Re: Headline I thought I'd never see

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On 03/21/2012 07:48 PM, Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:


i'm actually serious when i use the word "sabotage". if you've been watching the debacle that used to be called "nokia", and its [former micro$oft exec] c.e.o.'s decision to walk away from everything that made that company successful and throwing in with the micro$oft "smart phone" system nobody wants, you have to wonder where his loyalties lie. they're certainly not with nokia.
i say the same thing is being done with honda by the former g.m. execs it hired. pretty much all of their decisions have been to undermine the honda brand, destroy the concept of repeat business and destroy customer loyalty. are they genuinely well intentioned but simply incompetent? or are they still working for g.m. with a mission to undermine g.m.'s competition?
--
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Reality bites, don't it?
But reality it is, and reality is what Honda has to live with.
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On 3/21/2012 3:54 PM, Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:

Elmo is on fire again. ;-)
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cameo wrote:

...and probably rightly so. Only thing is I think that the mojo was lost beginning with the '84 models though I must concede that a good part of *that* was due to guv'ment interference..
JT
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Well that they are, if Jerry Seinfeld and Jay Leno can be believed.

Yep.
So it's newer safety regs that keep them from just re-issuing 1980s frames with more modern engines?
I was actually just going to post about the late unlamented Accord V6 hybrid from a couple years back, how about just keeping up with the Jones's with an Accord hybrid I4 - AND KNOCK 500 POUNDS OFF IT.
Hey, I actually saw two Volts on the road today, setting a new American record.
J.
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That's exactly the point. Modern "safety" regulations -- especially the newer side-impact regs -- make it difficult to impossible to build a light car of any size.
Everything these days is 400-500 lbs heavier than the same size was 20 years ago, and all of that has gone into the structure, airbags, ABS, etc.
Take a look at the roof pillars, window sizes, and beltlines on a new car and compare them against a 1992 model. The new cars have tree-trunks for pillars, gun slits for windows, and beltlines up to your nose. Visibility sucks.
You can have "safety", and you can have lightness, but you can't have both unless you start using materials and processes that would put the price out of reach of the average consumer.
--
Tegger

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wrote:

Well, but that's where the challenge is now for Honda or anybody.
I guess the question is to what degree the new standards make sense? I've never heard that the old, ligher Hondas had any reputation as death traps.
I believe the air bags are a total waste of money and can really only be counterproductive, I guess with all the side airbags and crap that might be a hundred pounds - and more than a thousand dollars, right there. So if that's a sign, then probably 95% of the new standards are garbage.
J.
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On 03/22/2012 08:07 AM, JRStern wrote:

the late 80's hondas were pretty much at the top of the game in that regard. great crash resistant frames, no abs, no airbags - and economical because of the weight savings.

they're good for a very limited percentage of the population - the people that drive hunched up close to the wheel. but i think darwinian natural selection of those people from the gene pool is a good thing - and certainly not one worth the nation wasting billions of dollars to oil despots for.

i couldn't agree more. all the time, money, weight and gasoline wasted lugging about "side impact protection" that is not a significant proportion of road impacts, and is pretty much impossible to /really/ protect since there is no room for an adequate crumple zone, is just insane.
i'll say it again to be boring - if passenger safety was the /real/ objective, we'd all have tubular safety cages, 6-point harness and helmets in our cars. then we could drive our 1600lb vehicles into the barrier at 200mph and walk away. just like indy.
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On 03/22/2012 06:26 AM, Tegger wrote:

that's not true - there's nothing in the regulations regarding weight. they just make it hardER to build /cheaply/.
which is of course, the whole point, politically speaking. the manufacturers know the agenda is not really safety, it's to make cars heavier to negate the fuel savings of their better engines. and they know damn well that if they /did/ make a better lighter car that was significantly more economical, there'd be a shake-down like there was with toyota and the bogus throttle "problem". much easier to just kow-tow to the political [read: "oil lobbying"] machine and build a heavier car.

