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Kill Count


Experienced Member
13 May 2000
Lake oswego, OR
Do any of you have experiences with stoplight racing? I seem to attract stop light racers like lint to a static cloth...So far I am undefeated..but today I had an intersting experience. I had a run in with an old friend who I hadnt seen for maybe 10 years. His car? 1998 BMW M3. I've heard great things about the M3's and was fully prepared to get my ass handed to me by this newer car, as I have a 10 year old stock 3.0L 5spd ( and a bad clutch).
well, off the line , I was WELL ahead of him by the time I was shifting into second, and pulling away very quickly in second gear. He followed me on the freeway,(I have resigned myself to the fact that an NSX is NOT in fact a stoplight king, as the acceleration is not quite in the realm of a C-5 Corvette or Viper)BUT much to my surprise, he still couldnt not keep up with me at all. I would have thought that the much praised M3 would be MUCH faster.)
I went through some sweeping corners and he literally disappeared in my mirror. I later found he almost lost his car on the dirt at one point..
anyways, that brings my count up to 2 300ZX's, 1 Integra, 1 Mustang GT, 1 M3, and 1 Supra...

Anyone have anything to say in defense of the M3? I was just expecting MUCH more.
I just had a similar experience at the track. I just got back from a great day at Laguna Seca in my '91 5 speed with mods I've mentioned in other threads. When I bumped up to the Intermediate group (only my third track event, still running in the Novice class) I spotted a BMW M Coupe a few turns ahead. I've heard some pretty good things about this car, and have test driven the new coupe, although not the M series. Well, imagine my surprise when, after only one lap, I had reeled him in and passed him! I'm willing to bet he was more than a little surprised as well.
Edo, there's a lot more to this (old) car than a lot of people realize!
Hey Edo,

In your post you said "acceleration is not quite in the realm of a C-5 Corvette or Viper" Viper I can see, but the C-5? I've read 0-60s for the 91 5 speed as low as 5.0 stock and the vettes best I've READ was 4.8 so doesn't that qualify for "in the realm"?

Just curious.

Good story though.
0-60 in 5.0 Seconds? Thats pretty impressive. Most of the mag's I saw had 0-60's for a '91 posted at around 5.9 seconds or so. Which is SIGNIFICANTLY slower than a Corvette's 4.8 seconds, and on par with an M3's 5.9 seconds. I suppose the numbers are very subjective. Either way, I either A) came upon a terrible M3 driver, or B)the NSX is alot quicker than they look on paper.
Your right! The best most magazines could get out of a 91 was 5.5-5.9 sec. I am not sure why! I even saw one 1/4 time listed at 14.00! The nsx is easy to drive so I am not sure if it might have been the drivers or the car (it might have been very abused). Either way, I have posted consistant 5.1-5.2 sec times to 60 in my 92 (intake+lowing springs) and 1/4 runs in 13.3-13.4 at 108 mph. A friend that ran a 2000 6spd posted times between 5.23-5.4 and 1/4 of 13.4-13.6 at 106 mph. He launched the car perfectly every time as well. Most cars get a little faster as they get older as well(to a certain point). Elevation also plays a part in performance! I beleive that for every 1,000-1,500 ft, you loose 2-3% in horsepower. The vette also about 6,000 miles on it versus my 92 with 48,000. I am not sure exactly where magazines get there cars from but I do know that in the old days it was not uncommon for them to come from the factory with hand built, blueprinted engines with more horsepower then hand delivered to the mags. Who knows?
I read all kinds of car mags, and I know that that you shouldn't base your car on magazine numbers. But I've read about 4 different mags when the NSX was introduced in 91 and they were all 5.0 to 5.4 for the 5 speed and 5.8 5.9 for the auto, 0-60. So to me that seems really consistant. Just my 2 cents.

