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In general, what do you like about modern cars?


hauserplenty

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Much less noise, vibration and harshness.

OBD-II. Scantools are evolving into ruggedized tablet computers, which is making for simplified repairs.

Tolerances are so much closer, that any oil seen on the outside of an engine is considered unacceptable, even after 60,000 miles. I remember when a complete absence of oil on the outside of an engine meant that it had been installed 5 minutes ago.

Some of the tech is nice. Although I confess to being a Luddite at times, I mustard mitt Bluetooth integration, steering wheel-mounted controls and even paddle shifters could make a 7-year loan a bit easier to rationalize...

Air bags, crumple zones, proximity sensors and LED lighting all tick my boxes as well.

But so does working air conditioning, and tires that grip, and a roof that won't leak...&c.

 

American cars of today must be a lot different from the utter rubbish they sell here.

 

Yes, the modern cars I have hitherto experienced did a good job cancelling out engine noise. They replaced it with unbearable rattles, creaks and road noise from their radial low profile tyres, aka "singing waffles" in automotive engineer speak.

All of them vibrated with this extremely annoying high frequency pitch and to say they are harsh would be an understatement of downright British proportions.

They have no suspension whatsoever and the seats feel like something you would strap someone onto to waterboard him. Brought to you directly from Colditz Castle.

 

From an engineering point of view, I find it difficult to see a correlation between tolerances and oil leaks (quality control being an entirely differerent matter altoghether),

but if the oil puddles on every single parking space at the vast Morrison's car park across the street are anything to go by, and following your logic, the tolerances today

appear to be the size of pancakes. When it comes to measurable tolerances, I find the specifications outlined in a 2014 Dodge Challenger Hemi workshop manual much

more tolerant, than the ones specified in the 1970 Dodge Challenger manual for the 440 engine.

 

I have yet to understand what Bluetooth integration, steering wheel-mounted controls and even paddle shifters contribute to driving a car, unless you want to kill a few people

because you were busy with all kinds of shit except driving a car.

Air bags, crumple zones, proximity sensors, LED lighting and all those other mock safety devices lead to nothing but people driving without due care and attention because perceived safety blanket, something psychologists have known for centuries.

A friend of mine is a practitioning osteopath for over 30 years. He told me, that before airbags, he dealt with healing people suffering from broken bones, etc, and they usually were healed completely within a couple of years or so. Since airbags, he has to deal with all kinds of maladies that occur after a considerable time after an accident, and which are in fact unhealable.

People now are having problems for the rest of their lives.

My 1957 Imperial had working dual air conditioning with thermostatic control, so this is hardly something new, tires that grip are completely irrelevant if you have an ill designed

suspension system, which most modern cars have, so ill desinged in fact, that they wouldn't be driveable without computerised compensation systems. Good old cars however have a lot of grip even with cheap tyres, because their suspension systems are well designed.

 

Roofs that won't leak have been employed by Louis Renault as early as 1899, in fact, they were the reason he started to build cars in the first place.

 

And scantools only help diagnosing defects, that wouldn't exist if cars were properly designed. They merely help to diagnose systems brought into place to compensate symptoms.

The root cause of petrol engines emitting CO and CO2 is known since the 1920s. The solution to the problem is known since the 1930s.

It just has never been deployed, because until the 1960s there was no legal need for it, and due to the fascist structure establishing itself since the 1960s, it was more profitable to cure the symptoms, instead of addressing the cause.

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Hmm.

I refer the shite honourable gentleman to the reply I gave, some moments ago.

I'll grant you, maybe tolerance is the wrong word to use, from an engineering standpoint.

But from the standpoint of trying to have a bit of fun posting threads on a beige car forum, your opinions seem, well...

...intolerant?

Keeping one's hands on the wheel is a good thing, one which I think bears at least some consideration when it comes to actually driving a car. I'm also willing to grant you that there is a downside to the explosive charge of an airbag deployment. However I happen to believe it outweighs the alternative. Apparently, so did the folks at Mercedes-Benz, who pioneered the technology, then shared their research with others. I prefer their opinions to those of any anonymous source, so there you have it.

I believe that it's not what you know, but how you use it that counts, so I shall return to being helpful and considerate in future because after all, we are a supportive community here. Mostly.

 

Your* mileage may vary**.

 

*Do you remember the origin of this phrase, squire?

