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dozeydustman

Shite you just don't get the appeal of

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I think that with many here, it is guilt by association with the typical owner that puts many people off paricular cars. for example I was in Cornwall last week and of course there were lots of T2 Campers around, but they were nearly all in original spec, full of families and being used as they were intended to ;). This always raised a grin, but when I see one dangerously modified and parked in  a field with a lot of others, I reach for the sick-bucket. :(

In fact this applies to jut about everything. I have driven and passengered MGBs in the days when they were just sports cars that were getting on a bit and they were FUN even at the modest speeds they were capable of, but what's the point in over-restoring one and parking it in a field with  a row of others instead of spending the day giving it a good B-road blast, and not worrying about the odd stone-chip?

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Kit cars that are a pastiche of well known stuff like AC Cobras, Pre-War sportscars, Jago jeeps etc can be shot into the sun. If kit cars are there own vision and don't rip off others fair enough. That little Heron sportscar based on the Austin 7 Barret has or that Midas Mini thing are great.  

My dad occasionally flirted in the 80s with building a Pilgrim kit car which was the usual Cobra replica dross.  I couldn't see the appeal then or now.  Shit dashboards, shoddy build quality, stupid company names like Vision Fantasy Products and they are so obviously fake to anyone with the slightest clue. 

Always based on some defenceless family saloon that they should have stayed as even if they had rampant rot and a bent MOT.

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I reckon my Saabs or an old Volvo would be just as safe as a Zafira/Sportage/newerer car. 

The aim of the game is to not crash anyway. And if a 20 tonne truck hits you at 60mph no amount of airbags and Stability control will help you then... 

Sorry if that was a bit morbid!  

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For some people its any excuse to go out and sign on the dotted line for something bigger and newer cos better.  Mid way through the PCP the said bigger better car is caked in crisps and fizzy drinks and they start resenting the £299 p/m they signed up to, only to go and do it all over again after being offered £1500 trade in for the 5 year old MPV / Crossover thingy-me-jig.

However its their money their choice, this lot do ultimately keep the car industry going unlike myself.

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All this talk of spaceship Civics reminds me I really don't get the appeal of so called hidden* door handles.

Firstly, they're not hidden, I can see them.

Secondly, it looks shit because the front and rear door handles don't match. Why not make a nice handle and have four of them. I mean it's not like the doors themselves are hidden is it, they are obviously there. 

And thirdly, they are invariably hidden* up round the back of the window frame making them less user friendly. Door handles are at waist height for a reason - that's where your hands naturally are when standing normally. I would say they're a perfect example of style over substance except there's no style (see 2).

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I don't get the MPV (Zafira/Galaxy/806) or crossover/softroader thing either. Perhaps again my judgement has been clouded by using a Zafira A courtesy car for 3-4 months when Scimitar no1 was at the insurance assessors. It wasn't a particularly nice car to drive, it felt far too tall and unsteady for its Astra underpinnings (the Astra G wasn't a bad steer IMO) and it wasn't as practical as I thought it was going to be especially when you and 7 mates decide to go camping for a weekend and need to take a second car for 8 people's stuff, tents and beer. Sort of defeated the object of having a multi-purpose vehicle.

The MGB/Classic British Sports car thing I do get as I like soft tops and the feeling of wind in my hair; essentially cars that are open top roller-skates. An MX-5 would probably appeal to me as well. I enjoyed a rather cramped drive of a Midget 1500 about 15 years ago. It wasn't awful, certainly nothing to write home about either but it was fun. The flat cap, tweed, pipe and string back driving gloves brigade people tend to associate with a 50s/60s/70s roadster isn't my thing though.

 

4 hours ago, Justin Case said:

I think that with many here, it is guilt by association with the typical owner that puts many people off paricular cars. 

I think this may be one reason why I don't get the fwd Ford Escort hype. It was the chav's choice when I was in my teens which did put me off a little to start. As I had iterated I have driven a few, and the P-reg one my brother owned in the mid 2000s felt not much different from the 1983 1.3L one of my friends owned in 1997 or the K-reg Popular spec one in the pool of staff cars we had at Brands Hatch in 1996 - they all felt crashy in the ride and wooden in the steering whereas contemporaries weren't much better to start, they felt like they'd progressed and in most cases become better cars. Perhaps I've only driven a handful of dogs? Who knows. If I had the chance to drive a known good one my opinion would change; for what they are they're certainly well overpriced now.

However this doesn't ring true with for me with Mercedes. While most local Merc owners, including ones in snotty old A-classes and battered 190Es swan around thinking this:

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I would expect an executive saloon to be more comfortable and roomier than say a Corolla, Astra etc. I've been a passenger in loads of Mercs, and driven a small number, and found I had little headroom and kneeroom with the seat adjusted for me, and didn't feel any more refined to drive than a sad-face Scorpio or Omega Elite. Pay a premium but left uninspired. Again, may just be the particular examples of Mercedes car I've driven (3x W201, 1x W124 & 2x W210) weren't in the best of health and again would a revisit to a known decent one change my opinion?

