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Drewsifer New Reader
12/2/09 9:33 p.m.
carguy123 wrote:
Drewsifer wrote: Don't know if want. On one hand, it looks good and has torks. On the other hand, from personal experience with a Golf TDI, the engine is not how you say, inspiring. I'm sure in a much lighter car it will wow a little more, but I've just never gotten my head around the idea of a diesel sports car.

Audi at Le Mans ring a bell?

I was hoping someone would say that. So you're saying that a million dollar purpose built race car of which there are maybe three is a basis to change my opinion about diesel in sports cars?

mad_machine SuperDork
12/2/09 9:47 p.m.

I will admit I NEVER liked diesels until I drive a Turbo Diesel truck for a living. I would LOVE to have one in a light weight sports car.

And not only Audi at LeMons.. quite a few people in the UK use the BMW Diesels cars in racing as well

nderwater Reader
12/2/09 10:13 p.m.

The TDi in the MkIV VW's is a very economical engine. But I have to agree with Drew. Every other MkIV engine - VR6, 1.8T and even the 2.sl0w - is much more fun to drive in anger.

The lame electronic throttle, narrow power band and unpredictable boost management take the fun out of the MkIV TDi engine. It's certainly better when chip tuned, but still not as enjoyable to drive as is gas-drinking siblings. I don't miss my TDi.

Travis_K Dork
12/3/09 2:03 a.m.

Yea, running mk4 tdi=$7500 easy in california. The cheapest one i have heard of was a mk3 jetta that was totaled (went into a ditch and bent the whole front corner, strust tower, everything) but still ran good. he had literally 30 phone calls within hours of the add being posted of people wanting to bring cash the next morning. Someone I know went that night and got it though. They are worth a amazing amount of money here in cali. To alot of people that own them, they are the only car they find acceptable as a daily driver, so they dont care what it costs to get one.

Luke SuperDork
12/3/09 5:36 a.m.

A torquey diesel in a light body would no doubt be a hoot, but I think the sound would kill it for me. I'd want my exotic sports car to sound far, far removed from a tractor.

John Brown
John Brown SuperDork
12/3/09 6:37 a.m.
njansenv wrote: Hey John, I know it's OT, but why's the PD motor so bad? (genuine curiousity, my commute has me eying TDI's all the time)

PDs seem to have three issues that I do not like.

1: Can not keep the EGR system clean.

2: Injection system more troublesome than the pre-2004 and the new TDi.

3: Can not keep camshafts in them (sub 170k miles if not using Castrol Synthetic)

As for what a TDi is worth...

2001 Beetle $8500

2002 Jetta $9350

2005 Golf $11495

DukeOfUndersteer Dork
12/3/09 7:56 a.m.
wearymicrobe wrote:
DukeOfUndersteer wrote: i assume its going to be a contender with the K1 attack, which i think the kit is like $20 grand...

Kits for these are not longer available. When they were 30-35K+ without drive train paint or assemble.

wow, they got to that price? Thats too bad thats not being produced, it was a good looking car IMO

Ian F
Ian F HalfDork
12/3/09 8:15 a.m.

Wow... if I can get that kind of money, then my TDI days may be numbered... especially if I can get more than 50% of what I paid for the car after driving it for seven years...

He just posted on tdiclub that if he can't bring the kits in at the $10K price point, it's unlikely they'll be produced.

12/5/09 4:16 p.m.

Just found you guys...mark smith here...yep the bugger is a go.

I am going to use the jetta mk4 as the base of a very easy to build mid engine kit.

Mine will start out biodiesel chipped with bigger injectors to get the 140hp and 230lbs ft..too fun I think....but the ffcobra.com crowd seems to be split on the turbo vr6 vs the 1.8t vs the diesel...they all sound fun to me but i have been enamored with these little diesels for a couple of years now.

The car will not be sold as a factory five car...it really doesnt fit the brand...a v10gtm may have done the trick for ffr but i really wanted to try to use the vin from the jetta and it ended up doable with a bit of creativity.

The new company is called Smyth performance and it is focusing on this car as the ultimate reconfiguring of a stock boring car..so far the response has been amazing considering that the red car that got everybody excited was designed by a bunch of us together over on ffcobra for fun on photoshop.

the guys photochop the picture then i "sawsal"l chop the real gtm to transform it into this red car that really will look nothing like a gtm. I think the process has been a success as an experiment. good times. I am shipping 20 beta kits to guys that have built ffrs before in march to get it ready for prie time. I post pretty regularly on www.twitter.com/factoryfive and on ffcobra.com under athread called"mark smith, time to talk:) "

cheers and great to see the discussion on what started as just a way for me to have a biodiesel fun car. Go green but Go fast.

and fyi i just got back from vermont and paid 5k for a like new 120k mi donor car...i turned down about three or four others for 4500 or so....if you can get more than that for a ten year old car you are goood:)


M030 Reader
12/5/09 4:26 p.m.
Rufledt wrote: a mid engined, affordable car that looks like that, is light weight, torquey, and has amazing fuel economy? why the crap wouldn't they build one? i want one already. especially if it looks like that. i'm not the biggest GTM looks fan, but that is awesome!


