2013 Accord: priceless quote

The local newspaper has an auto-related section that's mainly ads, with a few "articles" thrown in that are usually puff pieces with a big chunk
of their content lifted from manufacturer press releases. Yesterday there was one touting the rollout of the 2013 Accord at a local dealership.
After pointing out that Honda had been facing increased competition from American and Korean sedans, the piece quoted the dealership's sales manager as he proudly touted a new "feature": "Honda's really listened to what the people want. The biggest complaint had been the road noise. They've addressed that by getting rid of the double-wishbone front suspension and going with struts."
I was reminded of H. L. Mencken's definition of democracy as "the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard".
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"Dave Garrett" wrote

I'm apparently one of the common people, very appreciative of reduced road noise, though I'm not so sure about it at the expense of changing to struts. What do other "quiet" cars use for front suspension components?
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On 10/07/2012 02:34 PM, Howard Lester wrote:

well, the acura tl is pretty quiet - that still has wishbones.
bottom line, the "noise" excuse is complete bull - there is no engineering connection between wishbones and increased noise. if anything, it's the other way around because wishbones are a less direct sound path.
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They're /all/ mostly like that. Sometimes they have one or two columnists producing original and interesting material; I read those and skip the rest.

That'a an odd comment. There is no connection between the two suspension designs and road-noise.

Mencken's statement had to do with governments, not with consumer-goods companies or any other private concerns. Plus, in his original quote, there is no comma.
--
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Technically, there is.
If they make a cheaper suspension, they can take some of that money and put it toward noise suppression--and still keep up their #1 goal, corporate profits at any cost.
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On 10/07/2012 05:50 PM, Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:

it's not a "technical" connection in the engineering sense, just the financial sense.

i still say their "ex" frod usa chairman is a trojan horse continuing to work for detroit and bent on honda's destruction. and he's right on target.
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wrote:

Honda, like all other manufacturers, went to strut front-ends on lower-end vehicles in order to help keep costs down. The primary impetus for this was safety and emissions regulations, which combine to /dramatically/ raise the cost of developing and bulding a car. Those costs are less onerous if the car has a higher sell-price and higher margin, but they're a killer for the low-end of the market.
As for "corporate profits at any cost": Any company which tries that is doomed to failure. Profits come from satisfied customers. Unsatisfied customers take their money elsewhere, resulting in eventual bankruptcy of the indiscriminately-cost-cutting company.
ALL companies, just like ALL families and ALL individuals, MUST spend less than they take in, so profit is an /absolutely necessary/ goal for everybody, including Honda.
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On 10/08/2012 03:30 PM, Tegger wrote:

safety + emissions != cost of developing. safety + emissions != cost of building.
"safety" is basically just making cars heavy and adding airbags. airbags don't cost that much to the manufacturer, and making the car heavy costs only the materials, and that's almost nothing extra.
"emissions" is basically just the cat [which has been there for more than 30 years already] and sensors [see above]. the rest is software, and that effectively costs nothing.

any mba course will teach you about product differentiation. i.e. make the "high end" product with the high price "different" to the low end stuff. otherwise nobody will pay the premium.
but, this works only if you have a lock on the market. honda don't, they have loads of competition. making their product generic and indistinguishable from the competition, and trying to charge a premium price - well, that's where there's an obvious disconnect that's either the product of stupidity, or a trojan horse.

there's profits and there's margins. woolmort make ultra-skinny margins. much skinnier than honda. but they make HUGE profits because they have successfully differentiated themselves and have huge volumes. honda are making themselves generic, not different, and they're losing volume. they're going to get eaten by frod and toyota. and i think the frod part is by design.
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