 

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6 hours ago, Yoss said:

All this talk of spaceship Civics reminds me I really don't get the appeal of so called hidden* door handles.

Firstly, they're not hidden, I can see them.

Secondly, it looks shit because the front and rear door handles don't match. Why not make a nice handle and have four of them. I mean it's not like the doors themselves are hidden is it, they are obviously there. 

And thirdly, they are invariably hidden* up round the back of the window frame making them less user friendly. Door handles are at waist height for a reason - that's where your hands naturally are when standing normally. I would say they're a perfect example of style over substance except there's no style (see 2).

I would again disagree that the 5 door civic is obviously a 5-door. I think Honda did a great job of the styling

 

honda-civic-2009-748l.jpg

 

Anyway each to their own, wouldn't it be boring if we all had to drive the same, government mandated car?

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7 hours ago, Yoss said:

All this talk of spaceship Civics reminds me I really don't get the appeal of so called hidden* door handles.

Firstly, they're not hidden, I can see them.

You'd think so right?

I lost count of the times where I gave people a lift, sat in the drivers seat and had someone standing there asking "are you not going to let me get in?"

"Yes, you can let yourself in"

"How? You are in the way"

"By opening the back doors with the handles by the window"

"....... OHHHH"

*Thonk* as they hit their head on the oddly shaped door opening.

"I hate your car"

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One car that stood out unexpectedly for me was a 1988 Ford Escort 1.6 Popular Normally Exasperated.
It seemed to corner rather well and was the car I have best been able to Heel-n-toe in, in fact if the fuel was below 1/3rd it could hold enough G in a sweeping bend to starve the engine of fuel.

Being a pool car it was caned everywhere it went and didnt break once in 130,000 miles but did develop rust pox all over the passenger side at four years old.

This never transformed into wanting any form of XR3i though

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13 hours ago, brownnova said:

I reckon my Saabs or an old Volvo would be just as safe as a Zafira/Sportage/newerer car. 

The aim of the game is to not crash anyway. And if a 20 tonne truck hits you at 60mph no amount of airbags and Stability control will help you then... 

Sorry if that was a bit morbid!  

 

There's a sound (in my head) school of thought anyway that crash tests are semi irrelevant.

Of course, they are a good thing to judge how they protect if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident, but as you say, avoidance is king.

On that basis, something small and nimble with a low safety rating is likely to be as safe as something large with a decent one.

The smaller, nimble car might well avoid the accident altogether or miss being hit, simply because it's a smaller target, whereas a large car in the same situation has less margin to escape the crash and is more likely to be sucked into an incident simply by there being more of it to hit or be hit.

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As for what shite i don't get.... the Mk1 Focus.

I should start this by saying i owned one, before anyone says i clearly haven't driven one.

They are stupendously overrated. I don't get the almost legendary status some seem to give them.

Don't get me wrong, they are a far, far better car than what they replaced and looked pretty good. (i'd rate them above the Mk2 as well) Probably was the right car at the right time for Ford and had a decent mix of abilities.

But all this talk of them having god like handling is utter nonsense. Maybe they seemed it compared to the dreary Escort, but they weren't even the best handlers in their class. The 306 was.

The overall handling balance was typical, safe FWD fare. Grip, grip, grip to understeer if you really tried too hard. very safe, very flattering.

The steering had decent turn in, but nothing to write home about. Feel wise, ok for what it was, miles off non assisted cars. Ride was vastly bettered in class around town, equalled at speed.

Quality wise, they were miles behind others in their class, interior aged poorly, they rotted worse than the competitors, most of the engine range was completely outclassed.

They are decent cars at their best, that's about it.

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16 hours ago, bunglebus said:

I would again disagree that the 5 door civic is obviously a 5-door. I think Honda did a great job of the styling

 

honda-civic-2009-748l.jpg

 

Anyway each to their own, wouldn't it be boring if we all had to drive the same, government mandated car?

Yes, the car as a whole is quite stylish and there was certainly nothing else like them at the time but hidden door handles spoil it. They've even gone to the trouble of designing a nice pointy, chrome handle for the front and it just looks wrong that there isn't one on the rear doors. 

It's not just them (though I think they may have started the trend), some Alfas have it (156 I think but I saw a modern one on a car lot the other day) amongst others and again they have a big chrome handle on the front then so called hidden ones on the back. Looks awful. They should at least try and have hidden handles on the front too, or at least colour coded recessed ones but, no, it's a bloody great lump of chrome.  Aesthetically it just doesn't work. 

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