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Best Hot Hatch - SVT, Civic Si, GTI, RSX, Mini, Beetle...

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Comments

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,150
    HH - you must be slipping. You didn't jump all over him for stating the RSX outperforms the Mini based on published 0-60 times alone. ;)
    Also, Kevin, as anyone knows, performance is much more than acceleration.

    Aside from that, I have to point out that the RSX is indeed an unknown for reliability. Completely new car. Sure, you could say that its still Honda reliability, but without waiting to see how they hold up over time, its still just an assumption. The same way some folks would assume the Mini will be as good as BMW.

    Safety is also an X-factor until we see reports. The Mini was designed with safety as a chief concern, so it may surprise you.

    Looks, of course, is completely subjective. Personally, I find the RSX to be completely boring and oddly tall.

    I should also point out that, regardless of overall room, I found that I could not fit in the RSX. Not enough headroom. I did, however, fit in the Mini. Go figure.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 350
    HH - you must be slipping.

    Sorry; blame it on too many miles driven this week. I also didn't comment on crumple zones, as he used a "bigger is better" logic which would make a 1957 Caddy the safest vehicle on the planet, fins and all :-)

    In overgeneralized terms, I personally give my trust to German safety engineering over USA & Japanese safety engineering, because the latter two have both been known to give preference to "pass the DOT test" over real world crash data design priorities. This is really more a comment on the respective corporate cultures for what business descisions they choose to make, and not a comment on the respective technical skills of their staff. And it all applies double for SUV's :-)

    -hh
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    Good point of 0-60, but merging on a freeway, this is a very valid point. To me, top speed is a mute point since most passenger cars built today can go over 100 mph. I suspect the RSX has a higher top speed due to its superior HP, but again this is a mute point in my book.

    Handling - I will give to the Mini S. It posts a 0.86 on the skid pad

    The RSX posts an .83, but 0.88 has been reported on the -S by some sources (referenced on this board).

    In terms of build quality, we are talking about Apples and Oranges. While both are new cars, Isn't the RSX being built in the same factory as other Acuras? Aren't many of the parts of the RSX the same as in the Hondas and the Acuras?

    With the Mini, are there any parts that it shares with its BMW cousin? -probably not. Is it designed from the same group that designs BMWs? - No. Is it built in the same factories? - No. Same immediate management looking over the product (not upper level VPs) that look over the BMWs? -No. The answer is yes to these questions for the RSX.

    I do not care how much safety features is put into the Mini, with that short of a distance to the driver, it could be deadly. Physics needs to come into play here in a real-world crash.

    Huntzinger, please do not make generalizations about who does what in terms of safety. Unless you have proof of this generalization on safety of German vs. American vs. Japaneese, I will take it as just an opinion.

    In both NHSTA and I believe the Insurance institute of Highway safety both give Hondas an outstanding grade on virtually all their cars. Is there some other category that states how the structure is better able to take an accident than another besides these two groups, weight, height, and travel distance to the occupant?

    I think I have stated my case. What else?
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 350
    Good point of 0-60, but merging on a freeway, this is a very valid point.

    I disagree: the posted differences were on the order of a half second, which is effectively negligible in the real world. Its generally more important for the driver to know exactly what his car can do than what that actually is.

    Huntzinger, please do not make generalizations about who does what in terms of safety. Unless you have proof of this generalization on safety of German vs. American vs. Japanese, I will take it as just an opinion.

    It is most definitely my personal opinion, based on my personal experiences, readings and observations over the years; please take it with as much salt as you wish to imbibe.

    However, in a similar fashion, while I agree with your simplistic statement of physics in regards to deacceleration stroke distances, I would request that you retract your implicit assumption of equal Engineering Quality being applied within dramatically different vehicles from different corporations and cultural mindsets, and recognize that differences are inevitable, even if you do not agree with who specifically may be first or last.

    I do not care how much safety features is put into the Mini, with that short of a distance to the driver, it could be deadly.

    Could be. But consider that back in 1998, Mercedes announced that the even-shorter-overhang of the A-Class had proven in their safety testing to be the performance equal of the then-current generation E-Class sedan for crash safety. Perhaps this provides some insight into why I've been favorable to German engineering :-)

    We can't violate the laws of physics (yet!), but does this not go to show us that we shouldn't be fooled into just looking at a vehicle's hood length to make assumptions about its safety, and keep an eye at the quality of the Engineering that's underneath said hood?

