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JimCorrigan

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I'd tell Porsche to stop faffing around and 1) put the flat six back in the 981s, 2) make the 911R a regular production vehicle. They have more than enough limited edition crap to bolster their image. It's time to start giving back to those who've kept them afloat when all they made were 911s and Boxsters, rather than to just the uber rich badge whores.
 

prizrak

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Heated steering wheels IN ALL CARS and telescoping wheel in my Mustang, I have finally found a happy middle ground between where my legs are and where my arms are but if I could pull the wheel towards myself like 1/4" I would be so happy.
 

SquareLeft

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In the same vein as the Mustang LX being discussed, Chevrolet could use the existing Camaro chassis architecture to develop a small sedan/wagon/ute (with both 2 and 4 door models available for both the sedan and the wagon). Make it RWD (maybe with an AWD option) and offer a turbo 4, a V6 and V8 variants. Call it a Nova/El Camino if you want to attract the over-40 crowd. And, for Pete's sake, don't try to make it a luxury car!! I still think that's why the 'new' GTO failed to sell in the numbers GM hoped for.
 
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Spectre

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In the same vein as the Mustang LX being discussed, Chevrolet could use the existing Camaro chassis architecture to develop a small sedan/wagon/ute (with both 2 and 4 door models available for both the sedan and the wagon). Make it RWD (maybe with an AWD option) and offer a turbo 4, a V6 and V8 variants. Call it a Nova/El Camino if you want to attract the over-40 crowd. And, for Pete's sake, don't try to make it a luxury car!! I still think that's why the 'new' GTO failed to sell in the numbers GM hoped for.
They already did. They sell the sedan on the same platform as the Chevy SS.
 

CrzRsn

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They already did. They sell the sedan on the same platform as the Chevy SS.
The SS actually is a Zeta platform car - same as the last Camaro. The current Camaro is an Alfa car which also underpins the CTS sedan, ATS sedan and ATS coupe.
 

SquareLeft

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The SS actually is a Zeta platform car - same as the last Camaro. The current Camaro is an Alfa car which also underpins the CTS sedan, ATS sedan and ATS coupe.
Thanks for reinforcing my point, CrzRsn - but, I think you may have your GM & FCA cars switched... Alpha vs. Alfa :p
And, while I certainly didn't go into detail, the SS isn't even close to what I'd like to see Chevy build. I was dreaming of a much simpler car without the SS's generic styling.

SL
 

Spectre

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The SS actually is a Zeta platform car - same as the last Camaro. The current Camaro is an Alfa car which also underpins the CTS sedan, ATS sedan and ATS coupe.
At the time the SS was introduced it *was* on the same platform as the then-current Camaro. I stand by my statement that GM has already tried this idea. This was also tried earlier with the same car being badged as a Pontiac G8.
 

SquareLeft

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I stand by my statement that GM has already tried this idea. This was also tried earlier with the same car being badged as a Pontiac G8.
I certainly can't agree with you on this. GM half-assed the idea, offering a single body style (4-door sedan) on the G8 with styling that looked like everyone else's mid-size car and that came with an interior that tried to represent itself as a sporty luxury sedan.
Edit: In any case, GM was going after the BMW 3/5 series with the G6/G8 and that's not the market I'm envisioning. I'm looking at the people who would buy a Mustang or Camaro if they didn't have two kids; people who would like to be able to spec a sporty, good handling RWD car that doesn't sticker for over $40k; people who would love the convenience of a pickup truck, even as a second vehicle, but can't bring themselves to buy something that un-car-like.

For some examples of fresh thinking, look what Chrysler did with (and GM copied) the PT Cruiser (HHR) and sold millions. Would I buy one? No, but lots of people found them appealing (and still might if Chrysler had been smart/solvent enough to keep the design freshened). Ford did something similar with the Transit van. They looked just a bit outside the existing 'box' and tapped a U.S. market that no one was serving. Honda has sold a pile of (granted, mostly FWD) Elements and Ridgelines. GM HAS to have stylists capable of coming up with designs that have SOME fresh aspects. While I'm no fan of the styling on the latest years of Cadillac, at least they don't look like jellybeans.
Edit again: I don't mean to lay ALL the blame at the feet of the stylists. Myopic management gets shovels-full of my resentment on their desks, too. If you're a manager selling products that are as ubiquitous as cars and trucks, you should be looking at the big picture/long game and actively seeking markets that your competitors don't see. Case in point: Bob Lutz.

