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Thread: The State of The Car

  1. #256
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    Quote Originally Posted by NSXType-R View Post
    Just curious, what car do you drive again? I'm getting a Mustang vibe for some odd reason...
    No Mustang here. Just an early 2000's Japanese hatch. Simple, easy to maintain (other than the damn heating system), and fun to drive.

  2. #257
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcp123 View Post
    I do have an iPhone, but I swap now and then for my $20 Huawei cheapie. It's pretty much an unabashed ripoff of Nokia brick phones from early-mid 2000s.
    Snake was the best game on those Nokia brick phones.

  3. #258
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    Snake was the schizznitz.
    An it harm none, do as ye will

    Approximately 79% of statistics are made up.

  4. #259
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    Quote Originally Posted by NSXType-R View Post
    Snake was the best game on those Nokia brick phones.
    Brick Breaker was the ultimate waiting-room friend for a year or two. Then I hit my all time high and never found a decent replacement.

  5. #260
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    Quote Originally Posted by NSXType-R View Post
    Snake was the best game on those Nokia brick phones.
    I believe there's an app for that.

    Back on topic, I was struck by something last night while watching the hott hatches on Top Gear. Once I put some ice on it, it occured to me that we have hot hatches now that need at least 250bhp to be considered any good, and 300+ (or 350+ now thanks to AMG) for premium ones. Yet our two seater sports cars that were 'killed off' by the hott hatches in the first place are super fantastic with only 200 bhp. Also the hott hatches need to corner on rails, yet our sports cars have tyres from a Prius so they can get just nicely wayward.

    Food for thought, anyway.
    Life's too short to drive bad cars.

  6. #261
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    Quote Originally Posted by pimento View Post
    I believe there's an app for that.

    Back on topic, I was struck by something last night while watching the hott hatches on Top Gear. Once I put some ice on it, it occured to me that we have hot hatches now that need at least 250bhp to be considered any good, and 300+ (or 350+ now thanks to AMG) for premium ones. Yet our two seater sports cars that were 'killed off' by the hott hatches in the first place are super fantastic with only 200 bhp. Also the hott hatches need to corner on rails, yet our sports cars have tyres from a Prius so they can get just nicely wayward.

    Food for thought, anyway.
    Even though everyone knows I'm actually from 1923, I've lived pretty much old my life in the latter part of the 20th century and beginnings of the 21st and even I can remember when 250-300bhp was a lot of power. Now it barely serves to move around a supermini.

    I think it is all just silly.

    Even in Europe where we used to drive our tiny commie cars rather fast power is almost impossible to use these days. There are speed cameras everywhere, tight speed limits, lots of traffic and speed bumps. So if you want to keep your driving license you kind of have to stick to the speed limits.

    Now, my tiny little, slow sportscar can do 120km/h as well as a Lamborghini Aventador can. But there's something my car does that even the most extreme of italian supercars can't.

    I decided this weekened to go for a short drive on one of my favourite country lanes. It's winter, so temperatures are relatively low and it had rained the night before so it was quite greasy. This meant there wasn't much grip in the road. And this meant you were breaking traction at like 60 or 70km/h.

    It was excellent.

    I remember coming home and thinking, this has to be the best handling car I've ever driven. And then it got me. I'm sure it was one of the slowest spirited drives of my life, but what the white two seater had managed to do is make fun, safe.

    Surely, none of this is important, because all that matters today are numbers and badges, but I have to say for a driver (which isn't necessarily the same as a car enthusiast) that some car companies are run by lunatics who say "I know, what people really want is a slow sportscar with no grip at all" is something to celebrate.

    Just for that, I'm inclined to not spend I single euro-commie coin and save them all up to replace my current car with a Toyobaru when the time comes to do just so.

    Or something.
    Last edited by Ferrer; 02-19-2013 at 12:25 AM.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
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  7. #262
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    I strongly considered having a damn good think about buying one before I got my BMW.
    Life's too short to drive bad cars.

