Born Grippy

the well handling blog

Driving the next generation?

I just read  that future generations will probably  never own a car, or drive one…

just riding it as a mode of transport.

This saddens me, as I want future generations to get the same enjoyment of cars have.  As a dad of a 7 and 6 year old, i’m in a position to do something about it.

But what?

….spoon feed them cars of course!

Anything and everything goes, nothing is wrong (not even my pet hate the SUV).

Every car you can drive, feel free in and get enjoyment from is a car to be cherished, memories to be made and stored for future use.

In an earlier post I already touched upon the subject of how different enjoyment can be had in different cars.

Bad daddy….

On every journey, highlight the car aspect of it, for example:

With the Clio, whenever we encounter a tunnel we  “do a tunnel” this involves lowering windows, shifting down a gear or two and…..well you get the picture.

In the Alfa enjoyment is different, less visceral, it pampers and coddles, keeps you fit for the end of the journey. Point this out ’cause it isn’t something kids would notice.

I anthropomorphize the car, when with the kids, I say hello when starting and thank you after a long drive. (my wife calls the Clio ‘beasty’)

For the kids this enlivens the car, now it’s not just a tool, but a part of life, enjoyed the same as other things that make life worth it living.

A part of the journey and not just a means of getting to your destination.

For now and the future make memories which they will cherish forever, and will bring smiles to their face long after you’re gone.

I take them to car meets occasionally and tell that what makes some cars special, being of that age where they basically are information sponges they lap it up! (and spew it back at me at me in the most unexpected way)

As with any passion, your enthusiasm will shine, infect and plant a seed for future interests and passions.

 

So go forth and disseminate!

 

So, what car do you drive?

What do you say when somebody asks what car you drive?

Do you answer with the cars full name/type/options and mods (e.g. Audi A6 TFSI quattro S-line with 18″wheels)?

Or do you just say: “a blue one” ?

It’s all about image isn’t it?

My circle of friends seems to indicate a three-tiered approach based on knowledge or the impression of the questioner.

  • is he/she a car nut?
  • what kind? (driving or image driven)
  • one of us?

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can machines have a soul?

Do they?…

My greatest automotive passion is classic race cars, any type, any era.

When they raced, they were the ultimate expression of speed, and by still being around they give us a window into a bygone era.

One of the best memories, is from the first running of the le Mans classic (Go if you have never been!……really do!)

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how much is enough?

It used to be that I thought too much was always a good thing…

now?…not so much

As you know i drive a Clio RS, the 182 version, it has some tweaks because I like tweaking.

It puts a smile on my face every time I drive it and that smile last for long time after I turn the ignition off.

It corners like it’s on rails (especially with the tires now on it), runs about 170Whp and sounds awesome (the neighbours tend to disagree)

But like anyone with 5W40 in his veins I want more…

More of what?

Power!……everyones mousetrap, with more power this car would be better, this applies universally to every car right?……..Right?

Grip!…. “I need more grip because (fill in blank)”

I seem to have forgotten a lesson from an automotive legend :

“Simplify, then add lightness”

Colin Chapman

This is couldn’t be further from the “more is better” philosophy

applying both philosophies to my car, what would happen?

With more is better, I’d move the limits of the car to a higher plane, making them harder (and more unsafe) to reach.

Simplifying and adding lightness? not sure on how to simplify my car, but adding lightness would do me a treat.

After driving a friend’s car (same model) which was at least 100Kg lighter I was amazed at how alive it felt, steering response was quicker, braking felt better and acceleration much improved.

So next time you’re thinking about more of anything related to your car…have a good look at that back seat……do you REALLY need that?

to finish off, one more quote from the legend:

 

“Adding power makes you faster on the straights; subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere”

Colin Chapman

Be careful of what you want

Having just returned from holiday I was thinking, what do I want from a car?

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scandinavian flick?

What is with all the people doing a slow Scandinavian flick of sorts when taking a corner at slow to moderate speed?

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About Grip

Grip is not handling people, and too much of it for me takes the enjoyment out of driving the car.
The cars we drive are mostly used on the road where you cannot explore the limits of handling at anything approaching safe speed.

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How do you measure handling ?

So, How do you measure handling ?

If you are a german and very gründlich there are probably hundreds of variables which can be measured, massaged, filtered to give some meaningful figure on a scale.

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Handling?

What is this nebulous thing called handling?

Why do some cars have it and some don’t?

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