Am I insane for wanting a muscle car as my 2nd car?

Am I insane for wanting a muscle car as my 2nd car?


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Nugget

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The 1970 Plymouth Roadrunner to be precise
What a coincidence -- Equiraptor and I saw one of those this afternoon. Naturally, we stopped to gawk and chat with the owner. There's nothing quite like a Superbird.


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Is this an insane plan? Should I really take a baby step with a car such as a STI inbetween the two? Or should I go for it?
An STI isn't going to teach you car control, the thing is practically idiot proof below 95% of the limit, and it takes a lot of crazy to get it to 95%.

The important thing to note here is that I have no commute. I work from home and my only car will be my weekend car. Barely any mileage put on it -- just going to the grocery store and pleasure drives. I won't be forced to drive around the city in it if I don't want to. Hell I can just stick to side roads and such until I'm used to all that power if need be -- it's not like I have anywhere I need to go.

So am I nuts?
If you're disciplined enough to treat it as a leisurely Sunday drive, you should be fine.
Personally, I know I wouldn't be, I would be very, very tempted to open 'er up.
And if you do that without having any RWD experience, and not having daily driver experience in it, and it being a vehicle that has reputation of being extremely difficult to drive at the limit, then you'd be lucky not to wreck it.
You know yourself though, so you're probably the best judge on how disciplined you'll be.
I do think it makes sense to not use it as a daily driver.
In the first years after getting a drivers license, you need focus on traffic awareness, and you shouldn't be distracted by dealing with a vehicle that is difficult to drive.
 

_HighVoltage_

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I would say don't get a Viper just yet. You may be a very careful and safe driver, but just once in a while everyone has an urge to do something stupid and take a corner slightly faster than supposed to. In a normal car, that wouldn't result in much...in a Viper it may kill you.

But if you plan to own a Viper at some point, then stay away from that Corsica. FWD will not teach you car control. You will learn how to drive safely around other drivers and will learn how to predict certain situations, but not real car control. FWD can be very deceptive. I've been driving for five years, only FWD cars and I'm still a shit driver.

Whenever I try to do some spirited driving I always get over my head. It is always in the middle of the corner that you realize you are carrying too much speed. Everything is fine and dandy before that. All of a sudden you start to feel that heavy engine up front pulling you tangentially and the front wheels losing grip. At that point there is nothing you can do, except brake. FWD is a bitch.

So get something RWD with around 200hp till you learn how to control it, and then buy the Viper.
 

Viper007Bond

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You know yourself though, so you're probably the best judge on how disciplined you'll be.
I'm not a risk taker in general. I'm not the kind of person to whomp on it.

In the first years after getting a drivers license, you need focus on traffic awareness, and you shouldn't be distracted by dealing with a vehicle that is difficult to drive.
Yeah, this is a bit off. The Corsica will be my car for at least the first year as I become a better driver.
 

Viper007Bond

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Viper, are you going to hold on to the Corisca?

Even if you don't drive it, it'll lower your insurance if you just hold on to it and drive it sparingly.
Paying insurance, DMV registration, etc. for two cars can't possibly be cheaper than one car, can it?
 

Matt2000

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What a coincidence -- Equiraptor and I saw one of those this afternoon. Naturally, we stopped to gawk and chat with the owner. There's nothing quite like a Superbird.


(click for full size)
I'd better not look at the full sized images, it could lead to an uncomfortable day at work.
 

Redliner

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I would say don't get a Viper just yet. You may be a very careful and safe driver, but just once in a while everyone has an urge to do something stupid and take a corner slightly faster than supposed to. In a normal car, that wouldn't result in much...in a Viper it may kill you.

But if you plan to own a Viper at some point, then stay away from that Corsica. FWD will not teach you car control. You will learn how to drive safely around other drivers and will learn how to predict certain situations, but not real car control. FWD can be very deceptive. I've been driving for five years, only FWD cars and I'm still a shit driver.

Whenever I try to do some spirited driving I always get over my head. It is always in the middle of the corner that you realize you are carrying too much speed. Everything is fine and dandy before that. All of a sudden you start to feel that heavy engine up front pulling you tangentially and the front wheels losing grip. At that point there is nothing you can do, except brake. FWD is a bitch.

So get something RWD with around 200hp till you learn how to control it, and then buy the Viper.
Erm...
Braking could potentially make things even worse.
 
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MWF

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Having initially said "Go for it" I do think people have a point. If you can afford a Viper assuming your life doesn't change radically in the next few years you can still get one.

