3 (about 225mph give or take), then the fact that the thirdgens weren't towing a thunderstorm behind them is why I can get 27-30mpg in my bone stock 305.
I fail to see how a vehicle produced nowadays with a nearly flat front end pushes itself through the air easier than one did during the 90's with a curved front end. I do see, however, how today's cars with their big, high, flat rear ends can produce more wind turbulence behind them have more rear end drag than those of 20 years ago.

And you forgot the TA or GTA (whichever it was) with the .29 CD... http://www.thirdgen.org/1984-pontiac-firebird

Last edited by Maverick H1L; 02-22-2012 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 02-23-2012, 05:23 PM   #33
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Re: 3rd gen vs. 4th gen weight

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Can you elaborate on the difference between ballistic and drag coefficients? Ive never heard anyone building racecars yammering on about ballistics, always about drag.
I'm into handloading, so I may have used two different terms interchangeably. Ballistic coefficients measure how well a bullet pushes through the air. BC's are computed from a combination of mass, diameter, and Drag Coefficient. A higher BC means the bullet will travel on a flatter path than a same size bullet with a lower BC (less energy loss due to friction).

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And i thought a numerically lower CD was better than a numerically higher one?
You are correct. The F430 was .33 which was marginally better than the .34 of the Camaro. In long range shooting, the higher your BC is, the better aero it has. I just added .01 to the Camaro DC the wrong way. Point was that it took Ferrari nearly 15 yrs to come up with a car that had better aero than a thridgen Camaro.

Maverick, I was unaware of the 84 Firebird having such good aero. Thanks for pointing it out.
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Old 02-23-2012, 05:23 PM
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