We all have controversial opinions. Be it whether you think the Nissan Juke is actually pretty attractive, manual transmissions aren't always better, or you honestly didn't hate the Pontiac Aztek, we all harbor some persuasion, be it big or small, for which we catch copious flak upon expression.

In recognizing that all of us here at Autoblog harbor at least one viewpoint that stubbornly goes against the grain of popular opinion among auto enthusiasts, we've decided to come clean with them right here, proudly speaking our minds in a mature, structured manner – a striking contrast to how these things tend to come up while debated in the office.

We'd also like to invite you to share your unpopular and controversial opinions with us and the Autoblog faithful down in Comments. Don't be ashamed – this is a safe place.


The Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Is Dumb

I don't hate speed. I certainly don't hate crazy horsepower numbers. And because it bears mentioning due to the car in question, no, folks, I don't hate America. But I do think a 707-horsepower Dodge Challenger SRT is both unnecessary and a terrible idea.

Let's start with the car itself: the Challenger. I'll still never forget a former coworker's "like a meatship" description of the car's handling, and to this day, I've never once gotten out of the big Dodge and thought, "Wow, what a rewarding, involving experience." The large LX platform's bones are great at making cars that cruise nicely in a straight line, and cars like the Challenger will do burnouts and drift around corners with ease, but in order to handle 707 horsepower tactfully, you've got to have better chassis chops. And while I admittedly have not driven the Challenger Hellcat yet, the folks I've talked to say that, while it's better, it's still big and clumsy, just as you might expect.

Friends of mine have compared the 707-hp rating to supercars, and that's certainly valid. But supercars with that much power are designed and engineered to handle all that force in as balanced a fashion as possible. Take Chevy's forthcoming Corvette Z06, for example – it has 650 hp, and every bit of work added to that car versus the standard Stingray has been done to ensure it will still be super involving and great to manhandle. The Hellcat, meanwhile, is largely the same ol' mediocre-handling Challenger with a giant freaking engine under the hood. Look at it another way: in its outgoing generation, everyone I know who drove both vastly preferred the Mustang Boss 302 to the more powerful (662 hp!) Shelby GT500. Why? It was far better to drive. That Shelby was like a sloppy drunk friend at a party – fun to be around for a little while, but then just a chore.

The thing that really makes me nervous is that the Challenger Hellcat can be purchased for just $60,000. That's still a big chunk of change, for sure, but relatively speaking, it isn't. And I just don't trust most Challenger buyers with 707 horsepower at their disposal. Dodge's more tactile Viper doesn't even make this much power, so why put it in the cheaper Challenger? It's cool, sure, and furthers the whole pissing match between the American automakers in the horsepower wars, but from where I sit, I just don't like it. To me, it's dumb.

– Steven J. Ewing




The Dodge Challenger Is America's Best Muscle Car

What is the best American muscle car? Most journalists would tell you it's the Ford Mustang, perhaps in Shelby trim, or even just a run-of-the-mill GT. And they wouldn't be wrong, exactly, except that the Mustang isn't really a muscle car at all. Yes, it has a powerful American V8 engine underhood, sending gobs of red-white-and-blue-blooded torque to the proper (read: rear) wheels, and it's capable of incinerating a set of Goodyears on its way to a wickedly fast quarter-mile time slip. It's a great car, and one that I'd heartily recommend to the right buyer.

None of that makes it a muscle car, though.

To wit, the last-gen BMW M3 hit all those salient muscle-car-spec points, too, with the possible exception of its middling torque output. Like the M3, the Mustang, in recent years at least, feels light on its feet, almost as if it were designed to, you know, turn corners. The Camaro, in SS guise, feels closer to a proper muscle car, but it doesn't hold a candle to the Dodge Challenger, current King of Detroit Muscle.

I felt this way before the SRT Hellcat even hit the scene, but now my opinion is set in stone. Having grown up on American muscle cars – yes, I'm too young, having been born a decade after the 1970 pinnacle of muscle; my father and I worked on the old cars together in our barn – I can tell you that a proper muscle car marries a big engine with an eye-catching body and, well, not much else. And nothing currently on sale in the US more closely mimics the muscle car ethos of days past like the Dodge Challenger.

