MatraSport Forum

Each model => Murena => Topic started by: gizmo on June 05, 2007, 11:05:41 pm



Title: Wheels and tyres
Post by: gizmo on June 05, 2007, 11:05:41 pm

In another thread we are talking about the murena suspension and perhaps how to improve it but a major factor in the cars cornering power (as distinct from its handling) is the tyres. Do we stick with 14 inch rims and 60 profile tyres or fit 17 inch rims with 40 profile tyres? Of course there are various options in 15 and 16 inches also. As for tyre width, what will fit in the arches? Any recommendations for the make of tyres you are running?



Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on June 06, 2007, 12:03:57 pm
I have found that the Murena likes soft, sticky compounds and based on that I went for Yokohamas that has a reputation for being soft and grippy. Yokohama's generally score well in various tests, though they wear significantly faster than competitors.

But since wear rate and grip are in principle reversely correlated, I find that to be an indication of their uncompromised grippy nature ;)

And so far (running some 700 km on different roads) I am very satisfied with them! They don't oversteer, understeer or loose grip at all. Their limit is much further out than mine. Only on the very wet do they seem to set a limit (tendency to understeer), but that is acceptible. I think my winter tyres will be doing better then.

My front tyre size is non-standard, being a 55-profile instead of a 60. This is what Roy Gillard recommends strongly. I have never tried the 60 profile, though.

In the Yokohama case I had to accept different tyre patterns - the fronts are "S.drive", while the rears are "C.drive". S stands for "Sport", while "C" for comfort. So you can probably imagine that the carcass on the on the 55's is much stiffer than on the rears.

I just went to have the front wheels rebalanced because of vibration > 100 km/h. They are now far better, but when the mechanic and I worked with them we noticed that the rims are not perfectly round. Both front rims have been deformed a few mm which unfortunately means that they will never be perfect. These are the original rims.

It's a pity really, because had I known this I would have bought a pair of 15 inch rims and fitted 50-profile tyres on it with 195's on the front and 205's on the rear (i.e. 10 mm wider than standard), but now that I have the new tyres (and like them), I will probably buy myself a pair of new 14 inch rims in a design that matches the car.

I have been told to avoid Firestone's by the way, as they are simply too hard and will never perform well on the Murena.

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: gizmo on June 06, 2007, 10:52:16 pm

Interesting coments, I had yokohama's on my mx5 (185/60 x 14) and agree they are a good tyre, however I have recently changed the wheels and tyres for 17 inch rims and 205/40  budget tyres. The logic behind this is the 17's look better in the wheel arches and the car is rarely driven hard so grip was not a priority. Let's face facts the mx5 is really for posing on sunny days, and it's used mainly by my wife. I was of course expecting all of the undesirable side effects like poor ride quality adverse steering feedback etc. imagine my surprise to find the car is actually better than before, logic tells me it should be worse but no it really is improved and even my wife agrees. Explanations welcome.

On the subject of changing rims, on the murena using wobble bolts will allow the fitment of rims with 100x4 stud spacings and these wheels are much more common and cheaper and better still for me is that I have 3 other cars which use this stud pattern so I will be able to swap wheels and compare the different sizes without any extra expense (although I might need to buy a few pairs of axel stands).

I concur with your comment on firestone's, I had them on an MGB and they were bad, they were replaced by michelin XAS which were fantastic. Of course it's always dangerous to compare tyres when they are not fitted to the same type of car, I liked goodyears on a previous car but I'm not impressed with the goodyears on the mr2. Unlike the mx5 which rarely goes over 120kmph the mr2 rarely goes under 120kmph.



Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on June 07, 2007, 11:25:15 am
Interesting coments, I had yokohama's on my mx5 (185/60 x 14) and agree they are a good tyre, however I have recently changed the wheels and tyres for 17 inch rims and 205/40  budget tyres. The logic behind this is the 17's look better in the wheel arches and the car is rarely driven hard so grip was not a priority. Let's face facts the mx5 is really for posing on sunny days, and it's used mainly by my wife. I was of course expecting all of the undesirable side effects like poor ride quality adverse steering feedback etc. imagine my surprise to find the car is actually better than before, logic tells me it should be worse but no it really is improved and even my wife agrees. Explanations welcome.

New tyres are always better than old and with my own problems with irregular rims in mind, it may also be that your new rims are more circular than the old ones. Balancing could also be better on the new ones.

Quote
On the subject of changing rims, on the murena using wobble bolts will allow the fitment of rims with 100x4 stud spacings and these wheels are much more common and cheaper and better still for me is that I have 3 other cars which use this stud pattern so I will be able to swap wheels and compare the different sizes without any extra expense (although I might need to buy a few pairs of axel stands).