Take it in stages, and maybe make your second car a Miata (very forgiving handling) then move up to an S2000 (a bit more lairy I've heard, particularly in the wet) and then get the Viper.

Although Miata007Bond doesn't quite have the same cache! ;)
 
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Paying insurance, DMV registration, etc. for two cars can't possibly be cheaper than one car, can it?
Don't know about Oregon, but in Iowa it's not that much more, especially if you have older vehicles the registration can be very low.
If you use liability coverage with a high deductible, insurance can be low too, especially since some insurance companies give a multiple vehicle discount.
At one point I used to have four vehicles, and I think the difference at the time between 4 and 1 vehicle was less than 300 dollars a year (for registration and insurance combined).
 
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equiraptor

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Erm...
Braking could potentially make things even worse.
In a FWD, understeery vehicle, the only "worse" braking is likely to cause is more understeer. If you're already unable to avoid crossing the double yellow or going off the road, braking will at least help scrub off some speed, reducing forces if you do hit something.

This is why experience with car control is a good thing and needed before driving a car like a Viper. In the Camry I used to drive, if the car was understeering through a corner due to slightly hot entry, slight brake application would correct the excessive speed and get the car back in line. If it was understeering through a corner due to extremely hot entry, brake application (slight, extreme, whatever) would just help scrub some additional speed, and I'd enter the ditch with a bit less speed. In the Miata, on the other hand, brake application mid corner will cause reduced grip at the back, but this change is a smooth, gradual change if the inputs are smooth and gradual. It's possible to brake mid-corner in the Miata and handle the results if you know what you are doing. However, few people, even among those who track and autocross, can pull this off successfully regularly. In a Viper, braking (or even lifting off the throttle) mid-corner is even more challenging to control and restrain than it is in the Miata.

Please note, both the MINIs and the Mazda 3s I've driven, though FWD, would not qualify as "FWD, understeery" vehicles for this discussion. Both rotated well under throttle lift, and the MINI, especially, was very much like the Miata in its behavior. It was flat out easy to spin the MINI with a lift mid-corner.
 

Redliner

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In a FWD, understeery vehicle, the only "worse" braking is likely to cause is more understeer. If you're already unable to avoid crossing the double yellow or going off the road, braking will at least help scrub off some speed, reducing forces if you do hit something.

This is why experience with car control is a good thing and needed before driving a car like a Viper. In the Camry I used to drive, if the car was understeering through a corner due to slightly hot entry, slight brake application would correct the excessive speed and get the car back in line. If it was understeering through a corner due to extremely hot entry, brake application (slight, extreme, whatever) would just help scrub some additional speed, and I'd enter the ditch with a bit less speed. In the Miata, on the other hand, brake application mid corner will cause reduced grip at the back, but this change is a smooth, gradual change if the inputs are smooth and gradual. It's possible to brake mid-corner in the Miata and handle the results if you know what you are doing. However, few people, even among those who track and autocross, can pull this off successfully regularly. In a Viper, braking (or even lifting off the throttle) mid-corner is even more challenging to control and restrain than it is in the Miata.

Please note, both the MINIs and the Mazda 3s I've driven, though FWD, would not qualify as "FWD, understeery" vehicles for this discussion. Both rotated well under throttle lift, and the MINI, especially, was very much like the Miata in its behavior. It was flat out easy to spin the MINI with a lift mid-corner.

That?s what I meant to say but was too lazy to type out. :p
_HighVoltage_ said "At that point there is nothing you can do, except brake.", which is not true.
 

IceBone

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Foot on the throttle, then quickly off to bring the ass round.
 

_HighVoltage_

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That?s what I meant to say but was too lazy to type out. :p
_HighVoltage_ said "At that point there is nothing you can do, except brake.", which is not true.
Okay then...what can you do?

Foot on the throttle, then quickly off to bring the ass round.
That would only work if the front wheels haven't lost grip yet. In the situation we are discussing the front wheels are already skidding. Even if you could get the tail out (which in a lot of front engined FWD cars isn't that easy), what's the point of having all four wheels skidding?
 
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MWF

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When I did some skid training a few years ago we were taught to hold on the brakes (while sliding towards the tree/car/deer/cyclist/Marina owners forum member etc) and apply full lock in the direction we wanted to turn to avoid said thing and then release the brakes at the last safe moment having scrubbed off as much speed as possible. Car then turns as desired.

I have had cause to do same since, if only thanks to black ice or snow rather than total recklessness, in both FWD and RWD cars and I can testify it works equally well in both whether or not the car has ABS.
 
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