Would I buy one? Well, probably not – I'm more of a sedan person these days, so I'd buy an SRT-branded Charger or 300. It wouldn't be a muscle car, but it would have the ingredients I care most about, namely the big V8 engine, rear-wheel drive and a comfortable interior in which to watch the scenery pass by. Long live the Hemi.

– Jeremy Korzeniewski




US Automakers Don't Need To Make More Diesels

Automotive media members and enthusiasts are always clamoring for more diesel-powered cars. They then reinforce it with all of the benefits: more torque, better fuel economy, modern advancements in diesel technology – and proceed to wax poetically how much better off we'd all be if we drove diesels. Like in Europe.

I disagree.

Personally, I love diesels. They're fuel-efficient and usually great fun to drive. But do we need more of them? Nope. There are plenty of choices to satisfy the current demand. The German carmakers make a range of sedans and SUVs, and Chevy's diesel Cruze is a nice mainstream addition. You want a fullsize truck? Ram makes a really good EcoDiesel.

At the end of the day, diesels are a niche market. We don't need more of them. Ford, Toyota and Chrysler could come out with five new diesels apiece tomorrow, and they wouldn't jumpstart demand. And don't forget, diesel is about 30 cents more a gallon than regular gasoline is right now, according to the AAA. Automakers are in business to sell cars and make money. You don't do that by jamming technologies loved by industry insiders down the throats of consumers.

– Greg Migliore




The Tesla Model S Is The Most Patriotic Car You Can Drive

Forget pickup trucks and muscle cars. Tesla represents the same all-American tenets of innovation, craftsmanship and courage that made this country the car capital of the world a century ago.

Like our forefathers, Tesla started a revolution by questioning the establishment and focusing on the future, rather than living in the past. Its Model S is manufactured in the great state of California and runs solely on electricity – which can be generated locally and cleanly – instead of oil sourced from halfway around the globe, leaving a trail of emissions in its path. After all, we wouldn't want to pollute those spacious skies, purple mountains or amber waves of grain.

Granted, Tesla's founder and CEO Elon Musk wasn't born in the US, but what could be more American than an immigrant success story in this Land Of Opportunity?

– Adam Morath




Tesla Ain't All That

Tesla seems to be priming itself for world domination. The company promises to revolutionize the way we think about cars and is generating a great deal of excitement in both the public and private sectors. Recently, the company opened up its patents in hopes that the competition will use their technology, a move that could ensure Tesla's legacy as the electric vehicle standard.

The Model S is a great car for what it is; a high-tech, high-performance toy that allows the semi-wealthy to show off their eco sensibilities. But in the end, Tesla and all electric vehicles just come with too many drawbacks. For starters, batteries big enough and sophisticated enough to power a whole car are still wildly expensive to build. The half-million batteries a year promised by Tesla that will be built in its 'gigafactory' may be enough to bring prices down a little, but not enough. Forbes recently reported that an 85-kWh Tesla battery pack will cost between $13,000 and $17,000 by 2017. Building a entire gasoline hybrid powertrain costs less than half that amount. And replacement battery packs costs thousands.

Charging is another major drawback to the EV dream. A car can be many things; a feat of engineering, a work of art and a source of passion. But if a car isn't ready to roll when you are, then what's the point? Hydrogen fuel cells could well be the real future of green driving, even if that future is a bit more distant than we'd like. With fuel cell cars trickling onto the market and gasoline and diesel drivetrain development still yielding bigger efficiency and emissions improvements than anyone could've reasonably expected at this point in their development, Tesla and other battery-electric cars may be destined to be remembered as valiant attempts at innovation, but not much else.

– Erin Marquis




The Subaru BRZ Doesn't Need More Power

Ever since the Toyotabaru twins launched back in 2012, the thousands of voices clamoring for a turbocharger and/or a bigger engine have overshadowed its brilliance as a pure driver's car. "More power, more power," they chant, like a horde of zombies. Stop it, stop it, stop it. This vehicle is perfectly fine as-is.