Until Krede, and now you mentioned them, I didn't know about the existence of wobble bolts. Are they really useful?

Quote
Unlike the mx5 which rarely goes over 120kmph the mr2 rarely goes under 120kmph.

Is it the first generation MR2?


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: gizmo on June 07, 2007, 02:33:58 pm

New tyres are always better than old and with my own problems with irregular rims in mind, it may also be that your new rims are more circular than the old ones. Balancing could also be better on the new ones.

The yokohama's (A460's) were less than half worn and the rims are not old as the car has only done 12,000km. As mentioned they were really changed just for the look of the larger wheels.

Quote
Until Krede, and now you mentioned them, I didn't know about the existence of wobble bolts. Are they really useful?

Read the advert and decide for yourself: They come in most lengths and thread sizes.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v29/anglais17/Matra%20Murena/murena_bolts.jpg)


Quote
Is it the first generation MR2?

Yes, a mk1b

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v29/anglais17/MR2/mr2_1.jpg)

I will try the yokohama's on the mr2 to compare them to the present goodyears.



Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on June 07, 2007, 02:51:38 pm
Thats a nice Toyota that is!! :)
And look!!.. a sportscar DOES look good in white ;)


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: lewisman on June 07, 2007, 08:47:01 pm
White is the new black!

Don't forget that although Fiat/Alfa use the same pcd on their wheels, the bolts have a different thread.

You can also get a kit to replace the bolts with studs.  Makes it easier to replace the wheels but otherwise no difference.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on June 07, 2007, 08:53:31 pm
Don't forget that although Fiat/Alfa use the same pcd on their wheels, the bolts have a different thread.

Yes, thank you for reminding us!


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: lewisman on June 07, 2007, 09:29:52 pm
More proof that sportscars can look good in white 8)

(http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f114/swagon/ludfinal.jpg)

I should have kept it.......


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: gizmo on June 08, 2007, 12:20:41 am

Don't forget that although Fiat/Alfa use the same pcd on their wheels, the bolts have a different thread.

These wobble bolts come in every length and thread combination you could ask for, the Alfa advert was just an example to show one of the companies who supply them.

Yes lewisman the baggy looks nice in white, you really should  have kept it.



Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: lewisman on June 08, 2007, 01:16:44 am
A lot of the wobble bolts are sold for Alfas and Fiats because they use the same 98mm pcd unlike the rest which are mostly either 100mm (they are the ones of interest to us) or 108mm.  I didn't doubt you would know all about the thread issue, just that others might not remember to check.

The white Baggy was quite nice when I sold it.  It was right hand drive and it had a 1.6 Solara engine.  I had to sell it to start building a house!

Unfortunately it was sold on ebay last year for 350 in a sorry state.   :(  I almost bought it but for once the heart ruled the head. The thought of cutting out all of the welding that I did in the late 80's to do it all over again was enough to put me off.

Luckily the murena came up.  Probably needs as much work on the engine, interior and paintwork but at least it has a good chassis.

I have a few sets of spare alloys so have a choice of either 14" standard, 15" five spoke TSW, 16" Momo Arrows or (if I steal them off the wife's Alfa) 17" Momo five spoke alloys to try out on the murena.  (The least likely will be the 14" standard alloys which will no doubt end up on fleabay.)  I suspect the 17s would need to have different offsets front and rear. Not sure about the Arrows but the 15" TSWs look good on.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Lennart Sorth on June 23, 2007, 02:16:17 am
More proof that sportscars can look good in white 8)
nice!

Yes, you should have kept it, - but I'm sure you had good reason to part with it then.


On the topic of alloys, I use 15" Azev-A for summer driving, and when I bought them, the company simply asked for the offset, pcd and center hole diam - then they drilled the holes and balanced the  alloy.  I *think* I spoke to the German main company directly, but I could be wrong. It is 11 years ago.


/Lennart


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Ols on June 28, 2007, 11:08:24 am
Can i fit a 15 inch rims with  60 - 205 tyres in the front and in the back have anyone tried it , or should i stick to 14 inch , i would really like to put on 205 because i hate sport cars with thin tyres


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on June 28, 2007, 12:26:46 pm
Can i fit a 15 inch rims with  60 - 205 tyres in the front and in the back have anyone tried it , or should i stick to 14 inch , i would really like to put on 205 because i hate sport cars with thin tyres

The correct sizes on 15" rims are

front:  195/50R15
rear: 205/50R15

Lennart runs on that and is happy with it. It also looks good.

Don't fit the same width front and rear as you won't get the correct balance between front and rear. Also be careful to get the typre pressures right!