 

**It's called irony. Perhaps you've heard of it? (With apologies to Senator Al Franken)

 

Shite is as shite does.

 

Nothing further.

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Had the opportunity to draw a direct comparison a couple of months back, when I made a 600 mile round trip in the LNA, followed by the same trip a week later in my 2010 320d.

 

Creature comforts aside, the advantages of the modern car were:

 

Range - Made it on one tank in the 320d (Range is near 650-700 miles if you're careful) - LNA's range is about 320-350 miles

Acceleration - 0-60mph takes less than half the time in the 320d versus the LNA - Handy for overtaking dawdlers

 

The main thing was fatigue - After a 300+ mile stint in the LNA, you're knackered. I've covered 600+ miles in the 320d in one sitting, and still been relatively fresh.

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Comparing two small cars 20-odd years apart (my 205 and the OH's modern Panda) I would honestly rather drive the former. So I don't* hate modern cars, but I won't be buying one anytime soon.

 

The car is only for shit weather anyway, but I feel the same way about bikes and scooters. Sure, modern stuff is fast & has race-bred handling etc. but I'm slow, so it makes no odds to me.

 

*EDIT: it seems that I do hate modern cars, based on my experience of the truly horrible Audi A1.

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Taff, on 29 Oct 2015 - 9:59 PM, said:

no ignition points to set

variable speed intermittent wash-wipe

decent headlights

Bluetooth

iphone able to connect to the ice so I can play my own songs or downloaded podcasts

hoods that don't leak

anti corrosion measures

4 speed heater motors

abs

central locking

elec windows

 

that's all, really

 

You can have all of those in a 21-year old Cavalier, Taff. Apart from the non-leaking soft top. And you might have to change the resistor pack under the wiper motor to get all four blower speeds working again.

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Sort of following on from my other post in the polar opposite thread to this one, I think Leccy cars are a good thing (and have been since 1899...). Shame that the human race didn't get them in any usable quantity and form a bit sooner. 

 

Anyway, what with all the pointless toys and gadgets that festoon cars now, most of which don't seem to have very much to do with actually driving the thing, a better option I'm sure would be to make the car drive itself and make that standard (as I'm sure it will be in the not too distant future, what with Teslas having that feature, etc). As has been often discussed on here, most of the general populace don't care so much for cars anyway, bar having them as a pretty driveway ornament which show's 'em... a bit like dressing the kid in Gucci (that show's 'em too). That way, the owner of the The Latest Car (sic) can prat about with their Bluetooth working/not working, going on Facebook or whatever... and the car can get on with the driving. Drivability, visibility, what you'd like the exhaust to sound like etc. then becomes moot. 

 

As to the rest of us, those of us who actually quite like cars... well, us lot will probably keep something from the 80s/90s running... but probably cease to complain about new cars as they'll apply to us in the same way as train travel does.

 

So, what do we like/dislike about new trains...? ;)  

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You can have all of those in a 21-year old Cavalier, Taff. Apart from the non-leaking soft top. And you might have to change the resistor pack under the wiper motor to get all four blower speeds working again.

With the fitting of an after-market ICE, they are all in my 19-year old F, mate!

 

I take your point and the list was a last swipe at some of the modern-slagging posts & threads that have appeared lately. It can get a little "flat earth society" around here sometimes.

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Yeah, but the features you mentioned are sensible and reflect genuine progress over what had gone before (carburettors, non-galvanised panels, etc.). And also, as we've both said, they're not really modern anymore.

 

Many modern "improvements" are irritating and poorly conceived things like touchscreen heater controls that can't be operated whilst you keep your eye on the road, or not being able to drive the car with the door open (which you need to do, because the back is so high you can't see what's behind and the collision warning gubbins has broken). Or electronic big-brother gadgets like lane control and predictive braking, which even further isolate the driver from the task of actually driving the car themselves. 

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All cars were modern once.

 

Apart from the Marina.

 

All cars were once new. Some were modern.

 

 

Bodyshells that resist rust (on the whole) superbly. Probably one of the least appealing things about any older car is how well they don't do this. I can take or leave a lot of other features, but this is one I really like on a modern.

 

Galv shells are brilliant, provided there aren't rot-prone subframes. Audis and some Peugeots were well-protected from corrosion by the late 80s (better so than some from the last few years), by the 90s, loads were pretty good at not rotting.