Don't get me wrong. I love powerful cars. There's very little in this world that compares to a V8's ability to push your teeth back into your skull. But adding a bigger, heavier and more expensive engine to what is, to me, one of the top achievements in automotive engineering from the past decade is a very bad idea. It would, in effect, ultimately ruin the essence of this car.

The beauty of the BRZ is found not just in its balance, agility and absurdly responsive steering, but also in its rare ability to be a superbly engaging vehicle at legal speeds. I understand that it's a hoot to whip a Porsche 911 around a 25-mph corner at 60 mph – I've been there – but where in the real world can you really do that without putting someone's life or your license at stake? The reality is that we aren't all Ken Block. The BRZ's boxer four, when combined with its fantastic handling, is perfect for providing a fun experience for the amateur driver that wants to safely jazz up his or her commute, errand run or weekend day trip.

Cars don't have to be overly powerful to be fun.The sales success and critical acclaim of the Mazda MX-5 Miata speaks to that. You want power? Subaru has you covered with its WRX. Just get that and leave the BRZ alone.

– Michael Zak




The Smart Fortwo Isn't Nearly As Bad As You've Read

For better or for worse, car writers – like a lot of other professionals that earn their keep under the glare of public opinion – often seem to get their story straight as a herd, and stick to it. This mentality becomes especially pronounced with vehicles around the margins of normalcy in the marketplace: supercars, electric cars, Hummer H1s and the rolling punching bag better known as the Smart Fortwo.

To save you some time hunting around, let me summarize the arguments against the tiny two-seater: it drives badly on the highway (too slow, pushed around by crosswinds), it's too expensive "for what it is," fuel economy doesn't live up to expectations for such a small car and, of course, we all really, really, really hate the transmission.

Here's my counter: the Fortwo is a city car. When viewed in the context of what a city car should do and be, it's actually rather excellent. To whit: yes, the 1.0-liter turbocharged engine doesn't have loads of power for confident highway passing, but it still feels like a fish in water when buzzing through lane-gaps in the traffic that besets your average intercity slog. Better still, the car's quick steering and tiny, chuckable wheelbase make flitting in and out of the gaps somewhat of a sport. Fuel economy (EPA combined rating) is actually as-good or better than every other gasoline-powered, non-hybrid car on the market, with the notable exception of the Mitsubishi Mirage. As for the price, though it's true that you can get physically larger cars for more money, the Fortwo remains one of the very least expensive new cars you can buy in the US. Of course, if you need room for four, don't buy it at any rate – that seems obvious but I feel like I have to point it out.

Yeah, the transmission sucks. I've just never seen a bad trans so completely define public opinion (journalist opinion, really) of a single model so much. Open question: if the Fortwo had come with a manual transmission and a Mercedes-Benz badge (no "Smart" jokes), would it be a fan favorite today? I'd take that bet.

– Seyth Miersma




The Mazda Miata Doesn't Need A Coupe Model

Ever since the original MX-5 Miata was revealed back in 1989, a steady but vocal portion of the enthusiast base that Mazda so brilliantly courted with its original roadster has clamored for a hardtop coupe version. Beyond indulging in a couple of fixed-head concepts and a very limited run of Japanese domestic market models (fewer than 200 NB-generation coupes were built), those cries have gone unheard by company planners.

As a longtime Miata fan and as an owner, I have a one-word response to Mazda's recalcitrance: "Good." The fact that the Miata has remained a convertible means that it has stayed true to its original design ethos of maximizing the driver's interaction with his or her surroundings, a priority telegraphed through the car's light weight, vibrantly communicative handling, and yes, exposure to the elements.

Besides, it's not like there's a big penalty because the Miata is a convertible-only item these days. Improved computer-aided design and smarter materials usage has put the kibosh on much of the chassis flex found in the NA and NB generation cars, and the current NC generation is plenty rigid. The almost-here fourth-generation ND model will doubtlessly be stiffer still. And lest we forget, the NC brought along with it a power-folding hardtop option with minimal weight gain and zero intrusion on cargo space. It's arguably the best of both worlds – coupe-like refinement plus improved weather- and theft-resistance married with a convenient power retractable hardtop.