popular misconception. aluminum beer cans are much more high tech than their steel counterparts, yet they're cheaper. aluminum framed bicycles are often cheaper than comparable steel counterparts. aluminum cars are not prohibitively more expensive than steel. and with volume production, would be directly comparable since the material is easier to work and form. and you can get stiffer frames more easily leading to more design possibilities.
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IIRC,Audi builds an aluminum car. a version of the A2,IIRC.
What bugs me is that side-impact regs have brought about taller cars,no more low sporty cars. newer small cars are several inches taller than older small cars. So they end up being tall and narrow,Ugh.
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On 03/23/2012 07:42 AM, Jim Yanik wrote:

i don't think that's a result of regulation, i think it's typical mba "focus group research" saying "people like to be up high", [i.e. the same idiocy that shoved the suv down our throats for so long] and /that/ is driving a voluntary design decision.
and i know i don't like suv's not being /able/ to "low beam" me at night because their lights are mounted so high. that's addressed by making the car higher too.
blame it all on suv's.
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That's part of it, yes.
Side-intrusion regs basically dictate that cowl- and belt-lines be really high so as to reinforce the structure. This in addition to increased pillar-thickness and floorpan-reinforcement.
Side-curtain airbags (part of the effort to meet intrusion regs) cause pillars and rooflines to /really/ thicken. The B-pillars on all cars these days are at least 4-times thicker than those on my '91 Integra.
In addition, pedestrian-protection regs result in bulbous front-ends, and high cowls help with creating those bulbous fronts.
Like I said, you can have "safety", or you can have lightness. But you can't have both unless you start using materials and processes that put prices out of reach of most drivers.
Cars from 1990 were hardly death-traps. All we need to do is roll "safety" regulations back to what they were in 1990, and you'd have your original CRX back. But then a lot of activists would be unhappy, and a lot of bureaucrats would be out of work, so that will never happen.
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Honda V-6s have possibilities in a sportier car. They've increased rated HP in the last couple years and could probably get more if they tune them like Acura does.
A Honda V-8 would be an interesting motor, if they did it.
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A number of years ago Honda officially stated that they would never made a V8 becuase they didn't think V8s were "green" enough.
But then around the same time they also said they'd never make their V6 any bigger thean 3.0 liters, so...
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On 03/24/2012 04:59 AM, Tegger wrote:

and yet they made cvcc heads for g.m.'s v8's when they were trying to get g.m. to pick up their cvcc emissions technology.

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IMO,a sporty small car does not need a V-6 or V8. 4 cylinders ought to do it nicely. if your small car needs more than a 4- banger can reliably develop,your car is too heavy.
Or are you discussing "supercars"? corvette-class? drag racers?
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Jim Yanik
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On 03/24/2012 09:40 AM, Jim Yanik wrote:

indeed.
<http://www.theoldone.com/articles/Larryscivic/Larrys_Civic.htm
and then of course, you have the more readily available evo's and wrx's...

i'll go up to sears point on occasion and watch the weekend guys test. it's a "real" windy circuit, not that oval crap, and it's fun when you see a tricked prelude or integra wipe the floor with italian or german money.
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The sorts of vehicles Toyota and Nissan produce with V8s. Honda made an explicit decision not to participate in those market segments, and not to produce a V8.
Honda's official reason was that they didn't think V8s were "green" enough, and that they could achieve the same objectives using a "greener" V6. The old press releases are out there somewhere, I'm sure.
When Honda finally did make a pickup, it used a V6.
And thus they never did give Acura a V8 to compete with Lexus models that are so equipped. From a competitive perspective, that may have been a mistake: A RWD V8-powered RL might have been a viable competitor to Lexus instead of the slow-selling dud that was the V6 RL.
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Tegger

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Agreed overall, except for the RWD part. The current AWD platform would be fine, but absolutely they needed to plug a V8 in for competitive reasons.
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On 03/24/2012 04:28 PM, Elmo P. Shagnasty wrote:

why? why are we absolutely fixated on v8's? i've lived in europe and /everywhere/ you have small little 4-bangers, and sometimes 6's doing everything we do in v8's. the only difference is that they don't seem to have a problem with the concept of using more than one ratio in their transmission. we seem to have the bizarre mentality that once the vehicle is rolling, we should be able to climb mountains, with a trailer and 6000lb boat attached, without ever shifting gear. it's completely incomprehensible to me.
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