A Racer’s Perspective IX: Sedans


While this might not be the most exciting class in terms of speed, that is not to say that it is not an exciting class to have races in!  Some of my most memorable close calls and comebacks happen in this class.  It is also where I think my other vehicle (shameless self ego narcissistic plug) would fit, my 4-door E36 BMW (posted below on the left).  A 4-door vehicle that I drive everyday because my son will not fit in the backseat of my Nissan (on the right).  This is really the spirit of the Sedan class, cars you drive to work, mostly cars that will get you from point A to point B, and maybe a few cars that can get moving quickly (but ultimately maintain civility in everyday life when you have to drop your brat kids off at school).  Let’s have a look…

The Chevrolet Aveo is not at all what I would consider to be a performance vehicle, but in the sedan class, the Declasse Asea is a surprisingly spunky little car.  It might not be the fastest car in the class, but it definitely holds its own, especially given its look.  Upgraded, the car is suprisingly quick and very easy to drive.  Check out a slammed and sticker bombed version of the car below (crazy kids).  Note that front-mount intercooler suggesting the vehicle is turbocharged.

A larger four-door family/grocery getter is the Karin Asterope, which is essentially a Toyota Camry with Altezza taillights.  Nothing to really brag about here, the car is not particularly quick.  It is large and has soft suspension, which for going over bumps and curbs is okay, but it does not really corner very sharply.  Kind of a run-of-the-mill although it is rear-wheel-drive, for whatever that is worth.  Another less-than-spectacular car is the Albany Emperor, which has been around GTA for some time now.  Based on the Cadillac DeVille, it should be rocking a V8, but man, this thing is low on power.  It is also low to the ground in stock form, so if you wanna build a low-riding cruiser, this isn’t a bad option.  Just don’t go off-roading in it, this thing cannot handle bumps and dirt clumps or cracks in the pavement very well.  One positive thing that I can say about it is that it is tough.  This car can take a beating and not look too tore up, unless you buy the “already torn up” version of the car, which is also available.

A vehicle that has taken my attention is the Cheval Fugitive.  This car is interesting to me, at first glance, I thought it was one of the newer Chevy Impalas, and I blew it off.  After having a fairly close race against it, I took another look, and realized this might actually be modeled after Holden Commadore.  The Commadore has deep roots in the Australian V8 Supercar series, and has some of the closest and most contested racing out there.  Check out this Holden Commadore from team Red Bull battle out this last lap, crazy close finish.  Granted, the Fugitive is not a supercar, and is maybe above average in the sedan class, with a fairly good top speed.

Rocking luggage on the roof we find the Benefactor Glendale, which is surprisingly quick.  This car screams diesel, I am surprised it doesn’t drive around with a cloud of black smoke behind it.  It is very reminiscent of the Mercedes Benz W123.  I posted a 600 Pullman above just so we can have a look (plus it has Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones, so I couldn’t resist).  I was originally drawn to the car from its stock top speed, which is one of the highest in the class.  When fully tuned, its top speed is the highest (never mind the luggage creating drag), followed very very closely by the Shafter and Super Diamond.  It shares all of the other performance aspects with the Super Diamond which means it brakes like a freight train and handling is average.

The Vulcan Ingot is so painfully slow in stock form that I have not had the *ahem* pleasure of buying one myself.  It is a wagon…that’s about all I got.  Likewise the Dundreary Regina is another wagon that has no real purpose in a racing situation, however this wagon, based on the 1970s Plymouth Fury Sportwagon, might be a little bit faster.  If you really want a wagon that is quick, I would go with the Zirconium Stratum.  This thing is probably the fastest of the wagons.  What appears to be a Nissan Skyline R32 wagon (mixed with an Honda Accord wagon), this thing actually gets up and goes fairly quickly.  Or you could really go all out in the “I am gonna do something different” department and use the Chariot Romero Hearse or the Dundreary Stretch limo thing.

Meanwhile the Karin Intruder shows a little more promise in the department of speed.  It appears to be an Infinity either Q45 (slammed version posted above) or I30, I am not sure which.  It’s handling is good, not great.  It’s engine sounds mean!  But sound does not mean that a lot of power is being applied necessarily, and in this case, it really isn’t.  The car sounds like it is going a lot faster than it actually is.  Moving slowly up the ladder we also find the Declasse Premier which resembles some smaller compacts like the Chevy Cobalt or Daewoo Lacetti.  It also does not come packing too much power, but acceleration isn’t bad, and throwing this car in and out of traffic is surprisingly easy.  A word of caution, this car is fragile.  Slamming into another vehicle or hitting too many light poles might damage your car in a way that effects the performance, so try to be mindful of that if you are in a racing situation (or if someone else is driving this thing, you can bash the hell out of them).

On the opposite end of all extremes, the Albany Primo might be the anti-PremierOnce upon a time when I was drag racing people late at night, I recall getting absolutely crushed by a Cadillac Seville.  It looked like a car my grandmother would drive.  What I did not know at the time was that the vehicle was equipped with a 32 valve Northstar V8, which meant despite being heavy and not being able to handle well, the car could reach top speeds very quickly.  I believe this is the inspiration behind the Primo, that has excellent top speed (perhaps matching the fastest cars of the class) but not really doing much else very well.