Now, if Mazda wants to resurrect an RX-based rotary coupe, that I'm all for...

– Chris Paukert




Fewer People Should Be Buying New Cars

We love driving new cars. We love writing about new cars. But new cars are not a smart purchase for the majority of the car-shopping public.

There's a dearth of useful information for buyers on their prospective new purchases in many key areas. Sure, you can check out a list of features, take a test drive and see how you like the vehicle, but what do motorists really learn? Arguably the most valuable information for the majority of car buyers – whether a car is reliable, safe and fuel efficient – isn't yet available. It takes time to develop that track record.

After two or three years, dependability studies can measure the number of mechanical problems car owners experience, safety recalls can alert drivers to potential hazards and savvy shoppers can discern whether advertised gas-mileage figures are inflated.

Sure, shopping for a car that's three years old instead of brand-new removes some of the fun from the buying process. But consumers can make decisions based on hard evidence, not emotional whims.

And by the looks of it, many buyers can't afford a new car anyway. A recent study from Experian Automotive showed the average term of a car loan had reached 66 months, the highest since the company began tracking the data in 2006. A quarter of all new car loans are 73 to 84 months in duration. That's insane.

Considering new cars almost invariably depreciate in value the moment they're driven off the dealer lot, they're a rotten investment that people are paying off over longer and longer terms. Save some money, figure out which models have the best track record and buy a used car.

