Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Toyota Camry Xli (Part 2)

Transmission: the five-speed automatic gearbox functions quickly, but it’s slightly obsolete. It’s the same as on the Avesis 2.4, although they are different in appearance: the gearbox on Avensis 2.4 has a manual mode, the one on the Camry 2.4 only D-4-3-2-1. But the same algorithm in operating system returns us to good 80’s:  If you have selected "3", the automatic transmission will look for the most suitable speed only among "1", "2" and "3". It looks like that the reliability of old gearboxes is of more importance for Toyota than the convenience of new ones. But on the other hand, Camry’s gearbox has a protection against “the fool”: on the Avensis, a premature downshift can lead to breakage. The Camry’s automatic transmission will really change, for instance, the downshifting “2” selected by you, only after accelerating the car to the maximum permissible speed for “2”.

 Just for your info:  the fuel consumption of the Camry 2.4 with automatic transmission is more by two liters than that of with manual transmission.
Ride performance: the engine is modified. Formerly, it was able to produce 163 hp at 5800 rpm, now, 167 hp at 6000rpm, which is enough to move the car easily. I really liked the logic of cruise control. The foot-throttle is absolutely needless on highways. By means of a switch under the steering wheel you can easily control the speed. By the way, the cruise control remembers the speed even after braking the car and can come back to it. The suspension is soft. The car drifts and sways on curves. But as you remember, I’ve already mentioned that this car is not for a fast drive. The Camry is created to carry you through all the bumps with comfort and in a relaxed atmosphere, although a friend of mine, having driven the Camry, complaint about stiffness.
Nothing to do-riding styles and preferences are different as well as people.

Petrol powered                   2.4 Litres
Power:                               167 hp @ 6000 rpm
Torque:                              224 lb·ft @ 4000 rpm  (230 N·m)
Max. speed:                       210km/h

Fuel efficiency
City                                       11.6 l/100km
Highway                                6.7 l/100km
Autonomy                             750 km

Transmission:                      5-speed automatic 
Drivetrain:                           FWD

Length:                                       4815 mm
Width:                                        1820 mm
Height:                                       1,470 mm
Wheelbase:                                2,775 mm
Front track:                                1,585 mm
Rear track:                                 1,575 mm
Weight                                       1,441 kg

Fuel tank:                                     64 L
Trunk:                                          436 L

Monday, April 28, 2014

Toyota Camry Xli

I have an ambivalent attitude towards the Camry: admiration and bewilderment that coexist side by side.
First of all, I expect a car of this class to have high-quality interior trimmings and lots of useful options.
Let's start with the minimal configuration R1. It's nice that in this configuration we are already offered light-alloy wheels, body color mud flaps, fog lights, an immobilizer and an anti-theft alarm system. Headlamp washers are only available for extra pay.

Inside: the designers obviously overdone with multicolourness. The light yellow frames neighbor upon a silvery color and a blue panel of the stereo system. In short, welcome to the avant-garde! Even worse is the management of the heated seats, which only appears in the configuration R1-on a horizontal light yellow plate there are two black plastic buttons. And those are BUTTONS, but not stepless controllers, which are available even in lower-class cars. And again a strange solution-the heated seats can only be enabled or disabled without adjusting the level of heat. However, I liked the leather steering wheel, which, for instance, for the new Passat is an additional option. As a rule for Toyota, the steering wheel is equipped with buttons that allow you to manage the climate control, stereo system and the computer. By the way, the climate control is equipped with air ionizer and can be adjusted individually (Separate Driver/Front and Back Passenger Climate Controls). There are lots of compartments for various sundries which are neatly covered and easily accessible. As for the inside, it’s really huge-particularly nice to sit in the back.
Stereo system: the mp3 player with 6-CD-changer is pretty good. Unfortunately, the sound quality is worse than that of the Avensis. It might be because that the Avensis has two additional speakers.
Electronics: it looks like there is everything you need, but again, I stumbled upon a strange thing-the windscreen wiper has no heating. This option is very useful in our region- it’s available even on the cheapest Avensis. I was more surprised to find out that the configuration R1 was not equipped with electronic stability control, which, I think, is a necessity for such a big and heavy vehicle. But there is a certain logic: such cars are not for a fast, but for comfortable and relaxed drive.
To be continued…

