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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
All, I am struggling with traction on my goat. Tires are good condition (3500 miles). I have complained about the BF Goodrich tires before as being too hard (400 treadwear), and how stupid it is that these are put on the GTO. Anyway, I am running low air temps 30 front 28 rear currently (I have also had them at 32 all around). If I am taking a turn of about 30-50 degree angle and hit the gas at all, the rear end slips out on me. There is no traction whatsoever. The control kicks in and allows me to regain control before looping it, but this is awful. The rear end almost swung into a car yesterday.

I used to have a '96 Mustang GT, solid rear axle, not traction control and all and I have to say it stuck to the road much much better than the GTO. I DO understand that was 190 rear wheels vs something like 340HP.

My question, is this just the GTO or can I blame it on the tires? I would have thought this thing would stick. I'm starting to wonder if a good set of new soft rubber will make any difference. Any suggestions or advice?
 

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definately the gto, it can hold its own if your not accelerating mid turns or taking it to fast but i do know what you mean, naturally better tires would help, but these cars ussually can do a number on any high performance tires.
 

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I'm looking forward to having that problem again. Ive owned a few high hp cars and thats something they all have in common. You've gotta have a healty respect for the go pedal. Good tires help but they can only do so much. I've spent alot of time here lately and they've got alot of info about tires. Good luck.
 

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Russ2005 said:
My question, is this just the GTO or can I blame it on the tires? I would have thought this thing would stick. I'm starting to wonder if a good set of new soft rubber will make any difference. Any suggestions or advice?
It might be how you're driving. If you go into one of these turns too fast, you're going to overcompensate by getting completely off the gas, overbraking, and allowing the RPMs to drop.

What happens is that when you get back on the gas -- the combination of your (now) too slow speed, too low engine RPM, torque, suspension load and momentum are all going to cause the ass-end of the car to slide out.

Try braking in a straight line as you're going into a turn, set your gear, match your revs, slightly accelerate through the first half of the turn, then accelerate really hard as you're coming out.

This way the vast majority of your momentum will be going forward -- so even if you do induce wheelspin -- you'll be doing it in a manner which is a lot easier to control -- like a 5 to 10 degree correction versus something crazy like 30 or 40. Your corner speeds will be higher, too.

Learned this a few years ago at Lime Rock Park. Some guy was going flat out through a turn. Everybody thought he was the fastest -- because his engine note indicated he was on the gas the whole time. Turns out he was going too slow into the corner to begin with -- so it was the guys who were lifting that were actually going faster.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks all. Thanks B_A_. Since it is a 30-40 degree turn, I am trying to carry some speed into the turn and down shifting. You are probably right, dropping the RPMs then hitting gas gives the wheel spin. I'm not driving that hard, just playing coming home from work. It just seems to slip out easier than it should. I need to get out to a track, skidpad, parking lot, or something to figure out what this thing can and can not do.
 

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oh you're downshifting into turns? That's your problem right there. :agree with everything B_A_ was saying, if you're going into a turn, keep your gear.
 

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Russ2005 said:
I'm not driving that hard, just playing coming home from work. It just seems to slip out easier than it should. I need to get out to a track, skidpad, parking lot, or something to figure out what this thing can and can not do.
That's actually a very, very good strategy to learn how to get the most of out of your car. Too bad Pontiac doesn't sponsor driving clinics like Porsche and BMW does. See if Road Atlanta offers any cheap track and instructor time. That will help, too.

A car with 400/400 output that handles and brakes well? For $33K? We've never had the combination of price and performance available until now -- and finding the edge of these cars takes practice and talent. I like to think I'm pretty good -- but I've got a good friend who used to drive in the Trans Am series back in its hey day. Geez, he gets behind the wheel - and the difference is night and day. So fast, so smooth -- he just flat out carries speed at all times.

As an example of just how quick these new hi-po cars can do you in -- my Dad's neighbor, a guy who's close to 70, just shelled out top dollar for new Vette rag top -- and, with less than 500 miles, decides he wants to smoke the tires. Turns the T/C off, stomps the gas while making a right turn -- blows the tires off -- then overcorrects and lifts at the same time.

The rear tires bite while the front tires are turned left -- so they fling his car through a tree lined median. Of course, once he comes out the other side -- he gets t-boned by a car heading the other way. If he got hit on the driver's side -- he would have been dead. But since it was the passenger side -- he's now driving a rebuilt car with a screwed up paint job with more rattles than a coffee can full of rocks.