- Anders 8)


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Laurens on June 28, 2007, 06:20:42 pm
i am very satified with toyo proxis t1 r

205-50-15 and 225-50-15 on 15 inch wrd mesh 7j and 8j rims.

i have koni in the front and rear. with shortened 2.2 springs in the rear.

i have a 1.6

handling is very addicting.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: macaroni on June 28, 2007, 10:28:30 pm
Anyone know the correct offset to use front and back?


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on June 28, 2007, 10:38:46 pm
Anyone know the correct offset to use front and back?

Oh yes, that would be 29 mm
And there is plenty of space in the wheel arches to accomodate wider rims with the offset retained.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Laurens on June 29, 2007, 01:10:39 am
i have offset (ET) 20 with my 7j in front and 8j in the back. in the front you wont need a lower et. in the back it could be et 15 with no problem i think (with 8j).


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: gizmo on July 01, 2007, 10:37:28 pm

The subject of tyre pressures has arisen in several threads and recommendations of 1.6 front and 2.5 rear have been mentioned.  The way I see it, after we have inflated the tyres sufficiently to stop them being flat on the bottom any additional pressure is principally to adjust the tyres slip angle (ok. there are other factors but let's get the discussion started). Such a difference in pressures indicates to me a fundamental imbalance in the front/rear grip. Bearing in mind that the increase in rear pressure is increasing the grip at the rear, we also have wider rear tyres and a significantly wider rear track. If it is necessary to do all of this and still have a car which would like to oversteer what is wrong with the original set up? after all tyre pressure adjustments should be for fine tuning not basic set up. I have a few ideas but would welcome input from more experienced murena owners.



Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 01, 2007, 11:27:07 pm
My car is way more prone to "under" rather then oversteer.. especially in the wet.
As for the reason for any "patch up" technical solutions.. well.... oversteer is supposed to be a really hard to manage in midengined cars.... I for one am not brave enough to find out,  so I can only theorize as to how the murena behaves on the limit... the few times mine has had the tail out.. I've been sufficiently scared to make an effort to avoid it the best I can.
So maybe Matra went out of their way to build in some understeer to make the car safer for inexperienced drivers?

Another reason might be the weight distribution of the car.. witch... frankly is far from perfect.. 40-60 at best....and 35-65 is more likely for a 2.2 with a full tank of fuel and a case or two of (warm) beer in the trunk.... and thats rather bad..
I had my 2.2 on the brake tester a few weeks ago, and it actually said roughly 300/700kg!!.. of cause these figures are a very rough estimate as the tester is meant mostly for trucks.. but still... 
Now.. I know this will probably be a red cloth in front of some enthusiasts, but I suspect that as far as handling is concerned the mid engine is NOT an asset for this car.
Weight distribution aside, I still find the murena "heavy" rather then light at the controls... witch should have been another advantage of having the engine at the rear.
The only REAL advantage the murena got from the mid engine layout is the possibillity of having a very low nose and thus a low drag coefficient.

Of cause you could argue that the murena was intended for a lighter engine, that would have improved weight distribution, and that a front engine would have effected the aerodynamics, and that the propeller shaft tunnel would have made the 3 abrest seating impossible..but in my mind the mid engine in the murena is much more "show" then "go"...
Dont get me wrong... I love the mid engine configuration... the low nose and to some exte.... no!.. Id really rather just have had a 2 seater..
But as I was saying.. the things I have mentioned are what makes the murena so special, and I wouldnt have it any other way.. but as performance goes... well....

Also.. keep in mind that the murena is much more of an "upgraded" Bagheera then a new design... and (as far as i know) the Bag was an attempt at an affordable every mans "sportscar", rather then at a serious racer or gt.
Surely with a front suspension dating back to the first simca 1100's and an engine that can be traced just as far back a super car was never intended, But all its flaws aside, Id still say Matra did a very good job on the murena.. to quote a Danish  motoring magazine... "the murena is everyting the Bagheera should have been".. written, I guess, with mostly engine power, and rust problems in mind.
Only thing that went wrong, was the high price, that put it in a class of cars where it didnt belong...AT THE TIME!! (Today, I'd choose a 2.2 murena over a 924 ANY time)


     


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 02, 2007, 06:49:55 am
If it is necessary to do all of this and still have a car which would like to oversteer what is wrong with the original set up?

As Krede also mentions, Murena is tuned to understeer - it doesn't generally oversteer. And I don't think anything is wrong as such with setup, as a matter of fact I think it's quite perfect for a road car. The difference in tyre pressure is quite normal for a mid or rear engined car.

