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      07-27-2011, 03:52 PM   #1
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Better track car

I'm considering either a Mini John Cooper works or RX8 R3. Anyone have any insight as to which might be the better track car? Main attributes i'm looking for besides performance are safety and reliability/ ease of maintenance.

I understand the MC is front wheel drive while the R3 is rear wheel.

I have a lot of track experience with my prior M3's and skip Barber race series. I've got a 328 xdrive now that i'm considering giving to my wife if i get one of these cars. Other option is to mod the 328 however i'd like to keep what ever car i get mostly stock with the exception of track brake pads/minor suspension work. Just looking for a fun car that can be driven at the track with minor mods...
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      07-27-2011, 04:28 PM   #2
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I'd go with the mini personally. The rotaries burn oil and are known to have problems. That and they have almost no torque whatsoever.

I see more Mini's in HPDE's and autocrosses than RX8s by a long shot.

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      07-27-2011, 11:31 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by JoosyJoos View Post
I'd go with the mini personally. The rotaries burn oil and are known to have problems. That and they have almost no torque whatsoever.

I see more Mini's in HPDE's and autocrosses than RX8s by a long shot.
Just to be clear, rotaries burn oil by design.

Also, people say the same stuff about bimmers and it doesn't make it true. Rotaries by design are actually simpler than piston engines, and the vacuum hose/general turbo issues with the RX-7 don't make the RX-8 an unreliable car.

I've never driven either car. The Mini's short wheelbase helps a lot if you're into autocross. However, the RX-8's RWD and more even weight distribution is a better dynamic setup in general. Most people I've talked to really enjoyed the RX-8 and praised it's handling feel in particular. Torque alone doesn't mean shit (you have to take into consideration gearing). Horsepower is what matters when it comes to acceleration, and the RX-8 has a respectable amount of that (this is not the time or the place to get into horsepower vs. torque discussion, so let's not start it).

Ultimately, it comes down to your driving style and what you want: a go-kart like FWD car that will be great in very tight autocross-like situations, or a more neutral handling RX-8 that's more suited for road courses and the like.
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      07-28-2011, 12:39 AM   #4
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Just for track purpose, I would go with RX8. Rx8s have fantastic handling on techinical road courses, I was very suprised when I tested it on the track.

but mixing daily and occasional track, I would pick mini.
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      07-28-2011, 12:42 AM   #5
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Mini without hesitation. I mean have you SEEN The Italian Job (2003)?

But really, I would definitely take the Mini. The go-kart feeling is one I'd take over that of a straightaway monster anyday (hence why I'm trying to get back into a kart and get my skills back up so I can enter into a race series if all works out).
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