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Discussion Starter #1
Here's another '350Z vs ...' thread moved from my350z. This time the350Z is matched up with an Astra Turbo.

Acceleration Compariosion:
- Test #1: 0-130kph, standing start:
We did this a few times but the Zed will always out launch the Astra ... RWD helps here. The Zed jumps about 1 - 2 car lengths ahead even when the Astra gets a good launch, and then pulls away like a train. The Zed had good 3 car lengths by the end of 1st gear, and pulled even more in 2nd gear. By the time I shut down at around 130kph, I was good 6 - 7 car lengths ahead. Even if I bogged down at the start, it just meant that the Zed needed 1 - 2 secs to catch its breath and start pulling away.

- Test #2: 5-130kph, rolling start, both cars in 1st gear:
Again the Zed starts pulling away as soon as we started. It's pulling away pretty convincingly, but not as quickly as from a standing launch ... it's a lot more gradual. Still, by 130kph I would be good 4 - 5 car-lengths ahead. The Astra has a decent bottom end (which shows by its peak torque of 250Nm at ~2000rpm).

- Test #3: 10-130kph, rolling start, both cars in 2nd gear:
I was expecting to see a bigger difference than in the 1st gear roll, but surprisingly it was not much different to the above scenario. Because there are no gear-changes involved until ~100kph, it demonstrated the power difference pretty well, and the Zed pulls away more and more as the speeds increase. Again, by 130kph the Zed was good 4 - 5 car-lengths ahead.

- Test #4: 0-170kph, standing start:
I was interested to see how the Astra would go a higher speeds, and it did pretty well as I was expecting it to run out of puff there. Anyway, as in the 1st test, I would always out launch the Astra and then just consistently pull away. It was no different to 130kph from the 1st test, but after that I pulled away another 4 car lengths or so before I shut down at ~170kph. That would put me about 11 - 12 car lengths ahead ... hard to guestimate that kind of distance, but it was a fair bit. Still, the Astra was pulling pretty hard even at those speeds .... from what I gather, the Astra would be doing 150 - 155kph at that stage. That is not too far of a WRX.

Astra Turbo Impressions:
- The car feels petty good too even though it is more tuned for comfort and refinement (ie. very quiet, smooth and relatively soft).
- It has a good engine as it pulls from very low revs and at no point does it feel like the turbo needs to spool up. It pulls pretty well from low revs even in higher gears. It might give the odd WRX a run for it's money if it catches one in the wrong gear or at lower revs (and if they stay at road legal speeds).
 

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I think it should give a WRX a great run for its money.

While the current WRX's are rated at 165kW, that is at the flywheel and a 4WD drivetrain is a lot lossier.

Combine that with the extra mass of a WRX over the Astra, and the only real advantage that the WRX has is grip....which is negligible in stock form on a rolling start.
 

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Well, having just traded my modded Astra SRi Turbo for a 35th Anniversay 350Z, I can tell you that I am having trouble liking the Z. Don't get me wrong, the Z should be a good car (purpose built two seater, balanced chasis etc, etc) but my Astra (which belted out 175KW and 295NM) easily beat my mates WRX and other mates Skyline GTS T. I think that after reading the first post in this thread I would like to have been driving my Astra against DavidM. Think it might be a different story.

My New Z is rough and clunky, the transmission noise is bloody awful, shudder and whine.... I want to love this car (because it cost me an arm and a leg) but am finding it a bit disappointing at the moment.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I think that after reading the first post in this thread I would like to have been driving my Astra against DavidM. Think it might be a different story.

I take it you don't have the Astra anymore? Shame, as I'd be more than happy to line it up. Though, I don't think that 175kW/295Nm would be enough ... it would be a lot closer though. Th guy I know with the Astra Turbo now has a Unichip and around 165kW (even though they claim 170kW+) and there's still over 1/2sec in between the 2 cars over 400m.

btw, where are you located?

ps. Gongrats on the Zed ... shame you're not happy with it, but I wasn't happy with mine until I made a few changes (mainly the exhaust). Oh, and how many Ks have you got on it now? Mine felt slower than a Camry before it was run in (ie. 1000km).
 

