Random Thoughts... [Automotive Edition]

rickhamilton620

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Yeah, I didn't say anything about the product being an issue because as far as I can tell there isn't actually anything wrong with it. It's not embarrassingly bad, it doesn't seem to be a ripoff and the Suzukis I see seem to be reasonably durable. I wouldn't ever buy one, but that's more due to the spotty dealer network and the fact that they don't make anything in a class I'd be interested in than the quality of the cars.

How bad is their marketing department? Most people see a Suzuki sign off the highway and think it's a motorcycle dealership with a bunch of customer cars parked out front. No kidding. The public in general doesn't even know that Suzuki still makes cars.

If Suzuki gets kicked out of the market here, it won't be because of the product. It will be due to whatever idiots are managing their US dealer network and their marketing department, pure and simple. Unless they make some changes and soon, that day isn't far off.
I like the looks of the Kizashi; it has a pleasingly aggressive, wheels-at-the-corners-of-the car stance. But the 185hp 4 cylinder engine is only adequate, and the lack of a V6 option keeps it off my shopping list. And, I expect, more than few others as well. If they've even heard of the car in the first place.

Actually, Jalopnik sez that Suzuki plans to "take Kizashi to a whole new level" (suzuki's words...not Jalopniks)

http://jalopnik.com/#!5785772/suzuki-to-take-kizashi-to-the-next-level

It'll be interesting to see where this goes, and if Suzuki can milk this successfully.
 

Spectre

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thevictor390

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Test drove two more care with my mother today -

2006 Pontiac Solstice: love the exterior looks, interior is very basic, and with the top up, very hard to see out of in every direction. I didn't really enjoy it as much as I should have for a car that has nothing going for it but fun.

2004 Corvette Convertible: my manual skills are still iffy but I loved it. Great visibility, didn't feel nearly as big or wide as it was, lots of power, and perfect steering (I like feedback but not too stiff). The interior was bad but not unbearable - it was basically the same styling and quality of my 1996 Sebring... not bad in the Sebring but utterly dated in a 2004 model. It was a bit noisy at higher speeds (roof up).

Currently it looks like the next family car is going to be a Boxster....
 

Hbriz

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I hate the failure in Ford's marketing in this country. The Fiesta, Focus and Mondeo are brilliant cars, but the ads they run are either shit or non-existant. Therefore, nowhere near as many people buy them as they deserve to sell. Not because they are an inferior product, but because they forgot they existed. Someone I know was looking for a new family car, I suggested the Mondeo and they replied with "wait, they still make those?". Likewise with the Focus, the last ad they ran was a few years ago, and it basically just said that a Focus diesel had better fuel economy than a petrol-engined Corolla. What a revelation that was.
 

FruityLexia

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I hate the failure in Ford's marketing in this country. The Fiesta, Focus and Mondeo are brilliant cars, but the ads they run are either shit or non-existant. Therefore, nowhere near as many people buy them as they deserve to sell. Not because they are an inferior product, but because they forgot they existed. Someone I know was looking for a new family car, I suggested the Mondeo and they replied with "wait, they still make those?". Likewise with the Focus, the last ad they ran was a few years ago, and it basically just said that a Focus diesel had better fuel economy than a petrol-engined Corolla. What a revelation that was.
Pretty sure that was last year.

And I see Fiesta ads all the time
WE CAN GO THERE OVER BRIDGES, UNDER BRIDGES, OVER BRIDGES
Fuck I hate the song on the Fiesta ad.....
 

rickhamilton620

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I hate the failure in Ford's marketing in this country. The Fiesta, Focus and Mondeo are brilliant cars, but the ads they run are either shit or non-existant. Therefore, nowhere near as many people buy them as they deserve to sell. Not because they are an inferior product, but because they forgot they existed. Someone I know was looking for a new family car, I suggested the Mondeo and they replied with "wait, they still make those?". Likewise with the Focus, the last ad they ran was a few years ago, and it basically just said that a Focus diesel had better fuel economy than a petrol-engined Corolla. What a revelation that was.
:lol: It's strange how company marketing can vary between awful and great depending on the country. Then again, Ford's no stranger to shitty marketing. They've always managed to fuck up advertising anything that wasn't a CUV/SUV/Truck/*insert sporty car like mustang or thunderbird here*. Sure they've done ads for their car line...but they're kinda spartan (When's the last time you've seen a Taurus ad?) save for the "hip" stuff like Fiesta. They'll advertise their MPV offerings relatively well for like the first month or two and then thats it...you never hear about them again. Aerostar, Windstar, Freestar, Freestyle/Taurus X/Flex, same thing. Hell, the only ad I remember for those last three is one for the Freestyle...and not in a good way:

[video=youtube;dC-cjq930Lk]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dC-cjq930Lk[/video]

:| WTF??...I don't even... I get it, and as the child of a divorced parent appreciate the fact that Ford decided to be bold and different and tackle the thorny issues of family vacations, but geesh..weird for a launch ad for a family van/MPV.