I've got no problem with the weight distribution, I think it's perfect. Lots of fun and excellent driver feedback on everything that's happening between the road and tyres.

Mid engined race cars generally also have 40/60 weight distribution by the way.

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 06, 2007, 08:11:19 pm
Only thing that went wrong, was the high price, that put it in a class of cars where it didnt belong...AT THE TIME!! (Today, I'd choose a 2.2 murena over a 924 ANY time)

I'm sorry but you are definitely wrong here.  The Murena in 1983 was an incredibly cheap car!  Most people who saw my new Murena thought it cost twice what it actually did.

I bought mine new in 1983 and couldn't believe my luck.  A Lotus Esprit (also a GRP mid-engined 2.2 with galvanised chassis) was over twice the price.  My Murena 2.2 was 6900 all taxes paid and an Esprit was 15,000.  And that 924 was 8500, and if you consider the spec. it was no contest - steel wheels, 70 profile tyres, drum rear brakes, wind up windows...  to name just a few things.  I know since I had checked out all the competition before buying the Murena.  The Murena was only around the price of a plain Ford Cortina!  It was a bargain.

The Bagheera was over priced and being prone to corrosion, not as well made, and then the Murena went the other way, being more powerful, more modern, and galvanised and only just over 1000 more.  Whilst a Bagheera was more costly than even more powerful sportcars like an E-type, the Murena was cheaper than just about any other sportscar at the time.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 06, 2007, 08:16:18 pm
Anyone know the correct offset to use front and back?

The correct offset is 28 mm.  This is the factory and original wheel spec.

Anything else means the wheel bearing is taking a side torque.  The vertical loads should go through the centre line of the wheel bearings, and that only happens with the correct offset.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 06, 2007, 08:36:20 pm
Only thing that went wrong, was the high price, that put it in a class of cars where it didnt belong...AT THE TIME!! (Today, I'd choose a 2.2 murena over a 924 ANY time)

I'm sorry but you are definitely wrong here.  The Murena in 1983 was an incredibly cheap car!  Most people who saw my new Murena thought it cost twice what it actually did.

And that is still true: The Murena is an incredibly cheap classic, extremely long lasting and one that can still compete in style and apperance with modern cars. We can keep wondering why, but it is a fact that it is and has apparantly always been underrated.

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 06, 2007, 08:40:00 pm
The subject of tyre pressures has arisen in several threads and recommendations of 1.6 front and 2.5 rear have been mentioned...

Such a difference in pressures indicates to me a fundamental imbalance in the front/rear grip.

I have always run 1.8 bar front and 2.5 bar rear, which is the factory spec. for a 2.2 Murena running at motorway speeds.  Since the Murena can get up to 110 kph quite easily and quickly, I see no point in the low speed recommendations.

PLEASE NOTE: early handbooks had the wrong (low) pressures and a sticker was released with the correct ones.

From my experience over twenty five years of very fast driving of Murena 2.2, I know that anything less than 2.2 bar at the rear noticeably increases the oversteer tendancies of the car, so I always keep mine at 2.5 bar and have never had problems with grip or tyre wear in the centre (which would be the case if these pressures were too high).

As Anders has pointed out, I also found many years ago that 55 profile tyres at the front improve the car more than the small change would suggest.  I wish to keep the unique original wheels on my Murena so that limits the tyres available.  However, 185/55x14 front at 1.8 bar and 195/60x14 rear at 2.5 bar appear to give the optimum in ride handling and grip for a close to original spec.

Obviously if you don't mind changing to non-original wheels then you have a much wider choice, but bear in mind that the main reason why there is this disparity in front and rear tyre pressures is weight. The Murena 2.2 has a 41/59 front/rear weight distribution, and when loaded with a full tank and some luggage can even approach 35/65 I would guess.  So you need the higher rear pressures no matter what wheel/tyres you use.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 06, 2007, 09:14:49 pm
Well.. back in 81 the murena 2.2 was "fair" priced In Denmark (at aprox 180000dkr) ...
But the car was never "in stock" and had to be imported through special order.
And..just a couple of years later, in 84 the price of the car had risen to 300000dkr for the Murena "s".... and that was alot.
Maybe you got them cheaper in the UK because they were only made in left hand drive?   


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 06, 2007, 09:42:21 pm
Obviously if you don't mind changing to non-original wheels then you have a much wider choice, but bear in mind that the main reason why there is this disparity in front and rear tyre pressures is weight. The Murena 2.2 has a 41/59 front/rear weight distribution, and when loaded with a full tank and some luggage can even approach 35/65 I would guess.  So you need the higher rear pressures no matter what wheel/tyres you use.