– Pete Bigelow


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 306 Comments
      dinobot666
      • 4 Months Ago
      I've kind of lost track of who the editors at Autoblog were these days, so thanks for this. It's always nice to have an editorial piece for a site that's kind of become a press release site.
        AcidTonic
        • 4 Months Ago
        @dinobot666
        I too enjoy articles like this one. Some real humans talking without the heavy PR filter. More of this please Autoblog.
      John Neff
      • 4 Months Ago
      As former Editor-in-Chief of Autoblog, I just wanted to give props to the team for this excellent and fun post, and contribute my own controversial automotive belief: Minivans Should Be More Popular Than They Are Yes, minivans had their day, back before big SUVs began roaming the land. And they've clung to life thanks to a few stubborn automakers who continue to sell them despite the fact that families in America are crazy for crossovers. My argument is simply that minivans seem, to me at least, to be ideal solutions for any young family with at least two kids, which is a group of people much larger in size than the one that's still buying minivans. These vehicles do the work of many, including hauling as much as a truck, pampering like a luxury car, and in the case of ones like the Odyssey and Mazda5, being not all that bad to drive, as well. They're usually more fuel efficient than three-row crossovers, they're easier to get kids in and out of, they're often less expensive, and one could make the argument that they're safer, as well. If the argument for not buying a minivan rests solely on whatever stigma may be attached to them, well, I can't argue against someone's fear about how they will be perceived if they're caught piloting a Grand Caravan, except to say that to me, how I look to others is less important than making sure the tens of thousands of dollars I'm going to spend gets me the best solution for my needs.
        MN_Mavrik
        • 4 Months Ago
        @John Neff
        Nothing hauls families and their crap around better than a minivan. I don't understand why more vehicles don't have the Stow'n'Go seating like the Chrysler minivans. It is the most amazing feat in vehicle packaging in the last few decades.
          Neez
          • 4 Months Ago
          @MN_Mavrik
          I hate dodges "stow and go", for kids in the back it's fine. But have YOU actually tried sitting in the back 2nd and 3rd rows while on a long roadtrip???? What kills the stow and go for me is the legroom. Third row passengers can't put their feet under the 2nd row seats which makes it cramped. Also the thigh support is bad because the floor is raised, so your feet end up supporting your legs instead of your thighs. If you remove the stow and go covers so you can put your feet down on the lower floor, it's actually much much better, and your legs don't get tired after 2 hours of driving.
        Cowboy
        • 4 Months Ago
        @John Neff
        may be this is why you are former editor-in-chief. what you are telling is truth, but look at the cosmetic side, todays mini vans look like a minibus, or a boat. who want to drive something look like a ship, better I will drive a garangutan suburban.
      Wakeupneo
      • 4 Months Ago
      I miss bumpers. I despise the fact that a relatively minor, low-speed hit to the front of new cars requires the replacement (or tricky repair) of front fascia, headlights, grille, hood and front wing panels. Talk about a step backward for consumers. And yes, I get the 'crumple-zone' argument, but surely we can figure out a better way to manage this without it costing the earth.
        realrambo
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Wakeupneo
        agree auto makers have found the golden goose n the part dept. just like Apple did with stolen Iphone regardless of model ......
      Johnny Trailerpark
      • 4 Months Ago
      I like the last-gen Pontiac GTO.
        Bandit5317
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        That's unpopular!? The last GTO was a phenomenal car. Nice leather interior and great stereo standard, relatively cheap, hugely powerful and reliable LS series engine, somewhat subdued but still clearly muscle car looks, and good handling. I've wanted to buy a used 05-06 GTO (the years with the LS2) for a long time now. Unfortunately, since Pontiac went under, prices have risen. They used to be ridiculously cheap.
          jonnybimmer
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Bandit5317
          The most common complaint I've seen about the GTO seems to be that it was too bland and "boring" looking. Personally I liked it's almost sleeper-like appearance, but the again I'm not a muscle car guy so I just figured I was the one with the unpopular opinion.
          Tom
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Bandit5317
          While I wouldn't say the interior was terrible, or as bad as my 2006 Charger R/T's, I just didn't like the feeling of the car for some reason. Couldn't put my finger on it at the time. On the other hand, when I drove the Charger, it was instant love.
        Justin Campanale
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        That's what I've been saying all along. It's the definition of a sleeper car. It was hugely powerful while looking no more assuming than your dad's Accord Coupe.
        Chris
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        I like it too though I can't help but wonder if it would have been smarter to call it something else, so that it would have been better embraced for what it was rather than have it trying to fill the shoes of a very well known classic. I know when I first saw it my first reaction was "man that ain't no GTO." I've come to embrace it over the years, but to me, the first thing that will come to mind when I hear "GTO" will be the 64-67 model that they wrote songs about back in the day.
        superlightv12
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        I've driven a couple of them. Very nice drivers and I personally like that it doesn't have the almost cartoonish look of most muscle cars. Sort of a muscle car with a degree in comfort.
        Rob
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        BRZ doesn't need more power = Autoweek needs more testosterone. If this was a paid subscription, I'd cancel after reading that.
          Tom
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Rob
          Have you driven one? It misses the point of what it is. it's a lightweight, skinny-tired, "You can have fun at legal speeds" car. I'm more taken aback by the "Hellcat is dumb" from the one who's never driven one.
          Rob
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Rob
          The G8 GXP was a great sleeper with a stickshift and a Camaro pricepoint But, the GXP's price was laughable and the SS Sedan's is downright RIDICULOUS.
          ex-ford
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Rob
          I disagree with you. I had a Nissan 240 SX with only 150 hp and a 5spd manual. It was the most pleasurable and exciting vehicle I've had. It had plenty of power for it's size, and like the BRZ, it's the handling that made it fun.
          Humberto Yi
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Rob
          The brz fan boys are after you! It doesn't need more power, it just should cost 20k loaded. There is nothing in this car made for going fast, and the interior is garbage. It's a great cheap sports car, does it all perfectly, but it isn't cheap. So, more power, or make it cheaper really are the options
        Rochester
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Johnny Trailerpark
        Me too, Johnny. In spite of understanding all the reasons why people don't.
      Plan B
      • 4 Months Ago
      Here's one Autoblog. The constant bashing of Hyundai/Kia gets on my nerves. I can't stand it. Out of every automaker I can't think of one company that has made the biggest jump in refinement than them over the last 10 years. Every generation of their cars have gotten exponentially better and its impressive to say the least. I think Kia is the only automaker right now where I see their entire lineup from top to bottom and say to myself "that's really nice". I understand everybody has a favorite brand whether they want to admit it or not, but I believe in giving credit where its due. The Koreans jump in styling and quality only makes the industry as a whole much stronger and more competitive.
        white_blur47
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Plan B
        Perception takes a long time to change. I don't understand why people rave about the big three German luxury automakers, IMO they are not any better than any other brand. I will admit they were better, but that hasn't been the case for many years.
          Chris
          • 4 Months Ago
          @white_blur47
          To answer your question about the Germans? It's all about perception. They're considered the benchmark for other luxury brands such as Cadillac. Every casual observer of the industry I talk to seems to think they're the creme de la creme of the automotive world.
        Dan
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Plan B
        My only problem with Kia is the name. I cannot drive a car with KIA on it, since to me KIA will always mean Killed In Action. But yes, I look at their cars and think "Wow! That looks good!" Not so much with Hyundai. Sister owns a new Sonata, and I just don't fit behind the wheel. And the design is a little too much for my tastes. Like they were trying too hard to look different. The '15 Sonata looks much better to me.
          ihatemacs9
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Dan
          just put a NAZA badge inplace of the KIA badge
        VQGreenS
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Plan B