    In both NHTSA and I believe the Insurance institute of Highway safety both give Hondas an outstanding grade on virtually all their cars.

    Yup, yet these tests can be rigged. This was an item of controversy in the professional journals several years ago. IIRC, the "tested excellent, but flunks on the highway" example was the Miata, due to the low rigidity of its nose, which was what helped it post good numbers on the DOT fixed barrier crash test, but did very poorly in real-world offset impacts. Gosh, that's another little tidbit of insight :-)

    Is there some other category that states how the structure is better able to take an accident than another besides these two groups, weight, height, and travel distance to the occupant?

    Probably. I'd look to see what Mercedes has to say on the subject, as they have been the industry leader in this field for 40+ years. Amongst other things, they invented the offset impact test which IIRC is still not being used by NHTSA.

    -hh
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    "However, in a similar fashion, while I agree with your simplistic statement of physics in regards to deacceleration stroke distances, I would request that you retract your implicit assumption of equal Engineering Quality being applied within dramatically different vehicles from different corporations and cultural mindsets, and recognize that differences are inevitable, even if you do not agree with who specifically may be first or last."

    - Sorry, you missed the point entirely. To explain it in a more simple fashion - the RSX is an evolution from the Integra, but has a different name. The RSX uses some of the same parts found in Hondas and other Acuras. I believe the Mini is a completely new model, using completely new parts, from a completely new division. Is this not the case? If it is not, then I am sadly mistaken and appologise. I do not believe I am though.
    "Probably. I'd look to see what Mercedes has to say on the subject, as they have been the industry leader in this field for 40+ years. Amongst other things, they invented the offset impact test which IIRC is still not being used by NHTSA."

    The IIRC does use this test, and many Japanese cars consistantly do well, specifically Toyotas and Hondas.

    Do you have something from Mercedes stating they have a better method for testing cars than IIRC and NHTSA? If you do, then I will give your opinion on the tests done by these two organizations a great deal more weight. Otherwise, I will stick with what I read and what I have experienced with Japanese cars.

    One last thing - New models from BMW's lineup usually have a reputation of having lesser quality than the later model years. Case-in-point - the X5 - per Consumer Reports, had much worse reliability versus BMW's other vehicles this past year.
  • drivinisfundrivinisfun Posts: 372
    "With the Mini, are there any parts that it shares with its BMW cousin? -probably not. Is it designed from the same group that designs BMWs? - No. Is it built in the same factories? - No. Same immediate management looking over the product (not upper level VPs) that look over the BMWs? -No. The answer is yes to these questions for the RSX."

    The MINI is a 100% BMW product developed and manufactured using the same exact engineering, safety and quality control standards that apply to all other upmarket BMW products. get your facts straight. The Oxford, England plant where the new MINI is produced is one of the most efficient and advanced vehicle factories in Europe. Obviously the only thing the new MINI shares with the old model is the name and the heritage. The rest of the car is pure Bavarian teutonic engineering down to the Nurbruring circuit (One of the most demanding and difficult circuits in the world) where its handling dynamics were fined tuned during development. (Where was the RSX's handling fined tuned....oh yeah in Honda's Tochigi proving grounds, LOL)

    The MINI shares its high performance Multilink rear suspension hardware with the current generation BMW 3 series car. Think about it, the MINI is FWD yet has the rear suspension of a RWD vehicle....excessive right? That's why BMW did it! Show me similar hardware of this calibre in your RSX...where is the NSX/S2000 suspension hardware???? Your car is more closely related to a Honda Civic than a mid luxury sports sedan, while the MINI is a BMW 3 series in disguise...big difference.

    Also the MINI has a Electro-Hydraulic, engine speed sensitive power steering, long wheel base, wide track, short overhang and low center of gravity for excellent handling. Want me to keep going? All right here it goes... Standard on every MINI you also get:

    * 4-wheel ABS
    * Flat Tire Monitor
    * Drive by wire Throttle
    *Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD)
    *All Season Traction Control (ASC)
    *Corner Brake Control (CBC)
    *6 standard airbags with the AHPS II advanced head protection system
    *Exceptional body torsional rigidity. The MINI is 3 times more rigid than any other car (Including your RSX) in its immediate class size and it is 50% stronger than the body of the current BMW 3 series!

