4 different Frogs in current issue of Wheels
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! Saru's Avatar
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    Default 4 different Frogs in current issue of Wheels

    Hi,

    Frogs in the current issue:

    Renaultsport Megane RS - they like it (on smooth roads)

    Pug 407 diesel sedan- "best handling car in class"... "benchmark". The resurgence of French handling? Peter Robinson drove the car at launch in Portugal so I'm thinking the roads weren't typical Euro-smooth (?).

    Pug 307CC - not a bad review (they don't want it to be an MX-5) though I got the impression they would have liked more power or less weight.

    Citroen c+crosser prototype/showcar - driven by Michael Stahl, mainly for it's drive-by-wire interface. Interesting.

    I think that's all. I don't have the mag with me at work.

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    Member Sputnik's Avatar
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    Yeah, I saw that.

    Maybe the (admittedly unattractive) long nose on the 407 is not the end of the world afterall, handling wise. Shame to see them criticise the quality of the interior though - can't help perceived quality.

    Was curious about the c-crosser too - not sure i really like the idea of drive by wire, but it is nice to see doing something a little more cutting edge than translucent gearknobs. Hmmm - electronics...

    i'll have to buy it now (the mag...not the c-crosser)
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    nJm
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    The British reports on the 407 have been very favourable of the 4 cylinder models (both petrol and diesel). It seems the electronic dampeners on the V6 aren't doing a very good job and the added weight over the front doesn't help. Sounds like the same problems the 607 has (as the 4 cylinder 607s are meant to be quite ok).
    Nick
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    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

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    Fellow Frogger! Saru's Avatar
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    The article raises the issue of drive-by-wire. Plenty of cars have dbw throttles and plenty of passenger aircraft have fly-by-wire. The Citroen guy quoted in the article says that the difference is that Airbus makes 1 plane a day and Citroen make several orders of magnitude more cars a day so there's obviously more room for error.

    I'd be curious about what happens in the event of a failure - no brakes, steering or accelerator. Eeek!
    '94 405 Mi16

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    XTC
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vegas
    The article raises the issue of drive-by-wire. Plenty of cars have dbw throttles and plenty of passenger aircraft have fly-by-wire. The Citroen guy quoted in the article says that the difference is that Airbus makes 1 plane a day and Citroen make several orders of magnitude more cars a day so there's obviously more room for error.

    I'd be curious about what happens in the event of a failure - no brakes, steering or accelerator. Eeek!
    And for every hour the Airbus is in the air, it probably has almost another hour in service and maintence (well maybe not .. but it's a lot compared to cars).

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    XTC
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vegas
    Renaultsport Megane RS - they like it (on smooth roads)
    Is there a projected release date for the RMS ? - dealers keep moving it backwards ..

    - XTC206 -
    You're not fooling everyone, or did you forget? .......




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    1000+ Posts Haakon's Avatar
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    The other problem with an Airbus is that the computer has the last word on a bad situation - it will override the pilot if it thinks hes wrong. I think I refer Boeing where the pilot has the last word .....

    At least on a Citroen, it wont try to take over the driving
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    The other problem with an Airbus is that the computer has the last word on a bad situation - it will override the pilot if it thinks hes wrong. I think I refer Boeing where the pilot has the last word .....
    Not entirely true - there are different flight laws.

    Boeing fans jump up and down at certain Airbus fly by wire accidents, but if you actually look at them closely, you'll see it's pilot error.

