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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering if we should attempt a head-to-head comparison between Solstice and it's competitors?

First battle would be is identifying who the competition is and what categories we'd use in comparison. Wild card factor is the fact that all Solstice specs are preliminary so they could change a little before next year.

Cars
Solstice, MR2, S2000, Miata, Z4, TT, ???

Versions:
We also have to separate out base models from performance versions
Base or Performance version (any type of turbo, supercharged or bigger engine)

Categories:
Price (base), HP, weight, styling, ???
 

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in my own personal opinion...
(couldnt find anything on MR2)
HP
#1. TT has 250HP
#2. S2000 has 240HP
#3. Z4 has 184HP
#4. Solstice has 170HP

Base Price(all in canadian curency)
#1. Solstice at around 25,000
#2. S2000 at 49,000
#3. Z4 at 51,800
#4. TT at 53,375

Styling
#1. Solstice
#2. S2000
#3. Z4
#4. TT

Now for the weight the Manufactures websites dont list and i dont really have the paitence to go and find the rest while at work.
 

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Actually, most or all of the weights are available on the net. Don't have time right now, but will see what I have, if you have the patience, autos.msn.com is a good place to start.

Take a look at this thread, I've got a lot of the weights already...

http://www.solsticeforum.com/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=78&perpage=15&pagenumber=2 "weight on autoline detroit"

Also, possibly the boxter?

What about older vehicles that are no longer produced?
 

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I would think that the solstice is in more direct competition with a MX-5 Miata than any of the cars you just mentioned.

Also, I would think that the TT is out of its competition and price range. If you compare it to a TT, you might as well compare it to a 350Z, a Crossfire, and an RX-8. Boxters? Even though I would take a solstice over a boxter any day of the week, I wouldnt consider these two cars in competition.

-Whit
 

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The Miata and MR2 are the real competition the extra $10k for the Honda coupled with its reputation for quality makes it a goal rather than a competitor.

The problem with a two-seater is that it is either a toy for the well-to-do or a daily driver for either a single person or a DINK. The market is decidedly limited.

Most manufacturers will go for a "softer" four-seater even if the rear shelf is good only for legless infants.

The general impractability of an open car has always limited its appeal particularly on American roads where being tiny can be hazardous (a full size SUV in the next lane cannot see my Fiero).

You also have the fact that in their heart of hearts, the Great American Land Barge is what the bulk of the natives really want.

That said periodically there is a wave of "small" and if the timing is right, a small car can succeed. Japanese cars leveleraged the 55 mph speed limit (in the '70s, most Japanese cars buzzed & struggled over 60 mph) into domanance.

Today the 70 mph limit is back (except for the slow corner) and many add another 10 on top of that. In most of the country, 100 miles is "just around the corner", something people from other automobile exporting countries have difficulty understanding. Add improbable taxes on engine size and gasoline and their cars are rarely suited for the US.

If that were not so, truely tiny cars like the MB "A" series, the English Robin, or the Smart Car would be sold here.

Now since S. E. Knudsen took over Pontiac in the late '50s, removed the suspenders, and replaced Oldsmobile as the maverick division in GM there has been a push for a small two seater. Since Chevvy has the top of the line position with the Corvette, Pontiac has always gone after the "economy performance car" segment often out of the parts bin.

The first GTO which was a small car fitted with a big car engine was the start. It was followed by the OHC-6 at a time when sixes were for grandmothers and taxicabs, the TransAm, the Sunbird V-8, and the Fiero.

While seeming radical on the outside, the Fiero had a front end from a T-1000 and a rear end that was actually the front end from a Phoenix. Under the skin almost all of the parts before the 88 model were straight from inventory.

People also may forget but Pontiac created the minivan for GM with the TranSport concept car of the '80s that began as a high speed long distance people mover (with a front end remakably like the Solstice - anyone have a .jpg ?).

So what is the real competition ? Right now the Miata and MR-2 but it would be easy for VW, Hyundai, or Ford to produce a competitor if the market is perceived to be there but in the past it hasn't been large.
 

