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Concept Sports Car
A little doodle built for Dan The Man's current contest.
About this creation
The recent trend for trackday cars is all very well, but most of them are no fun on the road. Roads have bumps, potholes, speed limits and a plethora of things to hit. A sports car should be enjoyable all the time (unless it rains...). It doesn't need to be big, or expensive, or even massively fast; it's sole purpose is to engage it's driver.



It helps if the driver can share that pleasure with friends - two of them, either side of him (or her), placed in the middle so the balance of this lightweight car is not disturbed by them.

Lightweight ? Essential! 500-600kg is preferable, and possible without recourse to exotic materials. This is what a Caterham weighs, and for that matter a 2CV (a sort of unsportscar but still fun).



For lively performance, a power to weight ratio of around 150-200 bhp per ton is desirable; accordingly a car such as this needs around 100bhp. Much more and it becomes too excitable to extend safely on the public road. The first Lotus Elise weighed 750kg and had 118bhp and it was (and remains) sublime to drive.

Your 100 horsepower comes courtesy of a little turbocharged 900cc 2 cylinder engine, straight out of the Fiat 500 Twinair. The modern petrol engine is an examplar of effeciency and this is one of the best.



The model is 14 studs wide (small by my usual standards..) and features working steering, engine driven by the rear wheels by chains (!) and all round suspension (pendular front and independent by trailing arms at the rear). It's all under here...

In reality, there would be no substitute for the geometric purity of wishbones all round, not to mention a differential and a gearbox - an ordinary 5-speed manual; none of these electronically controlled contrivances to interrupt the feel of the car.



Suspension doesn't need to be hard. I want a sports car able to traverse a speed hump without breaking my spine. It can be done. Ask a Lotus engineer, or one who used to work for Peugeot but doesn't any more...



Plenty of travel here... with the cycle wings moving with the wheels they do create unsprung weight and this is never helpful - perhaps these should be the only carbonfibre parts on the car.

For once, a model of mine has the right wheels! These would be smallish, say 15 inches, with 50 profile tyres. The fashion for massive wheels and skinny tyres does nothing for any aspect of a car's behavior. With relatively little power, they do not need to be wide either - a car with high levels of grip means a car with less predictable behavior when it does let go.




Nothing to see here! Move along please...



The shape would hopefully produce little or no aerodynamic lift. Downforce is not necessary, or wanted in a road car that travels at speeds too slow to exploit it. Although the car is built low, there is sufficient ground clearance to traverse a bumpy road without worrying about the undercarriage - a refreshing change.

All of the above does guarantee, of course, that it would not be very fast around a track; but I hope the driver of this would still enjoy himself more.



So there we have it - small, inexpensive, not very powerful but FUN!