      P.Z. Dawkins
      • 4 Months Ago
      I like the way first gen PT Cruisers look and I wish they were built better and didn't have a stupid name.
        Tom
        • 4 Months Ago
        @P.Z. Dawkins
        The first-gen ones were built better than the decontented Daimler-ized ones!
        Quen47
        • 4 Months Ago
        @P.Z. Dawkins
        They were useful little cars too and didn't drive terribly.
      miketype1each
      • 4 Months Ago
      I agree with your assessment of the BRZ, the Hellcat, and the Miata. If I can help it, I'll never have another used car. But there is a point you've missed, and that is the lack of content in today's cars--mainly, storage. Allow me to explain: Why is it that some vehicles give us loads of storage space, while others do not? Point is, a dashboard is a dashboard and if one maker can provide an upper glove box, why don't all provide it? Is it so very difficult to design one that, while closed, lends to the design of the dash? Space is there, so why is it taken from us? Some vehicles have nearly-flat rear floor areas which make riding in the back more comfortable. Toyota have them, as do KIA, Hyundai, and perhaps others. 4-wheel drive cars are exempt from this matter, of course, but what is it with some of today's makers that simply refuse to design for more space and comfort? What good is telling us they're incorporating more high-strength steel while giving us the same lack of room? It boggles the mind. Face it: Europe and the rest of the world get the better-designed cars. Have Ford truly gone global in their design? Have a gander at their European sites, compare the models there with the models here in the US, and decide for yourself. We're a bunch of power-hungry, couldn't-care-less-about-diesel miscreants. We don't get the better cars because of our attitudes, and it shows. Believe you me, people buy cars for reasons most automotive journalists fail to understand. I now drive our '09 Corolla S because my wife fell out of love with it only 8 months into having it. Why? It is a bit too low for her; the interior door pull is too far back from the door's pivot point, requiring her to "reach out more" to close it once inside; and that the ground-effects skirting on the rocker panels jut out, are dirt magnets, and because they jut out and are magnets to dirt, her pant leg always made contact, which left dirt which she'd need to brush off. But to listen to most automotive journalists, they, too, are interested in only in a vehicle's slalom times. Rarely--and I mean RARELY--do automotive journalists give any consideration to matters of the kind of interest to people like my wife. Even I, at 73" tall, cannot maneuver my leg over the sill to keep from getting dirt on my pant leg. No big deal to me, but it is to others. As for diminishing content, I see where doors are removed from console storage spaces; only one front seat has a rear map pocket; where there were two 12 V outlets, now there is only one; rear clothes hanger hooks are absent; no trays in the trunk for items like jugs of milk, and so on. This little list of mine grows each year, and isn't car evolution to be exactly that: evolution? Won't be long before we'll see vinyl-covered cardboard door panels--again.
        AcidTonic
        • 4 Months Ago
        @miketype1each
        Couldn't agree more. But for performance nuances over comfort for me.
      19secondsslow
      • 4 Months Ago
      I loved AMC cars when I was a kid. I'd sit on my parent's front porch and wait for an Eagle wagon to go by. I tore the ads out of magazines so I could stare at them for hours. I mean, what could possibly have been cooler than an all wheel drive wagon that sits up a little higher than most other cars. I was stuck with a VW Rabbit, but my heart was with the Eagle wagon.
        Plan B
        • 4 Months Ago
        @19secondsslow
        Saw this guy in a very good conditioned Eagle wagon on the expressway last week. I rolled by him and gave him the thumbs up, hadn't seen one in ages.
        johnb
        • 4 Months Ago
        @19secondsslow
        that's cool. I always thought they were cool as well. Imagine if they survived. What would a modern interpretation of that look like. I'm thinking it would be something like a more rugged looking subaru, and that would be darn cool.
      johnb
      • 4 Months Ago
      ok, now that we are airing our dirty laundry, I'm going to say something I've never told anyone before. I find the Ford Flex pretty cool. Not cool enough to buy new,.. but maybe as a beater in a few years. whew that felt good to get off my chest.
        JeepinBen
        • 4 Months Ago
        @johnb
        YES! Find one with the Ecoboost - it's a poor man's CTS V Wagon.
        joe23521
        • 4 Months Ago
        @johnb
        I've (sometimes not so) secretly liked it since day one. May have even bought one in place of the family T&C had it been priced better.
        Dan
        • 4 Months Ago
        @johnb
        Definitely not a new vehicle purchase, but a decently priced used model I might go for.