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padgett said:
The Miata and MR2 are the real competition the extra $10k for the Honda coupled with its reputation for quality makes it a goal rather than a competitor.

The problem with a two-seater is that it is either a toy for the well-to-do or a daily driver for either a single person or a DINK. The market is decidedly limited.

Most manufacturers will go for a "softer" four-seater even if the rear shelf is good only for legless infants.

The general impractability of an open car has always limited its appeal particularly on American roads where being tiny can be hazardous (a full size SUV in the next lane cannot see my Fiero).

You also have the fact that in their heart of hearts, the Great American Land Barge is what the bulk of the natives really want.

That said periodically there is a wave of "small" and if the timing is right, a small car can succeed. Japanese cars leveleraged the 55 mph speed limit (in the '70s, most Japanese cars buzzed & struggled over 60 mph) into domanance.

Today the 70 mph limit is back (except for the slow corner) and many add another 10 on top of that. In most of the country, 100 miles is "just around the corner", something people from other automobile exporting countries have difficulty understanding. Add improbable taxes on engine size and gasoline and their cars are rarely suited for the US.

If that were not so, truely tiny cars like the MB "A" series, the English Robin, or the Smart Car would be sold here.

Now since S. E. Knudsen took over Pontiac in the late '50s, removed the suspenders, and replaced Oldsmobile as the maverick division in GM there has been a push for a small two seater. Since Chevvy has the top of the line position with the Corvette, Pontiac has always gone after the "economy performance car" segment often out of the parts bin.

The first GTO which was a small car fitted with a big car engine was the start. It was followed by the OHC-6 at a time when sixes were for grandmothers and taxicabs, the TransAm, the Sunbird V-8, and the Fiero.

While seeming radical on the outside, the Fiero had a front end from a T-1000 and a rear end that was actually the front end from a Phoenix. Under the skin almost all of the parts before the 88 model were straight from inventory.

People also may forget but Pontiac created the minivan for GM with the TranSport concept car of the '80s that began as a high speed long distance people mover (with a front end remakably like the Solstice - anyone have a .jpg ?).

So what is the real competition ? Right now the Miata and MR-2 but it would be easy for VW, Hyundai, or Ford to produce a competitor if the market is perceived to be there but in the past it hasn't been large.

So the Solstice
WOHOOO!!! I finally understood one of your posts padgett! :party
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Here's my shot at a comparison (all taken from MSN)...

Roadster Review - all cars are base model roadsters only

Base Price
Honda S2000 - $32,800
Toyota MR2 - $24,895
Mazda Miata - $21,868
Audi TT Roadster - $35,250
BMW Z4 - $33,600
Nissan 350Z Roadster - $33,850
Pontiac Solstice - $20,000 (est.)

Base Engine
Honda S2000 - 2.2 240HP @ 7800 RPM
Toyota MR2 - 1.8 138HP @ 6400 RPM
Mazda Miata - 1.8 142HP @ 7000 RPM
Audi TT Roadster - 1.8 180HP @ 5500 RPM
BMW Z4 - 2.5 184HP @ 6000 RPM
Nissan 350Z Roadster - 3.5 287HP @ 6200 RPM (6 cyl)
Pontiac Solstice - 2.4 170HP @ 6400 RPM

Torque
Honda S2000 - 161 @ 6500 RPM
Toyota MR2 - 125 @ 4400 RPM
Mazda Miata - 125 @ 5500 RPM
Audi TT Roadster - 173 @ 1950 RPM
BMW Z4 - 175 @ 3500 RPM
Nissan 350Z Roadster - 274 @ 4800 RPM
Pontiac Solstice - 170 @ 4400 rpm

Weight
Honda S2000 - 2809 lbs
Toyota MR2 - 2195 lbs
Mazda Miata - 2474 lbs
Audi TT Roadster - 3131 lbs
BMW Z4 - 2998 lbs
Nissan 350Z Roadster - 3445 lbs
Pontiac Solstice - 2850 lbs (est.)

