Bias Against Domestic Cars

Page 4 of 8  
Actually Toyota buyers DO think they are smarter than the average new vehicle buyer.
When I was in retail that was one of the things we loved about them, it made
is easy for us to get an extra 20% to 30% out of them when we sold them a car than we could get from the buyers in our domestic brand stores LOL

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Tom wrote:

So you believe that the demographics of a Toyota buyer are the same as the demographics of a Chevrolet buyer?
It may well be elitist for a car-buyer to have shunned a Geo/Chevy Prizm in favor of a Toyota Corolla, but the sales figures of each model prove that there had to have been reasons that the Corolla sold so much better than the Prizm. Up until recently, one reason to have chosen a Chevy over a Toyota would have been the wider availability of warranty service, but at least in my area so many Chevy dealers have closed that the Toyota now wins in that regard. The Corolla and Prizm were comparably priced, the Prizm has a lower MSRP, but the Corolla was heavily discounted, often to well below invoice.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You can read the exact same remarks in the archives of the Saturn newsgroup, where he trolled for a decade and compiled thousands of posts attacking Saturn and other domestic automobiles under various accounts. The best ones are where he contradicts himself and even ignores (or attacks) Consumer Reports when it didn't support his agenda. CR is like any other magazine. The editors are human. They have biases. They know their demographic and cater to it very well, because that's where their paycheck is. Their surveys aren't randomy sampled or scientific in any way. The results are not peer reviewed and they don't publish any statistical information like sample size, margin of error, standard deviation, nada. In the case of their red and black circles for reliability, they don't even tell you what they mean on an absolute scale; usually only in percent above/below average. That kind of information isn't all that helpful unless you know what average is. 40% above average when average is near zero is not a good way to scale your data to show people how many problems to expect over a typical period of ownership. More importantly, they don't tell you much about the severity or cost of the problems, only what categories are most typical. Oxygen sensor, engine oil sludge or worse? Who knows.
That's not to say the reviews and reliability results aren't any good, but that they really aren't all that different from any other auto magazine. If you find you generally agree with them, great, but that doesn't make their results any more meaningful or accurate. I like Consumer Reports for the most part, but the non-random surveys and dumbed down results are not impressive by any statistical standard. Their reviews are usually reasonable enough. Usually they seem close to the mark, but sometimes they miss badly. Don't rely on them as the only resource and you'll be fine. For example, I'm still not sure how their 32mpg city fuel economy rating of the new Prius is anything close to "real world". We never owned a hybrid before and from our first tank it's been over 50mpg both estimated from the trip computer and calculated from gas fill ups. No fancy driving habits or super inflated tires or anything. Many other owners report the same. As with everything, don't always believe what you read.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com wrote:

Of course they do. They always state the sample size, and if they don't have a sufficiently large sample for a specific product then they leave it out, as you can see in every one of their surveys, including the most recent wireless carrier surveys.
Claims of bias are pure sour grapes. A few people that buy a product get all upset when their choice is not validated by independent entities. No where was such an attitude more prevalent than for Saturn owners which could never accept the fact that all the marketing hype about the brand was not supported by the statistical reports of reliability from Consumer Reports and J.D. Power. You of course are well aware of this behavior since you were one of those that engaged in it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'll bite. I'm looking at the April, 2009 auto issue. Let's take the Ford Fusion on page 89. I see lots of red circles. I'm not seeing them state any numbers aside from the model year and the "6" in V6. No sample size for this model is given, though you claim it is always stated. No margin of error for the reliability projection. Nothing of statistical value whatsoever. You must still be getting the special edition? Please share.

Well, I engaged in the amusement provided by helping to debunk your anti-Saturn rhetoric and finding all your contradictions, anyway. For example, as you've apparently forgotten, the SL/SW series usually did reasonably well in reliability, according to Consumer Reports. In fact, according to the April, 2001 issue, every single year of the 8 listed was average (4) or above average (4) and had check marks for their "reliability verdict". So there's no sour grapes to be had there, but of course, I can't tell you how accurate those results are. That's because, again, no statistical information whatsoever is provided. As for the original topic, you're free to believe there is no bias at Consumer Reports. You can believe the same about Fox News and any other media outlet, too. The fact is they are all run by editors and management that have a bias to keep their jobs, in addition to any policy and personal biases they may have. That they don't bother to support their reliability circles with any statistical details should make any skeptic wonder why. In the age of websites, the lack of space in the print version is no longer a good excuse. Is there an organizational policy bias against domestic autos? Probably not. That doesn't make their reviews and reliability results unbiased.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com wrote:

They state the sample size for the whole survey, and they also state that they leave out models for which they get too low a number or responses for the data to be statistically valid. Fortunately the survey is so large that only really niche vehicles are left out for lack of data.

