On Car Classification

Obeying the new format of this car blog, here’s the first post:

Cars are usually misclassified. I saw some sketches and renderings of a new, upcoming MINI (Not Mini, mind you) Cooper “Speedster.” Here it is in all it’s glory:

Except, that’s no damn speedster. These are speedsters:

See the difference? Speedsters have little to no windshield. They are pure-bred race machines. By definition, a speedster should be a roadster with none or a reduced windshield. The sketch depicts a convertible. Ready for a weird ride? Here we go:

 A roadster is a 2 seater car with a removable or stowable roof. (Or… vice versa. Or no roof at all!) The catch is that a roadster is a roadster by design. It never shares a coupe form in it’s lineup. A convertible is born first as a coupe or a 4 seater car and then makes the roofless transition. Get it? So, by definition, there are very few true-to-blood roadsters in the market today. Same thing applies to the definition of sports car.

A sports car is a light roadster with a front engine and rear wheel drive. 

That’s it. 

If your car is not that, it is not a sport car by definition. It is just not. Stop complaining! Well, it might be a sporty car, it might be a supercar, But it is not a sports car. Only two cars fit the bill for a proper sport car in the last decade or so: The Honda S2000 and the Mazda Miata. Believe it or not.

Your Mustang is a GT, or Grand Touring coupe. It’s what the GT stands for in the V8 variant. It’s made to cruise comfortably, but it is also sporty. It’s definitely NOT a sports car. Neither is that Nissan 350/370Z.

There are also touring cars. Touring cars are less powerful, less “sporty” then those GT cars, yet they also allow for comfortable touring and gobs of power.

I could keep lecturing car classes all night long, but my bed looks mighty comfortable at this time of the night. I’ll just leave this note here for… pondering. 🙂 It’s a very controversial topic.

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