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German magazines: How and where do they test cars?

posted by Giannis

Discussing the latest test drive from AutoBild or Sport Auto is a hot topic amongst car enthusiasts. You will find us fighting to support our favourite car, no matter if it won or lost, if the test drivers liked it or not. But we never wonder under what conditions it was tested. Where and how. At least, not until our great member DeDe brought this issue up.

After the jump, you will find a detailed report on the test facilities of each German automotive magazine, as well as details on exactly how the tests are made, details like tyre pressure, the number and distance between the pylons of the slalom test or the number of persons on board during the 0-1ookm/h measurements.

1. Auto Motor und Sport & Sport Auto

Since they are sister-mags, their testing-methodes are the same. The only difference is that AMuS usually tests at airfields, while Sport Auto’s hometrack is the Hockenheimring with its main (drag-) straight. If the airfield at Lahr’s not available, or the weather is bad, AMuS goes to the Hockenheimring or Pirelli’s Vizzola-testtrack in Italy. If HHR is not available, Sport Auto goes to Lahr.

This is the complete performance-testing-methode of Sport Auto:

1. Weight-measure with full tank of fuel.

2. Preparing the testcar for testing: tyre-pressure checking, telemetry + 2 persons onboard.

3. Full braking from around 105-110 kph: the telemetry measures the braking-distance between 100,00 and 0,00 km/h. This is the braking-result for “cold brakes“.

4. Flexibility in 4th, 5th and 6th gear (and 7th, 8th gear if available). At 70 km/h they give full throttle, the timing starts at 80 kph and goes until the car reaches 140, 160 or 180 kph. They repeat the same methode on the other direction back to eliminate wind-effect or track slopes. The results in the magazine are the two-way averages.

5. Acceleration from standstill. They measure the acceleration between 0,00 and 200,00 kph. They repeat the testing twice in both directions. The results are the averages of these 4 runs.

6. Just after the last 0-200 kph acceleration run comes the full braking from 200 kph.

7. 10 full-power brakings from 100 kph. The 10th braking-result is for “warm brakes“.

8. 18 m slalom: 10 pylons in a distance of 18 metres from each other. Photo-cell-timing helps the testers, they calculate the average speed of the slalom from the time. Sport Auto tests with ESP OFF, while AMuS with ESP ON.

9. 36 m slalom and 110 m ISO evasive test: these are criterias of the Supertest. Since HHR is too narrow for the evasive test, they use the airfield for this kind of testing.

10. Tracktime on the short course of the Hockenheimring: after the warm-up lap comes 2 or 3 hotlaps. Best laptime will be published.

Additional info for AMuS-testing: they also measures the time and speed for the 400 m distance – no quarter mile (402,34 m).

Test-tracks for AMuS and Sport Auto:

2. AutoBild and AutoBild Sportscars

- They measure weight with full tank of fuel as well.

- Unlike AMuS and Sport Auto, AutoBild always tests with only driver onboard. Acceleration- and flexibility-runs are two-way-averages of course.

- 1st braking is for “cold brakes“, 10th is for “warm brakes“.

Additional performance-testings by AutoBild Sportscars: unlike their sister-mag AutoBild, they usually measures 0-250 and 0-300 kph times as well. Topspeed-runs are very usual as well: they measures the correct, GPS-based topspeed on the unrestricted parts of the German Autobahn.

Test-tracks for AutoBild and AutoBild Sportscars:

3. AutoZeitung

I think they tests with one person onboard (just like AutoBild), but I’m not 100% sure about it.

What I know is that their test-track is the airfield at Mendig, Germany, where their handling-track is, as well (marked with red on the 2nd picture).

Test-track for AutoZeitung:

Please join our forum discussion here: http://www.germancarforum.com/community/threads/german-magazines-how-and-where-do-they-test-cars.47532/


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