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View Poll Results: Would there be a market for mass produced simple basic cars?
yes 39 44.83%
no 48 55.17%
Voters: 87. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-22-2019, 10:15 AM
 
Location: Amelia Island
2,693 posts, read 3,758,206 times
Reputation: 2565

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We have traveled way to far since the sixties and seventies...........once emissions started and the NTSB became way to involved in safety (which was a good thing) there was no turning back.


I am one of those dinosaurs that used to be able to wrench on cars. The engine compartments were obstruction free for the most part and the components weren't that delicate where you could put a little umph into it and not break something.


There is no turning back now unless you want a specialty kit car or can find something to restore from days of old.


If you look at the trends now you will also see people want high end trucks and SUV's. Sedans are getting dropped like hot potatoes from manufactures at least average selling ones (not high end).


Americans are spoiled..............I know in Europe because of fuel prices you do see plenty of entry level affordable commuter cars not all optioned out.


My two cents
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Old 01-22-2019, 12:15 PM
Status: "In the chilly hours and minutes of uncertainty" (set 13 days ago)
 
Location: SF, CA
1,218 posts, read 518,491 times
Reputation: 1834
Quote:
Originally Posted by cyphorx View Post
not really, because in the old one it was a 10 minute job, in the new one it's an all day job just because of all the stuff you have to take off just to get to it.



Examples:



1967 mustang, no extras, or stuff you don't need to make the car go(and go fast), car is roughly the same size as a new mustang but 3x more room to work in, everything is easy to get to, so all you need is a wrench/ratchet set.








2018 mustang engine, look at all the crap you have to get around or remove just to do minor repairs/maintenance, plus the time it takes to put everything back on, and because of sensors you often have to take stuff back off and on again because you forgot to reconnect a sensor or a wire got bent and is not connecting right.
What's the gray thing sitting on top of the engine in the 2018 car (in the place where the air filter is on the old one)?
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Old 01-22-2019, 12:57 PM
 
525 posts, read 395,102 times
Reputation: 1159
Oh mygosh yes I would buy one. Hand window cranks, manual lock with the key, huge engine bay, bench vinyl seat that does not recline... a thousand yeses. My old '85 Dodge truck was like that with its inline 6 cyl. As basic and generic as it could get. Had it 20 years and could fix anything on it. Unfortunately you cant get that type of vehicle any longer. Just seems with every little thing they add for convenience add's another grand to the cost. ...But with EPA and safety rules these days I get it.

Of course I love my modern '17 Tacoma and all of the conveniences that come with it, but sometimes... ya know?
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Old 01-22-2019, 01:11 PM
 
Location: D.C.
2,007 posts, read 1,664,568 times
Reputation: 3172
Build a car for $1,000? Ha! I suspect your cousin flunked that one, or is living in the USSR....


Tires alone would probably equate to 25% of the cost. Glass, metal, machined to fit, ball bearings, solid steel for axles, piston rings, mounts, friggin battery.....and on and on x's 5,000.... No way...


I once bought a home made boat for $400 with my buddy back in 1997 while living in Wilmington, NC. Got our patio furniture for free after picking it out of the intercoastal waterway after hurricane Fran (debris from Wrightsville Beach). It never made it back onto the trailer after that maiden voyage though.


We drank a lot back then...
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Old 01-22-2019, 02:06 PM
 
9,002 posts, read 9,838,989 times
Reputation: 6861
There was an industry guy who was interviewed about a cheap basic automobile back when Tata motors introduced their Nano automobile that would sell for $1500.00 (US) He said the direction of the industry is not cheaper but better. Buyers want a better car not a cheaper one so there no reason to build them cheaper.

Last edited by thriftylefty; 01-22-2019 at 02:47 PM..
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Old 01-22-2019, 02:43 PM
 
5,586 posts, read 8,330,231 times
Reputation: 7580
Quote:
Originally Posted by cvetters63 View Post
You guys just. Don't. Get. It. You physically CAN'T MAKE a new car for that kind of price, no matter HOW simple. As was mentioned, a Yugo was $4k in 1985 dollars. You're not going to get cheaper in TODAY'S dollars. It's IMPOSSIBLE. You HAVE to meet modern emissions and safety regulations. You can't SELL a NEW car that's worse than the Yugo now.

