| according to them, most cars are death traps.
| i dont think their method of testing is very acurate.
| its solid aboject slamming into a staionary car.
| no crush zones to activate etc on the barrier they use
I actually think that their method may be useful. I'm in a
Hyundai now because my Ford Aerostar was totalled in a head-on
with another Aerostar. It was an unusual demonstration of
selective crumpling. Many car accidents are between two vehicles,
both of which would have hopefully crumpled to progressively
absorb the impact and save the occupants. However, CU's method
simulates what will happen when the car slams into a concrete
wall, and as we all know, some car accidents involve one vehicle
and a large, unyielding, solid object. So, I'd say that CU's test
is rather crude, but quite valid.
Let me add that CU sometimes has test standards that can seem
off-the-beam to a person who has experience in the particular
realm of the test, and can come up with results that cause me to
shake my head in disbelief. However, there are reasons, some
unfortunate, for their behavior.
My own beef with them has to do with the reliability of consumer
electronic products and the cost of ownership. In other words,
how likely is it to fail and especially, how much will that
repair cost. However, I think that they don't dare comment upon
these concerns because they've already had to fight off Bose, and
it was only the US Supreme Court that saved Consumers Union in
the end. That's not been the only lawsuit. They've got to be
completely objective in ways that will stand up in court.
For cars, I think that the repair charts are misleading. For
example, a car can be shown to need lots of repairs to the
electrical system. But in reality, let's say that the issue was
that the heater motor would fail due to an engineer having
specified the wrong fuse. Replacing the fuse (a $1 part) fixes
this, but it will show up on the CR repair chart as a black dot
because it happened to a lot of people. But another car that has
a wiring harness that can burn out when stressed by only the
cigarette lighter when used with the headlights will show up as
having good electrical systems, but the repair will run $3,000.
Yes. I was pretty surprised to read their recommendation of the
'04 Sonata because it's seemed that their descriptions of Hyundai
cars have been so ho-hum. But on the linked page, I think that CU
explained their context quite well. It seems to be a good job.