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Some people seem to think the 2860 pound curb weight of the Solstice will detract from its handling. Disregarding the myth that a lighter car always handles better, I think there is a real misconception about the weight of modern cars and how light the Solstice truly is.

Here is a comparison of the Solstice and various other sports and GT cars. Again, comparing weight only and not horsepower or overall performance, just weight:

Pontiac Solsice, 2860

So what is lighter than a Solstice?

Lotus Elise, 1950
Toyota MR2, 2200
Mazda MX5, 2480
Mini Cooper, 2750
Acura RSX, 2750

What is about the same as a Solstice?

Honda Civic Si, 2800
Honda S2000, 2850
Porsche Boxster, 2850
Dodge SRT-4, 2900

What is heavier than a Solstice?

BMW Z4, 2950
Volkswagen GTI, 2950
Mistu Eclipse, 2950
Mazda RX-8, 3000
Chrysler Crossfire, 3050
Porsche911, 3100
Audi TT, 3150
Chevy Corvette, 3200
Nissan 350z, 3200
MB SLK350, 3250
BMW 325i, 3250

And of course I am neglecting all such cars as the Mustang & GTO, and the medium to big luxury cars or the list of heavier cars would be huge. I just tried to give a taste of "light" cars that still weigh more than the Solstice and Sky.

I think you can see there are only a tiny handful of sports and GT cars that are lighter than a Solstice. It was a remarkable achievement to bring this car in as light as it is, stay true to the concept's shape and meet all the safety requirements and performance goals.

Really, you can't find a much lighter roadster on the streets today. The low CG, suspension design and tire selection should really make the Solstice and Sky two of the best handling cars available today. And the light weight will enhance responsiveness.

So when people try to tell you the Solstice isn't light for a sports car, ask them to name 3 cars that are lighter. Chances are they won't be able to do it.
 

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Good analysis jimbo. The Miata guys are obsessed with every once of weight but Solstice seems about right on weight in the middle of the road.
 

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jimbo said:
Disregarding the myth that a lighter car always handles better,
Sorry, not a myth. (assuming similar suspension setups)

Not only is weight important but more critical is how that weight is distributed/placed around the car. I'm not just referring to the front/rear %, but how far from the CG weight is.

A heavier car with the extra weight very close to the CG will be far less noticeable than that same extra weight hung at the ends of the car.
 

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Also if two comparable cars 500# in weight difference utilize same size and brand tire the heavier car MAY, I said MAY stick to the ground a little better due to high g.p. Note 0-60 in 7.2 is not slouch at under 20k (assuming no options)
 

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achieftain said:
Also if two comparable cars 500# in weight difference utilize same size and brand tire the heavier car MAY, I said MAY stick to the ground a little better due to high g.p.
A tire has a fixed side load limit it will take. The heavier car will reach it sooner. (if all else is the same)
 

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Let's do a real world challenge in the middle of winter on black ice or 6 inches of snow between my house and Fformula88 and see which vehicle stays on the road.
 

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achieftain said:
Let's do a real world challenge in the middle of winter on black ice or 6 inches of snow between my house and Fformula88 and see which vehicle stays on the road.
:confused: So I would be better off buying an SUV?
 

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LBJay said:
:confused: So I would be better off buying an SUV?
NO, not what I meant. ALthough for 6 months of the year in Erie that's not a bad idea. Also that would leave one more sol for the rest of us (just kiddin") :yesnod: :lol: Take the example of almost the same tires on two cars, same layout, similar chassis components. The C6 Corvette has same layout front eng, rwd 4 wheel i.s. as the Solstice. Front tires on C6 are same size as Sol, although rear are one size bigger (quite frankly I could never understand having two different sizes esp with directional tires - you can never ever rotate, only buy replacements faster, hmmmm). Now I don't have the numbers in front of me but if a 2860# Solstice holds onto the pavement BETTER than the new 'vette as measured by slalom speed and lateral g force, then as soon as I get my 177hp 'weakling' I'm goin' huntin' for 'vette pink slips.
 

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Forget the imperical results a second. There is certainly a difference in how the car feels in the turns. There is a reason people think the ultra-light Elise is one of the ultimately fun cars to drive. Its not because it can necessarily out handle every other car on the road, but it feels like it can.

A heavier car can certainly be made to stick just as well as a lighter car, but the driving experience might not be the same.

I think the Sol's weight is fine. I have no problem with it.

If I was a Miata fan, I would be worried about weight too. The Miata's handling reputation has been based on how fun it is to drive from behind the wheel, and not because it sticks like an F1 racecar. Its light, nimble, tossable. Adding weight could hurt those traits.
 

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achieftain said:
quite frankly I could never understand having two different sizes esp with directional tires - you can never ever rotate, only buy replacements faster, hmmmm).
Because the front tires don't have to control 400HP and 400ftlbs of torque ;)

While two cars of different weights may be able to pull the same maximum Gs on a skidpad, the lighter car will out brake, transition (right-left) much quicker and be able to accelerate sooner.

On a tight parking lot AutoX course with out a long straight, even a 109 HP Miata can embarrass a Corvette.

Given a choice between an additional 20HP or 200lbs less weight, I'll take less weight.
 

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slowandlow said:
all i say is get a carbon fiber hood heck i shaved 30 lbs with my carbon fiber hood on my alero.
Yeah, and the alero hood is much smaller then the Solstice. I think the SOlstice hood is even bigger then the Covette hood because of how far it wraps around. I bet a CF hood on the Solstice would save a ton of weight.
 

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todd_raleigh said:
Does anyone know how many inches of clearance there is from the ground on the Solstice?
4.9"
 

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Fortimir said:
Where are you getting that value from, I don't remember seeing official ride height values.

However we do know the Solstice is the lowest ground clearance GM car in production, and the Corvette has a ground clearance of 5".
 

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dylan01 said:
at the CIAS, i measured it to be 4.9'' from the ground to the plastic strip on the bottom of the front of the car.
That's where I got it.
 
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