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View Full Version : "The Future of the Car" - Popular Science, Sept.



Sherlock
08-19-2004, 03:20 AM
Browsing the magazine stand while waiting for the washroom to be vacated at a local gas bar (11:15 at night...) Very dangerous!

Anyway... Saw the title of the latest Popular Science issue - "The Future of the Car" Did a quick skim read and it looked interesting enough to buy, looks like there is lots of interesting information and articles in it, haven't read any of it yet (just got home) but may well be worth a read for some of you with an interest in this topic.

Best quote so far from article "Is This the Golden Age of Driving?":

"Congratulations, America: You live in a time when your station wagon has more horsepower than a '60-era Ferrari, when your Corvette gets better mileage than a '92 Hyundai and when your Toyota runs, at least part of the time, on batteries..."

Steve_S
08-19-2004, 01:04 PM
[ QUOTE ]
"Congratulations, America: You live in a time when your station wagon has more horsepower than a '60-era Ferrari, when your Corvette gets better mileage than a '92 Hyundai and when your Toyota runs, at least part of the time, on batteries..."

[/ QUOTE ]

Makes me sad, actually.

waltesefalcon
08-19-2004, 08:52 PM
Its pretty pathetic the way cars are going. They are just becoming mass produced disposable commodities. The few cars that still have any kind of soul are few and far in between, soon if regulations, and the bottom line keep having as big of an influence on the auto market as they have these last 25 years or so their won't be any cars left with any carachter.

Steve_S
08-20-2004, 01:22 AM
Well one thing is for sure. There will be no restoring old classics from the early 2000's. With so many plastic parts and glued-together body and chassis parts, it will be virtually impossible to restore a decaying old car from this time period.

Yes, automobile manufacturers of yesteryear built cars designed to last ten years or less, but they still built them from materials which by themselves stand the test of time, and when rusting out can be repaired or a replacement fabricated. So even though a car bought new in 1955 may have been worn out by 1965, it could still be rebuilt and given a new start on life. Cars today are not made to last much longer and only do so because of increased quality of manufacture and raw materials. But when they are done, they are really done. And this is especially true when a model has been discontinued so that parts are becomming scarce. Take a look in your modern truck or auto and think about how you would replace that big plastic center console shroud in 40 years. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

huck6
08-20-2004, 11:40 AM
Every time I bemoan the failure of personality in modern cars, my dad reminds me that many of our beloved classics were seen simpy as practical A to B transportation in their day.

There are a few worthies out there (PT Cruiser, MINI, Crossfire, New Beetle, and hopefully very soon, Solstice (sp?)). I would be surprised if a number of these aren't cherished classics in 20 years. Even a lowly mid-ninties Grand Am might look pretty sharp if cruising across Europe.

We have to be optimistic, if not hopeful.

Steve_S
08-20-2004, 10:59 PM
The difference between older cars and newer is that cars 40 years ago had real character. Modern cars feel very similar even between very different models. What did the older cars have that gave them character that newer cars do not, you ask? Flaws. The foundation of character in a car, and often in people as well is flaws. Ask any Harley rider why he puts up with such vibration and noise. He will insist it isn't a bad thing, it's character! And ask any British Car owner why he wants to drive a vehicle that handles poorly, needs to be shifted a certain way, requires beating on the fuel pump to run or any other flaw and he will say the same... because it has character!

Randi
08-21-2004, 01:52 AM
The worst thing - besides owning a newcar is the minute you leave the parking lot it's . worth drops 20%. The new scam is "GAP" insurance. that is an extra note that they scalp you for to pay the amount you regular insurance won'tpaybecause your newcar isn'tworth what you paid for it!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and they leave you holding the bag on at least $1,500. after their loophole deductions. Any insurance guys out there want to explain this to unsuspecting customers?????????? Randi /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazyeyes.gif /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazyeyes.gifBut not /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazyeyes.gif enough to buy NEW CARS

Geo Hahn
08-23-2004, 08:29 PM
[ QUOTE ]
...Saw the title of the latest Popular Science issue - "The Future of the Car"...

[/ QUOTE ]

Hey, those are the guys who promised me (in 1958) that I'd be driving a Flying Car by the mid-60s. I'm still waiting.

Maybe they meant the 2060s?

MattP
08-24-2004, 01:43 AM
Here you go.

https://www.moller.com/skycar/

Anything else?

I don't know what the future classics will be, if someone had told me about tuner Hondas 20 years ago I wouldn't have believed them.