OT: My GM rant

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Something is seriously wrong at GM. They're the only car company out that still insists on using 4 speed autos (well, they do have a 5 speed but its
for 3 Cadillacs and 1 for Saturn), Ford is using 5 and 6 speed autos and CVTs on Fords..not just certain a brand in the company. They have no cars that I see myself in besides the CTS, SRX and the Corvette (the CTS was decided against in favor of the Mustang).
Don't get me wrong, we've had GMs here for as long as I can remember (which isn't that long but nonetheless). 1987 Caprice and 2 Silverados. 1991 Blazer. 1992 Lumina, Silverado and Caprice. 1993 Grand Prix and Camaro. 1997 Silverado. 1999 Blazer and Camaro. 2001 LeSabre. 2004 Sierra. (also throw in the 2001 Dodge Stratus and the 2005 Mustang and the 1988 Bronco). From the 1987 Silverado, the new Sierra has the same transmission, just updated. From the 92 Lumina to the 01 LeSabre, same transmission again just updated a bit.
I want to see GM succeed, but they really have to step up the base here. The Mustang can get a 5 speed auto, the cheapest GM that can is the Cadillac CTS. Something is also wrong when a cheap car from Ford has bounceback windows but a not so cheap truck from GMC doesn't (which are a nice thing to have when you have people that like to roll up the windows when your fingers are sticking out). The Sierra has no light in the glovebox, as I found 2 years ago going up for deer hunting when I had to find something in it, in a cheaper vehicle that would have been fine, not when you're paying close to 40k for it.
The Sierra has a recall for the tailgate cables. How long have they been making those? How do they manage to screw that up now? The LeSabre needed the windshield wiper motors replaced, the light switch replaced (it got stuck in place, you could not turn the lights off). The 91 Blazer had to be lemon lawwed. It would just die on the highway. They replaced the engine and transmission 4 times each. The 92 Caprice had a major ABS problem that they fixed and it came back. The 99 Blazers door fell off the other day, literally. The bushings rusted through on the driver side door and the pin fell out. The 01 Stratus had an electrical problem where the lights and dash would die. The only problem that I have with the Mustang is that when I'm putting gas in it the pump'll shut off a couple times.
Really, I see no incentive to keep buying GM products right now. I'm a car guy, I go for whatever is best for me at the moment. What really irks me though is that GM has the brainpower to catch up and pass up the other guys. But they CHOOSE not to. One part disagrees with the other and someone has to make a decision. Would it really hurt them to spend maybe a couple hundred dollars more on a car to get them up to the quality expectations of the public? It may cost a little bit more to build the car, but GM would lose less money because they wouldn't have the incentives on them or as much of an incentive. Would it really hurt to brag about how much they've gone up in reliability and say that they're still working to get up to the top? Would it really hurt to use newer technology (they're getting somewhat better with this right now)? Would it really hurt to give people what they want?
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Phillip Schmid wrote:

Indeed, GM does seem hell bent on using retro-technology for it's mainstream vehicles while the competition is generally going much more high tech.
A V-6 Honda Accord comes with an overhead cam variable valve timing masterpiece mated to a 5 speed automatic. GM's competitors in that segment are old pushrod designs (3.4/3.5/3.8 l) mated to at best 4 speed automatics.
The Honda is available with one of the best in-car navigation systems arounds, but at GM you can not get such a system is any Chevrolet, Saturn, Pontiac or Buick (at least you couldn't in '03 when I shopped them all before reluctantly buying Japanese).
I do not understand why the largest car company in the world (at least at the moment) insists on staying behind the times technology wise. Sure you can get the latest stuff on $50,000 Cadillacs, but why not on under $30,000 vehicles when smaller companies like Honda can do it?
John
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I don't understand it either, but maybe one day they're going to wake up and see what they're doing. It's not their world anymore, they don't set the rules.
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Phillip Schmid wrote:

Yet, that GM 3.8 gets better mileage and HP for its weight than anything but the very newest Lexus engines. 240hp with a supercharger and still 26-27mpg, all the while gulping down gas to get a nearly two ton boat down the road... It may be old, but it works well.
(the Camry V6 is very simmilar as well, btw - excellent low-tech design)
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think of how much power/gas mileage the 3800 would get if it was mated to a 5 speed auto or one of those new Variable Ratio Transmissions.... hmmm.
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GM puts their engineering energies on gimmicky things, like their speed activated radio volume system (radio gets louder the faster the car goes, softer as the vehicle slows down). That feature IS more important than anything, don't you know?! ;-)
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When the Lexus LS was first introduced I bough one, it had that feature. ;)
mike hunt
"James C. Reeves" wrote:

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I think thats the funniest thing ever, thats basically saying "hey we don't insulate our cars for shit, thus we have lots of road noise and design an overly complicated radio system to compensate"
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That's pretty much it too. After awhile too you don't really notice it getting louder then when you slow down the radio is like completely quiet so it's kind of a weird feeling.
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That is one way to look at it, I suppose.
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goes,
don't
"overly complicated"?? Only if you're mentally challenged. I set mine the day I bought my truck in 1999, and haven't had to touch it since. Works very well. And, unlike the lights, if you don't like it, you don't have to use it. H
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I believe he likely meant overly complicated from the context that is should not be necessary in the first place, not that it is particularly difficult to use. Although we are talking about the general population here...95+% of which can't program a VCR (similar methods).
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James C. Reeves wrote:

