Paris Motor Show highlights, Nissan 240Z, BMW 3 Series vs. Cadillac ATS, Acura NSX-lite

Episode #302 of the Autoblog Podcast is here, and this week, Dan Roth, Zach Bowman and Chris Paukert talk about the highlights from the 2012 Paris Motor Show, the possibility of a new Nissan 240Z, The BMW 3 Series and Cadillac ATS duking it out for Motor Trend, and a sub-NSX still on the table from Acura. Your questions and comments power the end of the 'cast, and for those of you who hung with us live on our UStream channel, thanks for taking the time. Keep reading for our Q&A module for you to scroll through and follow along, too. Thanks for listening!

Autoblog Podcast #302:



Topics:

In the Autoblog Garage:
2012 Fiat 500 Abarth
2013 Dodge Dart
2012 Subaru Impreza sedan

Hosts: Dan Roth, Zach Bowman, Chris Paukert


Runtime: 01:17:05

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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 7 Comments
      tmkarab
      • 2 Years Ago
      RE: The NSX Well, at least you admit it, "When they come out with something we think sucks, we'll beat the hell out of it" Way to show your bias...again. And you use to call yourselves Honda fans...at least be somewhat informed. It's pretty much common knowledge (at least to real auto journalists) that the 370hp hybrid RLX is getting a 7 speed dual clutch transmission. So it's safe to say the NSX will get something at least as good, right? As for the CRZ, not my favorite Honda and it definitely does not live up to the CRX's cult heritage. But to say that the CRZ is not fun or frugal is just biased journalism (again). The closest competitor is the Hyundai Veloster and everyone knows that car is all style and no substance, rough, bland handling. If you think of the CRZ as a base model CRX (not an HF or an Si) then it starts to make sense...more so when the mmc engine improvements come, even more when the rumored Si-like performance tuned turbo arrives...
        audiohack
        • 2 Years Ago
        @tmkarab
        I don't disagree that the Veloster can't cash the checks its body styling writes, but the CRZ is a flawed, compromised car. It's neither astoundingly efficient or exceptionally sporty, so there's no dividend paid for having to haul around the hybrid gear, and because of the batteries, wimpy engine and low rolling resistance tires, there's no performance upside, either. Don't you want your journalists to call BS when something isn't very good? It's less bias than informed evaluation. Of course your opinions may not always match up, but it's not that we love to beat up on Honda, it's that we've seen a bunch of disappointing stuff coming from a company that's long been known for its mojo. I think, by the way, you may be right on the transmission, my crack about it being a five-speed manual was a joke. -Dan
          tmkarab
          • 2 Years Ago
          @audiohack
          That would be logical, except for the fact we both know there are plenty of cars that are both flawed and compromised that still can be good cars...even endearing cult cars, much like the original CRX - not to mention a host of oddball, exotic, cars that go to a beat of a different drum. When you say 'isn't a very good car' it reads as: unsafe, unreliable, poor value, uncomfortable, cheap fit/finish. The CRZ is none of these things. I do listen to the podcasts when Honda is the topic...it's analogous to an Obama supporter tuning into FOX...trust that the incredulous factor is VERY high.
          tmkarab
          • 2 Years Ago
          @audiohack
          The CRZ is compromised, yes. Flawed? Probably. Not very good? That's where bias and informed evaluation gets blurred. CRZ's real world performance numbers ARE competitive and more importantly, and if you get over your preconceived notions, many of the basic Honda virtues are present: great gearbox, good ride/handling tradeoff for a sporty car, smart looking without looking too overdone... http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2011-honda-cr-z-ex-road-test-review http://www.motortrend.com/auto_shows/detroit/2010/2011_honda_cr_z_hybrid/ http://www.roadandtrack.com/tests/long-tests/test-car-wrapup-2011-honda-cr-z-ex http://www.windingroad.com/articles/reviews/driven-2011-honda-cr-z/ http://www.windingroad.com/articles/reviews/quick-drive-2012-honda-cr-z/ Looks like the consensus is that the CRZ is a good but not a great car...far cry from 'isn't very good'. So please explain why you feel it's so unworthy. Does it handle worse than the Veloster? Is it less reliable than, say, a Mini? Is it less practical or efficient than a Miata? I realize the 5-speed manual crack was a joke...and it was telling...of your tired old biases. As a Honda fan, I'm well aware that Honda has been in a product lull and not building to its typical exceptionally-better-than-the-competition standards. But the rumors of Honda's death [mojo] have been greatly exaggerated. Case in point - the new Accord (and CRV, and RDX). Jumping on the 'Honda has lost its mojo' band wagon was so on trend... ...last year. Isn't it time to find a newly dead horse to beat? As another (more reputable) publication mentioned, many other car makers would kill to have Honda's 'problems'...
          audiohack
          • 2 Years Ago
          @audiohack
          It logically follows that if something is both flawed and compromised, it's not very good. At the very least, the CRZ is a letdown. Automobile sales hinge on emotional, subjective response, and you're never going to remove that component from the auto reviewers, even Consumer Reports. The CRZ fails to excite, and what it does do well is overshadowed by what it doesn't do so well. No preconceived notions. The CRZ is billed as a sporty, efficient car unlike anything else on the market. Okay, other than a decent shifter, which it does have, it's dynamically compromised by being a hybrid, styling is again a subjective argument that nobody will win, and it fails to deliver an upside equal to or greater than the compromises it forces (price, space, performance) If you were looking for a sporty, efficient small car, do you think a CRZ would win out over, say, a Miata? Sure, it'll have better fuel economy. And worse everything else. There isn't enough joy behind the wheel of the CRZ. You *DO* listen to the podcast (which I'm greatly appreciative for!) - did you really think it was that serious a comment? We tend to be jokey and have some fun on the podcast, and I know you are a fierce defender of Honda, but really, we mean no malice. At least from my perspective, I'd be pretty happy with a three speed if they were three well-chosen ratios. More speeds doesn't necessarily make a transmission better, and I've said as much on the podcast and elsewhere for years. I had no complaints about the Subaru four-speed auto, for instance, and would welcome it back in place of their terrible new CVT. I agree with some of your points - BUT: the Civic was a downgrade, Honda's engineering leadership and innovative thinking seems to be getting stripped out of the cars in favor of doing it the same way as everyone else, and it seems like there's been at least a couple years of trading a product that's not the top of its class for tip-top money while better values abound in the space. There are certainly still very good products from Honda, and you can see evidence of the ship being righted, but the perception among those of us who watch is that Honda had gone slack for at least a while.
      Kyle H
      • 2 Years Ago
      I recently discovered the Autoblog podcast and I've been listening every week since. I have only one (constructive) criticism: the actual audio quality of the podcast leaves much to be desired. It sounds like you guys are recording a telephone conversation. Obviously I don't know your setup but maybe Skype and some better mics may be all you need to amp the audio quality up. Content is absolutely great. Dan, you're doing a great job (seriously). Thanks for the awesome podcast.
      VictoryRed08
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hey Autoblog, thanks for mentioning my tip on the Mazda6 Wagon in Canada. Let's make the Mazda6 Wagon happen in Canada (and perhaps North America), here's the direct link: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151778202207080&set=o.98390615740&type=1&theater Comments and likes are appreciated, I'm trying to generate enough attention to get Mazda to bring it to our shores. I don't want to have to buy a Golf Wagon, the 6 with the 2.0 SkyActiv platform would be perfect for what I need (the diesel would be nice too).