Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Digital Experience Director
2/21/18 12:04 p.m.


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These two cars look similar. They wear the same badges. They have the same name. They’re built to run in the same series. All that separates them is time. A lot can happen in 46 years. These Mustangs, though spiritually connected, come from totally different worlds. Their competition venue? Trans Am, which bills itself as “America’s Road Racing Series.”

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Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
2/21/18 12:43 p.m.

Neither of those cars are Pontiacs.

HapDL
HapDL New Reader
2/21/18 6:11 p.m.

St. James didn't exactly have much of a record in TA.  Might have been better to get a current driver, maybe Ernie Francis might have filled in nicely?

kb58
kb58 SuperDork
2/22/18 8:34 a.m.

Curious where those seconds came from. What was total vehicle weight of both? Also, tire sizes and compounds?

tuna55
tuna55 MegaDork
2/22/18 8:43 a.m.

great article. I'd prefer to drive the old one, but wow the buy-in of the new piece is pretty nice considering how many great parts are there.

Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
2/22/18 8:46 a.m.

In reply to kb58 :

Classic Trans-Am car: 

Tires: Goodyear Blue Streak: 600-15 front, 800-15 rear

Numbers: 600-plus horsepower, 430 ft.-lbs. of torque, 3150 lbs. w/driver

 

Modern Trans Am car:

Tires: Hoosier TA2 slicks

Numbers: 500 hp, 465 ft.-lbs. , 2800 lbs. w/driver

bmw88rider
bmw88rider SuperDork
2/22/18 9:46 a.m.

I'd be interested to see how much of that gap was just tires alone. 

 

Great piece though. The buy in for the modern TA2 is really pretty reasonable. I see a few show up to the SCCA events locally. I've always loved that class. Closest thing we have ever gotten to Aussie Supercar here. 

TreDeuce
TreDeuce New Reader
2/22/18 11:14 a.m.

Quite a bit of the time difference has to be the tires. 

Saw the first Trans-Am to be held at SIR/Pacific raceways with the likes of Dave McDonald who later died at the Indy 500 with Eddie Sachs. Quit watching the Indy-500 and F1 for some 30 years after the loss of Dave and Eddy and so many more drivers. 

 

MotorsportsGordon
MotorsportsGordon Reader
2/22/18 11:18 a.m.
TreDeuce said:

Quite a bit of the time difference has to be the tires. 

Saw the first Trans-Am to be held at SIR/Pacific raceways with the likes of Dave McDonald who later died at the Indy 500 with Eddie Sachs. Quit watching the Indy-500 and F1 for some 30 years after the loss of Dave and Eddy and so many more drivers. 

 

Your probably thinking of a different race or series the first trans am was was 2 years after his crash.

jonk67
jonk67
2/24/18 7:15 p.m.

1970 TA

Front: American Racing 8.5" X 15" / 8" X 15" tire?

Rear: American Racing 8.5" X 15"?/ 10" X 15" tire?

TA2

Front: Bassett ? X 15" / Hoosier ? tire size

Rear: Bassett ? X 15" / Hoosier ? tire size

 

More info would be great, the TA look is what I'm going for with my '67 restoration. 

 

TA2 is running a 351W block bored/stroked to 377ci? Is this just a new casting of the old block? Really surprised they don't go with the coyote? But I do like seeing old iron used in a new chassis and fake body at least. There's been enough old body's subjected to new engines. I've wanted to take a 2010+ Mustang with a blown engine and swap in a good old big block 428, etc. or a built 302/351W with webers vs. fuel injection and computers. 

PT_SHO
PT_SHO New Reader
5/23/18 1:01 a.m.

Yeah I would guess (not knowing if the tires on the '70 are a "modern" compound) that tires are a lot of the difference.  But I'm hearing:

a tube frame with better front suspension geometry,

ten percent less weight, likely distributed more evenly,

probably better aero, and a lot fatter torque curve (+20% displacement, more torque despite not being wound nearly as tight).

It's surprising that there isn't a bigger gap.

MazdaFace
MazdaFace HalfDork
5/23/18 4:19 a.m.

In reply to PT_SHO :

That's what I was thinking

octavious
octavious Dork
5/23/18 6:51 a.m.

Great article.  Thank you.  

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
5/23/18 7:57 a.m.

It would be interesting to see lap differences on equal tires, but I would also imagine the difference in braking also contributes to the lap times.  The newer car can likely brake a lot deeper into a corner than the vintage one.

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