Friday, April 25, 2014

Hyundai i30 (Part 2)

I was lucky to test the most technically equipped model with the 1.6-liter 122 hp engine and a five-speed manual transmission. As an alternative to the manual, a rather out of date 4-speed automatic transmission is also offered, for which you’ll have to pay about 2000$ extra.
To my surprise, the engine briskly accelerated the car to 120 km/h, after which the rate of the acceleration significantly slowed down. Due to the too much sensitive throttle pedal and the totally non-informative clutch, it is virtually impossible to set the car in motion without skidding. In addition, the “cotton” gear stick is not particularly precise in moves and selectivity. In spite all of this, thanks to the smartly-aggregated transmissive speeds in the gear box, the i30 demonstrated a quite agile temper-the main thing is not to let the tachometer arrow sink below 3000 RPM.
The hatchback obediently follows all the commands of the steering wheel, which has a commendably accurate zero point of calibration and a good sensitivity. I remember being pleasantly surprised by a similar character of the "toddler" Hyundai i20 during a comparative test with VW Polo.
Smooth and comfort were sacrificed for a better manoeuvrability and minimal deflections in turns, in order to satisfy the demands of the Europeans. Even on soft winter tires, you are going to feel all the halls and cracks of the road. Bigger halls will be accompanied by dull beats, so the tires can easily blow out.

The brakes are good-a slight push on the pedal is combined with good efficiency and, in case of wheel locks, the ABS system intervenes correctly, if the car slides sideways.
The price of Hyundai i 30 with 1.4-liter engine and mechanical gearbox is about 13.500 $.
However, the standard model "Classic" has everything you need: 6 airbags, heated seats, air conditioning, ABS, an audio system with steering wheel controls and a package of electronic devices.
The modification "Comfort" is offered with a two-position-adjustable leather steering wheel, two-level heated front seats, rear power windows, climate control, central armrest, cooled glove box, trip computer, rain gauge as well as fog lamps and alloy wheels. This version will cost about 15.500 $. An additional payment of 1000$ will be required for the 1.6-liter engine.
The top model "Style" is only offered with the 1.6-liter engine and is distinguishable for the ESP stabilization system and leather-trimmed Interior. This will cost around 18000$.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Hyundai i30 (Part 1)

According to official sources, the i30, having overtaken the popular Elantra, came third after the best-selling Hyundai Tucson and Getz. The appearance of the i30 is the brainchild of the European Design Center, it was created in compliance with the preferences of the buyers of the Old World. The slanting headlights, the muscular swellings and the red triangle taillights are the basic features of the “Asians” and give the car a dynamic look. The exterior lacks for sport aggression, which I wouldn’t say about single-platform Kia Cee`d.
By the way, Kia is the one who shares the same framework and the technical stuffing with my “guinea pig”.

The difference between these two is that Hyundai i30 is shipped to Armenia only with 1.4- and 1.6-liter engines with a five-door body (hatchback), while the Cee’d is available in three versions, the two of which (the three-door hatch Pro_ Cee’d and the station wagon Cee’d_sw) can be equipped with a 2-liter 143 hp engine.
In the interior, the i30 is a typical Korean. The simple plastic, cool dashboard backlights and the rough leather on the steering wheel neighbor together quite ergonomically.
The high leather seats are notable for a good profile and lateral support. As for back seats, there is little room- tall passengers might prop their knees against the back of the front seats.
There is an “oasis” of keys and switches located on the front panel, by means of which you can manage the audio system and the climate control. The audio system can be connected to external devices through AUX and obtain data from USB memory sticks.
The trunk is far from being a leader in the class in terms of capacity-only 340 liters.  By folding the rear seats, split at a ratio of 60:40, its volume can be increased up to 1250 liters.
To be continue….