    The A320 (narrowbody twinjet, around 150pax; Ansett used to fly them, sound like chainsaws on takeoff, Jetstar will be flying them soon, Air New Zealand flies them here), had a few incidents in the early years, but lets look at who ultimately was at fault.
    1. Famous chainsaw, fly by airshow, oops ended in a forest - pilot error. Doesn't matter whether you are in an Airbus or Boeing, if you are too slow, engines are near idle (jet throttle response is terrible from idle I can assure you, I've flown various full motion sims ), you're close to the ground - if you're sloppy, you'll crash if there's something coming ahead you need to climb above. Plain and simple.
    2. Indian Airlines A320 crash - pilot error. If you leave your throttles on idle forever on landing with lots of flap, don't be surprised if you don't actually make the airfield!!!
    3. Air Inter A320 crash - wrong mode selected by the pilot, didn't notice it on the autopilot glareshield.
    There are cases where the Airbus system would have prevented Boeing crashes, eg. the American Airlines 757 in Cali, which crashed trying to go around with the spoilers up.

    There are systems in an Airbus that allow you to fly better than what would probably be humanly possible - pull back on the stick, you get max lift, without the risk of stall. It's a bit like ABS, optimised by the computer. In a non FBW aircraft - you have to discover the edge of the flight envelope yourself.

    This is a very interesting discussion, If An Airbus, Would This Flight Have Crashed?.

    One interesting quote:

    If An Airbus, Would This Flight Have Crashed?

    No, it would not have crashed.

    Instead it would have ignored the completely insane commands from the pilot and told him how to behave as a true aviator.

    The pax would have noticed nothing unusual.

    The plane would not have had to be grounded for an overstress inspection (and possibly repairs).

    The flight crew would have retained their jobs.

    The airline would have saved a lot of money and would not have lost customer- (and insurance company-) confidence.

    And finally the Icelandic and Norwegian CAA's would have saved half a forest of paperwork.

    If I was an Airbus fanatic, then I would tell Toulouse about this incident to be used in Airbus advertisements.

    This incident is the most obvious example showing the advantages of FBW hard limits. In other cases - mainly TCAS related incidents - it may have disadvantages.
    There is no simple answer as to which one is better, in some situations Airbus FBW is better, in others Boeing's system is better (the 777 is their only commercial FBW jet). Preben's post puts it nicely.

    <TABLE width=650 align=center border=0 valign="middle"><TBODY><TR><TD>There are hundreds of things which can cause incidents or accidents. But those things can be grouped. Two groups are:

    1. Incidents caused by mistakes made by the pilots (as in this Icelandair incident).

    2. Incidents caused from the outside, where a brilliant flight crew knows exactly what is best to do (that non-transponder Cessna just growing bigger on the wind screen).

    (There are of course more groups, for instance "outside caused and the crew has no clue what to do about it, or they act stupidly").

    When looking at group #1, then it is obvious that the more intelligent and helpful the plane is, the better is the chance of survival. The Airbus philosophy is obviously the right choice.

    And exactly opposite in group #2, of course that brilliant flight crew shall have all possible authority to show off their brilliance. = Boeing philosophy.

    Unfortunately the advantages of the two philosophies are not easily combinable.</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
    In the pre September 11 days when I enjoyed the privileges of riding in the jumpseat, one thing I noticed. Airbus pilots who had flown Boeings too were very happy with the Airbus. The main opponents of the Airbus were Boeing pilots who had never flown one...

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    1000+ Posts TroyO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vegas
    Hi,

    Frogs in the current issue:

    Renaultsport Megane RS - they like it (on smooth roads)

    Pug 407 diesel sedan- "best handling car in class"... "benchmark". The resurgence of French handling? Peter Robinson drove the car at launch in Portugal so I'm thinking the roads weren't typical Euro-smooth (?).

    Pug 307CC - not a bad review (they don't want it to be an MX-5) though I got the impression they would have liked more power or less weight.

    Citroen c+crosser prototype/showcar - driven by Michael Stahl, mainly for it's drive-by-wire interface. Interesting.

    I think that's all. I don't have the mag with me at work.
    Both the Renault Sport Megane and Peugeot 407 look quite promising. Can't wait to see them in the flesh.

    I'm not flash on the idea of drive-by-wire, given the electrical problems that have popped on up some of the mux Frogs.

    "The Multifunction display suddenly said 'Steering Fault' and my car would only turn left!"

    Troy.