Tyre pressure and handling is a complex subject and as far as I understand even today still not fully scientifically explained.

But I am certain that the Matra engineers did a good deal of playing with the Murena on the test track to get it right, and personally I would only divert from the recommended numbers (even on non standard rims) after testing on a skid pan!

Roy, don't you think the recommedation for the low tyre pressures would be to increase comfort?

About the offset and only because I hate being corrected (joking!): My original workshop manual specifies 29 mm both for the 5 1/2 inch and 6 inch rims ;)

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: michaltalbot on July 06, 2007, 09:43:34 pm

Maybe you got them cheaper in the UK because they were only made in left hand drive?   

I am not sure, but think that on International Simca Meeting in 2006, there was one British Murena with RHD, but maybe I am wrong...


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: michaltalbot on July 06, 2007, 09:55:37 pm
The Murena 2.2 has a 41/59 front/rear weight distribution...

Exactly! It's not bad. One day on race circuit can teach You how to feel where is the beginning of slide and how to respond. It's much better than cars with front wheel drive.

Yesterday I was sitting for couple of minutes and only watched my Murena. She looks so light, sporty with accurate portion of agresivity, every detail is on its place, all is in harmony... I love this car  ;)

Tomorrow at 4:00 AM we are starting our trip to Germany to visit the big Matra meeting, I am soooooooo looking forward to be there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  ;D


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 06, 2007, 10:01:04 pm
A few Murenas has been converted to right hand drive... but none of these were made by Matra themselves


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 06, 2007, 10:12:04 pm
Tomorrow at 4:00 AM we are starting our trip to Germany to visit the big Matra meeting, I am soooooooo looking forward to be there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  ;D

Oh, yes... Wish you a very nice drive and good meeting... bring greetings from everyone here!

Will you post photos, pllllllease? ;)

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 11, 2007, 12:15:06 am
Well.. back in 81 the murena 2.2 was "fair" priced In Denmark (at aprox 180000dkr) ...
But the car was never "in stock" and had to be imported through special order.
And..just a couple of years later, in 84 the price of the car had risen to 300000dkr for the Murena "s".... and that was a lot.

Maybe you got them cheaper in the UK because they were only made in left hand drive?   

No it was not just because they were LHD.  A standard 2.2 was approx. 5300 in Belgium in 1982/3 before tax, which was cheap even for a LHD car of this caliber.  They were never officially brought to the U.K. so the only way you could buy one here was to go to the continent and buy one, then personally import it, or find one that had been brought in by someone else.

Even with U.K. taxes added on, the 2.2 was just 6,900 which was a bargain.  So the very high price in Denmark suggests to me that someone was making a huge profit.  I know you pay a high tax, but the correct Denmark tax on 5300 still leaves a large discrepancy to that figure you have quoted even allowing for collection!

Roy


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 11, 2007, 12:21:35 am

I am not sure, but think that on International Simca Meeting in 2006, there was one British Murena with RHD, but maybe I am wrong...

Yes, that was Geoff's converted car.  His is probably the best.  The first conversions were terrible especially considering the price they charged.  One problem is the assymetric design, which means none were converted properly - you would have to change the floorpan etc.  The RHD conversion spoils the car in my opinion.

Matra never made any RHD Murena.  There were two companies offering conversions.  We believe about five or six were converted, and a few have been done by owners since.

Roy.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Lennart Sorth on July 11, 2007, 03:26:47 am
I know you pay a high tax, but the correct Denmark tax on 5300 still leaves a large discrepancy to that figure you have quoted even allowing for collection!

Rancho and Bagheera was the only one really imported in Denmark, and that was VERY expensive (I remember 180kdkr-200kdkr for a Bag II). The Murena was only imported on demand, but there was an indicated list price - which as Krede says was roughly 200kdkr (18k) - rising to the ridiculous 300kdkr for the 'S' in 1984.

Danish car-tax is progressive, and tops off with 180%  - and this is calculated  after adding  25% VAT and 12.5% duty.

Because of this, it is common that the importers get a large discount at the factories, making it somewhat less astronomic. This is why non-danes can actually buy VERY cheap cars in Denmark. However, being a small company, Matra never gave any discount, so that made them very much more expensive than mainstream-cars which cost the same in the rest of the world.

Today the difference between say UK and Denmark (new) car prices is about a factor of 2 to 2.2, which is caused by the above mentioned discount, and the soaring profit-margins charged by the UK dealers.

I would think the UK dealers had not become quite as profit-crazed in 1980 as they are today, which may also account for some of the difference.

300kdkr (25k) for a Murena S was a LOT of money in 1984, and still is for that matter.