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Hi Dave

Actually your comments and those from others on this forum are making me feel quite a bit better about my purchase. I hope that I will gradually love this car. I have about 600+Km o the clock.

About the Astra thing... I think my disappointment was that I was used to some pretty reasonable performance and spent quite a bit to upgrade to the Z so was expecting a little more. ANyway, if it improves as it is run in then I can live with a car that gives you a hard-on when it goes down the street and handles better than the Astra. I surpose it is just that it is closer to a race car than a sports hatch.

BTW: When I said "it would be a different story" maybe I can't compare until mine is run in..... hope so.

Oh yeh... I'm in Bundaberg, Qld (Rum Country).
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Actually your comments and those from others on this forum are making me feel quite a bit better about my purchase. I hope that I will gradually love this car. I have about 600+Km o the clock.

I was not kidding that my car felt slower than a Camry before I had my 1st service at 1000km. Even after that the exhaust made a huge difference (at least for me with the original 206kW engine). I would have not bought the car unless I knew what effect the exhaust had. And I would have not belived that unless I felt it myself by being taken for a spin in a similarly equiped car.

About the Astra thing... I think my disappointment was that I was used to some pretty reasonable performance and spent quite a bit to upgrade to the Z so was expecting a little more.

I came from an S2000 and I am certain that the S2000 was quicker ... in particular in the 1st 2 gears. I have not lined up an S2000 when my car was 100% stock so I can't say for sure, but all my other 'tests' point to that.

More importantly, the S2000 'felt' quicker and there's no if/buts about it and that was very obvious to me in all my early test drives. Really surprised me that I would feel like that in a 206kW/363Nm car. The S2000 had 176kW/208Nm and weighted 1259kg. It took the exhaust on the Zed to 'feel' as quick, but be unlimately quicker at all speeds.

Anyway, if it improves as it is run in then I can live with a car that gives you a hard-on when it goes down the street and handles better than the Astra.

I really hope that it will improve for you ... I would hope that the new 221kW models would follow the same run-in path as the original 206kW models. I would hope that the car would feel more like my car feels after the exhaust, but I've never been in the 221kW one so I can't tell.

Also another thing that might be a shock to you is all the noise and harshness in the car. The Astra turbo is incredibly refined, quiet and smoot. The 350Z is total opposite, everything is direct and immediate. The price for that is the harshness and noise. Though, that was never a problem for me as I've had MR2 and S2000 as my previous cars. If anything, for someone like me the Astra is too soft, too quiet and too isolated in order to get the feedback that I require from a car. Still, it did handle suprisingly well so they did do a very good job with it. Once he put on the Unichip it did really well at the 400m track as well as Winton ... I was certainly impressed.

BTW: When I said "it would be a different story" maybe I can't compare until mine is run in..... hope so.

What mods did you have on the car and did you ever take it to a 400m drag-strip? I'd be interested to hear about your mods as I'm sure my fiend would love to hear aout them. As I mentioned before, he has a Unichip (or some kind of a chip) and dynoed the car at similap power to new WRXs (ie. aroud 165kW at the crank).

Though if you did have 175kW, then it would be close to the S2000 considering that it weights 1282kg ... you know, it would probably give a very good run to a stock 206kW Zed if it had that power. Was it a manufacturers claim, or did you have the figures proven (ie. before and after dyno, drag-strip etc)?

Oh yeh... I'm in Bundaberg, Qld (Rum Country).

I see Qeensland. I'm in Melbourne so it's a shame as I'd love to meet up with a new 221kW Zed and see how it compares with what I've got. I know that I'd love the 7,000rpm redline to say the least.
 
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