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  #61  
Old 03-20-2010, 03:57 AM
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Yes, i do agree. To some extent, cars aren't made the same way anymore, simply because the rules (very litteraly) have changed. Theese days the heap af regulations the good people building cars gotta follow is huge, which ofc. puts some restrictions on the creative liberty one can take.

Another reason I think the conditions have changed is the fact that building a car today (Because the strickt regulations) is rather expensive, atleast when compared to the huge behemoths that the the automotive industies, with their platform sharing and co-op developments. Yes, alot of people get to do it, but it usualy ends up being exclusive supercars like the Koenigsegg or the Pagani you don't really see newcommers who cater to the general public. (Atleast not in my(our?) part of the world)

I do believe that if we were to travel to more eastern seabearings we would come across a totally different automotive culture (Japan excluted) where classics are being born, which we might never hear of.

Allthough, thats not to say that classics aren't being made today. They are, they are just far in between. Imo the Ferrari 360 would be a good example, allthought at the moment i can't think of some cheap cars which might one day be classic. I might return upon further mindstorming.

Last edited by Buen; 03-21-2010 at 02:41 PM.
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  #62  
Old 03-20-2010, 05:39 AM
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Quote:
Yes, i do agree. To some extent, cars aren't made the same way anymore, simply because the rules (very litteraly) have changed.
No. Just no.

Cars aren't made the same way because better ways have been developed. Cheaper, higher quality, safer, faster.
Nearly all manufacturers are trying to keep well ahead of minimum safely standards demanded by rules, people weren't deliberately buying unsafe cars in the past, nor were manufacturers producing them...they just couldn't do any better.

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I do believe that if we were to travel to more eastern seabearings we would come across a totally different automotive culture (Japan excluted) where classics are being born, which we might never hear of.
What? We have the internet, how do we not hear about them? Is there some secret conspiracy going on?

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Allthough, thats not to say that classics aren't being made today. They are, they are just far in between. Imo the Ferrari 360 would be a good example, allthought at the moment i can't think of some cheap cars which might one day be classic. I might return upon further mindstorming.
Instant classics have always been rare. Do you think the original Mustang was a classic from the get go? No, it was a cheap, slow, girl's car until someone slung a big vee ate between the front tyres and decades of nostalgia and a massively disappointing decade (1980's) pushed up demand.

Modern cars which might be future classics could be the Nissan 350z, the few Holden Monaros that made it to the USA, 4G63 powered Mitsubishi Evos, the Clio V6, BMW E46 M3.
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  #63  
Old 03-20-2010, 05:50 AM
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Apart from the technology development though, he does have a point that cars are different. Not better or worse, just different. Theu rules have indeed changed, and not only the written ones. These days it's not only safety that matters, but also the environments and the fact that to break even you need to produce, and sell, a million cars.

That means several things, for instance the beautiful shapes of the past are gone forever. The new one will maybe be beautiful as well, but they will definitely be different. Adventures like DeTomasos, Isos, Jensens, TVRs and the likes are a distant memory, because you can't produce a mid-priced sportscar profitably these days unless you are a big multinational company. A result of globalisation and economies of scale is also the fact that experimentation is going down and uniformity is taking place. Altough with the new resurgence of petrol engines this may change partly.

In short, cars and rules are indeed different. Better or worse? I don't know, I don't think we can generalise. As in every decade there will be the good, the bad and the ugly.
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  #64  
Old 03-20-2010, 07:14 AM
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Ferrer, what is wrong with you lately? You sound so rational and calculated, almost cold blooded...

In any case - your last post was really well written and you've put my thoughts on the matter into words far more succinct then I could have. Thank you.

Last edited by Revo; 03-20-2010 at 07:23 AM.
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  #65  
Old 03-21-2010, 05:43 AM
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Originally Posted by ferrer
Apart from the technology development though, he does have a point that cars are different. Not better or worse, just different.
Art is different, music is different, war and politics are the same but cars are -in every measurable sense- better.

Saying cars look different isn't a point inasmuch as it's a uselessly obvious observation with no single cause explaining it.

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These days it's not only safety that matters, but also the environments and the fact that to break even you need to produce, and sell, a million cars.
And yet, Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin and Lamborghini are now profitable companies although some were in danger of disappearing or were actually bankrupt pre modern pesky regulations era.

The practise of large companies accepting losses on high profile flagship models which are made up for in expected additional sales of economy models has gone on for a long time. Requiring large numbers of sales hasn't stopped interesting cars being made.

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Adventures like DeTomasos, Isos, Jensens, TVRs and the likes are a distant memory, because you can't produce a mid-priced sportscar profitably these days unless you are a big multinational company.
Hasn't stopped Farbio or Morgan or Artega from producing small numbers of new cars equipped to compete with the offerings of multinationals.
The companies you've listed may be history but many many others have risen to fill that void, their fates are more closely connected with the quality of their products, their business sense and the state of the economy than with any rules which have been introduced.

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A result of globalisation and economies of scale is also the fact that experimentation is going down and uniformity is taking place.
I disagree, there has never ever been a wider variety of good and different cars to choose from. Even a little Australian company has appeared out of nowhere with a new racer for the road.

