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how do you define ’handling’

as in, say a valver, sport, 172 etc ?? - in fact, any clio, ANY car.. (but consdier drive train layout (FWD or RWD even 4WD) ??.

No trick questions lol

seriously.. opinions on good handling are like arseholes .. everyone has one .. lol..

what do YOU call good handling...

How do YOU define it...


why ??..


The sum of various factors such as grip, body control and predictability - that culminate (with the right hands) in an intangible sense, or reality, of superior varied road conditions ability.

The best handling cars Ive driven allow me to cover my favourite Welsh roads with that other intangible - fun. The best car will allow you to extract the potential of the chassis and drivetrain, whilst regulating the loss of control (skids etc) so that it is either eliminated or easy to spot - think 205/106 GTi lift-off rear end syndrome.
  mk2 172

im not too up on the terms used for everything but what i absolutely love about the willy is if you get into sh*t you can get out of it, it just dont seem to wanna go pear shaped, if you lose the back end you seem to be able to bring it right instead of my other cars which wobbled about til you ground to a halt!
  Clio 197

Handling is a tough question. I like a car that feels almost unstable at first. Sort of darty if you know what I mean. Then when you get used to it you dont notice it anymore. It just does what you tell it to, and lets you know what it is doing. Get into anything else after and it feels like a lorry.

The FWD,RWD,4WD question is just one of degree. I like all the cars to feel that bit twitchy and they usually seem much more responsive when they are that way. RWD is great for good old fashioned power on oversteer which I think deep down inside is everybodys favourite. The Willy is great because even though a FWD car there is still lots of steering done with the throttle, and the lift off or braking oversteer sure is entertaining. 4WD is really only fun on the slippy stuff and in spite of all the advances, it does seem to remove the driver from a lot of the decision making, although the WRC drivers certainly would disagree.

hmmmmmmm......i have had many a debate with regular drivers and many race drivers about handling......and i have come up with 2 different set of requirements.

Road and Track.

On my road car, i need it to be predictable as i dont wanna have snapon oversteer and i dont really want compulsive understeer. Its not about grip at all, grip is the sole purpose of the tyres. Handling, i like ot think is the car i feel comfortable hustling around. I feel dead comfy in my MK2 XR2 slifing it cause its soo easy and predictable, i can take the tail in wheever i want. My RT on the otherhand, i have never go the tail out on purpose, why? because it scares the sh*t out of me....its not predictable at all! not a quality i like in a car on the road! it grips like hell, but with the super duper remote power steering and harsh chassis (i know its my fault for setting it up like this, and its a car that wasnt meant to be setup like this).
So, on the road, just something i feel i am in control of at the speed i like can go TOO FAST on the road.....

The track however you cant go too fast for teh conditions, you always trying to go one better.....even when you spend the entire lap at the limit.....can i move the apex 1 forwards or backwards, do i really need to lift here, shall shift up or bounce of the limiter for 1 extra sec.....etc etc etc.

I dont really car how a car handles on a track......well, to an extent. all i care about is going round as fast as possible...and if i feel uncomfortable.....who cares, i sure dont....

i have driven cars that feel so awfull but get me round 0.5 sec quiker, i adapt tot eh car, not adapt the car to me.....its easier.

as for FWD, RWD,

im a karter from 8yrs old, a RWD fanatic...i hate FWD witha passion as understeer is my enemy!! ]

getting the car balanced on the throttle can only really be achieved in a RWD car, a FWD car, you can only heold the throttle at the limit of adheision and wait to strighten the steering wheel to get more power down. a 4WD car, hmmm....not neccesarily a good handling car...a gprippy car yes! thats why audi used it for rallying.....why put 300bhp thorught he rears when you can put 600 through all the wheels.....but the balance of the car becomes a really fast and grippy FWD car, they will understeer prodominantly unless heavily provoked into a drift then, when power is on, the front will only pull itself cant hand the tail out like a RWD car.....which give you more options in terms of line adjustment...

sorry for the HUGE rant.....and i know many will disagree, but as capt said.....IMHO.....
  BMW 320d Sport

Dont wanna get technical here so Ill put it simply. Good handling is if you can drive smooth at a speed where other cars would be getting scary. Good handling cars dont give you surprises.

The feeling I get in my 16v of my hands and feet directly controlling the front wheels on the road and my arse being the back end of the car: that is what I call good handling, when you can feel part of the car even though its so huge compared to a person. Ive driven plenty of faster cars than mine where I didnt get that feeling, thats why I wouldnt get one. The same reason why so many people still buy 16v/Williams/205 GTi/Mini Cooper etc.

Cars can be totally different in the way they handle to each other and still be called good handling. I drive a Westfield which handles well. It does tend to twitch around a bit and the back will come out if you hit the power a little early coming out of a corner. But it totally predictable and you feel every undulation in the road through the steering.
The Clio feels more refined and I love the way the car turns into a corner really sharp.
I reckon both cars will probably outhandle my driving abilities.

I would say good handling is a car that tells you what it is doing and does what you tell it!!!

Unlike your missus.

  Corsa 1.3 CDTI

IMO - Good handlnig is the ability to push the car to its phsyical limits and still get good feed back from the steering, suspension and other controls and this will then be felt hopefully early by the driver before the car breaks away.

Pretty much what Mat said.

I think that makes sense.

You all forget the personel aspect, some people are just liabilities in differing cars, just the same as some people prefer differing handling characteristics. People new to powerful RWD always end up getting into trouble at some point. FWD is more friendly, but I aint a fan of fronting out (powered understeer) as its harder to control than power oversteer. Not much experience with 4WD (apart from Landies, and they certainly know nothing about handling).

However if you read at the clinic in CCC, the suspension geometry on most of the cars that appear is out, and corner weights are usually not balanced. Reckon this is because not many people have the equipment and inclination to alter thier suspension geometry especially the MAX brigade. But changes in handling make cars win races, so maybe more attension should be paid. Which leads me to my question, anybody ever taken corner weights on thier cars.

Alex M (aimless ranter)

we cant really adjust too much on our 172s....and corner weights area fixed thing....unless you take out half a seat here, battery there etc.

On my race kart, i was so light that i was 40KG under weight. This let me place the lead weights low and where i wanted....i did achieve near perfect 25/25/25/25 distribution.

Handling is whether your car will cut it when pushed!! I reckon handling equals tyre choice and then how good the chasis is, centre of gravity of car, mass of car, footprint etc - however - look at motorcycles - how narrow they are, 2 wheels, light, and handle like nothing else - if a car was that narrow it would fly of the road - why - cars dont lean like motorbikes - they flex.....

actually, cars should have as stiff a chassis (note not suspension) as they can, so flex doesnt affect geometry.

bike need a certain amount of dailed in yamaha made the mistake in GP racing.

they made the stiffest chassis at the time, and its was poo poo poopety poo.