In the world of sports cars, there are two major leaders: American and European sports cars. The differences are staggering between the two different types of sports cars. When you think about American sports cars you think of Detroit muscle and names like Mustang, Charger and Corvette. European sports cars bring about another type of vision. These cars, given the moniker of exotic, have sleek lines, fast engines and names like Ferrari, Porsche and Lamborghini. A major point of contention has been the quality of each of these types of sports cars. Here is some information on each type in an American vs. European sports car shootout.
Sports Cars Are about Speed
The debate has raged for decades about which sports car is going to go faster. The American sports cars are pure metal and heavy. Their powerful engines have to work very hard to propel them down the road at high rates of speed. The European counterparts are lighter, with fiberglass bodies and low to the ground profiles. The air flows over them and does not cause as much drag as in American sports cars. Because of this facet of European engineering, their high powered motors can move them at a very fast speed.
Performance and Handling
After speed, one of the more important aspects of sports car is how they handle on the straightaways and curves of both the racetrack and highways. American sports cars, with their beefy suspensions, large rear axles and wide tires command American roads. However, the lighter European sports cars can hug the corners at higher rates of speed on the European roads for which they are made. Changing things up, you will notice a very different handling vehicle in both respects.
A big concern for American car manufacturers is safety. When you take into account that the Mustang, Camaro and Charger are built for safety you can see that they will handle more serious accidents. European sports cars, because of the amount of fiberglass and cramped cockpit, are easily damaged when in an accident.
Many of the car manufacturers of the world are looking into ways to keep the miles per gallon as high as they can while still giving their big engines the power they need to keep the horsepower and speed. In the race for the highest rated MPG, the two types of sports cars give and take in this issue. You are not going to get as much as a hybrid or smaller mid size sedan, but today's sports cars do get a respectable 19 city and 24 highway on average. However, new models of the Corvette will get a little better mileage than the Porsche 911 Turbo, while the 911 receives a much better MPG than the Mustang GT.
Dependability and Longevity
With the advances in engineering it is not unusual for cars to last for more than 200,000 miles. Sports cars are unique in that they require much more maintenance because of the stresses that the engines are under to perform, accelerate and keep high rates of speed for a long period of time. Generally, American engines will last longer than their European counterparts, but that will only depend on how well the vehicle has been maintained.