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The S500

This review is addressed to those who earn well and can afford the S-class.
I'll dare to depart from the conventional narrative about a car and share some thoughts and subjective sensations I experienced after two weeks of constant and extensive "communication" with the S500.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have come to the conclusion that this car is absolutely devoid of any superfluities. Can you imagine?
The only missing thing on the car, I guess, was the system of four-wheel drive. ( There are ,of course, models equipped with four-wheel drive,but not the one I was testing)
Everything else in the S-class satisfied me completely. 
The S-class is designed for those who work a lot. Only unconversant people are in the belief that the owners of luxury sedans are the rich idlers who love to splurge money.
I must confess,life has forced me to learn that real capital can be established only through hard work.
So,if someone thinks that a four-mode massage in a multicontour seat with automatically changeable degree of lateral support or an excellent sound system is a superfluity,then,I beg your pardon, this "someone" has never worked hard.
Such facilities mustn't be considered as superfluities,but, moreover, they must be considered as necessities.  And it's not just about self-respect,but practical terms: you simply must allow yourself  to relax, feel comfortable and safe on the way to work, a business meeting or home; with or without a driver.

It was a cool night. I'm came up to the S500 and no sooner had I touched the handle of the left back door than the car recognized its owner by the key which was in my pocket . I threw my brief case on the back seat and took the driver's seat. I pushed the engine start and the seat heating buttons. The headlights and the sidelights had already been switched on. The climate control system was waiting for the moment to take the first warmth from the mighty engine.
Just a few minutes after the start of the movement, it became warm in the cabin and I kind of relaxed involuntarily. I noticed that my neck was numb, which was a nice opportunity to test how much effective the massage of my seat is. I chose the mode "slow and stiff" and started to feel nice waves rolling up and down from my waist to the shoulders; the exhaustion I had accumulated during the week seemed to be fading away!
Once, I gave a lift to a friend of mine on this car. Being on the back seat, he spoke in delight,' but it is said that the roads in Yerevan are terrible... nothing of the kind!'. Indeed, the hydropneumatic suspension is a technological wonder-even in an active mode of driving, it makes the car docile and steady and irons out all the discomfort you might experience on a bumpy road.
Without feeling how the time flew by (I had been driving for 4 hours!) I reached Tbilisi. Instead  of getting tired , I enjoyed myself during the whole trip and was kind of refreshed.
As I was driving up to the city, I slightly eased up on the accelerator. Perhaps, someone will think that the 5.5 liter engine, which produces 388hp, is far too much-anyway,it can't be used to the full. But damn how it's nice,when you constantly feel this abundance of power under the right foot and when ,at a speed of 100 km/h, the tachometer arrow "calms down" at 1500 rpm.
Well,I finally got to the garage, went out and the car got locked through one finger touch,but it was still willingly illuminating my way to the exit.
There still remains lots of untold things about the S500. I will only mention its service,which is to be given after every 15.000 kilometers .In fact, the costs of service is not so important and can't be calculated beforehand either,because the car is equipped with a special device, which tests all the components and the units and draws up a list of  the required works.
Unofficially, the first servicing costs are about 1000 $-the second one 1500.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Test Drive of the "TT" (Part 3)

So, we safely reached the place of our destination, namely, the testing track, which I had mentioned earlier. The head of our driving school Arman  Babayan met us at the track; he had just finished the conducting of defensive driving training. The winner of the Annular Motorcycling Championship of Armenia Aghasi Tadevosyan was also there. If not them, then who could give an expert evaluation of the controllability of our car?
After making a couple of fierce laps by turns on TT, they made a brief résumé: 'a typical front-wheel-drive vehicle, which acts in compliance with all the canons of front drive: when easing up on the accelerator, the car goes into a skid and straightens the path when you rev up the engine. Sad is that the revs are slightly delayed: the engine does not react momentarily as you push down on the gas, which is fraught with the risk of turning around. However, the problem can be solved by switching the transmission to manual mode; the gears are changed by means of paddle shifters just behind the steering wheel. It would be a cool idea to equip the car with four-wheel drive.There must be something wrong with brakes: such solid brand cars should not swing under intensive brakes, however, they endured at least 3 laps of torture in the proper manner. The absence of any kind of differential lock is particularly palpable on high-speed  turnings: under the onslaught of the 200 horsepower  the near-side wheel starts to grind the rest of the asphalt. So, for TT to be able to compete on a track, it should have a  differential lock and a stiffer suspension. For now, it's just a nice glamour car."