However, these days, we have successfully got the tax people to evaluate our cars in the very low end, so the tax most often is 2-3k, which is why they are becoming so popular in Denmark now :)


/Lennart


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 11, 2007, 06:48:11 am
However, these days, we have successfully got the tax people to evaluate our cars in the very low end, so the tax most often is 2-3k, which is why they are becoming so popular in Denmark now :)

Yes, this is the used car import tax that currently seems to be the level set by the authorities, and it is so low that the Murena is somewhat of a bargain here, but then again... comparing with equal classed cars from the same era, the level is about the same. Only the Lotus Esprit seems to be much higher priced.

The used car import tax is calculated from the street price of the car in Denmark, and this is of course where the difference in prices come from: An Esprit is just more "wanted" than a Murena, being both more known in the public and rarer.

Krede mentioned the 924 below, and that seems to carry roughly the same tax price tag as the Murena here.

All in all, for Danes looking for a classic car to drive and take good care of, the Murena is a very attractive alternative to the more common choices of "classic" sports cars here: English sports cars of the 1960's and 70's, or Porsches from the 1970's.

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 11, 2007, 02:34:54 pm
Quote
An Esprit is just more "wanted"
Without ever having driven one, I will venture the guess that is it also a much better "sports car". :)

What really sets the Murena apart from other similar cars, is its resistance to corrosion.This makes all the difference to me... I would not have dared buying one, and it would not have suited my needs, had it not been for this.

The low price must be due to Simca/talbots well deserved reputation for rusting away faster then anyone had dared imagine... and the fact that very few people are looking for one to buy.... because very few people have any idea that this car was ever made.
In my humble opinion the Talbot Matra Murena has to be one of (If not THE) most underrated cars EVER!.
The few people I have spoken to who actually knew about the simca/matra cars have ALL been aged 45+ .... as are many of the matra owners ;)


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 11, 2007, 03:40:14 pm
Quote
An Esprit is just more "wanted"
Without ever having driven one, I will venture the guess that is it also a much better "sports car". :)

Why?


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: macaroni on July 11, 2007, 04:01:12 pm
I agree, why?

I've been in an Esprit S4, 264bhp chargecooled, and was distinctly unimpressed. Fast yes, but dreadfully built, camped, noisy and felt very dated compared to my Matra.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 11, 2007, 04:21:10 pm
Are you serious??!!

Quote
dreadfully built, camped, noisy and felt very dated

I would say this description fits my Murena quite accurately... especially the noisy and cramped bits :)

Of cause Its all dependent on what model you compare it with, but the s3 would be the one that time wise is the best match..

But any Esprits has a much better engine... 16 valves.... And i suspect better center of gravity... better suspension and better brakes.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: roy4matra on July 11, 2007, 05:34:20 pm
Are you serious??!!

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dreadfully built, camped, noisy and felt very dated

I would say this description fits my Murena quite accurately... especially the noisy and cramped bits :)

Whilst I note your smiley, I would ask 'Are YOU serious?!'

How can a three seat open floor interior be more clamped than the purely two seat Esprit with huge central dividing tunnel that sits over the chassis?  I found the Esprit very restrictive, and would take my Murena any day over an Esprit.  As for the luggage compartments, well there is just no comparison at all and I never considered the Lotus had one!  If you prefer the Esprit, fine, but you cannot be serious about it being less cramped.

The same goes for noise.  The Murena is quieter than a Lotus.  If yours is very noisy I think it needs some attention.

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Of cause Its all dependent on what model you compare it with, but the s3 would be the one that time wise is the best match..

But any Esprits has a much better engine... 16 valves.... And i suspect better center of gravity... better suspension and better brakes.

The correct comparison has to be the Esprit of the same age i.e. the Esprit S2.2 not the S3 which is a later model.  If you see most S2.2 from around 1982/3 their quality is poor and whilst the original engine had more power (160bhp) than even the 'S' (142bhp) these are generally regarded as temperamental and prone to major oil leaks.  Centre of gravity should be lower as the whole car is lower, but that also makes for more difficult entry and exit, and makes the car less practical for everyday use.  The handling should be better as Lotus are renowned for being some of the best, but I would take exception to better brakes.  Those I have driven have been no better, and if you think about it, they use the same rear calipers so only the pads will make much difference there!  If you use the Kevlar pads in your Murena like I do, you will improve the Murena even further, and the brakes are already brilliant.

The only Lotus I've ever wanted was an S3 SE Elan in my youth, and whilst I enjoy driving any I can get my hands on, I would never want to own a more modern Lotus as they are just not practical sportscars, which the Murena really is.  It has to be as I cannot afford two run lots of cars, and for many years the Murena was my only car.