  8. #263
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post

    I decided this weekened to go for a short drive on one of my favourite country lanes. It's winter, so temperatures are relatively low and it had rained the night before so it was quite greasy. This meant there wasn't much grip in the road. And this meant you were breaking traction at like 60 or 70km/h.

    It was excellent.
    Most people donít understand this. The authorities over here call it "hooning" to scare the ignorant. It also justifies (in some eyes) the law they created (anti hoon law ) to collect more revenue. I guess many drivers donít experience it until they are in trouble so they think breaking traction is automatically dangerous.
    The day I got my drivers license at the tender age of 16 I took the old manís HJ 6 cylinder Kingswood down to Muttons Cove which was a large area covered in coal cinders form the local power station. I proceeded to throw it around the wide open plains hanging the tail out and progressively learning to control an oversteering car. (sorry dad). I graduated to the various tracks and learned to control the car through corners. Best fun ever and only really ever likely to hurt myself albeit at relatively low speeds. They closed that area long ago and more recently have built on it.
    My hooning tendencies were mostly satisfied in places like this off the road. I guess with most people driving front wheel drive cars the thrill of instantly breaking rear traction with a flick of the throttle is an alien concept. Hence why I am a rear wheel drive tragic.
    But you are right. Along with my dadís HJ I also had as much fun in my terminally underpowered EK Holden breaking traction and sliding around at pretty modest speeds.
    "A string is approximately nine long."
    Egg Nogg 02-04-2005, 05:07 AM

  9. #264
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    So, with less opportunity out there to really explore the ever-increasing limits automakers are building into cars, will there eventually be a point where more performance just doesn't sell anymore? And to compete, cars simply have to be more fuel-efficient, space-efficient, and packed with feature content? Or do you think despite the piling on of traffic laws, there will always be the "outlaws" who will go for the big guns?
    An it harm none, do as ye will

    Approximately 79% of statistics are made up.

  10. #265
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    Efficiency will be a bigger and bigger sales point as long as we keep being nudged that way by legislation that makes it too expensive not to. Speed will always be a sales point to a certain subsection - what we'll see at least in the near term is more efficient speed. Long term, when we crack hydrogen creation, storage and distribution, the petrol will be left for us to guzzle on weekends.
    Life's too short to drive bad cars.

  11. #266
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    If the UK is anything to go by, then the cars will continue to get more efficient but there will always be a "tweaked" model in the range that pushes the performance envelope - Astra, Corsa VXR Nurburgring, Ford Focus/Fiesta ST, Fiat 500 Abarth LOTS of fast, fun when you want it, but "good" mileage when you need it !!
    Then the out and out, raw, no smarts, no TC etc stripped Caterham/Elise etc for those who still like to enjoy driving experience even if slower on crowded roads.
    Leading to a growth in "trackdays" at reasonable costs. $100 can get you 4 hours on a race circuit here in the UK where you can really take the car and yourself to the limits and then drive home and pick the kids up from school
    "A woman without curves is like a road without bends, you might get to your destination quicker but the ride is boring as hell'

  12. #267
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    Quote Originally Posted by crisis View Post
    Most people donít understand this. The authorities over here call it "hooning" to scare the ignorant. It also justifies (in some eyes) the law they created (anti hoon law ) to collect more revenue. I guess many drivers donít experience it until they are in trouble so they think breaking traction is automatically dangerous.
    The day I got my drivers license at the tender age of 16 I took the old manís HJ 6 cylinder Kingswood down to Muttons Cove which was a large area covered in coal cinders form the local power station. I proceeded to throw it around the wide open plains hanging the tail out and progressively learning to control an oversteering car. (sorry dad). I graduated to the various tracks and learned to control the car through corners. Best fun ever and only really ever likely to hurt myself albeit at relatively low speeds. They closed that area long ago and more recently have built on it.
    My hooning tendencies were mostly satisfied in places like this off the road. I guess with most people driving front wheel drive cars the thrill of instantly breaking rear traction with a flick of the throttle is an alien concept. Hence why I am a rear wheel drive tragic.
    But you are right. Along with my dadís HJ I also had as much fun in my terminally underpowered EK Holden breaking traction and sliding around at pretty modest speeds.
    I agree and it's a shame that this happens. I'm not even talking about drifting or taking corners sideways, at preposterous angles. I'm talking about enjoying a good handling car rounding good visibility corners with a bit of nice oversteer when there's no one coming the other way.