While our experts were violently driving the car, I picked up a stopwatch and timed.
1:52! As far as I remember, it's been one of the top results shown on a front-wheel car on this track so far. The absolute record was set on a  400-horsepower 4-wheel drive Mitsubishi Evo XI, which, in essence, is a true "fighting" rally car, therefor it is not shameful to lose.
 In short, the AUDI TT is good!
As for me, I did drive the car on the track, but not in racing mode. I made a couple of quick-trial laps and got only positive impressions of those dynamic rides.
Separately, I'd like to note the excellent work of the automatic gearbox.Contrary to popular opinion, during intensive acceleration it changes the gears much quicker than any other experienced driver. In addition to the above, I would like to point out the fact that our TT was not the most powerful of its type. The official dealers offer their potential buyers the model with 3.2 liter engine and four-wheel drive. I think such an equipped car will make a serious competition to such giants, as the PORSCHE 911, or maybe even a FERRARI.
This small test-drive only strengthened my final opinion of a car associated with the legendary gun: it's light to handle , fast as a bullet and ,of course, accurate in the hands of an experienced shooter. Moreover, I've never had so much fun by driving a semi-sport car. Besides, the car is awesomely beautiful.
There is only one caveat: the coupe is for a self-lover, or , in the extreme case, for a self-lover and his girlfriend. But the latter option must be considered only at low speeds, otherwise  there might be an unplanned trip to the dry cleaner's.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

A Test Drive of the "TT" (Part 2)

The main purpose of creating this Audi, as it seems to me, was the idea of producing a sport car, which would be capable of going in town not just well but perfectly; at the same time, the car should have all the characteristics of a civilian sedan.
Now, let's check it out!

The 200 HP, which produces the 2-liter inline-four turbo engine and 6-speed S tronic gearbox, proved to be enough to take your breath away. The coupe accelerates confidently and vigorously, thanks to the vivid engine, which easily reaches its maximal revolutions.
I'd like to mention that the car demonstrated such dynamics when the gear knob was on "D"!  By the way, there is also "S" (Sport Drive or maybe Super Sport?) on the gear selector.

I guess the analogy with a bullet comes to reality.

Initially, I checked the dynamics of acceleration on a relatively small area of the testing track.
After a few laps I can testify, without exaggeration, that TT has excellent maneuverability and acceleration. Then I decided to test out the car on a real racing track. For those who’re not aware, I’d like to inform that in Yerevan we also have a real circular racing track with a length of 4 kilometers.
In spite of the fact that the construction is not completed in full, it’s still possible to make a few fast laps, since the track is fully asphalted; the official opening is planned for early next year.

On the way to the racing track I had to drive through our streets of notorious quality, which was a nice opportunity to evaluate the travelling comfort and smoothness of the car. And as it turned out, the car was surprisingly comfortable for a coupe: moderately stiff and without irritating with detailed information on bumps and other road irregularities at medium speeds.
There were of course some minor flaws.
At relatively low speeds (30-40 km/h) the car conveys in detail all the “delight” of our roads to its passengers. I wouldn’t say that this is too critical, but the comfort and smoothness of a business sedan are only evanescent thoughts in this case. When accelerating the car to 100 km/h, the suspension seems to be getting kind of more “self-disciplined” without allowing the car to come off the given direction, and only rather large bumps make the car shudder. All in all, I have nothing to cavil at. I won’t go into details on my impressions about TT’s behavior on Yerevan-Sevan highway, because on this road I was sitting beside the driver. As a passenger, I was feeling very comfortable in a quiet style of driving, but, as soon as the style got shifted to aggressive, I started to feel seasick. While being a passenger, I happened to notice the rear spoiler activating button located on the front of the panel, which was unseen at first. But if you want to find out its practical effect on driving dynamics of the car, you should refer to the user guide-I simply ran out of time to study it thoroughly. Most likely, at certain speeds, the rear axle changes the angle of the spoiler to increase the downforce.
To be continue...