Could I guarantee that my 'wanted' concept would sell? No, but with enough engineering ingenuity, I think that the concept has broad enough appeal to sell across generational lines. A simple, practical vehicle that can be cost-effectively configured into multiple uses is nearly non-existent in the current market. My opinion is that a savvy car manufacturer could exploit that.

SL
 
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SquareLeft

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Since I've raked GM over the coals, I might as well go after my other target of disgust disappointment: Subaru. I'm convinced that the people responsible for product planning and development at Subaru have either lost their minds or sold their souls to the advertising/PR hacks. Where's the feisty company that brought us the Brat and the original WRX?

The latest model WRX/STI doesn't have an available hatch model because they couldn't make it look 'bold' (my word) enough? The WRX has a #%&\! CVT transmission option because it's the 'corporate' transmission?? PLEASE! If you want to offer a CVT in the Outback and Legacy, fine, but... Those excuses, coming from Subaru, are the very definition of LAME!

And, taking a quick look at lack-of-foresight - how did they miss the all the marketing possibilities of the BRZ? It's RWD and already uses a Subaru engine. Just modify the structure to take the WRX/STI drivetrain! Easy to do? Probably not, but the rewards would almost undoubtedly stack up on their door-step. They'd have a potential Skyline/TT beater without most of the development costs.
Edit: I should also note here that I do like the current BRZ and I think that Subaru/Scion did a very good job of hitting the market's sweet spot with these cars. My only complaint is that Subaru (especially) could have so easily taken the car up-market with an AWD premium model...

Final note to Subaru: OK, so you don't want to spend the development money on a strong, paddle-shifted DCT - I get it. You're already in bed with Toyota, so why not just go to Porsche and have them design a case for a version of their PDK transmission? If nothing else, license the technology and build it in-house. It could be made into a (granted, expensive) option to replace the CVT in the performance cars. Too expensive? Maybe, but given the way the public throws money at new STIs, I'm pretty darn certain you could make a business case for the increased sales to all the 20-somethings who can't be bothered with learning to use a clutch.

Just my 2 devalued cents...

SL
 
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Perc

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Heated steering wheels IN ALL CARS and telescoping wheel in my Mustang, I have finally found a happy middle ground between where my legs are and where my arms are but if I could pull the wheel towards myself like 1/4" I would be so happy.
My mid-range rep-mobile Ford Sierra had a telescopic steering wheel 26 years ago. How is it possible that a Mustang GT doesn't have it now?
 

rickhamilton620

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Telescoping wheels were pretty much reserved for import luxury cars well into the mid to late 00's here.

IIRC there were a few domestic luxury cars in the 80's that got this (GM products come to mind) but nothing mainstream.

IIRC, Prizrak's Mustang generation came out in 05... well within the "telescoping wheels are too expensive/unnecessary for the plebs" period of cars sold in America.

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk
 
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Spectre

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My mid-range rep-mobile Ford Sierra had a telescopic steering wheel 26 years ago. How is it possible that a Mustang GT doesn't have it now?
Airbags and 'safety column' legislation contributed to the delay. For a lot of designs, the designer must choose between tilt and telescope on the column for both engineering and budget reasons. A steering column that is safe to stick an airbag on top of but that also meets the 'safety' collapsing energy absorbing mandate is already not cheap or simple. Adding a hinge to get it to tilt adds complexity and size, not to mention expense. Adding a telescope mechanism to it while still balancing between the energy-absorption requirement and the airbag mounting requirement is also an expensive and complex task that increases the size of the column. Adding both while still being compliant may not be possible at a given price point for a given car - or alternately, the significantly larger column mechanism may not fit.

Mercedes, for many years, decided to do telescope but no tilt as did many Euro makers. The W201 190E had a telescope only column through its entire production run. The related W124 only got tilt very, very, very late in its production run and from 1994 on even telescoping was made an extra cost option. The XJ Series III wound up production in 1992 having never had a tilt wheel, but having had telescoping for its entire run. The Saab 9000s didn't get tilt wheels until 95 (which made driving my parents' 9000 Turbo a HUGE pain in the ass for me as the wheel is at all the wrong kind of angles) and there was a time from the late 80s until 1995 that Saab deleted telescoping because of the airbag mandate. I can go on and on...

Statistically, tilt adjustment will allow more people to fit comfortably in a driving position than telescoping. The Japanese, not being idiots, also chose tilt over telescope for the most part where they were forced to choose one or the other. Ford also usually chooses tilt over telescope where that's an issue.
 
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