    Let's be brutally honest here, if you like driving cars you only really enjoy it when you are at the limit or getting close to it, and I would say that in those circumstances a rear wheel drive is (in general) safer than a front wheel drive car.

    To induce tail out antics in a front wheel drive car you have to overdo it in the corners and the way to get it back is by insisting with the throttle, which isn't a natural reaction. However in a (front engined) rear wheel drive to stop power-oversteer you just have to ease the throttle, which is the natural reaction when things get out of hand.

    So, in conclusion, rear wheel drive is safer than front wheel drive.

    Probably.
    Quote Originally Posted by jcp123 View Post
    So, with less opportunity out there to really explore the ever-increasing limits automakers are building into cars, will there eventually be a point where more performance just doesn't sell anymore? And to compete, cars simply have to be more fuel-efficient, space-efficient, and packed with feature content? Or do you think despite the piling on of traffic laws, there will always be the "outlaws" who will go for the big guns?
    The thing about performance is that it sells without even the need to experience it. You do not need to do 200mph or 0-60 in 3"5 seconds to brag about a car that can do it. It's the same case as premium badges, the important thing is to have them; the actual abilities of the car are irrelevant.

    One has to wonder if (for example) the A45 AMG is really worth the premium over a standard A250 or if the increase in performance is really usable in the real world, yet people will hanker after it if only for the (on paper) incredible performance.

    I think JC defined it well in 19x04 when posting the lap times of the three hot hatches in the powerboard, if you are at all serious about driving what you actually want is a (slower) GT86, not a +250bhp front wheel drive hatchback. However it's only a small portion of car enthusiast that are serious drivers, so high performance cars will always have a following and a public despite the ever increasing numbers of speed cameras, speed bumps, etc.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  13. #268
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    Selling luxury cars in a bankrupt continent with a penchant for cheap, slow hatchbacks with diesel engines is the in thing to do, apparently.

    Europe Image-Building Ground for Cadillac‚€™s Global Plan | Europe content from WardsAuto

    Or something.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

  14. #269
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    Selling luxury cars in a bankrupt continent
    and yet, the UK has just reached a 4 year high on new car sales !!! ( admittedly econoboxes mainly )
    Whether we're bankrupt or not, we seem to be buying cars

    EDIT: Interest piqued I checked, Bentley sales were UP 20% last year ! ( Now OK, most likely from a dip after 2008, but still ) Luxury car market defies the economic gloom as Bentley and Rolls-Royce sales race ahead | This is Money
    Last edited by Matra et Alpine; 02-26-2013 at 03:31 PM.
    "A woman without curves is like a road without bends, you might get to your destination quicker but the ride is boring as hell'

  15. #270
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matra et Alpine View Post
    and yet, the UK has just reached a 4 year high on new car sales !!! ( admittedly econoboxes mainly )
    Whether we're bankrupt or not, we seem to be buying cars

    EDIT: Interest piqued I checked, Bentley sales were UP 20% last year ! ( Now OK, most likely from a dip after 2008, but still ) Luxury car market defies the economic gloom as Bentley and Rolls-Royce sales race ahead | This is Money
    I somewhat doubt the Bentley customer would consider a Cadillac. Unless he/she is a rapped from Los Angeles. Which I suspect there aren't that many in euro-commie land. Possibly something to do with LA being in the US, you know.

    Still the UK may be doing fine, and I guess Germany isn't doing bad either. But last month's best selling car in Spain was the Dacia Sandero, and we are being surpassed by countries with a portion of our population (Benelux). And France and Italy aren't in much better state...

    Still it appeals a bit to our euro-snob side that this is still the market for cars.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
    Visca Catalunya!

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