Sunday, July 3, 2011

Call me a Rays Engineering Fanboy...

Combing automotive forums, I see many posts with little to no knowledge behind them. As I have said before, forums are riddled with misguided, poorly educated "enthusiasts" with strange agendas. Believe it or not, I respect the opinions of others, even if they do not run parallel to my own. People are free to modify their cars however they please with the parts of their choice. However, I would be lying if I said that it does not bother me when, occasionally, I read the opinions of close-minded people who are contemptuously attempting to cause a stir. It only bothers me because those slightly less educated individuals reading may actually believe the mis-information being expelled.

I have nothing against the popular wheel company, Vossen. Their representatives post regularly on the forums and, in turn, Vossen has developed quite a following in the G community. Thus, Volk versus Vossen is a somewhat common debate among some G owners. To me, however, there is no debating which is the superior wheel. It should not even be up for discussion. Reading the conflicting viewpoints and opinions in a particular thread of an owner looking for help deciding between wheels made by each of these companies proved somewhat comical. I only chose to respond when I read the comment of a member who emerged as the lone irritant of this thread for more than 400 replies. He referred to Volk Racing wheels as resembling "$100 eBay rims" and cars featuring Volk wheels as "rice rockets."

I probably should not have paid this obtuse troll any regard, but I couldn't help it...

"Rice Rocket" is a slang/derogatory term for a Japanese motorcycle; not a car. If you mean "rice" in terms of its pejorative colloquial use in regards to poorly executed auto modifications, you could not be more wrong. Volk Racing is the furthest thing from "rice" when it comes to modifying a car. As for the argument about appearance, looks are subjective. What appeals to one person might be considered "ugly" by another's standards. So that argument, to me, is just... well, dumb.

As for the performance/quality, Rays Engineering's forging processes and safety standards are second to none. They are constantly improving and setting standards for others to imitate. Yes, their base lies in racing and the motorsports culture, as evidenced by the fact that Rays features wheels in F-1 (Formula 1 Championship), WTCC (Worldwide Touring Car Championship), North American ALMS (American Le Mans Series), the Japanese Super GT Championship, and many other major competitions and races worldwide. (And, for the record, the majority of these cars have to buy their own wheels - there are not too many 'freebies' or sponsorships.) Furthermore, the same R&D that goes into the Rays wheels that compete in these races, goes into the wheels that are featured on the cars in the street, the same cars owned by members of this forum. (Of course, the few featuring the authentic parts.

I don't know about others, but I had never even heard of Vossen before I joined this forum.

I am in no way suggesting that Vossen wheels are poor quality, but, bluntly, Volk is on a completely different level. I think people are so enraptured by Vossen because every day on this forum a new thread is posted by Vossen with great photo shoots featuring new cars and awesome photography. There is no debating, Vossen has a great marketing department. They pay to advertise their wheels on this site and, by all means, they're doing it right. A ton of G's on here are sporting Vossen wheels. The fact that the OP is even debating going to Vossen is a tribute to the work they are doing.

Vossen has only been around for five years. In due time, who knows? Maybe they could, some day, be on the same level as Rays Engineering and Volk Racing. That's an admirable goal. Do not get me wrong, I mean no disrespect to Vossen whatsoever, but Volk is one of the best wheels in the world. Period. I think any representative from Vossen should/would be honored to be mentioned in the same conversation/debate as Volk Racing.

1 comment:

  1. fyi, vossen's forge line is produced by someone else. and since they didn't paid the other company that produces their forge line. that company took the design and are now selling them at a discounted rate.