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In short, cars and rules are indeed different. Better or worse?
Evolving taste, advancing production tech and the pressures of international competition being responsible for the lions share with rules responsible for what, exactly? The unlamentable loss of pop up headlights?
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  #66  
Old 03-21-2010, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P4g4nite View Post
Art is different, music is different, war and politics are the same but cars are -in every measurable sense- better.

Saying cars look different isn't a point inasmuch as it's a uselessly obvious observation with no single cause explaining it.
Whya re they better? They may be better to you, but what if my concept of better is different from yours? Undeniably there are some areas, like safety and fuel consumption forn instance, where cars have undoubtedly progressed, but what about handling and performance? What about intangibles? Aren't those imporant too? The latest Abarth Punto is just a match for the original Uno Turbo as far as performance is concerned.

I'm not saying that old cars are better, as I said in my previous post there's good and bad in which ever era you look. Just like Tim Allen is wrong, don't make the misyake to dismiss old cars because they are old. Yes, they might not be as advanced in some cases, but that doesn't make them worse, just different and from their era. Because if they are bad, current cars are bad too because they will be worse than the ones made in 2067.

Let's just say that we should appreciate old cars for what they are and new ones for what they are too and not trying to say which is best, because in the best of cases best is a subjective attribute.
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Originally Posted by P4g4nite View Post
And yet, Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin and Lamborghini are now profitable companies although some were in danger of disappearing or were actually bankrupt pre modern pesky regulations era.

The practise of large companies accepting losses on high profile flagship models which are made up for in expected additional sales of economy models has gone on for a long time. Requiring large numbers of sales hasn't stopped interesting cars being made.
75% of car companies you listed are now part of large industrial groups, and the other one was until recently. As I said, though that doesn't make them worse, just different. Take the Gallardo, I may whine about it as long as I want, but it is a good car, just different. In the olden days what they would've done is take which ever engine they had in hand, cut off some cylinders, phone some carrozzeria down the road from Sant'Agata mate the design with some spare chasis they had lying around and voilą you had a new entry level Lambo.

Now, it'd almost certainly break down every 100 yards, have no visibility at all, be expensive to buy and run and have all sorts of designs faults. But it'd been unique. Objectively it was a worse car than the Audi Gallardo, but I personally preferred this approach.

But I'm not right or wrong, it's just a matter of opinion. And in the end what dominates is the trend. And what the trend says is that people want Lamborghini R8s, because they want the badge without the fuss that was usually associated with it. And there's nothing we can do with that, wheter we like it or not.
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Originally Posted by P4g4nite View Post
Hasn't stopped Farbio or Morgan or Artega from producing small numbers of new cars equipped to compete with the offerings of multinationals.
The companies you've listed may be history but many many others have risen to fill that void, their fates are more closely connected with the quality of their products, their business sense and the state of the economy than with any rules which have been introduced.

I disagree, there has never ever been a wider variety of good and different cars to choose from. Even a little Australian company has appeared out of nowhere with a new racer for the road.
Morgan isn't exactly a new comer, and AFAIK you can't buy an Artega yet. I don't know much about Farbio because they are an UK-only operation and Skelta is just a racer with numer plates as far as I understand.

All the manufacturers I mentioned, and many others, used to build road worthy spoartscar and grand tourers that were usually moderately useable and moderately comfortable. As far as I can see this isn't possible anymore. Aside from the UK, which in any case should be considered as a different planet when it comes to cars, the market for small manufacturers which just want to build road cars has just disappeared. Unless you want to built a seven figure supercar, everything else is done more cost-efectively by large car companies, and this means there's nowhere to go for this small car companies because they can't compete, especially if they are upstarts.

Now I'm not discussing the market for racers and trackday cars, the big manufacturers haven't tackled those yet, but if you just want a normal car there's almost no way you can get it from a small company because it isn't profitable for them. If even Saab or Volvo are suffering imagine a car comapny that would barely sell a thousand cars a year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by P4g4nite View Post
Evolving taste, advancing production tech and the pressures of international competition being responsible for the lions share with rules responsible for what, exactly? The unlamentable loss of pop up headlights?
Diversity. Diversity is gone forever. It's been replaced by efficiency.

You see in 1743 the market for Lancias was the same as today, three people. But that was ok because then three was fine for the company to be profitable. Their return may only have been 1% over the invested capital but that was ok, because they didn't need more.

Today though if every year they don't see a 154690% increase in sales you are fired and dismissed as an incompetent. That means there's no longer a market for Lancias, Saabs, Volvos and many other manufacturers. And this is a great loss.

But fear not, because what this loss has given us is more volume for the surviving companies. And more volume means they can spread the costs of developing exciting new technologies over more units, therefore making the cost per unit lower and assumable for the companies. That has undoubtely made the car progress and get better as the decades passed.

Is this better or worse? Neither I would say. We've gained many things, such as safer, more frugal cars, better performance is some case and a lot of helpful technology. This has come, though at the cost of uniformity.

In the end it's up to each one of us which is better.
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  #67  
Old 03-21-2010, 10:45 AM
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Kitdy Kitdy is offline
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In the end it's up to each one of us which is better.
It's up to each of you to decide which is better, but we know what's best:

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  #68  
Old 03-21-2010, 10:22 PM
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