My sentiments exactly! I would buy one.

fact5 New Reader
12/6/09 8:28 a.m.

In reply to M030:

so if 60% of people don't like the idea but 40% love it...thats not a bad share of the builder market.

z31maniac Dork
12/6/09 9:26 a.m.

Glad to see you are posting up here. Love your companies products.

I desperately want to build the '33 clone.

nderwater Reader
12/6/09 10:41 a.m.

The biggest reason why my Dad and I haven't already purchased a FFR roadster kit is because we both work full time, and don't want a half-built car suck in the garage for the next few years. An inexpensive kit which was half as complicated to assemble would be a pretty attractive option.

DukeOfUndersteer Dork
12/6/09 11:10 a.m.

Mark, you need any TDi software?

alex Dork
12/6/09 12:16 p.m.

This thread is relevant to my interests. I could easily sell the girlfriend on a 40mpg, 2000#, biodiesel, sub-$20k sportscar, in the vein of an Elise, her favorite car.

Keep it up, Mark! We're waiting for good news on this project.

ronbros Reader
12/6/09 5:57 p.m.

you could use a 2.8L aluminum ,4cyl., turbo diesel, piezo injectors, from Jeep liberty,, easy 200hp, push it a little 250hp ,BUT 450lb.ft. now that would wake things up, torque startin at 1500rpm.

why scream it to death, when you can torque right on by those old petrol cars, hasnt anybody watched ALMS ,, Audi and Peogeot win LeMans ,,1st four places.

and someplace in this world sombody bought(at auction ) 158 new and take out Jeep diesel engines last yr , cheap-cheap-cheap, 158 engines for $8000. US.

donno who ,and where are they sittin at,????

DukeOfUndersteer Dork
12/7/09 8:39 a.m.

I am bumping this back up because Ive been watching this topic on all the different car sites and am loving every second of it!

jlphil New Reader
12/7/09 8:23 p.m.

After three FFR Roadsters, I'm in for building a Smyth TDI. Bought a Mk IV $4,200 donor Jetta to drive awhile to learn about deisels, then plan to chop it up when Mark makes his new kit available. When you get all jazzed about a project, trust the guy masterminding it, and want to learn some new stuff, it just seems like the right thing to do. Anybody else in?

DukeOfUndersteer Dork
12/7/09 8:43 p.m.
jlphil wrote: After three FFR Roadsters, I'm in for building a Smyth TDI. Bought a Mk IV $4,200 donor Jetta to drive awhile to learn about deisels, then plan to chop it up when Mark makes his new kit available. When you get all jazzed about a project, trust the guy masterminding it, and want to learn some new stuff, it just seems like the right thing to do. Anybody else in?

Got my Mk4 ready, though its a 2.0, it still would be fun.

jlphil New Reader
12/8/09 8:19 a.m.

DukeoU, That will work fine! The car's being designed to accept any Mk4 drivetrain: 4 cyl. deisel, gas, or VR6. Do it...any car project that involves extensive use of a SawZall is too good to pass up.

kreb Dork
12/8/09 8:46 a.m.

hmmm I'm looking into my crystal ball and seeing........ the first spec diesel series! Remember, you heard it here first.

And again Mark, I'm not really a Cobra guy, but I have huge respect for the directions that you've gone. Big ups!

mistanfo Dork
12/8/09 9:42 a.m.

Except that there is already the TDI cup, which uses spec cars. However, I am anxiously awaiting this car to come into being.

DukeOfUndersteer Dork
12/9/09 8:18 a.m.

found my donor, BUT I CALL DIBS ON IT!!!


12/13/09 12:10 a.m.

This new Tdi FF car really looks amazing! I like its styling more than that of the gtm supercar. A 400hp turbo diesel motor in it would be incredible. Mark, I'm looking forward to seeing your design of the front and the rear of this car.

If I can build a decked out version of this car for under $30k, it would be within reach in a couple of years for me. My brother would also be interested. A project like this would be worth it. What do you estimate the build time will be on it? I appreciate you making the effort to provide people with a car kit like this for around $10k -a lot of value for the money. A 2,000 lb. street legal supercar sounds very appealing. When will there be more image angles posted of this car?

jlphil New Reader
12/13/09 9:02 p.m.

In reply to carenthusiast:

Here's the thread where the design and development of this car has been exhaustively discussed and documented:


More detail than you can read at one sitting...it'll take a beer or two, but well worth it if you're interested in this thing, now tentatively being called the Smyth G3F. HTH, Good luck!

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