Styling (opinion)
Honda S2000 - 9
Toyota MR2 - 6
Mazda Miata - 6
Audi TT Roadster - 7
BMW Z4 - 9
Nissan 350Z Roadster - 7
Pontiac Solstice - 10

Pros (opinion)
Honda S2000 - Std Leather, Power
Toyota MR2 - Price
Mazda Miata - Price, Handling
Audi TT Roadster - 2+2 seating, Roomy interior
BMW Z4 - Power, Roomy interior, , Quiet interior
Nissan 350Z Roadster - Very fast, Roomy trunk
Pontiac Solstice - Price, Reasonable power, Styling

Cons (opinion)
Honda S2000 - Noisy, Price
Toyota MR2 - Low power, Less storage
Mazda Miata - Engine/Road noise, small interior, no anti-lock brakes standard
Audi TT Roadster - Price, Weight, base model only auto trans option,
BMW Z4 - Price
Nissan 350Z Roadster - Price, Weight
Pontiac Solstice - Unknown?
 

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Only the Miata and MR2 are direct competitors in that group. The next closest in price is $12K+ higher. The Solstice kills the Miata in styling, but the Miata has the advantage in weight and available aftermarket. And now with the Mazdaspeed version you will easily be able to increase the power to decent levels. The MR2 has some incredible looking body kits for it and if it was available in Canada I would probably already own one even though it is seriously underpowered from the factory.

I think the Solstice will slot in perfectly to this group and will be favoured, as a new release often is unless the Miata receives a good redesign by then, which it might.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Price does not dictate direct competition. Yes you pay more for the German ones and they will have more bells and whistles but pound for pound how much different are the on the critical factors. How much of a BMW is for the name?
 

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mceb said:
Price does not dictate direct competition. Yes you pay more for the German ones and they will have more bells and whistles but pound for pound how much different are the on the critical factors. How much of a BMW is for the name?
Well if price is not the key factor in the overall buying decision, why are we not all driving C5 drop tops rather than wasting time looking at the Solstice?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I guess what I meant is they are all roadsters so they are in the same class and can be compared as a unit. Some are more expensive due to import name plates, quality factors or fancy options but in the end the all have 4 wheels, no top and an engine. Price is a big factor for me on Solstice...just hope the quality holds up over time.
 

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mceb said:
I guess what I meant is they are all roadsters so they are in the same class and can be compared as a unit. Some are more expensive due to import name plates, quality factors or fancy options but in the end the all have 4 wheels, no top and an engine. Price is a big factor for me on Solstice...just hope the quality holds up over time.
Understood. :wink
 

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I would say the obvious compitition is the Miata. General motors can't help but see how sucessful they have been and said to them selves, gee...what if? But I would also include Honda and BMW because General Motors has always wanted Pontiac to position themselves against those guys.

I guess it also compares to the MR2 but who the hell wants that thing! Slow, no trunk and it's ugly!
 

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The Miata and BMW Z4 seem like likely targets. It is interesting really - Pontiac wants to be the American BMW. Mazda wants to be the Japanese BMW. Just about everyone wants to be BMW, and the doors are opening with BMW's controversial (and often poorly received) styling changes.
 

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my expectations

I'm hoping for performance some where between the miata and the S2000. It shouldn't be hard unless they screw up on the handling.

I'm currently driving a 350Z and love the car but hate the service.
I don't think I would ever by another nissan product because of the poor service.

Another car I would consider is the Elise, but I'm a little leary of service on any type of import at the moment
 

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Heck even the Europeans put American powerplants in their chassis when they can get around the taxes: Cad-Allard, Facel-Vega, Sunbeam Tiger, and Morgan +8 are all examples (Cobra was an American doing it so doen't count).

Service will always be less expensive in the home country.

New GTO is first example of car from Oz with a US powerplant being sold here (and if you look at the brake plumbing you can tell where the pedal started out).

Suspect there are going to be even more left-over GTOs than Thunderbirds on the lots and that is really going to put pressure on Pontiac to hold the Solstice price point (plus needing a winner).
 
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