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ABS - as per the other thread, I don't want to practice candance breaking as I'm sliding towards the back of another car

Air con - yes you may only need it for a few weeks a year. But when you get in a car that's been parked in the sun all day, you'll be glad of it

Airbags - admittedly I've never tried one, but get the feeling I'll be glad it's there if I have no other choice

Unlikely to rust

Better headlights

Stronger bodyshell

Less road noise and viration

Heat up quicker in the winter and better ventilation

Fuel economy

Day to day reliability

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...Besides that I mean.

After all, it does seem that high-end luxury cars of the 1980's hold up quite well today. The cheap cars of today are much less fatiguing to drive, and the high-end models tend to have more gadgets. The proximity sensors are cool. They don't seem to be eroding my driving skills much. GPS is nice, until the unit fails and they want a couple thousand to fix it. But it seems you can't just tick the boxes you want; you have to buy a trim level now. So if I were buying a modern today, I might take power-everything but tell them to fuggedabout the "premium sound" since today's cheap radio is almost as good, if not better than some of the most costly units from 20-30 years ago.

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ABS - as per the other thread, I don't want to practice candance breaking as I'm sliding towards the back of another car

Air con - yes you may only need it for a few weeks a year. But when you get in a car that's been parked in the sun all day, you'll be glad of it

Airbags - admittedly I've never tried one, but get the feeling I'll be glad it's there if I have no other choice

Unlikely to rust

Better headlights

Stronger bodyshell

Less road noise and viration

Heat up quicker in the winter and better ventilation

Fuel economy

Day to day reliability

 

This is basically why I bought my Mercedes 190e, and held out for the spec I got.  I wanted something considered 'OLDSKOOLM7' whilst still having some semblance of practicality.

I tend to use Air-Con as much in the winter as I do in the summer, especially with something that has a propensity to condensate on the inside.

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This is basically why I bought my Mercedes 190e, and held out for the spec I got.

 

I don't like anything about them and have never owned anything newer than 1993.

 

.

Sums up my feelings exactly.

 

I consider our 190E to be a modern car.   It looks as modern as I can relate to, offers all of the reliability and driveability of anything newer and remains sufficiently full of MB DNA from a time I still understand.

 

The reasons I would take it somewhere instead of one of the old Morrises are to do with heating, silence, spinal comfort and a degree of anonymity.    Most of these are  to do with it not being fucked rather than being inherently more "modern".    

 

I still refuse to revise my standards post-20th century.

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Re: driving comfort over long distances. The only vehicles that haven't given me a numb, flattened feeling arse after a couple of hundred miles are w201 and w124 Mercedes. Nothing new comes close but I haven't had the chance to try anything top end and new so that's possibly a bit unfair.

The stereos in modern fords have loads of bass. Can't think of owt else really

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The advances in new cars every year are great. When I started working with cars it was with Mk2 Fiestas. A posh one had a heated rear window and a radio. The equivalent new Fiesta has aircon, Bluetooth, ABS, airbags, a 5 speed box, working suspension and will go faster using less fuel. The new one will handle and ride a lot better than the old Mk2 and it won't deafen you at 70 mph. The new one will be more reliable for a lot longer and it doesn't need any particular technique to get it going in the morning - no faffing with a choke and pissing about with leaky VV carbs.

 

Same with a 1989 Transit v a 2015 one. The new one is tons nicer to drive, nicer to be in, quicker, quieter, safer, more reliable, needs less servicing and a lot less fuel and is a huge improvement.

 

Old cars have their charms. Some are genuinely brilliant but the new stuff is better in reality.

 

I tend to own 10-15 year old cars. That way I get airbags, ABS and the brilliance of engine management systems. I really don't want to go back to points condensers and carbs. I don't like manual chokes, dynamos and drum brakes are ancient technology that doesn't work very well.

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I still do around 50k miles a year. Over the last 6.5 years of driving nearly new cars the number of breakdowns or mechanical failures has been zero. None.

 

Compare that to doing the same kind of job in the early 90s and breakdowns were regular occurrences.

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Forgive me if it's been mentioned already but seemingly far better outer body corrosion prevention. When I grew up most cars had hanging arches etc at a few years old.

 

It's weird going to modern scrap yards to see rows of fairly fresh rust free cars, obviously written off by mechanical failures or over the top insurance repair costs.

 

I think yesterday's OMGRUST has been replaced with DMF and weird electronic failures for sending cars over the bridge

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