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Test Drive of the "TT"

The name of this car is short and whipping. It calls up an association with the legendary TT pistol to my mind; and therefor, before meeting it, I subconsciously wanted to see something, which would be light to handle, fast as a bullet and, of course, accurate in the hands of an experienced shooter.
And here is the  strong coupe! Glittering its white metallic in the rays of the spring sun it appeared at our testing track. The car is small in size, but, due to its serious block-front headlights, which are crouched to the ground as if ready to jump and attack, looks like a ferocious predator.
In profile and from behind the car looks peaceful; the sloping roof slightly reminds of VW Beetle. The large 245/45 R17 wheels, which are big for a relatively small car, also gives it a solid look.
After briefly examining the exterior, I got into the car.

The doors of this Audi are frameless, and therefor when you open the door, the front window automatically lowers a little. It is worth mentioning, that thanks to the comfortable shapes of the front seats and the right position of the steering wheel I had no difficulty to get in. You might have noticed that it is not always easy to get into other sport or half sport cars. The seats are equipped with electronic adjustment of all possible positions. Despite my fears, the driver's belt was also easily reachable. The designers who were responsible for the ergonomics of this element have taken into consideration all the peculiarities of the two-door body and the discomfort of belt fastening. In short, it's quite easy to reach for the belt and buckle it up. As for the finishing materials, I think it's not worth going into details. The interior looks so as you'd expect from this manufacturer; everything is of high-Q and put together with true German thoroughness and attention to tiny details.
The inside of the car is trimmed with black fabric,  the same color was present in the covering of the ceiling. Even in the decorations there is a hint of power and aggression!
Unlike the bigger A6 and A8, the front panel of TT is not decorated with wood or aluminium, however, I daren't  say that it's defective and yields in something to its older brothers. Everything here is subordinated to the spirit of rigor and aristocratic restraint, and the main emphasis in the layout is put on the maximal functionality. There are back seats, but only in name apparently. The point is that it is almost impossible for an adult (even one) to take a seat there: there is neither room for feet below nor enough space for a head not to bend it to the chest. Most likely, the back seats can be used  as an additional space for fragile and precious luggage or a personal place for the driver's dog. As an argument in favour of such assumptions, I will cite the fact that you can't quickly recline the front seats by hand, they tilt or move forward only with the help of sluggish electric drives.
The dashboard has chrome-plated rims and is quite informative. There is also a display of  the automatic gearbox. The small TEMP and fuel gauges which I have already seen on (if I'm not mistaken) Ford Kuga, do not allow to easily get information from them. All right, in the last analysis, it is not so important for a car with such an orientation.
To be continue...

Monday, April 7, 2014

A Test Drive of a Friend's X5 (Part 2)

Now, my impressions about the drive.
I would refrain from calling it “simple driving”. X5 is capable of turning an even routine trip from home to the local supermarket into a thrilling ride. I guess that the engineers of BMW have reached such heights in their craft that made this “non-tuned” car excessively powerful.
Driving X5 is unbelievably hard in the city. It’s not just in traffic jam and cram. As I came out of the yard, I had a feeling as if all the drivers were purposely slowing down. I was kind of driving quietly, safely,with a good reserve for any maneuvers,but,all the same, I had to drive around all the cars.The situation changed as I accelerated the car somewhere up to 180 km/h. This speed X5 reaches within seconds showing total obedience to any action of its driver.
The normal traffic speed of 70-80km/h is perceived quite differently on X5: it seems as if you are not moving. You only need to slightly push the foot-throttle and it's already 120 km/h!
The five-speed automatic gearbox functions absolutely silently: you can notice the moment of changing a speed only through the shake of the tachometer arrow.

