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Standard Suspension/Steering Feel "Soft"?

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gobmcdeeusa

Guest
I've recently driven a standard 2007 C6 coupe and it felt kinda soft to me. I currently own a 2005 BMW Z4 which feels tight in comparison. I feel the road better and the steering is tighter in the BMW. Does anyone else think the standard Corvette suspension is soft and does the other setups F55 or Z51 give better road feel and a tighter, more precise steering feel? I didn't drive a Z51 optioned Corvette because I don't want the extra expense of the tires BUT..... I wasn't expecting this. What am I missing?
 

NORTY

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 7, 2006
Messages
851
Location
Carlsbad,Ca.
Corvette
2006 C6Z DSOM
The Corvette has variable sensitivity as a result of the algorythems the ECU is getting. here are some parameters:
1. Vehicle speed.
2. Tire inflation (really!)
3. Steering inputs.
4. Lateral G's.
5. Gas pedal movement speed (REALLY!)
6. Brake threshold.

The computer will "read" what the driver wants, and then deliver.


The largest effect is vehicle speed for the steering sensitivity.
 
Joined
Mar 27, 2003
Messages
3,671
Location
Mustang, OK
Corvette
'13 427 60th vert - '21 Silver Flare Coupe - CTS V Wagon(4-door Vette)
I've never driven a BMW so I can't compare but I have an F55 car and do not find it soft at all. In fact, my '06 F55 car is tighter in Tour mode than my wife's '03 in Tour. In sport, both are about the same.

If you try an F55 car, you get the standard F1 GS2 tires instead of the F1 SC tires that come on the Z51 cars.
 
G

gobmcdeeusa

Guest
Thanks for the replies. I also noticed that the Corvette idles rather rough. Is this typical as well? The BMW is smooth as silk at idle. Please don't think I'm bashing the Vette as I thinkg it's a beautiful automobile and has a lot of technology supporting its claim to fame. I'm just giving my observations. I also thought the Bose stereo was better than the standard but not all that much better, and it was difficult seeing the HUD in bright afternoon sunlight conditions. I like having a tight steering wheel at any speed. I got the Vette up to maybe 60 mph and I could have driven it with two fingers while making turns. I like it firmer than that. Will Z51 do the trick? I find it hard to believe that the F55 would change the steering feel that much, but I do believe the feel of the suspension should feel different. Also, what is the expected life of the Z51 tires compared to the standard tires if you don't drive too aggressively?
 
Joined
Mar 27, 2003
Messages
3,671
Location
Mustang, OK
Corvette
'13 427 60th vert - '21 Silver Flare Coupe - CTS V Wagon(4-door Vette)
Lots of questions!

I don't know if the idle isn't smooth or not as it feels fine to me - then again, all the cars in my garage are LS1, LS2 or LS6 motors and the all feel the same to me.

Can't speak for the stereo as my hearing aids don't seem to care either way.

I find the C6 HUD to be very readable in the bright sun and very adjustable. The C5 HUD is harder to read and seems to fade out a little over time.

What you refer to as a tight steering wheel may be just the difference in off-center response. In the past (C4 era) the run-flat tires with the stiff side walls made a noticable different in steering response. The C5 and C6 suspensions tuned some of this out and the variable steering takes care of the rest of it. I don't really want a twitchy car. I find the steering response to be very good from parking lot speeds all the way to 160 - and at 160 it better not be twitchy.

Each suspension reacts with the steering programming and vice versa. F55 will be better than base and Z51 will be better than F55.

I have the "Z51" style tires on my CTS-V and they wear out real fast. Under hard driving, less than 10K miles seems to be normal. Trying to take it easy most of the time only gets me around 13K on the tires. Can't speak fully about the Vettes wear rate but I hear it is about the same. The GS2 tires will last a lot longer and be much better in the rain and snow.
 
Joined
May 10, 2002
Messages
2,254
Location
Boise, Idaho
Corvette
2002 electron blue Z06
I have a 2002 Z06 and my wife has a 2001 BMW 330xi. They are both great cars, but they have different characteristics. The BMW in-line 6 is smoother than the V8. It is just inherent in the design of in-line vs V configured engines. I have driven a couple of Z3's and they do feel lighter and more nimble than my Z. I think it is largely a function of relative size. Having said that, I would pick the Z to win just about every speed contest that you could devise.

