Bluelighter S2000 R1

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[size=4][b][u]Car[/u]: [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] S2000 R1
[u]Tuner[/u]: Rotary Junkie
[u]Tuning Shop[/u]: RRV Motor Works

[u]Lap Time[/u]: [color="Blue"]1:26.716[/color][/b][/size]

Sorry to sound negative, but I was hoping the great Rotary Junky would have provided a lightweight car with a more challenging tune, rather than something which [i]starts off[/i] as already being a top-notch tuner automobile. Whatever though. This won't affect my judging, I promise. 


Top Speed: [color="Blue"]136.0 mph[/color][/b]

Note. The [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color] and [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] have exactly the same power & weight, but oddly I could get a better lap time in the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color]. I attribute this to the fact that the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] has a different gearing scheme. It also has a [b]carbon shaft[/b] (the [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color] didn't list one as required). Using a lighter driveshaft makes for a very small advantage (literally hundredths of a second, or tenths of a second if you're lucky) but those small advantages add up when you're cruising out of corner after corner. :idea:

So...gearing. [b]We're only using gears 2 thru 5[/b] in the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color], and the gearing itself seems just a bit more convenient for Twin Ring Motegi. The [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color] assumes gear 6 also sees action in addition to gears 2 thru 5, which (in theory) adds just a slight bit of clutch-disengagement time. Anyways, I got a better lap time in the[color="Blue"] Blue Lighter[/color], and it felt like less work.

The [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] also has suspension tuning more to my liking (more on this later). The main area where the [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color] has a clear advantage is the fact that it hasn't got a limited-slip. In the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color], I couldn't plant the throttle quite as early (especially out of hairpin areas), and had to be slightly less aggressive while doing so; lest just a bit of understeer shows up.  But it's remarkable, the set of small differences between [color="Green"]Lime[/color] and [color="Blue"]Blue[/color]. Any "Need 4 Speed" type of driver who doesn't understand what fine-tuning is all about, and doesn't find it necessary, would probably miss these subtle differences. I didn't.

Overall, there isn't much issue with speed (and employing it) in the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] for the same reasons as found in the previous article. But when compared to some others in this contest, it isn't quite as fast, and try as I might, I couldn't get the lowest lap times in the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color].



This part got a little interesting for me, personally.

There are some subtle (and not so subtle) differences between the[color="Green"] Lime Lighter[/color] and the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color]. The latter car has a limited slip, for instance. It also has some radically different suspension ideas including (and I like this) [b]staggered ride height[/b]--lower in front/higher by 15mm in the rear. I personally almost NEVER set my ride height exactly the same front & back, so I felt completely comfortable with the way the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] transfers weight.

Other differences? The camber is offset further than it was in the [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color], and there's a small amount of toe up front. This eliminates some of the former car's front-end grabbyness. The [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] is also set with a [u]softer[/u] suspension tune, and hasn't had its body super-stiffened with a rollcage. :tup:

I definately and IMMEDIATELY could tell the differences between [color="Green"]Lime[/color] and [color="Blue"]Blue[/color].

Good stuff: over cornering aprons, the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] is barely upset, wheras the [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color] sometimes gets squirrely. The [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] also feels just slightly more adept in those corners. Perhaps this is just the fact that I'm more comfortable with lower ground clearance up front (I set most of my front-engine cars this way). Lots of camber, which I thought might be bad, but honestly, it doesn't affect traction at all, and perhaps even enhances grip mid-corner, just as it should. :D

Most of the things which give this car a high score are facts caused by the fact that the Amuse S2000 is, in fact, nearly a race car from the get-go, but one can't ignore that Rotary Junkie also has had his influence, as well. Point the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter [/color]this way, and it goes that way. Point it that way, and you'll never have to worry. Transitioning from side to side in the esses is therefore a breeze. :tup:

Now the bad stuff (what bad stuff there is, anyways). Mostly, it's the [b]limited-slip[/b]. In the[color="Green"] Lime Lighter[/color], I could punch the gas earlier out of slower areas. In the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color], I had to be more cautious; feeding the gas carefully, as if I was trying to feed a hungry tiger with my bare hands. [b]Understeer[/b] shows up otherwise. [i]Small amounts[/i] of understeer...but understeer, nonetheless. :indiff: It simply limits a further max-point. Once the front-end locks in a little better (usually mid-corner), it's then possible to plant the throttle, and the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] starts throttle-steering just as you'd expect. :)

Braking in both cars (Lime and Blue) is similar. Again, I'd prefer slightly stronger front brakes, and managed a slightly better time once I set the front stronger; but overall, the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] also stops on a dime, when compared to others in this contest.  



The [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] is slightly less versatile than the [color="Green"]Lime Lighter[/color], mostly because it's got a limited-slip. Even tho I could manage a better lap time in RJ's car, I had to be more careful while navigating those corners. But while driving for fun, sport, or Best Lap times, the Blue Lighter feels almost as versatile.


[u][b]Car versus Battle Monster[/b][/u][/size]:

Again, not much to say here, as the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] could easily eat the BATTLE MONSTER for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, while digesting its lap time with seconds to spare. Room for desert. ;) 


[b][u]Improvement over Stock[/u][/b][/size]:

And again, really not much improvement here. The stock Amuse S2000 can do all the things the [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color] can do, just not as quickly. The [color="Blue"]Blue Lighter[/color]'s main advantages (again) are that it's lighter and has gearing more appropriate for Twin Ring. 

Oh, and I added an extra point since I like the fact that the Bluelighter hasn't been chassis/body stiffened. It means more of the stock Amuse's flexibility is left intact. 


TOTAL SCORE: 76[/size][/b][/color]