There is no breathtaking speed, the car behaves as if it's in a normal driving mode. And only the traffic police Inspector disagrees. He doesn't care about the reliability of the car-it's simply banned, that's all.

According to manufacturer's data,the car reaches 0-100km/h in 6,9 secs. and the top speed is 240km/h.
The suspension is slightly stiffer, but only to the extent that allows the driver to evaluate the quality of the road. The specialists of BMW succeeded in creating ideal chassis-your every part of the body feels the position of the car on the road. You can take turns at least twice as faster than usually without experiencing any drifts.
The Xdrive system is configured in such a way that under normal conditions 70% of traction is transmitted to the rear axle in order to conserve the rear-steer habits. On a slippery road the torque distribution gets equalized.
Switch the car into Sport+ mode, which sharpens the throttle response and slightly clamps the suspension, and you can drive like the wind.
Of course, it would be a pointless challenge to use X5 on extreme off roads with its 209 mm ground clearance. Besides there is no "algorithmized" off-road transmission.
But who cares?
The car ideally behaves without wallowing in the mud!
Words can hardly describe the experience of driving an X5.  The Bavarians have come to a completely unattainable level of developing and customizing techniques.
BMW X5 is a crossover of higher caste.

A Test Drive of a Friend's X5

It‘s always sad to part with good things. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a cool computer, smartphone or nice clothes, we instantly get used to them. The same story is with cars: once you’ve had a good car, it is very hard to change it.
I’ve got cleared for myself, why X5 is so much beloved in Armenia. This is not just an expensive toy for rich boys. This is an impressive machine, capable of little exploits.
It is the embodiment of the status of the owner and, if I may say so, a kind of manifesto: the driver of X5 does not agree to half-measures. He needs the utmost: maximum comfort, maximum drive and maximum respect. And the car gives it all.

The first BMW X 5 debuted in 1999, the car was classified as Sport Activity Vehicle (SAV), a machine for people leading an active lifestyle. By today's standards, the car is more suitable under the definition of "crossover", because its concept and equipment is designed for good roads and comfortable driving.
Today, I am going to introduce my friend’s X5 2002, which he bought three months ago.

The model of 2002 has altered forms of frontal bumper, the course of optics and lamps. But, the main thing, which distinguishes the crossover from its previous generation, is hiding in the engine compartment. The car received a new range of power units: a new eight-stage automatic transmission ZF.
The system Efficient Dynamics has led to better balance power characteristics and reduction of fuel consumption for all cars, but most of all, it affected high-powered models such as X5.
The V8 Twin Power Turbo engine is equipped with High Precision Injection system and can produce 407 horsepower. It is worth mentioning that this monstrous engine does not exceed the Euro 5 standard. The robotized mechanism of the transmission  automatically distributes the torque between axles depending on road conditions, by using an electronically controlled clutches.
Additionally, the settings of the levers, shock-absorbers and the springs of the models хDrive50i and хDrive40d have also been changed.
The new control system with Servotronic booster modifies the steering intensity depending on the speed.
Do I need to mention that the comfort is on top? The front seats are equipped with all possible adjustments. The adjustment range of the heated steering wheel is simply unreal; being 2-meter-tall, I pushed the chair back to the full stop, took the wheel as far as it would go, and it almost thrust me in the chest. As for visibility, it’s excellent.
The iDrive multimedia system can help you avoid traffic jams and understands tactile input.
The luggage compartment is transformable; its volume can be increased from 620 to 1750 liters. If you install the third row of seats, X5 can carry up to 7 passengers.

There are also a number of information, entertainment and safety systems (adaptive headlights, automatic switching from driving to passing beam, a park distance control,  a rear view camera, following of road markings, a speed limit indicator,  a side view system).