Makes me wonder how the hell are they gonna advertise the Grand C-Max....They surely haven't advertised their current minivan/MPV (Transit Connect (Tourneo Connect) Family) at all. No ads for it..anywhere:




Granted, they're getting better though. The new Focus will have a ad campaign that's global in scope so they're the same pretty much in every country, save for regional specific ads that have the same look/feel of the global ads but highlight features specific to Foci in that region (EX: Start-Stop system)

EX: US 2012 Focus ad for Active Park Assist

[video=youtube;m8IdUU-3m8A]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8IdUU-3m8A[/video]

And just to show that it truly is global, here's a very slightly modified ad for Europe:

 
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katwalk

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:| WTF??...I don't even... I get it, and as the child of a divorced parent appreciate the fact that Ford decided to be bold and different and tackle the thorny issues of family vacations, but geesh..weird for a launch ad for a family van/MPV.
I assume the plan was "Just because you are a single parent and your family has fallen apart doesn't mean you don't need a family car!" I don't think anyone wants to think about that when buying cars though.

Also, as far as ford ads I only really see generic ones for "Your new england ford dealer". Better than the stupid ernie bach jr ads though <_<
 

Red_Bull

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I hate the failure in Ford's marketing in this country. The Fiesta, Focus and Mondeo are brilliant cars, but the ads they run are either shit or non-existant. Therefore, nowhere near as many people buy them as they deserve to sell. Not because they are an inferior product, but because they forgot they existed. Someone I know was looking for a new family car, I suggested the Mondeo and they replied with "wait, they still make those?". Likewise with the Focus, the last ad they ran was a few years ago, and it basically just said that a Focus diesel had better fuel economy than a petrol-engined Corolla. What a revelation that was.
Even the Falcon is an excellent car and totally creams the Holden. I drive XR6s and Holden's SV6 on a daily basis and the Falcon is so much better at everything. For cut price six cylinder powered entertainment, the Falcon is the clear winner. But they arent selling. People are seemingly put off by the fact the future of Ford Australia is unclear, which, among other things doesnt help resale value. Also they have bugger all decent teams and drivers in the V8 Supercars, and the effect of that on sales should not be underestimated.
 

rickhamilton620

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Even the Falcon is an excellent car and totally creams the Holden. I drive XR6s and Holden's SV6 on a daily basis and the Falcon is so much better at everything. For cut price six cylinder powered entertainment, the Falcon is the clear winner. But they arent selling. People are seemingly put off by the fact the future of Ford Australia is unclear, which, among other things doesnt help resale value. Also they have bugger all decent teams and drivers in the V8 Supercars, and the effect of that on sales should not be underestimated.
Interesting, so it's kinda like how being involved in Nascar was/(to a much lesser extent today) is considered essential for the big 3 domestic brands here. The whole, "win on Sunday, sell on Monday" mantra. Maybe I should switch to marketing, as this stuff fascinates me..
 

Lastsoul

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Hmm, intresting. NA was only made to 1997, and then replaced with the NB (so bye bye pop-up lights). Of course it's possible the car wasn't registered before '98. Anyway, after the 1.8 engine came in 94, the 1.6 had 90hp and not the described 115hv. This car has the newer dashboard which was introduced at the same time as the 1.8 engine, so if it is 1.6, then it's 90hp. From the pictures you can't tell if it's a good car or not, so if it's too far away, ask more pictures, especially from the rocker panels in front of rear axel, it's the first part to rust.
 

AiR

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I've been to Ford today. They had a new Focus parked outside, so I thought I'd go in and see how it was. And they had one inside too, covered like it was secret. Who thought up that clever idea? Lets park our new car in broad daylight outside and not let people look at it inside. Next to it they had a new B-Max (C? MPV thing. I didnt look at what it was) which also had the new dashboard and I must say it looks very nice in real life. Terrible in photos. Also Ford like VW like to use scrollwheels for the seat heaters, only Ford put them in the best place ever, flat down so you just roll your finger over them, not pressing hard against them like in a VW. Still like buttons better.

The Hyundai i20 has terrible HVAC controls. They're really nice to look at, but impossible to use. I'm almost asian-sized and I had great difficulty gripping the dials with my nearly asian fingers. No grip and way to resistive to turning. Also the Hyundai poverty spec steering wheels of 2011 are just as bad as they were last year. You must order a leather wheel or you will want rub off your hands (which you might actually do on the sandpaper poverty spec wheels) everytime you touch it. Also the ix35 is really nice. It has the deepest armrest cubbyhole ever. Some say it goes to China.

