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Old 10-31-2007, 08:27 AM   #241
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Safer drivers

It would take a paradigm shift in the way people drive their battle cruisers.

I have plenty of friends who drove smaller Saturns or Civics through college, but as soon as they could afford it (car payment wise) got big SUVs. Why? They always felt like they were going to get smashed by a battle cruiser driving 80mph on their rear bumper.

I don't think the price of gas is going to make a big enough difference. For example, Nissan is building trucks in the US because it's the only real market they have. This happened while the price of gas was edging up to $3 a gallon.

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Old 02-27-2008, 08:16 PM   #242
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I'm not surprised you had a decent experience with a mid 90's Escort, as that car was actually made by Mazda.
BS. Shared some design w/323... but not built by Mazda. Very much a Ford. Which owns a big chunk of Mazda.

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The late 80's Escort was made by Fix Or Repair Daily itself, and it was a cheap hunk of crap. The car simply wasn't designed to last more than about 70k miles.
BS again. I had a friend who had a mid-80s Lynx wagon; I drove it, and at the time liked it (my ride at the time was a 67 289 Mustang). Her Lynx was pretty decent, and she put a LOT more that 70K on it.

My experience with 2 mid-90s Escort/Tracer wagons... is that they're pretty good cars. Engines aren't as smooth/refined as 16V Toyotas/Nissans of the time, but it is reliable and works well. A failed time belt won't destroy the motor, and it is easy to replace. The Wagons are a good value, with excellent FE. My last tank returned 38.48mpg.

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What will it take to make small cars desirable?
Expensive fuel, apparently.
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:57 PM   #243
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He stole my line.

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Over $10 gas for the foreseeable future
The only other thing would be to offer a 100 MPG car^H^H^H SUV with A/C and multiple DVD players.

Honestly sheeple buy whatever the talking box tells them to. Now that Japanese cars are designed and built in the US, they have wide acceptance. Hondas are now huge, not gas sippers. Only another oil crunch will make small cars acceptable.
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Old 02-28-2008, 10:14 AM   #244
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They need to make them not look so damn ugly. Most of the good gas mileage cars are disgusting the exceptions would be the civic hybrid and the prius.

Most people including myself don't want to drive an ugly car. Call it what you like, but most people are not going to spend 15k on something they think is ugly. I don't see why they can't make beautiful looking small cars.
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Old 02-28-2008, 10:44 AM   #245
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Hmmm yes the Battle Cruiser problem...

I definitely get cut off and tailgated less in the Voyager than the Escort. When BC tailgaters make me sufficiently nervous though I just lift off the gas until they come past, right off, slow down to 30, 20, whatever until they come past. Or I start tossing empty coffee cups out the window muhuhahahaaaaa.

I have an idea though. Anybody ever watch "Robot Wars" or a similar show, where quite often, these relatively small, manoeuverable, low to the ground, wedge sided robots would run rings around the big, battering, multi weaponed behemoths and tip and flip them, and push them around.... That's what we need in a small car... low, wedge sided and reinforced, then advertised like "Look how it tears the undercarriage right off this SUV and launches it into a concrete overpass, rendering a horrific flaming death on the careless SUV driver...."
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Old 02-28-2008, 11:04 AM   #246
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white90crxhf -

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Originally Posted by white90crxhf View Post
They need to make them not look so damn ugly. Most of the good gas mileage cars are disgusting the exceptions would be the civic hybrid and the prius.

Most people including myself don't want to drive an ugly car. Call it what you like, but most people are not going to spend 15k on something they think is ugly. I don't see why they can't make beautiful looking small cars.
That's a very good point. There are a lot of cars that I think would be good candidates for economy drivetrains. Why not make a "green" Scion TC with a base Corolla drivetrain? The closest I saw to this was the last Toyota Celica, which got 28/33 (old EPA) MPG in a base model.

I really wish the current Mitsubishi Eclipse came in a "green" version :


I'm not a Mini fan, but at least they are offering a 37/40 MPG version this year.

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Old 02-28-2008, 11:32 AM   #247
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white90crxhf -



That's a very good point. There are a lot of cars that I think would be good candidates for economy drivetrains. Why not make a "green" Scion TC with a base Corolla drivetrain? The closest I saw to this was the last Toyota Celica, which got 28/33 (old EPA) MPG in a base model.
The Mazda MX-3 with the 1.6 wasn't too bad, that one might respond to some tinkering. Don't forget you could have the Saturns in coupe form too. Since you can put the BP engines in MX3s, I wonder also if you could put the 1.9 Escort motor in them, since the Escort GT has a 1.8 BP motor. Not sure there would be a whole lot of point doing that over just driving it in the Escort, would have to compare Cd etc. There was the ZX2 escort of course, but it got a slightly sportier and thirstier motor.

Edit: oh the Probe was meant to have a very low Cd, wonder what options there are for a sippier drivetrain in that.

Edit2: Hmmm just looked the 93 up 2.0 was better for mpg, it appears that 93 only had the F4EAT auto tranny, I know you can get different final drive ratios for that, so it's potentially possible that a different final drive would improve it. Also, motor was set up for sporty midrange pull, some playing with the cam timing might give it low end lug. Yep I'd figure 35mpg in a '93 auto is possible with some relatively minor tinkering, swap GT body mouldings to it for better aero too..
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Old 02-28-2008, 11:44 AM   #248
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The Mazda MX-3 with the 1.6 wasn't too bad, that one might respond to some tinkering. Don't forget you could have the Saturns in coupe form too. Since you can put the BP engines in MX3s, I wonder also if you could put the 1.9 Escort motor in them, since the Escort GT has a 1.8 BP motor. Not sure there would be a whole lot of point doing that over just driving it in the Escort, would have to compare Cd etc. There was the ZX2 escort of course, but it got a slightly sportier and thirstier motor.

Edit: oh the Probe was meant to have a very low Cd, wonder what options there are for a sippier drivetrain in that.
That is egg-zactly why my first Saturn was the 1997 SC2 coupe. A 27/37 (old EPA) MPG right out the door. The best of both worlds, *and* made in the USA.

Right now I am talking about new cars with 0 mods, i.e. choices in the marketplace. Other than the Mini, I can't think of any "sporty" car that delivers the goods. My criteria is the same as my 1997 coupe, 27/37 (old EPA) MPG.

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Old 02-28-2008, 12:53 PM   #249
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RoadWarrior -



That is egg-zactly why my first Saturn was the 1997 SC2 coupe. A 27/37 (old EPA) MPG right out the door. The best of both worlds, *and* made in the USA.

Right now I am talking about new cars with 0 mods, i.e. choices in the marketplace. Other than the Mini, I can't think of any "sporty" car that delivers the goods. My criteria is the same as my 1997 coupe, 27/37 (old EPA) MPG.

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whats that saturn sky 2 seater roadstaer thing? i kinda like the looks and it has like around a 25K pricetag which isnt bad at all for a sporty looking car
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Old 02-28-2008, 01:58 PM   #250
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whats that saturn sky 2 seater roadstaer thing? i kinda like the looks and it has like around a 25K pricetag which isnt bad at all for a sporty looking car
Yeah, the Sky would be a another good candidate for an "economy" commuter version. But just like the Scion TC, it's base configuration is 20/28 old EPA MPG, or 17/26 new EPA MPG. My first test for a car is the city MPG. I won't even look at a car below 25 MPG city. Obviously, my choices end up being few and far between, .

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