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Humanist and the Successors

In 1983, Svetlana returned to Leningrad as an acknowledged designer.She had received more than 40 awards for her works. She was welcomed to lecture in the faculty of industrial art of the same school, which she graduated as a talanted student 25 years earlier.
Just like everywhere else,Svetlana demonstrated great zeal and devotion to her work when teaching there.Nowdays lots of well-known specialists consider Svetlana Mirzoyan as their teacher.
This gifted Armenian woman  was able to appreciate and support the talent of other people, which is a distinctive feature of great people.
She always inspired her students to live and create following the basics of humanism.,as a result,one of her students designed a special car for the disabled that bore the following, 'This car is to express humanism and kindeness towards disabled people.'
Another student of hers raised the painful subject of homeless people by designing disposable shelters for one-night stand.This idea emerged when he saw a homeless man who was trying to build a shelter from useless boxess on a tree.
And so,he offerd to solve the isssue of the homeless,by considering metal paper as a cheap building material.The demonstration of all those models stirred up great excitement not only among ordinery citizens,but also the media.
It has been many years,and a lot has changed since then; nowdays streets are filled with beautiful and sophisticated vehicles,nevertheless we should remember and realize how difficult it was to create and achieve someting in Stelana Mirzoyan's time.

The Armenian Icon of Soviet Design

There are only few names involved in Armenian car design, and this is explained by the almost complete lack of car industry in our country.
Imagine the delight and excitement I felt , when I came across the name of Svetlana Mirzoyan on one of the websites dedicated to car design.
It turns out that the name of this Armenian woman was well known throughout the world of automotive design during the Soviet period, but, let's start from the beginning.
Svetlana Mirzoyan was born in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in 1936, in a highly educated family (her father was a doctor and her mother-biologist).
In 1962 she entered the Leningrad Higher School of Art and Industry the department of metal art design. The school was one of the best of its kind in the Soviet Union.
It was a great honor and privilege to study at that school, since only the best sculptors, architects and other highly skilled specialists were teaching there.
Once, during the presentation of Svetlana's graduation work, the dean of the faculty Joseph Wax announced the following, 'If there has been any ideal student in the history of the school, it should be Svetlana!'.

After the brilliant graduation, she moved to Latvia and got a job at RAF (Riga Autobus Factory).
In 1959, RAF was still considered as a newly founded factory and had manufactured only a few experimental models, but was planning to launch the mass production of new and high standard minibuses. The young Armenian specialist was among those who shouldered the responsibility of implementing this grand project.
She was responsible not only for creating a new style, logo and advertising brochures, but also for defending the project in the higher authorities.
Svetlana managed to invent a totally new looking car in a short period of time (In the Soviet Union everything was strictly scheduled-even human imagination and creative thinking were limited by time).
In 1960 at the London International Motor show the company received an award for its RAF 977 'Latvia'   minibus. In that year, the company started bulk deliveries of the minibus in various modifications to different countries of the world. In 1961 and 1962, RAF 977 received awards at international motor shows in Brussels and Paris.
Indeed, those achievements were Svetlana's personal victories. Who could imagine that the designer of the culturally iconic RAF was our countrywoman?

In 1963, Svetlana started to work for the bureau of art projects at one of the six branches of the All-Soviet Research Institute of Technical Aesthetics, which had been founded in 1962.
Grabbing all the opportunities, she successfully exerted every effort for her projects to go on production. The results of her talent were reflected in various spheres of Soviet production (tableware, telephones, furniture.,house and industrial vacuum cleaners, searchlights, and of course, the first Soviet high-speed train ER-200).
In 1964 she began to collaborate with the Civil Aviation Plant no.85 and designed a large number of steam engine vehicles to support airplanes and airport facilities, among such products was Leonid Brezhnev's personal boarding ramp.

Soviet power allegedly killed design and creative thought, as a result, women in monotonous and boring dresses, little choice of toys, tastelessly furnished apartments, and streets full of similarly looking cars.
By striving for equality, they only gained featurelessness.
But in spite of the allegations that the Soviet Union was destitute of design, we should, single out the names of the people whose hard work linked our present those historical times.
Whenever I look back in time,the past depicting pictures of the fixed-run taxis, fantastically looking airports and the futuristic boarding ramps start to revive before my eyes;all these characters are tightly connected with the name of Svetlana Mirzoyan.