Posted on Thursday, December 31, 2009 by NBA Playoff Schedule 2012
The sports car traces its roots to early 20th century touring cars. These raced in early rallys, such as the Herkomer Cup, Prinz Heinrich Fahrt, and Monte Carlo.
The first true sports cars (though the term would not be coined until after World War One) were the 3 litre 1910 Vauxhall 20 hp (15 kW) and 27/80PS Austro-Daimler (designed by Ferdinand Porsche).
These would shortly be joined by the French DFP (which became sporters after tuning by H.M. and W. O. Bentley, the Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost. In the U.S. (where the type was variously called roadster, speedster, runabout, or raceabout, there was Apperson, Kissel, Marion, Midland, National, Overland, Stoddard-Dayton, and Thomas among small models (which today would be called sports cars), while Chadwick, Mercer, Stutz, and Simplex were among large ones (which might today be called sports sedans or grand tourers).
In 1921, Ballot premiered its 2LS, with a remarkable 75 hp (56 kW) DOHC two liter, designed by Ernest Henry (formerly of Peugeot's Grand Prix program), capable of 150 km/h (90 mph); at most, one hundred were built in four years. This was followed by the SOHC 2LT and 2LTS. The same year, Benz built a supercharged 28/95PS four for the Coppa Florio; Max Sailer won.Simson in 1924 offered a Paul Henze-designed 60 hp (45 kW) DOHC 2 liter four, the Simson Supra Type S, in a long-wheelbase 120 km/h (60 mph) tourer and 115 km/h (71 mph) twin-carburettor sporter; only thirty were sold, against around three hundred of the SOHC model and 750 of the pushrod-six Type R. Duerkopp's Zoller-blown two liter in 1924, as well
A sports car is a term used to describe a class of automobile. The exact definition varies, but generally it is used to refer to a low to ground, light weight vehicle with a powerful engine. Most vehicles referred to as sports cars are rear-wheel drive, have two seats, two doors, and are designed for more precise handling, acceleration, and aesthetics. A sports car's dominant considerations can be superior road handling, braking, maneuverability, low weight, and high power, rtherthan passenger space, comfort, and fuel economy.
Sports cars can be either luxurious or spartan, but driving mechanical performance is the key attraction. Many drivers regard brand name and the subsequent racing reputation and history as important indications of sporting quality (for example, Ferrari, Porsche, Lotus), but some brands, such as Lamborghini, which do not race or build racing cars, are also highly regarded.
A car may be a sporting automobile without being a sports car. Performance modifications of regular, production cars, such as sport compacts, sports sedans, muscle cars, hot hatches and the like, generally are not considered sports cars, yet share traits common to sports cars. They are sometimes called "sports cars" for marketing purposes for increased advertising and promotional purposes. Performance cars of all configurations are grouped as Sports and Grand tourer cars, or, occasionally, as performance cars.
A sports car does not require a large, powerful engine, though many do have them. Many classic British sports cars lacked powerful engines, but were known for exceptional handling due to light weight, a well-engineered, balanced chassis, and modern suspension (for example, Lotus Seven, Austin 7 Speedy). On tight, twisting roads, such a sports car may perform more effectively than a heavier, more powerful car.
Due to North American safety regulations, many sports cars are unavailable for sale or use in the United States and Canada. In the United Kingdom, Europe, and the Middle Eastern market (e.g. UAE), a flexible attitude towards small-volume specialist manufacturers has allowed companies such as TVR, Noble, and Pagani to succeed.
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