Carbon Fiber, Titanium, Nitrous, and other space age materials are really interesting stuff, expensive stuff. Such things seem to have a very high numerical value, numbers number numbers. Closet Accountants, time slips, bank accounts. It is all 'speed'. Can you tell me what is fast?
Can you tell me, what is illusion?
Speed in the automotive world is defined simply as the feeling of traveling fast. Long long ago, people began hopping behind the wheel of cars, bikes, planes, etc and competing against each other to measure, or judge each others feeling of speed. Was it to see who had the fastest car, or two see who's bragging before the race was most accurate. To justify and back their claims of this feeling of speed. Surely the cars couldn't talk, surely the cars couldn't boast or brag, surely the cars could only do what the human made them do. Speed has never been anything but the feeling of traveling fast.
I spent sometime recently browsing through random car blogs, and the only real news that seemed to get attention was news of new Super cars. I've never quite understood the interest in super cars as they are slower than F1 cars, cost about the same, and you really can't drive them anywhere? Was it wrong to question what people observe as fast, and what truly is fast?
Comparison of people observation for speed is settled two ways: Either you apply scientific numbers to the vehicles performance, or you race another car who claims to be faster and see who the victor is. Both ways are terribly flawed measurements of speed. I'm reminded of the Simpsons episode where Krusty gambles away his daughters violin, resulting in the famous line of Legs, one of Fat Tony's henchmen spouting:
Well, it won't bring much cash, but its sentimental value is through the roof!
Speed is measured exactly the same way, it's a feeling that develops from the experiences with the car.
Your first car always seems to be the fastest. You're out on the road, lost by yourself in the middle of the night with no one around you. blasting down the road doing a speed that now, is common in your everyday driving but back then caused sweat and concentration, when suddenly a cat darts out in front of you. A slight dodge, a miss, you throw some dirt up as you avoid the ditch, and it's all over. Heart pounding, sweat above your eye brows. Man that was fast!
I'm curious to when numbers took over, I'm curious to when numbers replaced feelings and emotions. 0-60 times, top speeds, mileage estimates, etc. When did they become so important?
Accountants are very smart and meticulous people. They never miss a beat, or a number, but closet accountants, those who wish to hide their love for numbers often have other things on their minds and only hide behind the easiest numbers to remember. These people often forget not only their feelings, but the true numbers behind the speed of a car.
The ferrari is a fast car right? The VL commodore, not so much? Well let me leave you with a question, for the price of the VL commodore, and the number of times it average rate of drive per month, which car has the higher average speed? Which car can you drive faster more often?
Which car will give you the feeling of speed most often?
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I’ve never really been into running the 1/4, only toyed with racing friends and remember those first few cars that were ‘fast’.
Ignorance is bliss.