Roy


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 11, 2007, 07:36:20 pm
Hi Roy.
I have no doubt that you know quite a bit more then me ,about a great many things, not least  Esprits and Murenas, so I won't try to argue (much) ;)
My point is that I don't think the Esprit/Murena comparison is fair.
To the best of my judgment the Murena is a fancy but affordable coupe, more about looks, and every day practicality, than actual performance.
Wheres the Esprit was designed and sold as a real "super car" in line with the  (cheap) Ferrari's, Maserati's etc.. of the mid 70'ies.
Thus making for two very different cars, aimed at different buyers.

As for my own car.
The noisy par is mostly due to the car running a set of 40mm dellortos with bolt on airfilters and "s" cam.
This gives lots of  vibrations particularly at idle, but also in speed, witch results in quite a bit of rattles from various parts of the trim dashboard/bulkhead window etc.
Add to this that its running an overly rich mixture/wrong jets, that lets lots of unburned fuel explode in the exhaust, and makes the car sound like a spitfire going down with flames in its tail, every time you get off the throttle and engine brake...

I find the Murena cramped, as I can't seem to find a good driving position.
I'm 187cm with "long" legs (good for running.. bad for "murena'ing")... I cant get close enough to the steering wheel without my legs getting in the way of the gear leaver.
In tight corners I find the seats appalling, nowhere near enough support, and I also have to move my hands on the steering wheel as I turn the wheel as there isn't room for my knuckles in sharp turns.
And headroom is very limited.

Don't get me wrong.. I absolutely ADORE my murena.. for what it is, and I have never for a second regretted that I bought it.. it might be that it is the poor driving position that spoils the handling for me, but my old 84 1.5 Civic Crx was much more of a laugh to drive, and even with the "s" cam and twin carbs, I find it too slow to be a serious sportscar.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: lewisman on July 11, 2007, 10:05:39 pm
Sounds like you need what the murenas should have had in the first place - a decent engine!

If you found one that fitted, a decent driver's seat would help too.  I think the seats were reasonable when they were new but even the '79 Bagheera X I had back in the 80's (which had the velour interior) had worn through the foam on the driver's seats after 70K miles and that was only 8 or 9 years old.

I am currently balancing the cost of re-trimming my knackered 2.2 murena seats plus re-building the foam with replacing the two main seats with new.  The only problem is finding ones that are narrow enough as obviously the three seat layout is one of the things that makes the murena special.

I am lucky enough to have a set of 1.6 seats in good order (apart from missing a recline lever) which will do for a while even if they are in that shabby brown and white houndstooth material.

The Esprit was aiming at a different market but it was much less of a "production car" than the murena - the S1-S3 Esprit was really just a kit car made in a factory with a hand laid fibre glass body.  It wasn't until the last versions that they were vacuum forming the grp.

Some bits were typical British sportscar parts bin scavenging and it didn't matter whose parts bin they dipped into.  At least Matra stuck to Simca/Citroen bits and they were all from the same decade (mind you the engines should have been left in the previous one where they belonged).


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 11, 2007, 10:52:18 pm
You are definitely on to something regarding the seats and wear.
If I "wedge" myself in with a sweater or pillow, to get better support in corners, the driving experience gets much better.
Also I have driven Anders's car, and in that the foam hasn't collapsed nearly as much as in my own.( He is not as heavy as me I suppose :)  )
I can't get myself to fit other seats then the original ones.... even if the 3 abreast configuration could be maintained.
But I am having my seats re-skinned this fall (velor to genuine cow).. and I am thinking that some mild reshape of the foam, and maybe even a bit of welding on the steel frame of the seat, to make it fit me a bit better.
I reckon it can be done in a way that makes it nearly identical to the original seat.

engine wise, I have a set of 45mm throttle bodies on order, witch should improve the engine characteristic somewhat.... and I have a spare 2.2 that I will be rebuilding with some turbo parts from a Peugeot 505 (n9t).. that should do it.
But for now fitting fuel injection has priority.

I wonder If Matra would have considered fitting the turbo engine from the peugeot themselves had they gotten the chance?... probably not.. as the 16valve n/a 2.2 prototype produced about as much power as the n9tea in the peugeot.. (though not as much torque.)   

 


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Lennart Sorth on July 11, 2007, 11:01:28 pm
I find the Murena cramped, as I can't seem to find a good driving position.

heh - trust me, you will  find MUCH less space in an Esprit - I have tried, and almost couldn't get in (or out again). The space in the footwell is so cramped (for tall people) that you probably would start thinking of detachable steering-wheels, if you had an Esprit.

