What's the "right engine" for Midlana?

Which drivetrain to choose, so many choices, 4-cyl? 6-cyl? NA? Turbo?
Midlana1
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What's the "right engine" for Midlana?

Postby Midlana1 » 20 Apr 2009, 15:22

There isn't one. Well, it has to fit, other than that it's what you like, can afford, and can find in your area.

I've copied my post from elsewhere regarding the "right" engine to use:

This might be the time to point out that if you go to an autocross, watch which cars do all the winning - regardless of power. The cars that beat everyone all have less than 200hp - the key is low weight. And, a 200hp 2000lb car will not be nearly as fast as a 100hp 1000lb car, even though the power to weight is the same. Autocross is all about the driver, but past that, it's all about being nimble and that means low weight.

Here's a quote from a note I recieved about hp vs. weight:
MY 7 had a 1600 xflow about 110 hp and I easily beat every Cobra that showed up. As I got to be a better driver and with new tires I could some times beat the yellow Caterham 7 which has about 210 at the flywheel. It will spin the tires when it comes on the cam at 5500 about 60 mph. 200 hp is more than enough for an autox.

That said, I'm past lecturing people what they're "supposed" to want. Midlana is all about building a car and having fun, whatever your definition of fun is. For many people it's not about beating everyone at the autocross, or even at trackday events. They're looking for a cruiser that, given the chance of a Stoplight Grand Prix, want something to make the Mustang/Corvette/BMW/Audi driver in the next lane think, "Geez, that thing's faster than I thought."

I'm somewhere in the middle. I spent years autocrossing and eventually tired of spending the entire day in the hot sun for 180 seconds of track time. Yes it's great driver training, and it was priceless knowledge before going to trackday events, but I know it just isn't very interested to many people. For me, I love trackdays; a good 80-120 minutes of tracktime really gets it out of your system for a while. Other people could care less and never see a track; for them it's something cool to cruise in.

So what am I saying? Just build what you want, but understand that high horsepower absolutely does not mean an automatic win at whatever you do. The more turns that are involved the less hp matters and the more driver experience and weight become the prominent factors.

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Re: What's the "right engine" for Midlana?

Postby Jagmandave » 15 Sep 2009, 14:58

Have to agree wholeheartedly......

My '62 Seven had a 75 hp 1275 Sprite engine in it, the only thing that consistantly beat me in autocross was a twin cam Elan with about 125 hp. - and a much better chassis of course! 8-)

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Re: What's the "right engine" for Midlana?

Postby Midlana1 » 23 Jan 2011, 19:35

I just weighed the car, and using a drivetrain that weighs more than 450 lbs complete will likely cause problems by having too much weight at the rear. As my car sits, it has 66% rear weight bias, which is as high as I want to go. It remains to be seen if it'll cause understeer issues coming out of turns. Of course, that's what power-oversteer is for 8-)


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