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Are Tigers Tail-Happy?


Jedi Warrior

I was reading an article on the Tiger's handling characteristics (I think it was a scan of Car&Driver from the 60's posted @ Tigers United), and the article said that the short wheelbase of the Tiger couldn't handle the torque/horsepower of the small block Ford when you gassed it in the corners. The article claimed that Tigers were tail-happy and drivers had to be extra careful in the corners.

Does this coincide with the experience of all you Tiger owners out there? Any comments?


Bob Claffie

Jedi Knight
Country flag
It wasn't the big horsepower or short wheelbase that contributed to the image of loosey goosey handling. It was the pathetic 5:60 or 5:90X13 tires supplied with the car. With the design of the front fenders it was almost impossible to put anything larger on it without rolling the fender lips in. Don't forget this was waaaaaay before 50-60-70 series tires were ever dreamed of. In the good old days Lime Rock Park in Ct. had open practice on Tuesdays for just about anything on wheels and I remember, in my Tiger, standard procedure for going down the diving turn was to crank in about a quarter turn of opposite lock on the wheel. Never had a problem. (After I installed a limited slip diff it did get a little more tricky). Bob


Jedi Warrior
They are sure good for autocross.With the wierd ackerman angles one can actually plow in and then snap the rear around.With the lister I do have to watch it,351 cubes with 14 x 7 rims, it is still easy to snap the rear tires loose.But oh that feeling in 2nd with the pedal to the floor.One time the cops wanted to stop me and I was standing still.They had seen me hit it on one of those very rare times and then when they had the chance they were going to pull me over.We all had a good laugh and then I showed them the car.Now there are 2 more cops that wave to me and smile when we are out driving.
and it is sunny again


Jedi Warrior

Thanks for the replies. So I suppose the conclusions of the article I read should be taken into consideration with the tire technology available at the time.

With 15" or 16" wheels and a decent set of tires a Tiger should stick to the road with the best of them?



Senior Member
My gato is about as neutral as one gets. Yes, with smaller tires, it will be squirely. With good fat tires or gumballs, it sticks quite well, thank you. Maybe the lowering, stiffening (you won't believe the springs), 8X13 rims, roll cage, and big roll bars have something to do with that neutrality.

Many moon ago, Robbi Unser drove a Tiger up Pikes Peak. His comment went along the lines "the most ill handling bastard he'd driven". Sorry Mr. Unser, have to disagree. Course, driving Pikes with da arse hanging over the edge seems a bit on the crazy side itself.

[ 03-07-2004: Message edited by: jfslenes ]</p>
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