[This message has been edited by PUREVIL (edited 24 June 2000).]
Originally posted by nsxer:
I have posted consistant 5.1-5.2 sec times to 60 in my 92 (intake+lowing springs) and 1/4 runs in 13.3-13.4 at 108 mph. A friend that ran a 2000 6spd posted times between 5.23-5.4 and 1/4 of 13.4-13.6 at 106 mph

How are you measuring these times?
First of all, let's set the record straight on the 0-60 times for the stock '91 NSX. Here is what the magazines tested it at:

AutoWeek (8/26/91) 5.3
Car and Driver (9/90) 5.2
Motor Trend (12/90) 5.4
Road & Track (8/90) 5.7
Sports Car International (12/90) 5.03

Now, about that M3. Keep in mind that the biggest factors in acceleration time (not the only ones, but the biggest ones) are power and weight. The current M3 has 240 hp and weighs over 3,200 pounds. The '91 NSX has 270 hp and weighs 3,000 pounds. Those are significant differences, so you SHOULD be pulling away from him, easily.

Of course, the upcoming E46 M3, with its 336 hp, may be a different story.
Lud, We got the times using a Stalker radar gun that links to a laptop. It is the same unit that all of the magazines use. It takes 33 readings a sec. It will measure just about any performance data you need, acceleration, acceleration g-forces, 1/4 mile time-speed, it will even show you how fast you shift by the g changes that occur when you push the clutch in and then engage it. It is a ton of fun! Any info you guys would like to see, let me know!
I've raced with 2 99 M3, one is totally stock and another one has B&B exhaust, K&N air intake. My car is 91 5 speed with I/E/H
and 18 inch wheels. We were about the same fast; however, after 120km, i started pulling away from them. I didn't expect M3 is that fast as I've beaten S4 easily from the start.
Ok, so this is a bit confusing, We've got a few people here that say that a '91 NSX is far quicker than an M3, and some people that say that the M3's put up a very good fight.
NSXer says that it was not uncommon for the Mag's to get blueprinted engines.. That would be the age old factory "Ringer" story. Well, if thats the case, why are stock NSX's pulling faster 0-60 times than the Magazine tested ones? It should be the exact opposite no?
And also, if the NSX has 270hp and the M3 has 240hp and weighs more, why do they post roughly the same acceleration times on Car Mags?
I know (as Lud informed me on another topic) that peak horsepower ratings dont necessarily decide the faster car, but again, if there is such a descrepancy in power/weight ratio's, why would the M3 post almost identical 0-60 and 1/4mi times as an NSX?
That doesnt seem to make sense to me. As far as I know Cars should all adhere roughly to the F=MA equation...
I guess I'll go ahead and add to this thread too. I've had a couple of M3 kills as well. Both on the twisties and at lights. And that was BEFORE the mods. Now with the short gears and R&P (not to mention the headers and exhaust) the car feels quicker than ever off the line!
Originally posted by Edo:
And also, if the NSX has 270hp and the M3 has 240hp and weighs more, why do they post roughly the same acceleration times on Car Mags?

They don't. Can you quote magazine reports where the M3 acceleration was tested 0-60 at 5.2 seconds? I don't think so...

I've owned a 6-speed C5, and currently own an NSX and an M Coupe.

The C5 is full half second faster (o-60) than the 3.0 NSX and in real world terms that's an ass whooping.

The M Coupe is faster than the NSX off the line. More torque.

Remember, I've had and raced all three. After 60mph it's all over, the NSX blows past the M Coupe.

Overall the NSX is the most refined and capable at high speeds. If you want a stoplight racer buy an old Mustang 5.0 and throw a blower in it.


94 Red & Tan NSX 5spd
1999 Cosmos BMW M Coupe 5spd
Originally posted by Edo:
The M Coupe is the new one that looks like a Super Civic on Steroids right?
What about the M3 are they close in performance?

Many people say it looks like a shoe.

The two cars (M Coupe and M3) have the same 240 hp drivetrain and the suspension is the same or similar. The M Coupe has only a slight weight advantage (weighs 3130 pounds vs 3200-something for the M3), so performance should be pretty similar, too.

[This message has been edited by nsxtasy (edited 27 June 2000).]
Originally posted by NSEX:
ok..BMW M power makes the most powerful 240hp
and don't forget they got TORQUE.