        wtrmlnjuc
        • 4 Months Ago
        @johnb
        Best looking minivan-esque vehicle out there.
        leo
        • 4 Months Ago
        @johnb
        i actually like the MKT better and wish it had sliding doors
      peteMT
      • 4 Months Ago
      Full sized trucks are stupid for daily drivers. They're too big, too expensive, too thirsty, and the American public has been duped into buying them instead of more rational choices like brown station wagons with manual transmissions.
        methos1999
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        All for the wagon w/ a stick, but can I have mine in a color other than brown?
        Mondrell
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        What I fine even more comical about full-size truck owners is that many, at least in my slice of North Texas, are the ones blasting down streets and freeway as if they're in a 5.0 Mustang. Whereas 80 is just a little over half my speed range, it's 80% or more for most stock pickups, which are already several times more likely to roll in evasive maneuvers. If you're going to drive it like it's a sports car, then maybe it's time to get one, especially if the only thing you haul 98% of the year is your own ass.
          peteMT
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Mondrell
          Plenty of folks up north here drive WAYYY to fast in their trucks, even in the dead of winter. I'm going 45 in a new AWD Charger and I get blown off the icy road by a 3/4 ton Ford going 80+.
        pavsterrocks
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        If you need to haul stuff, smart money is on vans, yet trucks are cooler.
        Zoom
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        This!
        81waldron
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        I completely agree. I get it - anyone can come up with a few instances a year that justify the need for a truck: that landscaping purchase at Home Depot, the visit to IKEA for new room storage, a trek to Best Buy for that 60" on-sale TV, etc. However, to drive such hulking vehicle everyday for the 98% of the year when you're not making use of it's towing/hauling capabilities is such a waste - especially considering that virtually any company will ship said goods to you for a fee that's far cheaper than the monthly gas expense you'd incur if you owned such a gas-guzzler for daily driving. When I make this point to pickup-truck-owning-friends I'm always met with a rambling, poorly-defended argument that usually includes a gross overestimation of how often they tow/haul things and how living without a truck would be impossible for their lifestyle.
          scraejtp
          • 4 Months Ago
          @81waldron
          Eh, it may depend on the area. I live on a few acres and use and abuse my truck often. Not only would I need to rent a truck often, but possibly pay extra fees for damage when hauling debris/material. Not only that, I need a vehicle that is capable of hauling my boat. Now having said that, a full size truck is often unneeded, as I easily get by with my Ranger for the tasks listed above. I do have a second car as well (Subaru BRZ) but tend to drive the truck more often.
          beanrew
          • 4 Months Ago
          @81waldron
          ...impossible for their lifestyle, or ego? I vote ego.
          Julio B
          • 4 Months Ago
          @81waldron
          I just got a full kitchen, bathroom cabinets and a king bed from Ikea for my new house. Instead of buying a truck, I just paid $59 to have it all delivered to my door... I would've spent almost that on gas for the truck alone.
          81waldron
          • 4 Months Ago
          @81waldron
          @scraejtp, Just to be clear, I'm not against pick-up trucks as a whole, but as a daily driver for the average commuter. I have a used 2004 F-150 with 150,000 miles as a 3rd vehicle. It stays put in my garage until the rare occasion arises for which I need it (hauling, ground clearance for mountain drives in order to go shooting, mainly). In the mean time, I daily drive a vehicle that is far better suited to daily driving (VW GTI). Thus, my comment isn't for the guy that lives on a farm, is a contractor by trade, or what-have-you. It was for people that justify owning a $40k truck for the 4 occasions a year they need one.
          81waldron
          • 4 Months Ago
          @81waldron
          @Julio B Amen, brother. Preaching to the choir.
        TimeLordStig
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        Plus you can rent a truck at home depot or U-haul for like $20-$30, haul what you need and then get back in your Golf or Focus
        Plan B
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        Which is why you see CUVs taking over. Looks of a truck, mpg of a minivan without the minivan looks. Go sit inside a Durango, Explorer, Pathfinder, one of the GM Lambdas, they're just minivans without the sliding doors and boxy looks.
          Hi There Paul
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Plan B