LOL, sure you did. It's interesting that all the things I reported on so early turned out to be completely true, and resulted in recalls or special service campaigns by Saturn. You debunked nothing. But if it makes you feel good to think that you did, go right ahead believing it.
Saturn's demise was a direct result of their basing an entire company on marketing hype that could not fool enough people to sustain the business, and could not overcome the fact that the vehicles were unreliable. When CR and J.D. Power pointed out these facts, you saw the same kind of sour grapes you see now with the claims of bias.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

You were pretty much waging a trolling campaign against Saturn. Way over the top. Fake trolling names and all. Pretty much like the domestic guys will go after Toyota now for the gas pedal problem that's killed some people, and how they went after the Toyota head gasket and sludging problems. No real difference. Just one biased person complaining about others' bias. Happens all the time. Mob mentality. Don't feel bad about. But fight it. No sense being a punching bag. And try to look at the big picture.
--Vic
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Lol. "Hi! We surveyed a million of our own readers, so OF COURSE that means our results are accurate!" If that's enough to satisfy your intellecutual curiousity, so be it.


Thanks to Google, thousands of your anti-Saturn and anti-domestic rants still exist in the archives. A monkey can hit the bullseye with a dart once in a while, but it's all the horrible misses that provide a good chuckle.

Haven't owned a Saturn in nearly a decade, so I'm really not interested except to note your bias on the topic of this thread. Since CR showed the S-series to be generally reliable, contrary to your claims above, that doesn't even provide a basis for sour grapes. It only provides irony that you put so much trust into their reliability data, but ignore any results that you don't like.
As for bias, it would be nice to live in a world where you can believe everything you see from the media at face value and know that every study and statistic is accurate. Sadly, in the world where I live, being naive usually means being a sucker and being duped. Here, we would just have to blindly assume CR has no bias, because they hide away all their methodology and statistical information for some mysterious reason. I admit, I do like your world better.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 27 Nov 2009 02:26:09 -0800, SMS fired up the etcha-a-sketch and scratched out:

Saturn vehicles are unreliable?
They're small, but I never knew them to be unreliable.
--
perfectreign
www.perfectreign.com || www.ecmplace.com
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
PerfectReign wrote:

Look at the J.D. Power long term dependability results if you don't believe Consumer Reports.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 27 Nov 2009 09:09:01 -0800, SMS fired up the etcha-a-sketch and scratched out:

I just know that my wife's five-year-old Vue has had zero issues.
Sure it is small and very compact, but it has been reliable.
--
perfectreign
www.perfectreign.com || www.ecmplace.com
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
PerfectReign wrote:

Is that the one with the Honda V6 and Honda transmission in it? GM used a Honda engine from 2004 to 2007 model years, according Wikipedia.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
dr_jeff wrote:

The engine is from Honda, not sure about the transmission.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Sun, 29 Nov 2009 19:28:17 -0800, SMS fired up the etcha-a-sketch and scratched out:

Yes and yes.
I'm a bit worried because of the low reputation of these transmissions. However, I have theorized that most people with the Honda V6 transmission who have had issues were driving much heavier cars (the Oddesy minivan).
Crossing fingers.
--
perfectreign
www.perfectreign.com || www.ecmplace.com
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

You still don't seem to understand the bias inherent in the pre-selected (subscribers) and self-selecting respondents to their survey. Think of it this way, if FOX news (or any other channels news) polled their listeners asking them to rate the "level of satisfaction" with TV news shows, do you think the results would be a meaningful reflection on which news shows the "average" person finds satisfactory?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ashton Crusher wrote:

How about I don't think of a company with a news channel doing a survey of which is the best news channel? Maybe you could explain how such a survey is in any way related to a non-profit, independent consumer organization doing a statistically sound survey--but I doubt it.
You still fail to understand that Consumer Reports and J.D. Power aren't asking _anyone_ to rate vehicles. They're asking owners what problems they've had with the vehicles they own. From those answers they get their ratings. The J.D. Power ratings are from a random survey. The CR ratings are from surveys that subscribers choose to return. The results are always very similar. No one is asking a Toyota owner what their opinion of Fords is or vice-versa.
Those that complain that CR surveys are filled out by subscribers are just looking for something, anything, to complain about because they don't like the results. No doubt there's something about the J.D. Power surveys that they also can find that they don't like. Nothing but a double-blind survey would satisfy them (and most likely that would not satisfy them either)l; they're very bitter and angry.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I recall a survey of the Mitsubishi Eclipse and the Dodge and Plymouth version. They were ranked by consumers (not necessarily owners) to have different quality levels. 1 Mitsu, 2 Dodge, 3 Plymouth. It was strictly perception, not based on real facts. Some of the people surveyed had no idea they were identical cars.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Eventually, Consumer Reports lumped corporate twins together so that the results were the same for all siblings. As it was, it showed the very real problems inherent to their surveys and sampling.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ed Pawlowski wrote:

The perception of consumers versus responses to specific questions regarding owner problems are two very different things.
There seems to be an idea that the Consumer Reports surveys of reliability consist of questions like "Do you think xyz is a reliable vehicle" when in fact the surveys are limited to specific questions regarding the reliability of specific sub-systems of the vehicle.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
C. E. White wrote:

Clearly you've never seen one of the CR surveys if you think it's an opinion poll.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.