[rescue] What a load of...

Steven Ball hamster at snurkle.net
Fri Sep 28 13:21:10 CDT 2007

On Sep 28, 2007, at 7:13 AM, Sandwich Maker wrote:

> " From: "Sheldon T. Hall" <shel at artell.net>
> "
> " Sandwich Maker writes ...
> " On the "more powerful" front, though, I'm not so sure.
> they are, on average, and that's what i don't see the need for.  the
> saab and volvo both had about 80 hp - and were above middle range for
> cars of their size - whereas a toyota echo weighing 2000 lbs and an
> xb weighing 2400 have 108 and are considered underpowered.  and the
> comparison is even more unequal than the numbers suggest...
> " Remember, in 1963,
> " anyone could buy what was essentially a NASCAR racer right off  
> the showroom
> " floor.  The famous "Fastback" Ford, complete with 427 CID engine,  
> enormous
> " 4-barrel carb, and somewhere around 400 horsepower.  For  
> something so large
> " the acceleration was astounding, and kept being so until well  
> over 100 MPH.
> remember that 400 hp wasn't measured the same way engines are today.
> starting about '72, manufacturers have been required to test the
> engine 'fully dressed' as installed in the car.  before then, it was
> common to remove aircleaners, exhaust systems, and even fanbelts, and
> tweak settings to get the most favorable dyno test readings for
> advertising purposes.  if you read the literature in the early '70s
> you'll see advertised hp decline massively - but engines didn't
> actually become less powerful; reporting methods just became more
> accurate.  still, detroit did make some -really-powerful- cars back
> then.
> they didn't make many of those fastbacks, just enough to legalize them
> as a 'production' car for nascar.  curious there's no song about them.
> the beach boys immortalized both the chevy 409 and the superstock
> dodge...

I have a '73 Mustang Mach 1 fastback, with a 351 cubic inch (5.8  
liter) 'Cleveland' canted valve V8.  It runs pretty well, and I get  
about 16-18 miles to the gallon.  It probably puts out something like  
160-180 HP.  That's all well and good, but then consider, say, a new  
Subaru 2.5 liter opposed 4 with a turbo on it.  Gets about 25-28 in a  
similarly heavy car, but it makes 230 HP in stock trim.  I'm choosing  
to ignore the torque differences here, but regardless... ;)

What I'm getting at is that stock engines these days are about as  
powerful, just... way smaller and more efficient.  Of course, you can  
always transplant new tech onto the older... I have a buddy with a  
big turbo on his Mustang and a host of other additions and is  
clearing 600HP pretty easy.  Besides, that Subie engine is good for  
hundreds of thousands of miles as it came from the factory.  My  
Mustang?  I've already had the heads off due to the valve guides  
starting to leak.  It barely has 100k miles on it.  And don't get me  
started on all the other things I  have worked on or replaced over  
the years...

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