A Fiat Cinquecento Sporting faster than a Ferrari???

Fast or Quick?

Gary Phillips

We all know what fast means, but what’s quick? In car terms if you asked any school boy, or girl, they could reel off a list of the usual suspects, Porsche, Lamborghini, Ferrari etc. but what happens if you ask for an example of a quick car? Is it the same as a fast car or something different? I think it’s something very, very different and potentially just as exciting and more accessible to most.

Given access to a so called super car, any driver with the nerve and the right environment can drive fast, 100, 150, even 200mph, but this will inevitably be a straight line and will consist of no more of going up through the gears, until terminal velocity, or terminal cowardice is reached followed by a controlled deceleration.  Good for bragging rights down the pub, but it’s no more satisfying than a theme park ride.

So what’s quick all about? I think it’s getting the maximum out of any given car in the real world, so for me a Fiat Cinquecento Sporting has the same quick rating as a Ferrari.  Let me explain, yes the Ferrari will beat the little Fiat in a drag race, top speed, and cornering, but, and this is the BIG but, where will you be able to use your nice red Ferrari at its maximum? Basically nowhere.

But the little Fiat (other small cars are available) can be used to its near maximum potential almost everywhere, max rev’s, hard braking and tyre squealing cornering.  Ok, the numbers won’t be anywhere near the Ferrari but you will be using almost all of the Fiat’s potential.  You will be able to experience what a car feels like on the limit, on a limited budget and at a speed where if your luck runs out before your ability, you will live to tell the tale.

To progress to the full quick car status you will also have to adopt your driving style to make up for the limited performance of the car, planning ahead, avoiding unnecessary braking, keeping your speed up wherever possible, and using the cars size to maximise overtaking and cornering.  Once you’ve taken on this approach you will be pleasantly surprised to find out that your overall journey times are no slower than far grander cars.  This is where you and the car can truly start talking about being quick.

As they say more is less.