• Aug 3, 2010
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Chris Shunk, Sam Abuelsamid and Dan Roth are back for Episode #188 of the Autoblog Podcast. Topics this time around include rumors of a Ford Flex/Lincoln MKT phase-out after 2013, changes to the way NHTSA crash rating scores are given, patent images that could be the next Chrysler Sebring and the Chevrolet Cruze. Your feedback is incorporated throughout this hour and twenty minute extravaganza, too. Thanks for listening, see you next time!

Autoblog Podcast #189 - Flex sunsetting, NHTSA stars, saleable Sebrings and a cruise in the Cruze


In the Autoblog Garage:

Ford F250 Super Duty
Ford Mustang GT Convertible
Hyundai Sonata SE

News:
Hosts:
Dan Roth, Sam Abuelsamid, Chris Shunk

Runtime: 84:26


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 12 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think I have the answer to the fellow who wanted a 4 seater, RWD, under $3000 car, fun to drive car. I own one in fact. An second generation (FC) RX-7. They come in convertible. They're RWD and endlessly fun (it's a rotary with a 8000 rpm redline so that's a given. You can have rear seats that will fit adults for a brief trip, are dirt cheap (mine cost $1000 with a stellar rebuild that had 20,000 miles on it), and have a loyal enough following that they can be very well maintained. However if you drop the convertible from the equation, it'll have the hatch which is surprisingly useful. I have gone camping with 2 friends and all our gear in it.

      Your downsides are pretty simple: bad fuel economy (though it uses regular, using premium makes no difference for the engine). You also have to get in the habit of checking your oil and topping it up when you fill up but that's actually a blessing in disguise because you'll know as soon as your car needs a change and if anything is wrong. The rear seats are small and are great if you're carting little ones around but beyond that, it's pretty mean to put someone back there regularly. All in all a good car and pretty much the coolest thing you can buy for so cheap. At least it beats a Sebring Convertible :D
      • 4 Years Ago
      when you guys were talking about the 90's Sebring, you mentioned the Cloud Cars; However, You FORGOT one! You FAILED To Mention the Plymouth Breeze, and AS a Plymouth Breeze Owner; I am OFFENDED, that you would fail to acknowledge the Existence of my car!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Umm, the link for the Ford F250 Super Duty goes to the Dodge Challanger.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The "Hyundai Sonata SE" links to the Sienna.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well they weigh the same....
        • 4 Years Ago
        Links are fixed. Oops.
      • 4 Years Ago
      :'(
      • 4 Years Ago
      "He didn't say anything about Bondo either." - Chris.

      LOL.
        • 4 Years Ago
        you know what's funny, I don't remember what we were even talking about when he said that
      • 4 Years Ago
      The last 10 minutes of this podcast were fantastic. A buddy of mine my senior year had a convertible LeBaron turbo so the flashbacks that came on were much appreciated.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Funny you mention the Cruze and Focus as the return of Detroit to the small car segment... since they are so good because they were developed in Korea and Europe. GM and Ford have always had good small cars available on their foreign operations, they just didn't feel like bringing them to the USA for a long long time.
      • 4 Years Ago
      You have been oversold on the Multiair system
      As it stands, if Chrysler-Fiat added Multiair to their 2.4 I4 GEMA 'world engine', they would be giving up variable exhaust valve timing, and Multiair is meant to be used in lieu of direct injection. (sounds like they are going to be mutually exclusive, at least for a while)

      http://www.autozine.org/technical_school/engine/vvt_6.html
      http://www.gizmag.com/fiat-releases-multiair-engine-technology--is-this-a-fundamental-breakthrough-in-internal-combustion-engine-design/11184/
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IrPcmMHqHE

      Chrysler should add direct injection and a dual length intake manifold to their 2.4. They could also upgrade the balance shafts from the 'basic' design [in the sump, counter rotating directly under the crankshaft], to the 'sophisticated' design. (where they are located in the block, offset in height from each other so they can balance the connecting rod force imbalance)

      The long term 'issues' with Multiair is the integrity of the hydraulic system: 4 sealing areas of the hydraulic pistons, and oil reservoir. Valve brake durability. Valve lash is supposed to be handled internally.