The new Meriva is awesome. Suicide doors are the best invention of all time. No wonder they all made them like that when the car was born. You just open the door a little, grab the handle and swing in. To get out, the reverse. Works with very little room. Also if you open it alltogether you can get in even if you're an elephant. The back seat of a Meriva is fine for me but if you're the son of Thor you might not fit. But if you are why would you ride in a Meriva anyway when you can ride with the chariot of the god of thunder? You freak. Also the sliding thingy majig in the center console is sweeeeeeet. It slides! You can configure it anyway you like!

And imagine, you can even use the HVAC controls! Also the new Opel interiors make me a little sad, because they're awesome.

I went to the asshole dealer too, the one that sells all cars, Mercedes, Kia (Hyundai & Opel in nice dealership, Kia in asshole dealership), Nissan, Chrysler and whatever they can get their hands on and they're such assholes that they're in one way charming. They lock all cars they don't want people to look at. Want to compare a povery spec Mercedes to a loaded one? Sorry. Cant let you do that. Want to sit inside any car from Chrysler Corp (even fully loaded ones)? No can do. You wouldnt like it. The KIA Sportage was open though, and it was quite nice. The Rio next to it, locked. They had a Nissan GT-R. Unsuprisingly, it was not only locked, but a angry red note proclaimed DO NOT TOUCH. Way to attract customers.

So I can report the following, the new Jeep Grand Cherokee looks nice. The Journey looks nice. No idea if it is on the inside. But the underbelly seems a bit better protected from rust this time around at least. And Chrysler have started added painting the inside of the fuel port since last year. The dealership also had a Nissan Juke. They would rather people don't sit, open or even look at it, but they had to keep it open as it was a demo car and had the letters NEW NISSAN JUKE applied to it. It looks ugly in person. It has a tiny boot. The plastic is hard and awful. The center stack looks like it came from 1998. The C-pillar is the size of a whale. Gear throws are the length of the son of Thor.

So, unsuprisingly, the Nissan Juke is Junk.
 
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rickhamilton620

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I've been to Ford today. They had a new Focus parked outside, so I thought I'd go in and see how it was. And they had one inside too, covered like it was secret. Who thought up that clever idea? Lets park our new car in broad daylight outside and not let people look at it inside. Next to it they had a new B-Max (C? MPV thing. I didnt look at what it was) which also had the new dashboard and I must say it looks very nice in real life. Terrible in photos. Also Ford like VW like to use scrollwheels for the seat heaters, only Ford put them in the best place ever, flat down so you just roll your finger over them, not pressing hard against them like in a VW. Still like buttons better.

The Hyundai i20 has terrible HVAC controls. They're really nice to look at, but impossible to use. I'm almost asian-sized and I had great difficulty gripping the dials with my nearly asian fingers. No grip and way to resistive to turning. Also the Hyundai poverty spec steering wheels of 2011 are just as bad as they were last year. You must order a leather wheel or you will want rub off your hands (which you might actually do on the sandpaper poverty spec wheels) everytime you touch it. Also the ix35 is really nice. It has the deepest armrest cubbyhole ever. Some say it goes to China.

The new Meriva is awesome. Suicide doors are the best invention of all time. No wonder they all made them like that when the car was born. You just open the door a little, grab the handle and swing in. To get out, the reverse. Works with very little room. Also if you open it alltogether you can get in even if you're an elephant. The back seat of a Meriva is fine for me but if you're the son of Thor you might not fit. But if you are why would you ride in a Meriva anyway when you can ride with the chariot of the god of thunder? You freak. Also the sliding thingy majig in the center console is sweeeeeeet. It slides! You can configure it anyway you like!

And imagine, you can even use the HVAC controls! Also the new Opel interiors make me a little sad, because they're awesome.

I went to the asshole dealer too, the one that sells all cars, Mercedes, Kia (Hyundai & Opel in nice dealership, Kia in asshole dealership), Nissan, Chrysler, Jeep, Hummer, Corvette, Chevrolet and whatever they can get their hands on and they're such assholes that they're in one way charming. They lock all cars they don't want people to look at. Want to compare a povery spec Mercedes to a loaded one? Sorry. Cant let you do that. Want to sit inside any car from Chrysler Corp (even fully loaded ones)? No can do. You wouldnt like it. The KIA Sportage was open though, and it was quite nice. The Rio next to it, locked. They had a Nissan GT-R. Unsuprisingly, it was not only locked, but a angry red note proclaimed DO NOT TOUCH. Way to attract customers.

