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Old 06-24-2010, 02:41 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Lee View Post
I had a Spitfire 4, that engine block would barely have made a good paperweight.
Yeah. My old Sprite had modified front bodywork: the hood & fenders were one piece that hinged at the front, so I could pull two pins and a couple of electric plugs, and lift it all off. Then I could just undo a few bolts, reach in, and lift the engine out by hand.

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Old 06-24-2010, 03:30 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Last 3: 69.62 mpg (US)

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I brought up the Tempo because I had to defend the old-school cast iron pushrod engine from attack before. Cast iron and pushrods are not the devil! And the vehicle can be competitively light with them.
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Old 06-24-2010, 03:51 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Tim and I got into a conversation about this today, and I thought I'd do a bit of research and put together a list.

Fortunately someone already did it for me!
  1. Smart Fortwo Coupe / Cabrio
    Weight: 820 kg ó 840 kg ( 1,807ó1,851 lbs.)
    .
  2. Lotus Elise
    Weight: 899 kg (1,984 lbs)
    .
  3. Lotus Exige
    Weight: 942 kg (2,077 lbs)
    .
  4. Mazda2
    Weight: 1,045 kg (2,306 lbs)
    .
  5. Toyota Yaris Hatch / Sedan
    Weight: 1,049 kg (2,313 lbs)
    .
  6. Hyundai Accent Sedan
    Weight: 1,072 kg (2,365 lbs)
    .
  7. Mazda MX-5
    Weight: 1,115 kg (2,458 lbs)
    .
  8. Honda Fit
    Weight: 1,119 kg (2,466 lbs)
    .
  9. Hyundai Accent Hatchback
    Weight: 1,119 kg (2,467 lbs)
    .
  10. Nissan Versa Sedan
    Weight: 1,150 kg (2,535 lbs)
Honourable mention:

Chevrolet Aveo / Suzuki Swift+ hatchback 1,155 kg (2,546 lbs)
Kia Rio Sedan 1,160 kg (2,557 lbs)
MINI Cooper 1,165 kg (2,568 lbs)
Civic Coupe 1,179 kg (2,599 lbs)
Tesla Roadster 1,238 kg (2,729 lbs)

Now these are Canadian specs, so they may not perfectly match the USA figures. Also, I didn't double check them against manufacturer's info.

More details & pics of all the cars on this list can be found at: 10 Lightest cars on-sale in Canada - Sympatico.ca Autos
I'm actually amazed at how much some of those cars weigh.

My 99 Nissan Frontier has a curb weight of 2800-3100 lbs, with a box frame, and designed to cary an extra 1200-1400lbs of cargo.
My 84 CJ without top or doors comes in at 3000 lbs with a 600+lb engine, 80lb transfer case an extra 100lbs in the front axle and no thought to saving weight anyplace on the whole thing.

I can get an aluminum body tub that saves about 500lbs, that is stronger than the stock body.

The fiberglass top and steel doors adds about 350lbs.

Considering how small some of these cars are they should be lighter.
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:15 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Lee View Post
I brought up the Tempo because I had to defend the old-school cast iron pushrod engine from attack before. Cast iron and pushrods are not the devil! And the vehicle can be competitively light with them.
Nonsense. It can be light despite them, but imagine how light the same engine would be with aluminium castings.

And if you had variable valve timing instead of a simple valvetrain, you could have economy down low AND power up high. You could match the Tempo's power output with half the displacement. I guess that's the difference between a Tempo and a Civic.
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:40 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Sport Coupe - '92 Ford Tempo GL
Last 3: 69.62 mpg (US)

ShWing! - '82 honda gold wing Interstate
90 day: 33.65 mpg (US)

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Nonsense.

It has torque down low and doesn't need hp on high.

OHV = more compact. No timing belt to service either.

Cast iron cyls = the best wear characteristics.

Monoblock i.e. no separate cylinder sleeves = the most reliable. And inexpensive.

KISS = Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Civics pretty much aren't getting any better fe than the Coupe.
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:48 PM   #26 (permalink)
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90 day: 52.8 mpg (US)

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90 day: 73.57 mpg (US)

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Anyone know what the upcoming Scion iQ is supposed to weigh? It's got four seats. (Sort of.)

I'll go dig around...
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:49 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
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MPGiata - '90 Mazda Miata
90 day: 52.8 mpg (US)

Winter beater Metro - '00 Chevrolet Metro
90 day: 73.57 mpg (US)

Fancy Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
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curb weight: 1963 lbs.

Source: 2011 Scion iQ Features and Specs
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Old 06-24-2010, 06:18 PM   #28 (permalink)
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...but did you notice the MAXIMUM GROSS WEIGHT of 2646 lbs?

...with four seats that's less than 171 lbs per seat...passenger & luggage!

Last edited by gone-ot; 06-24-2010 at 06:27 PM..
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Old 06-24-2010, 06:26 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I doubt you would be able to fit full grown adults into the back seats. If you consider 2 60lb children in the back that leaves more than enough for 2 adults and some luggage.
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Old 06-24-2010, 06:33 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Lee View Post
Nonsense.

It has torque down low and doesn't need hp on high.

OHV = more compact. No timing belt to service either.

Cast iron cyls = the best wear characteristics.

Monoblock i.e. no separate cylinder sleeves = the most reliable. And inexpensive.

KISS = Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Civics pretty much aren't getting any better fe than the Coupe.
I love the Tempo myself, but mine was lucky to get over 30 mpg (3 speed auto; I ran 60 @3000 rpms)

The OHV may be more compact, but more simple it isn't. The pushrods only add to the weight and complexity while reducing its power and maximum rpms.

I would say though the weight of the block isn't the problem with a pushrod engine (and timing chains are a PAIN to get to compared to a belt, although the change intervals are longer) but rather the design. Having the cams lifting the tappets directly is much simpler than the cam pushing the lifter which pushes the pushrod which lifts the tappet.

AFAIK, the aluminum block/cast iron sleeve method is straight forward and reliable. My Max has an aluminum block and DOHC run by 4 timing chains, yet there is no recommended interval on changing the chains and this engine is known to last over 500k miles without problems.

When the Explorer did away with the pushrod and went with an OHV, the mileage went up. I know of a guy managing to eek out 30 mpg from a 2wd Explorer with the OHV engine. With a lot of hypermiling and even shutting off half the cylinders on my pushrod Explorer, I managed to get 19 once.

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Quote:
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I think you missed the point I was trying to make, which is that it's not rational to do either speed or fuel economy mods for economic reasons. You do it as a form of recreation, for the fun and for the challenge.
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