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oldsaw Reader
8/17/09 11:05 p.m.
Salanis wrote:
Keith wrote: I was basing my comment primarily on a sample size of one: my wife. This is the woman who is forcing me to build the MG and who has started hounding me for an E39 M5 (although she's recently said she'll settle for a E46 M3). The M Coupe does nothing for her. Well, nothing good. "Smooth flowing lines" isn't a description I would have come up with. "Looks like an athletic shoe", maybe I'm going to continue to work on Janel about accepting the M Coupe. Hopefully I'll be able to change her mind.
Hehehe. Well, the lines are smooth, and do flow... they just don't flow the way you'd expect them to. It's a love it or hate it car. And I don't think that has anything to do with gender.

Seems like this thread devolved from "Grand Touring" to "Getting Trim".

Back on topic, may I present the Ferrari 308 GT/4:

Ok, it's a Ferrari so perhaps that affects my "GT" argument, but it's not a Ferrari normally associated with "GT".

In it's favor, it is a Ferrari, it has "GT" in its' designation, and the rear seats are best considered as receptacles for the soft luggage that cannot fit in the limited trunk space.

I want one, always have, always will.

benzbaron Reader
8/17/09 11:55 p.m.

A proper mercedes slc can cover great distances at high speed with good stability and they are about as reliable as a 30 year old car can be. The 6 cylinder will do over 100mph steadily without issue, the car can apparently do 120mph, but you'd hate to kill it in Utah. A V8 slc will be even faster, the only problem is gas mileage. Coming back from LA through Paso Robles with over 100F temps I was cruising at 95mph with no issues.

I like the Dino 308gt, it is a really cool car. A teacher in college had one. The Dino 308 is cool because they are relatively cheap given their pedigree.

alex HalfDork
8/18/09 11:56 a.m.

I"m throwing in some love for my first performance car, inherited when my father got the Corvette he'd been dreaming about since he was 16: a Dodge Stealth RT/TT.

I really miss that car. It singlehandedly took me from being alpha theatre/band dweeb in high school to being the cool alpha theatre/band dweeb.

If they weren't such an electronics nightmare, I'd be looking for one. They should be capital C cheap by now, but I know I'd just be asking for trouble. Someday when I can afford to track down the one perfect low-miles collector example, I will.

Keith GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
8/18/09 12:26 p.m.

The BMW 540i Sport that the boss is selling (it's on ebay right now for a pretty good price, $8k will probably take it) has a lot of the attributes - smooth, quick, comfortable. Half the price of an E39 M5, too. But it fails the sexy test, and I think that's important for a GT. Definitely not the car to pull up to the casino in Monte Carlo or to impress the mistress. Because a GT has to impress the mistress, doesn't it?

alex HalfDork
8/18/09 12:30 p.m.

Agreed. This is one of those categories where sex appeal is important.

jgp1843 HalfDork
8/18/09 10:38 p.m.

I'll have to toss in a vote for the 86.5-on Supra. I had one for about three years, and it was an interesting car. It looked good, for the day it was adequately quick (mine was NA, but would do a relaxed 128 - don't ask), it was super comfortable and quiet, it handled very well once it got Konis and a decent alignment, and it got acceptable gas mileage for the day (20+ mpg at sustained 90+ mph. Don't ask how I know).

So why did I swap it after three years? Several reasons, none of which apply to it's value as a GT. First, it was absolutely helpless in the snow if the tires had less than half depth. Second, it wasn't really fun to drive because everything was so effortless,and because by the time you felt you were trying a little, you were going at insane speeds on the street. Thirdly, even though I got a good deal on a used one, it was still in the steep part of the depreciation curve. And the truth is, it was HEAVY, and I prefer light, efficient cars. So I sold it and bought my first MR2, which was everything the Supra wasn't: it was kind of noisy, handled great, it was fun (and got super gas mileage).

But for a GT, ie a car with good looks, that you could get into and drive 1000 miles at a stretch through winding roads in comfort, quiet, and at high average speeds, the Supra was a good car. It just depends on how much you value the everyday fun factor. Some folks considered them a Japanese Camaro; I thought of them as a Japanese 928.

z31maniac Dork
8/18/09 10:40 p.m.

See my screen name? Had one all through high school and first few years of college.

Loved that car. A hoot to drive, MONSTEROUS gas tank (~21 gallons) and a TON of room in the hatch for whatever you could possibly need.

neon4891 SuperDork
8/18/09 10:55 p.m.

My personal build, a Mustang II hatch. But ny the time it is improved enough, it would be far from a grass roots budget.

ReverendDexter HalfDork
8/19/09 12:00 a.m.

My Cobra immediately springs to mind.

I love that car for road trips. Leather seats, A/C, and it'll cruise for the entire tank at 80mph (knocking down 23mpg+ while doing so). Handling, while not true sports car level, is more than enough to maintain speed limit+5 though most corners, or at least caution sign+25. The combination of power and handling enables passing at pretty much any opportunity presented, which can cut a considerable amount of time out of daytime trips across mountain ranges (i.e. Santa Rosa to Thunderhill via 20/29).

Travis_K HalfDork
8/19/09 12:31 a.m.

One of the bertone volvos would work too, although they are a little odd looking.

ProjectVIN New Reader
8/19/09 12:41 a.m.

For a dream GT, the new Lotus Evora springs immediately to mind, but then that may just be because I was reading up on it.

Grassroots GT? Another vote cast for the 300ZX. If i'm doing 1000 miles I want to be in a (relatively) newer car, and the 300ZX was the truest GT of all of the sports cars Japan was tossing our way at the time.

Bargain-basement would be a 3800-Supercharged Riviera. Big but unique.