What matters to acceleration is not just torque, but TORQUE AT THE WHEELS, which is engine torque multiplied by the gearing. Even though the NSX torque figure isn't that high, it is offset by the fact that the NSX has a flat torque curve so that there's power WAY up to the 8000 rpm redline, whereas most other cars need to shift before that point. Once a shift takes place, torque at the wheels drops because of the gearing disadvantage.
That part makes perfect sense, but I dont in fact understand is people who have raced them and say they are definitely slower, and people who have owned them who say they are definitely FASTER. Could the amount of torque give an ILLUSION of faster acceleration? on the M3?
Originally posted by nsxer:
Lud, We got the times using a Stalker radar gun that links to a laptop

That sounds like a great setup!! I have never had a chance to play around with that type of rig before. I've used the poor man's version (G-Tech) enough to be frustrated with it's inaccuracy but that's about it.

One thing to keep in mind about your 1/4 mile speeds using the radar gun setup is that they are going to be higher than at a drag strip. At most modern strips the trap speed is measured with two light beams 60 feet apart. A light beam is placed 60 feet in front of the finish line and the finish line is the last beam. Then they average the speed. Obviously this is lower (though not by much) than your actual speed across the line in most situations.

Also, I'm not sure if the software compensates for conditions (temperature, etc.) which can affect drag strip speeds and times by a decent amount.

[This message has been edited by Lud (edited 27 June 2000).]
Actually, in the program with the radar gun you can have it show NHRA 1/4 times and speed or actuall time and speeds. You are correct in that the acutall speeds are higher than NHRA settings. You can also set it up for different roll-out distances. Any distance you want actually. We usually set it up NHRA style in that you have a 1 foot roll-out before it starts taking measurements. It will measure 1/4 mile time/speed, 1000ft. time/speed, 660ft time/speed, 0-to what ever speed you want, and distance in feet. The easiest is to make a run ut ot about 110mph and then pull out the info that you want to see. It is a lot of fun to compare what times magazines have for 50-70 mph or 30-90mpn times for cars and then compare them to our times. About the M3 ordeal, our data shows what some of you have said, 30-90 times for the nsx are faster than the M3! At least the data that we collected.
So is this program is just software only? It is not support software for Radar guns and things like that?
You just type in some of the conditions and it pops out all the "Theoretical" stats?
Careful with those radar guns... i saw some program on tv about a motorcycle-cop who was bringing litigation against the state due to his testicular cancer. It seems the officer had the habit of resting the radar gun in between his legs during lulls in traffic when he was looking for speeders. Although i wouldnt wish that condition on anyone, the phrase "serves you right" did come to mind..
Edo, The software that comes with the radar gun is called Stalker ATS. The radar gun links to your laptop via a 9 pin cable and then plugs into your parallel port. You then control the gun from the laptop. It already has several (about 25) performance perameters you can choose from but then you can creat your own ie.0-25mph or how fast you travel from 73-289 ft. Normally we set the gun behind the car on a tripod and sit next to the gun. We use cheap Radio Shack headsets to tell the driver when to go. Once the car leaves the line or goes at least one foot (when you choose the roll-out option as all the car mags do) the gun begins to take 33 readings a second. You can see the speed on both the back of the radar gun and the laptop (a little speedometer on the screen). Once the car reaches a little past whatever you are testing to, you hit the spacebar and it stops. You then save all the data in a file to later graph it out and read the data. You can put up to ten cars on one graph just like all the car mags do or look at the numerical data. The gun is acurate to an 1/8 of an inch. Anyway, it is fun to compare the data with what car mags get, especially something like 30-90mph which brings up the M3 talk, I can tell you from my experiences that an unmodified M3 cannot keep up with an NSX once up to speed. 0-60 it is pretty close, the fastest one we recorded was I believe 5.6 sec. with a very good driver. Once up to speed though, you can easily see on the graphs where the NSX really begins to pull away, right around 50 mph. If there is any info you guys would like to see let me know, we have tons of cars in our database, we even had a guy bring down (from Wichita) a Lamborghini Diablo 30th anniversay (white, very rare). Not only was it fast (0-60 in 4.5 sec) it sounded awesome. I've got video clips if anyone would like to see it! I've talked enough!