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TL-S, G35, IS350 around Willow Springs

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This is from a Japanese mag, so there is no English translated article floating around, at least yet. The Car Lounge has a thread with scans and a nice long discussion going already. Anyway, here are the results:

1. TL-S 6MT - 1:36:67 sec

2. IS350 - 1:38:24

3. G35 6MT - 1:38:67

4. RDX - 1:44:54

(naturally the RDX is just thrown in there for fun)

The FWD car wins? Blasphemy!

Most people are arguing that the TL-S is a more track-tuned car while the IS350 and G35 are the base models. The base TL would have undoubtedly finished last. However pricing wise, they are all very close, and I think it is a fair comparison.

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The TL and TL-S are some of few FWD cars I like...they are pretty sweet inside and out, and drive great (a coworker has an '06 TL, I've driven it a couple times).

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Mmm, TL-S...I never really paid attention to Acura lately, then I saw the TL-S at NYIAS, and fell right in love.

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Doesn't mean it handles better or is more enjoyable to drive. The Cobalt SS is faster in the slalom than a lot of RWD cars, but that doesn't mean it's more fun on a daily basis.

Credit to Acura/Honda though for making it significantly faster than the G35 and IS350, though.

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Not trying to take the credit away from TL-S which I think is a good FWD car. Willow Springs is a natural circuit for FWD cars because of its fast apexes. It suits more oversteering cars (AKA FWD). You can hence see about a 2-sec lap timing distance. The second thing which strikes me is Infiniti G-35 is not as fast as its HP ratings suggest. Despite having a 20hp difference, TL-S is faster in 0-60 than the G-35. When I test drove the G-35 and then TL (both had Hp's in 260's), to my surprise I found the TL actually pulling out faster than the G-35.

Honda has done well to mask the FWD of the TL, and in normal driving conditions you cannot see the difference. In fact most of the people who buy these cars will not see the difference at all, cruising at 75 mph on the interstate or getting on or off the ramp.

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Not only does the TL-S weigh the most, but it has the lowest rated horsepower and torque. Also, both the TL-S and G35 have significantly larger interiors than the IS350. The IS350, while it does have the AT, is still porky for its size. I think the IS350 would be really nice if it went on a diet (to 3,400 lbs or so), maybe with a performance trim version, and came with a 6MT. In that case it would most definitely win the comparo.

TL-S 6MT

3,559 lbs

286 hp @ 6200 rpm

256 tq @ 5000 rpm

Headroom, Front 38.7

Headroom, Rear 37.2

Legroom, Front 42.8

Legroom, Rear 34.9

Shoulder Room, Front 58.3

Shoulder Room, Rear 55.7

Hip Room, Front 55.6

Hip Room, Rear 53.8

Trunk Capacity 12.5 cu ft

IS350 6AT

3,527 lbs

306 hp @ 6,400 rpm

277 tq @ 4,800 rpm

Headroom, Front 37.2

Headroom, Rear 36.7

Legroom, Front 43.9

Legroom, Rear 30.6

Shoulder Room, Front 54.4

Shoulder Room, Rear 52.7

Trunk Capacity 13 cu ft

G35 Sedan 6MT

3,532 lbs

306 hp @ 6,800 rpm

268 tq @ 4,800 rpm

Headroom, Front 39.1

Headroom, Rear 37.2

Legroom, Front 43.9

Legroom, Rear 34.7

Shoulder Room, Front 55.6

Shoulder Room, Rear 55.2

Hip Room, Front 55.1

Hip Room, Rear 53.7

Trunk Capacity 13.5 cu ft

Willow Springs is a natural circuit for FWD cars because of its fast apexes. It suits more oversteering cars (AKA FWD).

Don't you mean corner plowing, understeering, FWD cars? :AH-HA_wink:

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You are right understeering. LOL :AH-HA_wink:

Correction noted

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The same thing that makes the TL-S fast on the track, its limited-slip diff, makes it a handful under normal driving conditions. LSD exacerbates torque steer on FWD cars.

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Road and Track said the TL Type-S was better than the G35 in February.

http://www.roadandtrack.com/article.asp?se...article_id=4459

widest tires, lightest car, best grip, best stopping distance, best manual transmission.

Well duh.

RWD isn't magic that replaces all the other components of a car.

R&T did say the TL-S was better than the G35, but not due to performance. From R&T:

"The reason the Lexus and Acura beat it is the G took the middle road — the IS 350 at the performance end of the spectrum and the TL Type-S on the touring end."

The TL-S is on the touring end. They commented on its "smooth ride quality" and "first-rate fit-and-finish". It also had the biggest rear passenger area. The TL-S has the slowest straight line acceleration, which is no surprise being at a 20hp disadvantage and weighing a bit more than the others.

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weighing a bit more than the others.

Their test data says the TL weighs 90 lb less than the other 2 cars, it's got the best grip, and it takes tighter corners than the G35.

It just has a weaker engine.

Maybe the G35 was doomed by its clutch and transmission? Dislike of it is expressed by many reviewers.

Buy the automatic they say.

Edited by JT64
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Their test data says the TL weighs 90 lb less than the other 2 cars, it's got the best grip, and it takes tighter corners than the G35.

It just has a weaker engine.

Maybe the G35 was doomed by its clutch and transmission? Dislike of it is expressed by many reviewers.

Buy the automatic they say.

I never really quite understood why G35 is considered that good. The engine sounds like a howling eunuch. The interior quality is not at par with the others and certainly not aesthetic. The gear lever is weird and the clutch action is long. However, the ride quality is better.

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TL-S is better than the G35 by spades. Ditto on the interior quality thing. Front drive or no I would love to own one.

Chris

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The G35 is just one of those cars that shows its lesser origins. The more time you spend around it, the more you realize it really is a Nissan.

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