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 2:28 a.m.
aussiesmg wrote: My personal GT cars are my 4 Triumph Stags, should be one good Stag when done

aussie, if you do it with the original Triumph V8 instead of the conversion...you're my hero.

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 2:31 a.m.
slantvaliant wrote:
friedgreencorrado wrote: I still recall a Chevrolet "Vega GT" called such a thing just because it had split seats and a console up the middle.
IIRC, all Vegas had bucket seats and consoles. The GT had a gauge package, "styled" wheels and better tires, some suspension tweaking, and the Holley/Weber 2-barrel carb. My Kammback - not a GT - had been retrofitted with a GT dash, which I really liked. Once I added a Starfire GT steering wheel, the driver's office really wasn't bad.

Those things actually handled pretty good for their time, didn't they? I'd still like one of the Cosworths..but only if someone would build it for me. Not exactly Grassroots, eh?

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 2:43 a.m.
ddavidv wrote: It does have 4 usable seats though. This thing is actually called a GT and I have to say that, other than some anemic acceleration in stock form, it really does live up to the task. Very comfortable cruising at highway speeds, loves to carve corners, stylish (I think) and with the leather seats probably the most luxurious car I've ever owned. Best of all you can buy them at Challenge friendly prices.

As a VW guy...I must agree. I love the B2 GT..I actually looked for one for my g/f for awhile (she'd look great in one), but she didn't feel the love for the two or three we looked at.

Sadly, I've moved it from the "short list" to the "long list"...especially since as a VAG product, I already know how to work on it, and even had the parts network lined up..

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 2:50 a.m.
Jay wrote: Mitsubishi Starion Porsche 944 Mk.II/III Supra Mitsubishi 3000GT ...or are those too sporty for GTs?

Nah. A GT is supposed to be sporty, but not uncompromising. The kind of thing you take out of the garage when you don't want to put up with your autocross/track day Miata for 2000km..

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 2:56 a.m.
924guy wrote: assembly required....

I hear ya, bro...

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 3:01 a.m.
Will wrote: Mine is a 94 Thunderbird SC. Tons of torque, 4-wheel double A-arm independent suspension, RWD, 5-speed manual, power everything inside, a big trunk, a decent rear seat and I like the looks. It runs high 12s in the quarter (after a lot of mods, anyway) and autocrosses pretty well for a 3500 pound car.

I still think those things are among the most under-appreciated American cars on the planet (a buddy of mine had one "back in the day"..). I hate that Ford went the "retro" path on the T-Bird. If they'd kept working on that platform, they would have eventually come up with a BMW beater.

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 3:08 a.m.
ultraclyde wrote: Howabout........Mustang...uh..GT? The late models are plenty cushy, plenty fast, and have all the creature comforts, but have back seats that only amputees can use. The trunk's not too bad. 'Course, since it says GT on the fender, it might not qualify.

Oh, it does...I just mentioned Camaros because I was a Chevy fan as a kid. My fault for forgetting why GM made the Camaro in the first place.

friedgreencorrado HalfDork
8/19/09 3:20 a.m.

Ah, dang. Sorry for the multiple posts, guys...and apologies to the folks I skipped...lots of good stuff here! If I replied to each one, this thread would be about 500 posts long.

I can't believe that I forgot to mention the BMW E24, the Porsche 928, the 9th & 10th gen Ford T-Birds (SC for me!), and the Merc SECs.

I'll shut up now, but y'all keep going! Maybe some great old cars'll get saved instead of crushed, just because we reminded somebody how cool they are...

pinchvalve GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
8/19/09 10:26 a.m.

With a W-8 or W-12:

Keith GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
8/19/09 10:58 a.m.

We're seeing two kinds of cars here: affordable cars that can be considered GTs (Stealth, 300Z, Supra) and high-end GTs that have become affordable (928, BMW 8-series). Quite a difference there.

Well, and a third class, DIY GTs like a W-12 Scirocco or LS-powered MG.

Ian F
Ian F HalfDork
8/19/09 12:09 p.m.

Hmm.... some interesting choices... nearly bought an Audi Coupe GT a number of years ago...

ready to go as-is:

8-series... auto or manual... for a hwy cruiser it doesn't matter as much...

E36 M3... yeah... while it does the "sports car thing" very well, I know from personal experience that it makes for an excellent hwy cruiser...

more 'project' cars:

Volvo 1800ES (w/ a crap load of mods to make it handle and go)... Our "nice" ES is a wonderful car for hwy cruising. If it had cruise control and a/c it would be damn near perfect (although with 210K miles on a 118hp engine, powerful it ain't).

Triumph GT6 with mods to make the interior a more pleasant place to spend time (like a/c, stereo, c.c., some sound insulation...)

Osterkraut Dork
8/19/09 12:15 p.m.

I've changed my mind. The late model 928 (S4? Is that right?) is the best Grassroots GT car.

Autolex Reader
8/19/09 12:21 p.m.

+1 to the 8 Series (and older 6 series for that matter)

How about Aston Martin?

Ferarri 599GTB/612 Scaglietti seem to fit the bill for the "perfect" GT car... as does the maserati Gran Turismo...(assuming money is no object)

How about the Mazda Cosmo? 3 rotor Wankel?


wait 7-10 years for the S5/A5 to become cheap?

Ian F
Ian F HalfDork
8/19/09 12:32 p.m.
Autolex wrote: How about Aston Martin?

While definitely the quintessential GT, they fail on the "grassroots" part... still quite expensive (I drive by a dealer that sells/services old A-M's every day).

+1 on the 6-series... lots of luxury and very reasonably priced.

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