  10. #10
    Member Sputnik's Avatar
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    i tend to share your reservations on drive-by-wire, TroyO, partly for the same reasons. Also, to me such a system seems less tactile than hydraulics (just an impression). But maybe it offers some potential for customizing - "like the steering a little quicker, sir? right you are"

    I am sure many people felt that the DS was a bad idea, steering suspension & brakes all controlled by this new fangled system!

    Interesting point, nJm, about the electronic dampers - i had read that those on the 607 are not peugeot made? Is this also true for the 407 V6? Seems they might have been better to stick with their own.
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    1000+ Posts Haakon's Avatar
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    Ah ha! - a fellow plane nut

    [QUOTE=Pug307][list=1][*]Famous chainsaw, fly by airshow, oops ended in a forest - pilot error. Doesn't matter whether you are in an Airbus or Boeing, if you are too slow, engines are near idle (jet throttle response is terrible from idle I can assure you, I've flown various full motion sims ), you're close to the ground - if you're sloppy, you'll crash if there's something coming ahead you need to climb above. Plain and simple.
    [QUOTE=Pug307]

    From what I've read, this happened because the pilot was new to Airbus, and tried to do a go around without telling the computer, which was programmed to land. When the pilot puled back on the stick, the plane fought him and the battle ended with the plane winning and executing a perfect landing - in the trees....

    [QUOTE=Pug307][*]Air Inter A320 crash - wrong mode selected by the pilot, didn't notice it on the autopilot glareshield.

    [QUOTE=Pug307]

    I think the pilot mixed up the rate of desent with angle of desent - apprantly an easy mistake as they are next to each other in a rolling menu

    I have been getting the quarterly CASA Air Safety magazine delivered to my house (previous tenant must have been a pilot and I keep forgetting to tell CASA he doesnt live here anymore ) which has lots of interesting stories of stupid pilots, scaries stuff ups.

    I do have to agree with you in that Airbus systems are pretty good and do save lives under a lot of conditions. The biggest problem is no doubt pilots who dont know how to fly them, old school types.

    But while I agree that it stops those occasions where a pilot tries something dumb (like a go around with too much flap), it may stop a pilot from doing something unusual to get out of an unusual situation.

    I am very jealous of my uncle - he got to spend a couple of hours flying the simulator that Ansett had (they were hiring it out cheap when Ansett went under) - he got to fly an Airbus under the Westgate bridge
    I tried to drown my sorrows in alcohol, but the bastards learnt how to swim

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    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    Ah ha! - a fellow plane nut
    SLC206 coined up a term for aviation enthusiasts, "Aerosexuals"

    I'm not as plane savvy as I used to be, but I still know a bit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    From what I've read, this happened because the pilot was new to Airbus, and tried to do a go around without telling the computer, which was programmed to land. When the pilot puled back on the stick, the plane fought him and the battle ended with the plane winning and executing a perfect landing - in the trees....
    Not true at all - see, this is why I find a lot of people misunderstand the Airbus FBW system.

    The A320 was doing a low fly pass, it was flying too slow and engines were at near idle, with a forest on a hill approaching at the end of the runway. The pilot commanded a go around, but the aircraft did not go around in time. Nothing to do with the FBW system, the plane NEVER fought back - the plane was simply too slow, too low and a forest in front, it could not climb in time. In fact, the engines spooled up faster than factory specs.

    The Airbus WILL NOT force you to land. In landing mode, some of the safety systems are disabled, otherwise you'd never be able to land. For example, in this situation, Alpha Floor protection (ie. stall protection) was disabled, as the plane was in landing mode. Landing mode doesn't mean the plane must land, it just means the plane won't increase thrust to prevent the aircraft from stalling. You only enter landing mode close to the ground.

