Some things that are happening:
- Cars are getting heavier
- Cars are getting taller
- Wheels are getting bigger
- Cars are getting quieter
But at the same time:
- Power is increasing
- Tires are getting better
- Traction control is getting better (including allowing some shenanigans)
- Brakes are getting bigger
- In EV’s, center of gravity is very low
- Dynamic suspension settings are more common
- Car noise is fake anyway, so you can set the volume to whatever you want
What if we just need to adjust our sense of scale for what a car is? If a tall, heavy crossover with 22 inch wheels is faster around a track than an M3, then how exactly is the M3 more fun? The latest M3 sounds like ass and has electric power steering anyway.
What if the 2022 Miata is electric, requiring it to weigh 1000 lbs more? Triple the power, scale up the brakes, widen the tires and what’s the difference, really? If you can’t tell how much the car weighs, does it matter?
I’m mostly playing devil’s advocate here, because the only good thing about my Neon is its light weight (and that stick in the middle) and that is truly enough to make the car incredibly fun and affordable to drive.
I am actually wondering if we will need to make a mental adjustment in 5-10 years to the idea of whether a 4000 lb car on 22 inch wheels can be “playful.”