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now comes the interesting bit: dynamics and the assessment thereof.we'll start with the ZS180 and give it a chance to recover lost honour (interior).being closely based on the rover 45,the ZS makes do with the same fundamentle under-pinnings :double wishbones all round and a near fabled lack of wheel travel.settings have been thoroughly revised ,though with springier springs and stiffer dampers,the ZS getting twin-valve dampers that adjust their firmness to combine straight line ride compliance with corner roll avoidance .in other words its a parts bin special.
yet the ZS does,genuinely work.dynamically this car is so close to supurb that you'd be stingy to deny it the adjective .there's a torquey engine ,a hard edged ,warbling soundtrack ,agile chassis ,helpfull steering and an abundance of grip. there are quibbles ,not least the lack of communication through the steering wheel,but fundamentley the ZS is knocking on the door of greatness .
drive gently and the proportional controls dish out completely proportional reponses.drive hard and the ZS seems to pick up your mood ,the back axle helps out with distinct "tip"into corners,and excellent body control follows the terrain as loyally as it possibly can.its like your packing a tarmac magnet.traction is good,the solid brake peddle gives excellent feel and retardation ,and ultimate power on understeer is very well cotained.there aren't any electronic traction or stability gizmos for the simple reason the ZS doesn't need them.
and although the ZS doesn't feel all theat quick next to its wizz-bang rivals ,its more than capable of keeping up.what you loose on the straights in terms of raw thrust ,you stand a very good chance of regaining on the corners.plus which,for the real-world business of short notice overtaking ,the ZS is comfotably the best car here,happy to dispatch plodders in forth or fifth ,wereas the corolla 190&CTR would have you frantically shreading ratios in seach of their elusive powerbands.
ride is firmin town and motorway cruising is a loud business with lots of wind and road noise ,but overall the ZS is far,far better than we ever hoped it would be!


and if your wondering,it came second to the civic type R,but only just ,if it had a better interior it would have beat it:O)

i like this bit....
Dynamics
its hard to credit that a car whose underpinnings date back more than a decade can be as rewarding as the ZS .think of an old impreza and you're amazingly close-a drivers delight!
 
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