South Mo Milton Dr

Also quick in this class is the Benefactor Schafter (pictured above).  I am thinking that this Mercedes Benz styled car is one of the fastest cars of the class.  It shares the same top speed as the Super Diamond, but has much better traction, handling, and braking.  In fact, in fully tuned form, it has the most traction in the class (tied with the Obey Tailgater).  And since the price tag is only $65,000 (compared to the Diamond’s $250,000), you may as well save some money and go faster in the corners as well.

I believe there is a classic Crown Victoria in the game, or at least something inspired by what is used as an entry level local PD oriented car, and that would be the Vapid Stanier.  This car is not slow, it has good acceleration, good braking, good top speed, and surprisingly good suspension.  I would say it is above average in all categories without having a singular thing that pushes it over the top in any way.  I will say this, it is pretty darned sturdy, so if you are a reckless driver, then this might be a good choice for you.

Another tough, but more expensive vehicle I would definitely consider having in my garage is the Enus Super Diamond, or the Rolls Royce of the game (pictured above).  While this particular vehicle takes some cues from both old and new, it is definitely a Rolls, and its performance is somewhat similar to the real life vehicle.  It has great acceleration, and has one of the fastest top speeds in the class.  Its handling is surprising good but is a little slow on the weight transitions (it is a heavy car).  Braking is piss poor.

On the opposite end of the ecologically minded spectrum, we find the Cheval Surge, which I believe is inspired by the Chevy Volt (names are very similar), but the front looks a lot like a Honda Insight.  Similarly, this is a eco-friendly electric car with one gear.  So the acceleration acts a little differently from other cars.  I admit, I have not fully tuned this car yet, but in stock form, its acceleration is quite a bit more than I thought (not at all great, but more than expected).  Despite having not-so-great traction, the overall balance was pretty good.  I have crashed this car, and it basically folds in when you hit something soft, so I would be careful not to collide with anything…

In terms of traction, in stock form, the Obey Tailgater (pictured above) tops everyone in the class.  This car is one of the cars inspired by Audi, taking on a few cues from the A4, A6, and A8.  This car is quick, matching every aspect of the Benefactor Shafter’s performance except in the acceleration department, where it is slightly slower, which is the only reason I would choose the Shafter over this car.  If you really like the styling, this is a good choice for a racer as well, it will keep up with any car in the class.

West Eclipse Blvd

Another car worth mentioning is the Albany Washington, given its great top speed in stock form.  Modified, I would like to think there are better options for racing.  Top speed remains fairly high, but still gets beat out by the Super Diamond and Shafter.  Handling could be better, despite having a high performance rating in the traction department in stock form.  It is a big car with a large displacement engine, and acts as such.  If this car had good acceleration, it could be competitive.  But even maxed out on modifications, it’s acceleration could be better.  It also has worse traction then some of the other faster cars when it is fully tuned.

Finally: the Vulcar Warrener, part of the “I am not a Hipster” DLC, it is based upon the old school 1970s Nissan Skyline GTR (pictured above), which means I love it already.  This was the first GTR ever produced, and right from the get go, in an era dominated by American muscle, this tiny little car put up a real fight on the racetrack.  It is a lineage that continues today, where GTRs (finally shipped legally to the states) push over 1000 horsepower on a regular basis and continue to be some of the fastest cars at the race track.  Check out the video posted below with Gan-san (from Best Motoring International) doing a lap around Fuji circuit.  Turn up the volume, the engine’s sound is unique and wonderful.

It’s top speed is the same as the Washington in fully tuned form, which means it is barely keeping up with the fastest top end cars in that department.  In the traction department, its performance rating is still bested by the Shafter, but I must admit, I enjoy this car more on sharp corners where there is heavy braking.  I believe the size difference allows this car to be more nimble.  While the Shafter might be faster overall, I find myself using this car more, and maybe it is because of its size and style.  I love this car!  Easily my favorite car of this class.

So what is in your garage, Recklesss?

Benefactors.  I have the Glendale for top speed and Shafter for cornering.  But the car I use most is, frankly, the Vulcar Warrener.  I absolutely love this car.  While it may not get me the win, it definitely puts a smile on my face.  That being said, there are a number of cars in this class that can be competitive.  This is a fairly stacked class, some cars are DEFINITELY slow, and there are some cars (Tailgater, Super Diamond, Washington, and others) that I plan to sell but know that if I am lined up next to one, I am going to probably have a fight on my hands.  That is one of the beautiful things about this class, there is a number of cars to choose from that are competitive, and that makes for some close and diverse forms of racing.  Have a look below while Slimsy1901 and I race with some random lobby dude driving a Super Diamond.  I am first person in the Warraner (TINY little car compared to the Super Diamond).  All three of us are driving different cars, and this was a pretty tight race at the end (my apologies for not being on point, I believe I had a few too many brewskies during this race).  Stay tuned!  More reviews to come.  And as always, I am up for further discussion!

*Disclaimer: these are my opinions. While I love racing in GTA, the in game physics are simply not what I would call a driving simulator. Having said that, I believe the physics for a game are very good, which means strategy and knowledge are both crucial to winning races. Furthermore, many of the cars have different strengths/weaknesses and the driver is always a determining factor in winning races. These are my opinions, and I am open to discussion and alternative perspectives on these matters.*





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