Why wouldn't a speed compensated volume be necessary? Unless you are getting one very expensive car....all vehicles have enough road/wind noise when at highway speeds to make this a neat little feature.
Ian
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It isn't a problem with the Sebring I drive now...unless I have the windows or sun roof open. If they're closed, I rarely need to touch the radio volume control during varied speed driving. Same thing with my Caravan. The only vehicle I've owned in the past 20 years that needed constant radio volume adjustment because of road/wind noise was in a base level truck I owned for about 15 years. With the unpadded vinyl floor covering, it's was no wonder. Although the Malibu I had was not particularly quiet in comparison to some cars, I still disabled the speed sensitive volume control. Wouldn't most people prefer the engineering effort and dollars go into reducing noise levels instead?
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James C. Reeves wrote:

I can almost guarantee that it would be far more costly to reduce noise levels then to use speed sensitive volume controls. And you know the American/Canadian consumer, "we want everything to be perfect, but don't want to pay any money for it".
Ian
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speed
than
an
the
use
should
James, you are trying to explain his statement with *your* views. And we all know your views, ad nauseam. "Overly complicated" and "not necessary" are in no way synonymous.
not that it is particularly difficult

of
When did you dream up that number? Do you really believe the crap that you put out? Have you ever used auto volume control? If you had, you would know that there is no similarity to programming a VCR. H
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Yes my Malibu's radio had the feature. And if I remember correctly, it used a button sequence that stepped thought several modes and volume sensitivities. And, yes that is similar to programming a VCR.
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I certaintly can't argue with that assessment since we all post messages based on our individial views. The concept of such is quite elementary and likely already understood by most people.

They can be in the context for which Paradox was making his point. (e.g. deaden road noises vs. overly complicated radio system = overly complicated radio system is not necessary IF sound is deadened properly) So, in this case, it is clearly (very clearly) symomymous. I guess you missed the point of Paradox's post.
The interesting thng here is that you've explained why you didn't think that my explanation of what Paradox meant was actually what he meant. But you failed to enlighten us as to what you think Paradox actually did mean by his statement. Care to offer your explanation from "your" point of view of what Paradox really meant by a "overly complicated radio system" vs. deadening road noise properly? You've tweeked my curosity! ;-)

Didn't, it was published 15+ years ago by a VCR manufacturer (I forget which one). One good thing that came out of it is that most VCR's these days have auto-setting clocks (from a broadcast time signal) and somewhat simplier program codes. Before then, neary all VCR's in service had blinking 12:00AM displays and were hardly ever used for automated recording. Using a VCR was one of the largest consumer product complaints...and think it still is, actually.

Sure. The statistics are out there to see. See the NHTSA public forum ste. See Toyota's (correct) response to customer complaints that they received about DRL's after their 1999 (or was it 2000) year of mandating them (Hint: they backed away from mandating them like GM should have done...and look who is selling the pants off of GM!). Look at Perot and Prowler studies and many in the European union as well. Look at the Motorcyclist Association and the Motorist Association studies. The list goes on and on. But, be like GM management and just ignore it all and just keep on tanking. Brilliant move Sherlock!.

See other post.
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and
You are attributing your veiws to his post, when he said something entirely different.

complicated
point
Nope. Keep reading.

that
his
I tend to think that people say what they mean, when they post. I don't use convoluted logic to try to make it agree with *my views*. Simply put, he said they use "an overly complicated radio system" to abate the noise issue. I took issue with the "overly complicated" part. Nothing else.
Care to offer your explanation from "your" point of view of what

Oh, I know what he meant. And I agree, to a point, with the exception of the "overly complicated" part. You used the word "properly", in regard to noise deadening. I believe that word is relative, in this case. I would expect a $70,000 luxury car to be much quieter than my $35,000 truck. And I suspect my truck is quieter than most $20,000 cars. If you want dead quiet, at speed, you've got to be prepared to pay more than I'm willing to pay. Automatic Volume Control is a good low cost alternative.

here...95+%
which
have
12:00AM
was
So, how is a 15+ year old report of dubious integrity relevent to this discussion?

~DRL ramblings snipped~

With intensive training and lots of practice, I'm sure even you could learn to turn a knob clockwise to increase sensitivity and counter-clockwise to decrease sensitivity. That's all it takes on my truck. H
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Still don't get it I see. Hmmm..let me try again. The original context was overly complicated in design, not overly complicated to use. His meaning is very obvious since he did not refer to the use of the radio being complicated at all, but to it's design being overly complicated to compensate for lack of sound deadening. Did that help any?
Remember the response I was responding to was out of context to the point...the responder indicated that he didn't have any problem with the radio being overly complicated to use. Paradox's point wasn't equating "complicated" with "complicated function" (or use), but with the need for a complicated (e.g. complexity of...) design to compensate for poor sound deadening. If you go back and read it again, I'm sure you'll see it this time.

I can buy that...no arguement. It makes more sense as you restate it.

No arguement.

If compared to the 2003 Malibu LS I once owned, you're probably right. But I disabeled the speed-sensing volume control even on the Malibu. At it's lowest sensitivity setting, I was turning the volume down manually when increasing speed. It still over compensated. So I was doin *more* volum adjustments with teh feature activated. If I used higher sensitivy settings the volume totally blew me out of the car as the speed increased. It was quite a uselss feature, as far as I was concerned. The radio volume was just fine with the feature completely deactivated. Of the people I know with GM vehicles, only one person, that drives a Silverado Truck, has the feature activated.

Not if it isn't needed even then...and I haven't paid over 20K for a new car yet. (well except the Caravan, I paid 22.5K for it new in 1997).

Beats me, you asked where my information came from. ;-)

You can hide it, but it still exists. ;-) Didn't Charles Dickens write something similar 150+ years ago? Obviously he got it!

It was a combination step button control on the model radio I had...each press of the button stepped through 4-5 sensitivity settings with one of those settings being a position where the feature was completely disabled. I didn't have a problem using the feature at all...so not sure why you thought I did. Oh, I get it, we're back to the meaning of "complicated" again in the context of the original post, aren't we? ;-)
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