Project Sipster Part 8: All The Drag-Reducing Details
by Dave Coleman
This is it kids, the last story in the Project Sipster series. This one is longer and more detailed than the original story (first published on TopGear.com America) in an attempt to elevate the nerdiness to something approaching a MotoIQ level.
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Project Sipster Part 7 - Sipster Indeed
Suddenly, out of nowhere, the conclusion, but not the end. Now, with lots of goofy raw video footage and stories of RC planes!
Project Sipster Part 6 - Faster Sipster
If you want a Diesel to make more power, you just have to squirt in more fuel. If you've never tuned an engine before, this is the most obvious thing in the world. But if you're used to tuning gas engines, this is the most preposterously naive and wrong-headed thing we've said in at least a week. Diesels, it seems, are a bit different.
UPDATE! I just found the dyno chart!
Project Sipster Part 5 - Safer Sipster
By Dave Coleman
We are not the manly men that inhabited the earth back in 1981, fearlessly cruising the streets without airbags, side impact beams or any hint of structural integrity; in all honesty, driving around in this little box kinda scares us. Since making an old car actually crashworthy is beyond even our powers of exaggeration, we're avoiding the whole crashworthiness issue by making the car easier not to crash. Handling and good brakes are our airbags.
Project Sipster is full to its bare metal roof with luggage, disorganized boxes of Rabbit parts and a full Cabriolet body kit; fender flares, side skirts, front bumper and all. To the untrained eye, it looks like a homeless camp. Our Editor isn't helping with the image problem. In the 30 minutes he's been stranded, hoping somebody, anybody will drive past this desolate stretch of Canadian nothingness, Jared has put on two pairs of pants, three sweatshirts and a sleeping bag. He hasn't slept for days and his hair… actually, his hair always looks like that.
Any dropout parts jockey can open a parts book and order a new left axle for a '91 Integra, but what if you have an engine from a '91 Integra and an insatiable desire to put it in an '86 Chevy Sprint? There isn't a book in the world that will tell you which axle will work for that one.
Project Sipster Part 2 - The Road to Regina
The Diesel engine's stubbornly inaccurate reputation as smelly, rattly and tragically underpowered was cemented in America's collective memory in large part by the Diesel Rabbit. However great they may seem with the tint of nostalgia and the amnesia of time, they were, in reality, pretty awful. But even judged by the exceedingly low standards of its original performance, this particular example was utterly pathetic. Pedestrians could beat it across an intersection at full throttle, and nothing short of driving off a cliff would convince it to break 30.
A 70mpg, 7-second 0-60 daily driver for $7,000? It seemed like a good idea at the time...
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