Get over it, already.
We know.

(I at least) just went with the "as cheap and simple as possible" meaning vs literal.
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Old 01-22-2019, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Central CT, sometimes NH.
3,283 posts, read 4,978,539 times
Reputation: 3068
Simple cars don't sell well. Even people without the money want much more car than they need or can afford which is not rational.

That being said, I've purchased several cars over the years and ran them up quickly to about 125,000 miles on my daily commute. I traded or sold them for another one about every 4 years. The inexpensive ones required few repairs during the time I owned them and worked out to be about $2000.00 per year for the pleasure of owning them exclusive of gas and insurance. I drove an average of 25,000 to 30,000 miles a year and owning more expensive cars I found used up much more money (about double) in terms of actual dollars lost due to depreciation as well as higher general maintenance costs. It just wasn't worth it for the monotonous commute to and from work on the same road every day. Gas mileage was more important to me than leather seats. If it had a cup holder for my coffee, a decent radio, and AC I was all set.

Now I don't need to commute anymore so I have a nicer car that I plan to own for a much longer period of time.
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Old 01-22-2019, 03:41 PM
 
5,051 posts, read 5,123,074 times
Reputation: 5117
Quote:
Originally Posted by thriftylefty View Post
There was an industry guy who was interviewed about a cheap basic automobile back when Tata motors introduced their Nano automobile that would sell for $1500.00 (US) He said the direction of the industry is not cheaper but better. Buyers want a better car not a cheaper one so there no reason to build them cheaper.
That Tata car began as a $2,500 projected price but jumped to $3,500 when production began.

But even the local people of India didn't even want a cheap car. Sales never took off even in India at that price.

So what does that say about real inexpensive cars?
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Old 01-22-2019, 06:33 PM
 
7,095 posts, read 4,618,612 times
Reputation: 12444
Quote:
Originally Posted by unit731 View Post
That Tata car began as a $2,500 projected price but jumped to $3,500 when production began.

But even the local people of India didn't even want a cheap car. Sales never took off even in India at that price.

So what does that say about real inexpensive cars?
The point is well-taken. However, some of our sentiments are less about cost-savings than about simplicity and robustness - for which we are, depending on circumstance, quite willing to pay a premium... diametrically opposite to the aim for cost-savings.

However, I don't want to pay $50K for a classic muscle-car. I just want a car from that era, or something of comparable level of technology, that's accessible to the home-mechanic. and still rear wheel drive. It need not be fast or aggressive, but it does need to be in sufficiently workable condition, that it's not a hapless rust bucket.

There is something of a market for "new" muscle cars, such as the 1969 Camaro. One can be bought, complete with a vintage VIN. See for example here: CAMARO Replica, Builder, For Sale, 1967, 68, 69, Brand New Muscle Car, Clone, Tribute . The price starts at $120K!!! OK, so maybe I was disingenuous about claiming complete insensitivity to price.

Sometimes I fantasize about taking a world-tour around various third-world countries, aboard a large cargo-ship anchored off-shore. Chaperoned by a local guide, I'd scour the local markets and classifieds, looking for vintage Opels and Simcas and Fiats, scooping them up, loading them aboard the cargo ship, and selling them for huge markup back in the US. Isn't fantasy a great thing?
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Old 01-22-2019, 06:34 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit Michigan
3,329 posts, read 902,749 times
Reputation: 2716
Quote:
Originally Posted by unit731 View Post
That Tata car began as a $2,500 projected price but jumped to $3,500 when production began.

But even the local people of India didn't even want a cheap car. Sales never took off even in India at that price.

So what does that say about real inexpensive cars?
Tata wants to sell cars here but canít because they canít pass front and side impact test.
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