    Hmmmmmm, the more we dig into the nuts and bolts of the MINI the more it resembles a BMW than a cheap based econobox car, doesn't it?
    DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) is also available on the MINI as an option. Also you have a choice of a normal aspirated or supercharged engine mated to a 5-speed (ZF), 6-speed (Getrag) or CVT automatic transmission with normal, sport and 6-speed forward gears Steptronic mode.

    See the more we look into the MINI the worse the RSX looks.....welll it looks like a Japanese ripoff of the first kind. A warmed over Civic coupe sold as a "Premium" sports coupe sedan. Look, I had a '95 Integra...nice car but nothing to rave home about...thin paint, sheetmetal, hard seats, questionnable interior plastics, thin sounding stereo and all for $20K! in 1995! How times have changed!

    Oh by the way, aside from the Acura's 4 year/50,000 mile warranty, do you also get paid in full 3 years worth of basic maintenance?? Ding, ding...!!! Guess who gets it..the MINI another perk including in all BMW products sold in the US.

    Rest assured that the only British traits left on the new MINI are the point of assembly (Oxford, England) and the car's 40 year heritage...the rest of the car is pure BMW/Munich headquarters clean sheet design to the last nut and bolt.

    This is not Mr. Bean's British Layland made Austin Mini of yesterday..this is one serious sports car at econobox car prices.

    And let's not even go into the heritage, charisma, and cool factor of the MINI....the RSX loses badly against it there as well!!

    I think your RSX should watch out for the MINI Cooper 'S' and even the Ford Focus SVT which clearly outshines your overpriced Civic based excuse of a sports coupe.
  • voochvooch Posts: 92
    None of these cars are really performance cars. Its almost not even worth arguing about it. I must agree with drivinisfun and also expand on his statement that the RSX(and the rest of the cars) are more closely related to the Civic. All they are are just sporty Civics, Corollas, Golfs etc. Sporty meaning sporty looking, thats about it. Therefore, its all about cool factor and styling - which are both subjective.

    I'm sure they all handle pretty well - they're all tiny and supposedly sports tuned. If you want to crunch numbers you guys should be arguing in a different forum, like a sports car forum eh? None of these cars are sports cars :p

    About the reliability thing - how on earth is the RSX's reliability proven?? There's no such thing as reliability on a first model year car. There has been no other previous model cars to make a judgement call... If you do, its pure speculation. That point is pretty much void in my eyes. Same thing with the MINI.

    I'd choose the Celica purely on styling since the performance of all the cars is relatively the same. Unless the GTI or Tiburon is a V6. The rest are whiney 4's (which isn't a bad thing) with less or equal to 200hp. Heck the 6's are less than 200hp. Out of all of them the Celica is prolly the slowest with least torque too.

    Safety - people who buy these cars are primarily concerned with safety?? I doubt it, but please attempt to prove me wrong. BUT, I can say that the 84 Celica's could survive a whooping. I got into a head on collision (real world, who'd a thought) and I walked away. The car was driven onto the tow truck too. I was impressed. Can't say that safety was on my mind when I bought it though. But that was an '84, not a 2002.
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    I talk about safety with crash protection, and the problem of short fronts and you give me the spec sheet. I say that due to "simple physics" the car is deadly in a crash due to the short length. You tell me that the car is extremely stiff. So let me get this straight, the car has no crumple zones, and the passenger has to rely on air bags to absorb the impact?????? So the passenger takes the brunt of the impact?

    You also contradict yourself about the build of the car.
    "The MINI is a 100% BMW product developed and manufactured using the same exact engineering"

    Then go on to say:
    "The Oxford, England plant where the new MINI is produced "

    So it is developed and manufactured by the same group that designs the other BMWs, yet is built in a plant that does not build the other BMWs, designed by a group that does not design the other BMWs, and you have the nerve to say:

    "The rest of the car is pure Bavarian teutonic engineering down to the Nurbruring circuit"

    Man, talk about your biasness getting the best of you!!!

    Also: "do you also get paid in full 3 years worth of basic maintenance?Ding, ding...!!! Guess who gets it..the MINI another perk including in all BMW products sold in the US.
    "

    Hope you are leasing the car, because once that warrenty expires, this car will definitely be a burden to your wallet every time you need a repair!

    The one advantage of the RSX sharing a platform with the civic is inexpensive maintenance and repair. Thus a low cost of ownership.

    Hey, if you are going to trade in your car after 3 years, more power to you. When I buy my cars, I regularly go over 100,000 miles, and go for as long as I can.