I have tilted my seat slightly up in the front (with some washers) which gives me a slightly more reclined driving position (on advice from fellow tall-guy Will Falconer :-) )  and during normal driving, I can move a hand between my head and the roof - and I'm 194cm.

Mind you, on a particular "bad morning-hair day", I *do* feel the roof :)

But as you know, my gearlever is somewhat shorter, which helps a lot - but it also helps that is has the choke to the left of it.


One thing you might want to know, however is that the Esprit actually shares its construction with the Murena, with a warm-galvanized chassis, and fiberglass bodywork.
Why do you think I tried some out ? :-)   (back when I ended up falling in love with the first Murena I ever saw in real life ... Roy's in fact :-) )

As a final remark, I have tried an S1 with  mmmmmm lets say not-entirely-the-original engine, plus a monster turbo, giving it 250+hp on a rolling road, and that thing is VERY quick. It has won "Danmarks hurtigste bil" a few times.

/Lennart


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: krede on July 11, 2007, 11:05:56 pm
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I have tilted my seat slightly up in the front (with some washers) which gives me
a slightly more reclined driving position

I think I would have even more trouble reaching the steering wheel, then I have now, if I made that mod.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: Anders Dinsen on July 11, 2007, 11:42:17 pm
Mind you, on a particular "bad morning-hair day", I *do* feel the roof :)

Me too... I'm looking forward to the haircut on Tuesday :D

Also I have driven Anders's car, and in that the foam hasn't collapsed nearly as much as in my own.( He is not as heavy as me I suppose :)  )

Yes, I actually find my seats quite good and supportive. But I doubt if I have made much difference, as I have only driven the car about 5% of it's total mileage.

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maybe even a bit of welding on the steel frame of the seat, to make it fit me a bit better.

I'd personally like to have the back of the drivers seat extended by some 5 cm, this would move the headrest from my neck where it does little good and up to my head. I wonder if anyone has tried that already?

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as the 16valve n/a 2.2 prototype produced about as much power as the n9tea in the peugeot.. (though not as much torque.)   

Difficult to say... but since Matra is connected with screaming engines (not roaring), I think they would have preferred faster rev'ing n/a engines. But the turbo would probably have been a simpler and cheaper upgrade than the 16 valve head which must have cost them a fortune to build. I personally enjoy my Holbay which needs 3500 rpm to kick a.... and happily revs to ear-popping 6000+ rpm even on the 34CIC carb ;) Roy has promised to include an article I've written on the magic this cam does in the September issue of the Matra Mag.

BTW, I'm afraid we are seriously OT by now...

So back on topic: I had my Yokohama's on REALLY wet roads this morning, and they were fine. Driving at 50 km/h down our local main street, a car suddently emerged from the right (i.e. driving side here in DK), and I had to slam the brakes in. All four wheels locked up for a moment until I got my ABS foot activated. Nothing happened, the other car stopped and I could pass it carefully, but it was good to notice how nicely the tyres behaved.

So I'm still extremely happy with the Yoko's - they offer excellent grip and very good feel of the road.

- Anders


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: lewisman on July 12, 2007, 01:37:41 am
Oops!  Sorry. I contributed to the tangential direction from the original post.  The tyres on my murena are a bit of  a mixed bag and as it currently is on a SORN this is not too relevant.  However I have recently changed from Toyo Proxes to Vredestein Sportracs on my Alfa and they are fantastic. The Toyos were good but a bit noisy and wore down quite quickly. The Vredesteins grip just as well in the dry but are quieter, longer lasting and better in the wet.

They would definately be my first choice.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: macaroni on July 12, 2007, 09:17:24 am
This thread has gone from wheels and tyres, through Lotus Esprits and now to seating positions!

I find the Murena very comfy and I am 6'2" (yay for imperial!). The biggest improvement I made was fitting a smaller steering wheel to give my knees some freedom.

I can't see how anyone needs more support for cornering. On the left side is the door and the right side, if travelling 1 or 2 up, just fold the central seat down and if travelling 3 up, just use the central passenger! Although I guess ne shouldn't (or even couldn't...) be going very fast with 3 aboard.


Title: Re: Wheels and tyres
Post by: zac on July 12, 2007, 06:48:28 pm
I can't see how anyone needs more support for cornering.

The seat padding makes a heck of a difference - I really noticed the difference between the well padded seats on my old car and the floppy things on the new one. Must put the middle seat down!  Hasn't really been a problem for the last 18 months as the car's been off the road  :(  The mechanic is back from holiday on Monday so hopefully I will get to drive it again sometime next week  ;D. At least it's now running - only think left to do is reroute water pipes due to deeper air filters (for dellortos).