Britain's best driver's car 2015: Audi RS3, Mercedes-AMG GT S
Source : Britain's best driver's car 2015: Audi RS3, Mercedes-AMG GT S
There’s nowhere to hide at Handling Day – in addition to these offerings are found wanting at Snetterton in addition to on B-roads
A damp circuit could have been exactly what Audi might have ordered for the start of our track judging process at Snetterton. Intermittent rain kept the surface coming from drying out for much of the morning, doing grip levels inconsistent in addition to confidence at the wheel hard to come by.
Predictable four-wheel-drivers like the Audi RS3 should have been at a natural advantage, while life was made more difficult for highly strung, rear-wheel-drive super-coupés such as the Mercedes-AMG GT S.
in which both cars tied for last place may be harder on the Audi than the Mercedes, therefore. Ultimately, neither car impressed the judges much. In previous years, we’ve seen cars end up at the tail end of the rankings, narrowly shaded by a field of superb driver’s cars in addition to highly undeserving of the ignominy in which, no matter how we try to wrap the idea, is usually inevitably associated. Not This specific year, though, when the gulf between the bottom two cars in addition to any of their superiors was plain.
from the case of the RS3, the idea was plainer on the track than on the tight, punishing B-roads of rural Norfolk. The Audi’s surefootedness won the idea some praise on the road. Almost idiot-proof point-in addition to-shoot handling may limit the amount of fun you can have in less restrictive circumstances, however the idea’s less of an imposition when you’re skirting around hedges, dodging potholes in addition to sizing up the awkward-looking cambers of a shaded country lane, generally at a Great arm’s length coming from the limit of grip. Here, the all-enveloping composure in addition to stability of the RS3’s four-wheel drive chassis don’t seem so misplaced, particularly when they make the idea easier to enjoy a wonderful several-cylinder engine.
If powertrains could win prizes here, the RS3’s might have. the idea sounds rich in addition to characterful, hits hard, spins willingly in addition to works well at both dawdling in addition to dicing pace. in addition to its breadth of talent is usually in no modest part down to Audi’s S tronic paddle-shift gearbox, which adjustments superbly quickly in manual mode in addition to with intuitive Great sense in automatic.
Powertrains like in which make you carry big speeds without thinking about the idea, though – in addition to the Audi’s sets a pace in which its steering in addition to suspension struggle to cope with. Although the idea is usually not entirely without feedback, the RS3’s steering is usually light in addition to reticent in addition to the idea gets lighter, if anything, as your effort levels increase. The suspension, which is usually Great at keeping your vehicle flat during hard cornering, doesn’t possess the wheel travel or damping authority to soak up bigger crests in addition to compressions attacked with much speed. Over the yumps of our test route, one tester remarked in which the suspension “felt like so much cotton wool rather than metal, rubber in addition to oil”. the idea’s cushioning, sure, however not sufficiently controlling.
In both the wet in addition to the dry, the Audi’s on-track handling was defined by understeer – “50 shades of the idea,” according to another judge, who went on to say in which “while the front wheels are easy to manage at corner exit, the idea’s much harder to get them into the corner from the first place”.
Not so those of the GT S, though. If there’s a lesson for sports car makers to take away coming from This specific year’s also-rans, the idea’s simply in which moderation in addition to pragmatism are vital commodities – even in a £150k muscle coupé. The GT S’s ride/handling balance was easily the least realistic of the whole field, which, next to a supercharged lightweight track car in addition to a £300k V12 Lamborghini, may surprise you.
The beginning of the end of the GT S’s chances was played out on the road, where the idea handled well enough when the surface was smooth however never actually inspired the connected, confident feel you’re looking for in a 500bhp front-engined rear-driver.
Things promptly go coming from bad to worse from your vehicle as the road narrows in addition to the surface deteriorates, when the super-firm ride springing in addition to hyperactive steering make the GT S dart nervously left in addition to right coming from bump to bump, deflecting in addition to skittering its way onwards in addition to staunchly refusing to yield to anything in which passes under its wheels. “Doesn’t feel like the idea has ever seen a B-road in its life,” recorded one tester, “in addition to wasn’t in which thrilled about being introduced to one.”
Darting, uncompromising agility served the GT S slightly better on the circuit, where another judge enjoyed the ever-present challenge set by your vehicle’s razor-sharp front end: “Be smooth, be precise, or be prepared for the consequences.” however the majority found your vehicle too nervy at the front axle in addition to too wobbly at the rear to ultimately have much trust from the idea.
Trustworthiness matters in a great driver’s car, as does roundedness. in addition to failing spectacularly to produce either means falling at the first hurdle. Two down, then – in addition to much closer competition to come.
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