Heck, where was my helmet? I had no intention of running. It would have been a good video. Next time!Brak said:WHAT...no vid?? Com'on...Chase-cam...where's the vid?
Yep. I think it's worth doing to avoid search engines.
I like the way your region strips the last name from the posted results to keep prying warranty companies in confusion. I think I will suggest it for our regional results.
Someone else just autocrossed one also, and I have talked to the people that tested the car for Road & Track, etc. I did autocross the one car at Lake Tahoe, so it's cool I know have some experience with LSS and non-LSS in battle. My car has LSS. Probably one difference was expectation. I knew going in that the street tires on the non-LSS tires would not be that great and the Lake Tahoe surface would be a little slippery. The car did very well in spite of that and because I drove accordingly. With my car and the A-048s at Qualcomm Stadium, I drove it at first expecting Hoosier like grip, which of course was silly. The car was all over the place.LeftyS7 said:Randy, If I'm not mistaken, you are the only person to report having autocrossed an US Elise. Didn't you autocross one at So. Lake Tahoe, as well? That time you had favorable comments about its performance. How were both cars equipped? Did either have LSS?
I have been autocrossing since 1990 in Toyota MR2s. Just about every version of MR2 made. I worked a lot to research and develop the setup on MR2s back in the early to mid 90s. The car was infinitely faster than my capabilities. I became faster and my set up became better, around 1997 I started competing nationally. I achieved my goal of a National Championship in SCCA ProSolo in 2000 and then sold the car. Since then I have played with shifter karts and OPCs (Other Peoples Cars). I have tried to do well in a newer Toyota MR2 Spyder, but it's lack of limited slip was it's achilles heal and I concluded it was not the car for it's class.
I understand that you've had considerable experience autocrossing and I'd appreciate your giving us a summary of your experience (please don't think that I'm being critical of you, quite the opposite, I'm always appreciative of anyone with experience sharing his thoughts on a car or on the autocross experience). I've had ten years experience autocrossing, locally, with a Caterham Super Seven and a 2000 sport package Miata but have plenty of room to improve. But I haven't had any experience autocrossing a rear engined or front wheel drive car.
Kumho and Hoosier tires will fit on the rim and under the car's front. The question is only now about how well they work under loading and wheel well clearance, but there have been some reports from overseas that the Hoosiers worked well. There needs to be a progression of tuning to be done, I would like to look at it more like an engineering exercise. Step one is to put the tires on it I will need to win. That can be Kumho or Hoosier. I will be happy to run A048s locally, but nationally, no way.
Obviously stickier race tires will help the Elise but the So. Lake Tahoe car had street rubber, too. It's clear, from your description, why the front tires are narrower than the rears, to balance out the oversteer. But it seems that even with LSD, which should help the oversteer a tad, the car will need to be balanced out with adjustable shocks or a stiffer front anti-sway bar. Does anyone even make them for the Elise? Are Hoosier, Goodyear or Kumho autocross tires even available to fit the Elise wheels?
I agree that early on, it was totally off their radar. "Some guys in the States playing in parking lots with cones?" I don't think that is true anymore though. I hope I, and others, have convinced them of that. Over 60,000 people actively autocross in the USA. It's a huge sport. We have one of the largest championship events in any motorsport with over 1200 drivers coming to Kansas in September. We have involvement by many car manufacturers and tire companies such as Subaru, Dodge, Toyota, and more. Those companies think it's important enough to get involved. This car is like the ultimate autocross car and I think it's very important for Lotus that it can do well.
As good as the Lotus engineers have been in the past and may be now in setting up suspensions it is clear that they have not had an awareness of or interest in autocross. Their response to the concern about a lack of LSD and the comments that the car handled worse with it support that concern. Given the small autocross customer base it's unlikely that they will seriously address autocross handling issues.
I am very pleased that they did listen and will be offering the LSD, even if they they shake their heads doing it.
So my concerns about making class legal mods to the Elise to make it competitive in a Stock autocross class are amplified.
It certainly is a fun weekend drive car, but having had a Seven I know how impractical, and dangerous, driving a car this small is in normal traffic, it's got to have greater thrill potential for me to justify it (and I sold my Seven to buy one). Again, a reason why I want to know how to maximize the autocross potential of the Elise.
So your further thoughts on the autocross performance and potential is gretaly appreciated. Thanks.