Comments

 I like it 
  February 14, 2012
Genius work with the engine to get it to sit so low, I would never have thought of that, and you've still featured suspension!
 I like it 
  January 1, 2012
5/ 5 for all this stud beauty !
  January 1, 2012
Happy New Year to you, too, Nick! Thanks for your comments :-))
  December 5, 2011
Hello!I have a wish! Could you make Ford Sierra!I want to see how professionals make that car.Its ok if you dont want :).i just thought that it would be cool. Best wishes-Patrick.:)
 I like it 
  December 3, 2011
Another brilliant lego engineering. Even if I did not get everything (specific and technic words), what an interesting lesson of mechanics, engines, tires, chassis... I love your concept, specially the two seats beside the driver. Do you add a trailer for the luggages? ;)
 I like it 
  December 2, 2011
Very nice lookin car!
 I like it 
  December 2, 2011
Nice Car! I like the layout of the three seats.
 I like it 
  December 1, 2011
Nifty car!
 I like it 
  December 1, 2011
Cool!
 I made it 
  November 30, 2011
Quoting Lola TruckDriver Dah, stop the whining and the lecturing, and get us a good ol' Pembelton! C'mon, you're a Brit, you're a 2cv collector/driver, you must know it all about them.
Ah, yes, now you're talking! Those are ace!
 I like it 
  November 30, 2011
Dah, stop the whining and the lecturing, and get us a good ol' Pembelton! C'mon, you're a Brit, you're a 2cv collector/driver, you must know it all about them.
  November 29, 2011
Nice MOC, but it's no where near your other MOCs as far as build quality. :-) @Tom: Yeah, heavy cars = no fun; light cars = fun. What'll be cool is to race a go-kart. I've never done it before, but have you? Hey, why don't you get a good job and buy yourself an Ariel?
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Cool concept Nick! I was hoping to build something for this contest...right up my street! Too much Porschyness going on right now. I love the way the arches move with the steering, very clever and looks great! Why do they make cars so heavy nowadays it doesn't make sense. I also want an MX-5 Miata maybe we should all get one and go racing lol
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Very cool concept Nick! I like the backstory you came up with too, it really shows the thought behind your building process.
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Wow, Nick, that's so cool. I love the concept. I made a styling model of a very similar car during my university studies: A very light weight roadster with three seats (driver in the middle) and a small engine (a motorbike engine). I like the shaping, too and I imagine how much fun it must be to drive this one. As always you added a lot of cool Technic details, especially considering the small scale. I have no particular detail that I like most, here it's the general concept for me. Great job!
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Great car. Liking the 3-seater idea and I really like that the front fenders/mudguards turn with the wheels. I still love your race transporter, it makes me want to build one but building on that scale is totally new to me. Maybe when I've got some spare time I might start planning one. I shall have to drop by the race group's homepage to see which teams have been taken.
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Nice "chain" drive ;)
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
... Good luck! not good luck? Hahaha
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
I wish more cars had one seat in the front and 2 in the back! Great build mate - GO NICK GO :P
 I made it 
  November 29, 2011
Quoting MortalSwordsman . Very cool Nick. Sort of has a retro front end and an ultra modern rear. I want to drive it! How did you fit all those technical goodies in such a small car? I saw nothing ;). I Cant wait to see nothing again. Good luck?
Thanks Joe. 'Nothing' is proving quite difficult but I'll crack it... The technical goodies are mostly simpler systems than I do on the larger cars.
 I made it 
  November 29, 2011
Quoting Senator. Chincilla . I see my random intrusions from other MOC's are starting to rub off... Just as planned! =)
Haha! Yes, that one was your fault ;-)
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
I like that three seat design! Wicked!
 I made it 
  November 29, 2011
Quoting Ape Fight A great little old-skool MOC, with lots of lovely Technic-ness. You're so right about what makes a car fun. Admittedly I'm not that experienced as a driver being relatively new to whole thing, but my first car, an MX-5 1.8 SVT, is still the best car I have ever driven. Wish I had another : ( Anyways, another very nice MOC, and could that be an D-Type chassis on top of the Commer?...
The MX-5 is just what I'm talking about - a wonderful car with perfect balance and an exploitable chassis. I want one too!
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
Very cool Nick. Sort of has a retro front end and an ultra modern rear. I want to drive it! How did you fit all those technical goodies in such a small car? I saw nothing ;). I Cant wait to see nothing again. Good luck?
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
I see my random intrusions from other MOC's are starting to rub off... Just as planned! =) Lol... Where to start with your track car? It's just wonderful! It looks rather simple, but upon further examination you used a plethora of nice techniques and ideas! And I enjoyed reading about all the details and sources for parts. Just fun stuffs.
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
A great little old-skool MOC, with lots of lovely Technic-ness. You're so right about what makes a car fun. Admittedly I'm not that experienced as a driver being relatively new to whole thing, but my first car, an MX-5 1.8 SVT, is still the best car I have ever driven. Wish I had another : ( Anyways, another very nice MOC, and could that be an D-Type chassis on top of the Commer?...
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
So little studs? :-) Also fine to see a glimp of 'some' other wip :-) Greetzzz!
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
I'd even take it out in the rain, depending on who is holding the unmbrella. Delightful.
 I like it 
  November 29, 2011
very cool sports car!keep it up!
 
By Nick Barrett
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop Concept Sports CarLarge scale vehicles


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