We know what customers want because we know what they buy in the rest of the world and what they buy everytime gas prices go up.
It is the US that is socialist, in that the car makers used government to restrict the sales of the cars we want, in the US. It is the socialist car makers that want to keep relying on government bail outs every time gas prices go up and they can't sell their gas hogs any more.
Easy to prove. If we really were interested in air quality, then how come we just test parts per million, and not calculate total pollution output? Cars that get 80 mpg should never fail, and cars that get 14 mpg should always fail. But not in the socialist US of A. Here you can add on 50 pounds of airpump plumbing that cuts mileage by 5%, and then you pass DEQ even though you increase pollution. That makes no engineering sense at all, and obviously is just corruption.
You are kidding. My Acura Integra is a small economical car that now has 380,000 miles on and still on the first clutch. I just changed the rear brake pads for the first time a week ago.
You can buy nice small well equiped cars in Europe but not over here. Fuel consumption has hardly reduced in the last ten years. Why? because fuel is still relatively cheap and car manufacturers like the big profits in big cars and big pickups.
Airbags cause hundreds of deaths each year, from things like neck injuries, knocking hands of the wheel, and forcing glasses into the eye. Airbags are not like a firesuit, 5 point seatbelt, HANS device or helmet, so why did you bring those up? Amusement park rides deal with safety by adding permant padding instead of explosive padding. Much safer and cheaper.
And sorry, but the new Corvette looks silly. What are all those grills and side ridges for? Nothing at all. They are nonfunctional.
Motorcycles have better survivabilty than cars? Please cite your source.
I believe that airbags are partly responsible for increased car safety, the decrease in car accident deaths (USA), along with the many other modern safety improvements. Nobody wants to put on a firesuit, five or seven point seatbelt, HANS device and helmet, to get racecar-like safety from street cars (racecars don't have airbags).
Back on THE topic...the new Corvette is awesome!...and for not much money compared to the exotics. I can hardly wait to see the new 'Vette in person, test drive also. I'll check it out at the NASCAR race later this month, along with all the other latest domestic muscle-cars on display by the manufacturers. There is also a nice showing of hot cars in the parking lot, as lots of racing fans own high-performance cars of various sorts, especially for recreational/occasional use.
If you test for total emissions instead of PPM, then of course an 80 mpg car would always pass, and the 14 mpg SUV would always fail.
Safety is always better in a smaller and lighter vehicle. Ever notice that motorcycles have a better survivability rating than cars? That is because smaller means more manuverable and accident avoidance is the main key. But if you hit a brick wall, a tiny car has less mass that needs to be slowed down, so can do better than a big car. Small cars automatically benefit from the better mass to strength ratio. That is why an ant can lift 100 times its own weight, and we can't. It is only head on small car vs large car where big is good. And the solution to that is fewer large cars.
Airbags are deadly deception, and should be illegal. No one should be allowed to put explosive devices in front of people's faces. Permanent padding is cheap and much safer, like on an amusement park ride.
Having 1 or 2 seats instead of 4 or 5, does not decrease comfort, but increase it.
The reality is that smaller cars are better in all ways, unless you need to haul the whole family around on the weekend, and for that you can either dust off the family truckster or rent.
The cost to manufacturer exotic cars generally exceeds the cost to manufacturer them .. by a large margin. Very rare to see exotics make any money on first few years of production.
The bugatti veyron price?over $2 million each.. they lost money on each of them. And not just a little bit. Wasn't until several years passed, they sold enough to recover their NRE.
The automotive industry (as a whole) does not think: the higher the price, the higher the profit.
Volume is the name of the game for automotive pricing and profit.
If volume of Chevy Volt sales were 100,000s/yr .. they would be cheaper.
Sorta of - Chicken or egg problem. Price for higher volume sales or price for expected sales. With big $ being wagered. There is a lot of NRE to be amortized.
If the EVERY ONE was willing to give up: comfort, safety, performance, reduced emissions... getting 80mpg with price tag of less than $10K would be easy.
The American public - thought it legislators - has mandated certain minimums must be met. These minimums (air bags, seat belts, crash testing, emissions, etc..) all add up to a car that has more mass. The public has decided: NO one can choose to eliminate these minimums.
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