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Italian vs. American performance

A Biturbo owner thoughtfully concluded:

> And how much do you have to spend on a Rustang to make it keep up
> with a standard sports I-car on a twisted and narrow country
> backroad?
> One difference is the definition of "going fast".
> In USA, it seems to mean how to spend the least time on the first 1/4 
> mile of a straight stretch of road. It really doesn't count that you 
> have to give the car a 5 mile advance warning about any upcoming turns.
> In Italy it seems to mean how to get from A to B in the shortest amount
> of time. Disregarding how many sharp turns, narrow passages, gravel
> roads, chicken and Mustangs may be inbetween A and B.
There is certainly a worthy argument here. Having owned an '81 Mustang,
I can attest to corning g's soley related to tire choice. They are not
handling icons. But that was the old Fox chassis, and it bears stating
that the new Camaros/Mustangles/etc. have all evolved since then and are
far better handling cars than nearly any of our Fiats. Our Fiats are OLD
cars now, and unfortunately getting outdated. It's wonderful that they
do respond so well to modifications, but I think it's unrealistic to
expect modern performance from cars that are anything but, even if they
were advanced for their day.
I only use the Fiat for touring, but the Audi is a constant struggle
between going after more power and handling or giving up and buying a
newer car I probably can't work on. My skinny-tired, company provided,
Ford Contour fleet car has more hp, and would probably handle better
than any of my cars with some decent donuts on the wheels.  It all comes
down to what you want out of a car. The original argument was why there
is no market here for Fiat performance parts, and I think it's pretty

Dwight Varnes
1970 124 Spider 1438cc
1986 Audi GT Coupe 2.2, 110hp (not a quattro, BTW)

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