But part of what I like about the Corvette is its brutal nature. I think the BMW and the Corvette get the job done; they just do it differently. If I need to run to the store, I will take the 'Vette every time. But if we take a road trip together out of state, we usually take the BMW because it is quieter and has more room for our stuff. I would take the Corvette if it was just me, but my wife likes the BMW better. She like smooth and I like a little rough around the edges.
 
G

gobmcdeeusa

Guest
So the F55 in sport setting is closer to the feel of the standard suspension or the Z51? I'm leaning toward F55 but will probably leave in Sport setting to get better body control and road feel. How much are you paying to have all four of your C6 standard or Z51 tires replaced? How many miles are you getting on them before replacement?
 

Lucy64

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 20, 2002
Messages
369
Location
South Riding, VA, USA
Corvette
1964 Red Convertible and 2005 DSOM Z51 Coupe
I just passed 18K miles on the original tires on my 05 Z51. The rears are worn a little more then the front (I don't know how that happens). I suspect I will get about 25K on these tires. I don't baby it, but I don't push it hard all of the time either. Based on what I have been reading 20K to 25K is close to the norm for someone that doesn't really run it hard.
 

korvettekarl

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 24, 2003
Messages
472
Location
Las Vegas, NV
Corvette
2017 Grand Sport 90 ZR1 57 Bel Air
I recently replaced the tires on my 05 Z51 6 speed. They tagged my for $1425 installed balanced etc. I had 18,887 miles on them. They weren't babied but I didn't do burn outs every day either. I put Pilot Sports on it. I am not happy with them. I prefer the BF Goodrich KDWs over the pilot sports. Both are made by Michellin but very different tires.
 

Lucy64

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 20, 2002
Messages
369
Location
South Riding, VA, USA
Corvette
1964 Red Convertible and 2005 DSOM Z51 Coupe
I've recently driven a standard 2007 C6 coupe and it felt kinda soft to me. I currently own a 2005 BMW Z4 which feels tight in comparison. I feel the road better and the steering is tighter in the BMW.

I traded in a BMW M3 when I bought my C6 coupe so I know what you are saying. You really can't expect the C6 to have the same feel as a much smaller more docile BMW. The Z4 is even smaller then the M3 I traded, so I am sure you notice even more. What is the wheelbase on the Z4?? I am sure it is much shorter and weighs less. The M3 was real tight and I could feel every peeble in the the road, and the C6 does feel much 'softer'. The BMW was more of a road racing car and the C6 just has tons of power and does not handle as well, even with the Z51 option. But I am totally sold on my C6 and have no plans on going back to BMW. I will take the power and comfort.
 
G

gobmcdeeusa

Guest
Lucy64,

How did you get over knowing that the interior of the BMW was not nearly as nice as the Corvettes? I'm assuming you noticed this of course. One of my anxieties lies with that the Corvette interior fit n finish and quality seems so inferior to the BMW products. I don't want to be bringing the car into Chevy every few months to fix something.
 

Lucy64

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 20, 2002
Messages
369
Location
South Riding, VA, USA
Corvette
1964 Red Convertible and 2005 DSOM Z51 Coupe
I guess I just love the look of the C6. I had no desire to get a C5, but when the C6 came out I just had to have one. I test drove a C5 hardtop when I bought the M3 and the M3 was one awesome car. But I just love the lines of the C6. My C6 had only been in the shop one time in the past, and that was for the recall for the coupe top problems. But I did have to take it in this week for a problem with the wiring harness of the front driving light/turn signal and will have to take it back Tuesday to have that replaced. But that is all covered by the dealer and won't cost me anything. I think the C6 interior is much better then the C5 was, but it is not near as nice as the BMW. What got me on the M3 was the cost of the brakes and tires. I was due again for both when I traded it on the C6, and brakes on the M3 cost mucho bucks. So I made the move. Prior to this both my wife and I both drove BMW's, now we have none. The cost for upkeep on a BMW is much higher then the Vette. PLUS.....2 Vettes side by side in the garage looks awesome. I bought my C6 used, 1 year old with only 9K miles, it had been a leased car. I got a great deal I couldn't pass up. I figure my next move in the future will be a used C6 Z06 when those prices start to fall. The M3 didn't really turn any heads, but the orange C6 sure does.
 
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gobmcdeeusa

Guest
Lucy64,

I meant the reverse: My bad! How did you get over knowing that the interior of the Corvette was not nearly as nice as the BMWs? I must be loosing it. Car buying is so stressful. It looks like you understood what I meant anyway. Thanks!
 

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