@nightwave With its sleek body, the Kerberos Hydra was high on the list of cars that the Petsamians wanted to test, despite its slightly overbudget pricetag of $80.6k. Once it was seen in person, the engineers wasted no time in getting it out onto the road.
During the test-drive, the engineers were a little underwhelmed with its performance, displaying relatively average comfort and drivability despite its prestigious showing. Crash testing also showed average safety. Reliability was good though not exceptional, and the engineers noticed significant brake fade compared to all of the other cars surveyed…explained by the use of cheap solid disk brakes, to their disappointment. Alarmingly, the car chugged petrol at an unbelievable rate, drinking nearly 14 liters per 100 km (17 MPG), and emissions testing confirmed that this car was the worst at fuel efficiency and emissions. The lack of an undertray didn’t help matters either.
While the engineers did appreciate the Hydra’s transmission, and it was not a bad car, there was not much to celebrate about it either. It was overpriced, and the fuel consumption was a big letdown, so it was excluded from further consideration.
@S31 Another nice-looking car, the MAHG Lambda looked big and imposing, and its suicide doors made it a car that couldn’t be forgotten.
On the road, the Lambda was wonderfully comfortable, and both engineers and politicians agreed that this was the most relaxing car they had been in during this evaluation, and surprisingly practical too! Crash safety was also very high, to everyone’s satisfaction. Drivability was about average, however, and its agility was very poor - this was a car for straight roads, and the relatively high fuel consumption with 98 RON fuel and high overdrive was not liked. The hydropneumatics suspension was also controversial.
And then, it happened - the car started showing wear and problems during testing, clearly being the least reliable car in the lineup. With a poor environmental resistance result as well, the engineers looked at it closely, and found that it was also using cheap treat and galvanized steel…and it also had cheap open differentials. It became clear that this car was optimized for comfort above all else, a decision not liked by the engineers, and with its problems, it was summarily excluded from the final 3.
@variationofvariables Of all of the cars in the competition, the Quezon Laguna would easily take the prize for the most anticipated to be driven, based on its looks alone. It was certainly a beautiful car, and there were high hopes for it.
Unfortunately, as a famous movie once said, “Reality is often disappointing”. While it looked, and certainly felt like the most prestigious car there, and it had a nice sporty feel to it with its dual clutch transmission, it was below average in comfort and reliability, and it wasn’t all that nice to drive. It did well in safety tests, but several others still managed to beat it.
On top of its mediocre performance, the asking price of $85k was way too much for the Petsamians to consider, so the Laguna had to be set aside.
@vero94773 Voltari’s Aileros was considered to be one of two “sports sedans” in the competition, with sporty looks and feel, so the Petsamians were interested in how it would compare to the more comfort-focused cars.
Driving around, comfort was average - not a surprise there - as well as pretty much everything else. It used expensive 98 RON fuel, but its fuel consumption was low enough to make it alright, and it was reliable and prestigious enough for the competition despite its low practicality. Nothing else really stood out, though engineers also liked its automatic transmission.
What set it apart from the other entries though, was its modest price of $75.2k. With a good value for its performance, and good looks too, the Aileros found itself as a finalist for the Petsamian fleet.
@66mazda If the Aileros was a sports sedan, the Kaizen SC72 was a true sports car that happened to end up in a luxury sedan competition. Sporting looks, sporting feel, sporting V12 turbo engine, and the smallest wheelbase of any cars there at 2.8m - it was an interesting departure from all of the rest. And with a tag price of $71.2k, it was almost unbelievably cheap for what it promised too.
Road tests confirmed that it was a sportscar, using special high-speed sports tires to support its excellent acceleration and top speed. It was a blast to drive, safety was average enough, and to the engineer’s surprise, it was also found to be the most reliable car in the competition. It was not very comfortable for the passengers and the entertainment system was a little cheap for its target audience, but this wasn’t much of a surprise. The suspension also seemed a little cheap compared to others, but was acceptable enough. A nasty surprise did occur though, when the service cost estimation found it to be by far the most expensive to maintain.
Despite - or perhaps because of its unusual sportiness, the SC72 caught the attention of everyone there, and with good performance at a low price, it easily found its way into the last finalist spot.
Congratulations to our three finalists! The winner will be announced tomorrow; until then, good luck!