    No different to a conventional aircraft. As I said before - if you are too slow, too low - you'll crash. Doesn't matter whether you are in an Airbus or Boeing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    I think the pilot mixed up the rate of desent with angle of desent - apprantly an easy mistake as they are next to each other in a rolling menu
    You have feet per minute & angle of descent - both use the same dial in the autopilot, and the mode is toggled by a switch on the autopilot glareshield.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    But while I agree that it stops those occasions where a pilot tries something dumb (like a go around with too much flap), it may stop a pilot from doing something unusual to get out of an unusual situation.
    Off the top of my head, I don't think the FBW system will play with flap, but I'm not 100% sure about that.

    One thing I do point out though - has this hypothetical situation arisen, in which an Airbus was unable to avoid the accident? Not to my knowledge.

    Have there been situations when the Airbus philosophy has been able to prevent Boeing accidents? Yes.

    So, based on experience, that anti Airbus argument is yet to have come true.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    I am very jealous of my uncle - he got to spend a couple of hours flying the simulator that Ansett had (they were hiring it out cheap when Ansett went under) - he got to fly an Airbus under the Westgate bridge
    Ahh, the joys of the A320 sim, one of my favourite - a very interesting aircraft to fly.

    It's been sold though

    One thing you notice in a sim, airliners can perform if you really want them to. I flew the Canadair CRJ (their newest sim), Airbus A320-211, Boeing 767-277, 737-377 and I think that's about it. Great fun - you can tell why they cost so much, because they are very good

    Not cheap to run either, about $1000 per hour.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pug307
    No different to a conventional aircraft. As I said before - if you are too slow, too low - you'll crash. Doesn't matter whether you are in an Airbus or Boeing.
    or in a Cessna 152 or Piper Archer
    Someone out there has a video taken from the back seat of me landing an Archer, and just above the runway the stall warning buzzer goes off and keeps going and going, and is followed by a .. very distinct drop to the ground ..

    The video got back to the lunch room faster than I could say "give that to me"

    Derek

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    Quote Originally Posted by DeKa
    or in a Cessna 152 or Piper Archer
    Someone out there has a video taken from the back seat of me landing an Archer, and just above the runway the stall warning buzzer goes off and keeps going and going, and is followed by a .. very distinct drop to the ground ..
    I used to get told off for not stalling prior to touching down.

    I was quite fond of performing greasers in the 152, but my instructors would always tell me to "hold off, hold off, hold off" so we had that stall whistle going "errrrrrrrrrr" for about 15 seconds prior to touchdown.

    One thing though, as plane Jane as a 152 is, at least it has throttle response. Flying the CRJ (little 50 seater jet), you could almost hear the kids in the back seat saying "Are we there yet, are we there yet", as the engines spooled up to stabilisation N1.

    Made 307 auto throttle response seem like it was handed down by Mr Ferrari!

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    1000+ Posts Haakon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pug307
    Great fun - you can tell why they cost so much, because they are very good

    Not cheap to run either, about $1000 per hour.
    apperantly you can look out the window and see traffic moving on the Tullamarine freeway and everything Level of detail (and the number crunching required to run it) is amazing. Would love a go in one......
    I tried to drown my sorrows in alcohol, but the bastards learnt how to swim

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    Quote Originally Posted by Haakon
    apperantly you can look out the window and see traffic moving on the Tullamarine freeway and everything Level of detail (and the number crunching required to run it) is amazing. Would love a go in one......
    Yep, but that's not the impressive part about it

    In all honesty, most modern computer games could teach a full motion sim a thing or two. The thing that impresses is how well it simulates everything else - eg. the kick in the back on takeoff, touchdown, etc. Especially in poor visibility, when graphical detail is much lower, it really does feel quite realistic. If you want smoke in the cockpit, you can get that too.

    On some of the sims, such as the 767 one (which is now 22 years old), the graphics are pretty simple. The tall buildings in the CBD basically look like a bunch of light globes stacked on top of each other. The A320 is a night simulator too (so graphics aren't too tough), IIRC it might've done dusk as well. Simulating cars on the freeway, basically dots running across the screen.

    www.ansettsimulators.com/

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