    BTW, if you read C&D, they question the benefit of the Mini S over the Mini, stating that it did not "feel much faster" than the base Mini.

    Also, Edmunds states, in regards to the CVT transmission Mini: "Cons: Hyundai Elantras (even when they have an automatic) will smoke it from a stoplight for two-thirds the price, manual mode shifting action is counter-intuitive"

    Then again, this car was meant for a manual, right drivinisfun?
  • muffin_manmuffin_man Posts: 865
    (disclaimer - I don't own a Honda of any kind)

    >The MINI is a 100% BMW product developed and manufactured using the same exact engineering, safety >and quality control standards that apply to all other upmarket BMW products. get your facts

    Are you talking about the EXACT same engineering, safety and quality controls that applied to a nameless BMW SUV? In addition, your average BMW sees a lot more shop time than a Honda. They are not as reliable.

    >handling dynamics were fined tuned during development. (Where was the RSX's handling fined >tuned....oh yeah in Honda's Tochigi proving grounds, LOL)

    Would that be the same place that the ITR had its handling tuned?

    >The MINI shares its high performance Multilink rear suspension hardware with the current generation >BMW 3 series car. Think about it, the MINI is FWD yet has the rear suspension of a RWD >vehicle....excessive right? That's why BMW did it! Show me similar hardware of this calibre in your >RSX...where is the NSX/S2000 suspension hardware???? Your car is more closely related to a Honda >Civic than a mid luxury sports sedan, while the MINI is a BMW 3 series in disguise...big difference.

    The way you are gushing about this car is making me nauseous. Oh, and your car is more closely related to a Neon than a BMW, because it's got a Chrysler engine under the hood, woohoo!

    >Also the MINI has a Electro-Hydraulic, engine speed sensitive power steering, long wheel base, wide >track, short overhang and low center of gravity for excellent handling. Want me to keep going? All >right here it goes... Standard on every MINI you also get:

    Who says that electro-hydraulic, engine speed sensitive power steering is any better than any other kind of power steering? (nevertheless, the Civic Si has the same thing)

    And the short overhand and low center of gravity just makes the Mini that much more dangerous in real world collisions.

    >*Exceptional body torsional rigidity. The MINI is 3 times more rigid than any other car (Including >your RSX) in its immediate class size and it is 50% stronger than the body of the current BMW 3 >series!

    Do you know why boxing has weight divisions?

    >Hmmmmmm, the more we dig into the nuts and bolts of the MINI the more it resembles a BMW than a >cheap based econobox car, doesn't it?

    The RSX _is_ a dressed up Civic, but it still outperforms the BMW. It will also probably last longer, and is almost certainly significantly safer.

    >See the more we look into the MINI the worse the RSX looks.....welll it looks like a Japanese ripoff >of the first kind. A warmed over Civic coupe sold as a "Premium" sports coupe sedan. Look, I had a >'95 Integra...nice car but nothing to rave home about...thin paint, sheetmetal, hard seats, >questionnable interior plastics, thin sounding stereo and all for $20K! in 1995! How times have >changed!

    7 years is a lifetime in the auto industry.

    >I think your RSX should watch out for the MINI Cooper 'S' and even the Ford Focus SVT which clearly >outshines your overpriced Civic based excuse of a sports coupe.

    You are right, the base RSX is not as good as those cars, but the type-S is better.
  • ...is available here.


    Notice how well the passenger compartment stays intact.

  • muffin_manmuffin_man Posts: 865
    Did they hit it with an Excursion?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,150
    just a few things:

    I like 0-60 just as much as the next guy. We actually talked about it quite a bit on this board already. I even used that onramp argument myself. But, HH is right, we're not talking about a huge difference here. Also, if that onramp has a curve in it, you're going to want handling to keep that speed up.

    The RSX has a whole new powertrain. The most important and expensive part of the car. So reliability is still an X-factor no matter how you slice it.

    Safety is a far more complex subject than us as non-safety-engineers can discuss here. But, just to throw an analogy to your "bigger is better" theory: In an accident, would you rather be in a 20 cubic-foot cardboard box or a 5 cubic-foot specially designed reinforced steel box? In other words, size is not everything.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    The RSX does have a new power train. Most of the components of the RSX are either borrowed or modified and tweaked components. The engine of course is totaly brand new. The Mini is brand new from the ground up. In terms of reliability, you can say both are brand new, but I would still say the RSX should be very reliable due to using a great deal of shared components.