Be careful and have fun!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
b_a_

Thanks for your comments. Actually, I have a buddy that was also Trans-Am driver (unfortunately defunct series now...thanks Mr Gentilozzi), NASCAR hired gun, and currently doing some Grand-Am work. I spent 5 years on the team as gopher, company sponsor, cook, PR man, etc). Check out his web site that I maintain for him at milleracing.com. Most all the photos in the gallery have been taken by me. The Sears Point and Watkins Glen NASCAR experiences have been quite a good time along with all the old Trans-Am venues such as Laguna Seca, LAGP, Elkhart Lake, Road Atlanta, etc. Fun times. Who is your Trans-Am buddy?

I'm certain I will get pointers and a GTO driving lesson from Johnny next time I see him. He sarcastically asked "how are you doing Mr Goatman" every time I speak with him. I look forward to the day I see him in person next and he gets behind the wheel...I know I will chit a brick within my own car...lol. At least then I will know exactly what the limits of the car are.
 

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Remember Johnny quite well! His EATON sponsorship stood out. Heard that the Speed World Challenge GT Series, which is pretty much identical to Trans-Am, is going to assume the name and combine the fields of cars.

Trans-Am was awesome in the late '80's and early '90's. Roush was in it. My bud Tom Gloy. Willie Ribbs. Tons of factory teams. Best race I ever saw was an early '90s race at Sears Point. Jack Baldwin had his Hot Wheels sponsored Camaro -- and that event was awesome. Trouble is, zero fans were there. Next thing you know, Tide dumps its series sponsorship -- and it was all downhill from there. Remember those old Cougars, the ICI Berettas and the Mac Tools Merkurs? Damn, that was hot.

What gives me indigestion is the fact that, to me, one of the goofiest forms of motorsports, NASCAR, which has rear wheel drive Fusions, Chargers and Monte Carlos on ovals -- takes off -- while nobody watches GTOs, Vipers, etc. compete in SWCGTS. Augh!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
B_A_

Very Cool. I've met Tom Gloy along the way but was not a very friendly person to me. I was wearing Rocketsports crew uniform, so maybe that was it. Willie T is awesome! I hung with him when he came back to race with Frank Cipiotinni (sp?) and his Camero burnt to the ground. Last I saw him (or heard anything about him) was at Long Beach about 4 years ago. I work for AutomationDirect (an was at least partially responsible for the big green smiley face on the car). After Tran-Am lost TNN and CBS TV deals and signed the big SPEED contract we kind of stepped out and Eaton got to take the reigns for a few years with the Jaguar and Rocketsports. Johnny's first race was 1995 in a home built Camero at Road Atlanta. I missed the Jack Baldwin, etc days. I do remember the Merkurs running in Trans-Am. Too much fun to be able and be behind the scenes of the series. I've also heard the World Challenge rumor. It is probably the best fit to carry on the name. I hate that Trans-Am died but understand why.
 

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High speed cornering is all about set up going into the turn. This car is a great drift car because of the weight ratio and power. Definitely practice in a large empty parking lot but keep it under control, donuts in a parking lot will get you a ticket. The only place you can safely practice drifting is on a closed track.

Goodluck:cheers
 

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ok something must be wrong with my goat.. I mean if I try to kick the rear out I can.. but the way your talking it seems like yours just wants to do it.. I've done plenty of U-turns and never had an issue with the rear kicking out at all.. only time its actually kicked out is when I ask it to by pressing the go peddle more.. I must be missing something like hp and tq or something..
 

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I have not had a problem with the rear getting away from me. I down shift and punch the gas around corners all the time and the only thing I get is some fish tail. But it never seems like it is getting away from me. The car doesn't fish tail as much since I got rid of the oem tires. I went with Bridgestone's Fusion 255/40ZRI17. Much better tire than the BF Goodrich and it only cost me $103 per tire instead of $160.
 

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I have quite some experience with drifting. The GTO has a flat torque line, and the line isn't low either. When you are cornering, there is less available grip from the tires than when you are going straight, and with a torquey car like the GTO, it is very easy to lose traction. I drive a AE86 Corolla GT-S (The last RWD Corolla) with an LSD rear end, with the low amount of power it has, I am careful through hard cornering. But when I want you get crazy, a nice clutch kick will get things stirred up real quick. I can't wait to get my GTO.
 
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