          I was thinking that CUV's are more like high station wagons than Minivans

        Krazeecain
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        No kidding. I've driven a few newer trucks and they're horrible to drive. The idea that people willingly drive them on a daily basis with such flimsy justification blows my mind.
          kingrat001
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Krazeecain
          I guess your idea and mine of horrible is a lot different. Nothing compares to the comfort and easy drive of a fullsized pickup. I miss my 2003 almost every day. I got hurt and keeping it was impossible, as my left knee wanted no part of getting into it.
        superlightv12
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        Just buy a used Chrysler Minivan and forget about impressing the neighbors. You have room for a large family, a comfortable long trip cruiser, AND you can carry a bunch of sheet rock or other building supplies in it. Gas mileage is much better too. I hated minivans until I bought one, then I got it. Wish I still had one.
          81waldron
          • 4 Months Ago
          @superlightv12
          I've said exactly this for years and years.
        E
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        For my business, I need my HD truck and it's great at meeting my demands. Outside of business, I use it only a few times a year for what it's actually made for and it's great to have. But why anyone would want to live with one of these all the time without requiring its capabilities regularly is completely beyond me. Unless you're hauling around a couple thousand pounds or more, they're ride is unbearable. The gas mileage, obviously, sucks too. At an average of 10mpg in a 2 year old truck, it costs about $150 a week just for fuel. The handling is surprisingly decent for a 7k+ lb machine, though you'll have to overlook the incredibly slow and imprecise steering. Although it can be fun a times because of the strong engine, fun is generally inhibited by the extreme disconnect between you and the chassis and the chassis and the road and the fact that every action is delayed. So there's no endearing qualities to driving an HD truck other than feeling bigger than everyone, which is probably why most daily drivers got them. They're Tonka trucks for the adult child. If I could step down to a 1/2-ton truck, I'd do it in a second!
        great1234
        • 4 Months Ago
        @peteMT
        That's why the Tacoma is great. Especially with a manual and V-6. More fun and less mine is bigger than yours overcompensating.
      Frisky_Dingo
      • 4 Months Ago
      What's up with not being able to make breaks in the texts and new paragraphs?
      NY EVO X MR GUY
      • 4 Months Ago
      Here's one. This autoblog section "upgrade"sucks.
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