So I can report the following, the new Jeep Grand Cherokee looks nice. No idea if it is. But the underbelly seems a bit better protected from rust this time around at least. And Chrysler have started added painting the inside of the fuel port since last year. The dealership also had a Nissan Juke. They would rather people don't sit, open or even look at it, but they had to keep it open as it was a demo car and had the letters NEW NISSAN JUKE applied to it. It looks ugly in person. It has a tiny boot. The plastic is hard and awful. The center stack looks like it came from 1998. The C-pillar is the size of a whale. Gear throws are the length of the son of Thor.

So, unsuprisingly, the Nissan Juke is Junk.

That was prob the most interesting (and hilarious) telling of a dealership experience that i've seen! :lol:

I still am torn on Meriva's suicide doors...I can imagine some kid *THWACK* ing a car next door with the damn thing. The rest of the car looks great though.

And ugh, there were cars locked like that at our local auto show. Seems some dealers were just overprotective..its a local auto show..chances are people going are looking at what they plan to buy in the future or are enthusiasts who want to see your stuff.. grrr. How was the Sportage? I think it looks great, especially in orange, but the rear visibility seems awful...couldn't live with it. Also, was the Rio the new one?

Juke = puke imo...:p
 

AiR

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It was the old Rio but with the latest (third?) facelift it doesnt look too bad, from the outside that is. The new looks pretty stunning (for a Rio) on pictures, will have to check that out when it's launched. Still can't understand how Nissan can pick such awful plastic. Hard plastic everywhere. If the HVAC controls would feel nice to use it'd redeem some of the ugly, but they're not even that.



I forgot about my 2nd impressions of the Fiesta, it's a shoe. A nice shoe. I like it alot. It has a great big cog for HVAC controls. I mean really big. And cog-shaped. Nothing electric. When you turn it you hear it pull levers and close vents and everything. It just makes you happy. Not even the flaws, like the extremely hard plastic (Nissan-like) rear door cards annoy you that much. The door cards echo so much that when I knocked on it with my fingers it told me a joke.
 
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rickhamilton620

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It was the old Rio but with the latest (third?) facelift it doesnt look too bad, from the outside that is. The new looks pretty stunning (for a Rio) on pictures, will have to check that out when it's launched. Still can't understand how Nissan can pick such awful plastic. Hard plastic everywhere. If the HVAC controls would feel nice to use it'd redeem some of the ugly, but they're not even that.



I forgot about my 2nd impressions of the Fiesta, it's a shoe. A nice shoe. I like it alot. It has a great big cog for HVAC controls. I mean really big. And cog-shaped. Nothing electric. When you turn it you hear it pull levers and close vents and everything. It just makes you happy. Not even the flaws, like the extremely hard plastic (Nissan-like) rear door cards annoy you that much. The door cards echo so much that when I knocked on it with my fingers it told me a joke.
Yeah the plastic in the Juke is pretty unremarkable, I understand they probably needed to get/keep the cost down (turbo engine and all that) but when the Versa, Sentra and Altima have better interiors...for the same price or less...thats an issue. Those HVAC controls always came across as cheap....the Corolla's are esp. offensive, so I'm glad to hear that the Fiesta isn't like that.

Also....told ya so on the Fiesta door cards! :p
 
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Cowboy

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I saw an old unimog today....wich is normal, what is not normal is what it was towing : a train, a farking at least 100ton heavy 8 wagon train.

This was at a site were they are laying new rails for a new line (we can't figure out how to run trains on time on the old lines so we decided to start over.....I think), it had those rail-ride attachments so it could drive on the track, and it was towing the entire trainrig that was installing the toplines....though little bastard.
 

narf

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I saw an old unimog today....wich is normal, what is not normal is what it was towing : a train, a farking at least 100ton heavy 8 wagon train.

This was at a site were they are laying new rails for a new line (we can't figure out how to run trains on time on the old lines so we decided to start over.....I think), it had those rail-ride attachments so it could drive on the track, and it was towing the entire trainrig that was installing the toplines....though little bastard.
:nod: road-rail equipment is (almost :lol:) standard.

http://www.unimog-trucks.eu/webspecial_road-rail/en/index.html



They say it can tow a 1000t train :jawdrop:
 
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AiR

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Also....told ya so on the Fiesta door cards! :p
You did I admit :)
But at least they look nice as long as you don't touch them :D
If I were Ford I'd make the door handle silver (or better yet, body coloured) because it's really hard to find them in the sea of black. I like black but it's a bit too much on those.

The Juke main key didnt impress either.
 
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