    The you might feel the difference between 7.0 (Mini S) and 6.3 (Acura RSX Type S) - both times taken by Car and Driver. I would agree it would be very slight to discern between the two. Also, the RSX is no slouch in the handling department either.

    If I was to take your analogy about the cardboard box vs. the steel box, if I am being hit by something at 60 miles an hour, I am going to get no padding in the steel box. As a result, I will feel the full brunt of the force even if the box is still intact. At least with the cardboard box, it will take some of the impact.

    This my friend is called crumple zones. This is why they went to crumple zones and unibody construction in the 80s. Cars in the 70s (minus MB if they did incorporated Crumple zones then), were dammaged much less in accidents, but their passengers were dammaged much more. As a result, the energy and force from an impact was absorbed significantly by the car's occupants instead of being absorbed by the car. Did I just nulify your analogy, qbrozen, of the cardboard box vs. the reinforced steel box?
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    Vooch, you are right that none of the cars are sports cars, but for the budget minded, they are about as close as you are going to get this side of a 350Z. The only two cars that might qualify would be the Mustang and the WRX (since the Trans Am and the Camaro are no longer made), but these are much different cars.

    Hey, if we all had unlimited funds, we can talk about another couple of econoboxes like a Mclarin F1 vs. the new Ferarri F60.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,150
    no, you didn't nulify it. First of all, steel still crumples. Its not indestructible, just sturdier. Second, the cardboard would not absorb enough of the impact to keep you from being splattered all over whatever it was that hit you. That's my point. Its all about design, not size. Smaller can be better if its designed better. Its pretty simple, really.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • muffin_manmuffin_man Posts: 865
    I really hope that the Mini is as sturdy and crashworthy as you think. But it's very light, and crumple zones save lives. In accidents with bigger cars it is almost always going to lose.

    And to take this to the absurd extreme, in a high speed, head on collision between an RSX and a Mini, I would rather be driving the RSX.
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    Take a shock sensor (sorry, the name for the device escapes me now). Put the sensor at the end of the 20 foot cardboard box and another at the end of the 5ft. steel box. Ram each box the same. See which sensor records more shock. I will bet you the one at the end of the steel box will record more shock. That is my point. A reinforced steel box does not have crumple zones, and may only absorb the shock slightly. If it did have crumple zones, this will help absorb some of the shock, but not a great deal of it. There is a chance that the object might not even hit the sensor at the end of the 20 feet of cardboard due to the length and the resistance of the cardboard. As a result, the sensor may feel much less shock.

    In terms of smaller and better, you are right. I might take a mini over a VW bus from the 60s, where your knees were right up against the front.
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 350
    Sorry, you missed the point entirely. To explain it in a more simple fashion...

    Sorry, nothing needs to be more simple: your disagreement with with my statement that I personally consider German safety engineering to be superior to Japanese safety engineering.

    Do you have something from Mercedes stating they have a better method for testing cars than IIRC and NHTSA?

    Try reading your Engineering history books on the subject: you'll find that MB invented the field and remains its leader. FWIW, how many more years will pass until IIRC and NHTSA *begin* to consider using the pedestrian impact safety tests that are already in use in Europe?

    -hh
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 350
    I say that due to "simple physics" the car is deadly in a crash due to the short length.


    Yet the A-Class does better in the Euro NCAP front impact testing than does the comparatively "very long hooded" Saab 9-3: 69% vs 50% (BTW, the Saab 900 was even worse).


    Here's the reference URL's, as well as the URL's for a some Honda's & Toyota's (all larger than the A) that are all incapable of using the physics advantage that they should have, to actually provide better overall safety:


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/mercaclass/


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/civic/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/accord/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/beetle/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/golf/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/saab93/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/saab900/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/corolla/index.html


    http://www.theaa.com/allaboutcars/safety/camry/index.html


    Yes, that last one's actually a Toyota Camry.



    Insofar as safety engineering history, various manufacturers make various claims, but Béla Barényi (of Mercedes) patented the occupant safety cell in 1951. The crumple zone premiered in 1953 with the Mercedes-Benz 180, and the world's first production vehicle with rigid passenger cage and integrated crumple zone are the 1959 Mercedes 220's. By 1970, less than 10% of the world's new cars had rigid safety cages integrated with crumple zones.

    (source: http://www.whnet.com/4x4/crashes.html)

    -hh

This discussion has been closed.