Modern cars

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Blaketon
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Modern cars

Postby Blaketon » Thu Nov 23, 2017 7:06 pm

The newest road car I ever owned was a 1987 VW Golf GTI. In some ways, it was the best car I ever owned (Though in todays world, I wouldn't swap it for my Traveller); not the fastest or stylish (Though style is only a matter of opinion) but it would do about 120mph, could return very good mpg and carry four people in comfort. It was still fairly straightforward and it was very well made. This helped make it simple to work on, as everything fitted so well.

Nowadays it seems cars are circuit boards on wheels, with electric, this, that and the other. I hired one yesterday, having promised my mother a trip to http://www.deanforestrailway.co.uk/ and since the weather was not good and it was the last regular Wednesday running, we thought why get one of our cars wet and filthy? First I couldn't start the thing....you have to put your foot on the clutch (Why :-? ?); the dashboard and armrests were full of switches; the whole thing seemed overly complex, with potential to become a liability a few years down the line (Lets face it, few cars are garaged, so aside from when they are in for service/repair, they are in the elements and get a hard life).

All the modern cars I have driven of late, seem to have very fierce brakes; anything more than a light prod has you thrown forward in the seat. There seems to be no feel or progression. It's not that I am used to standard Minor brake (Mine has servo discs anyway). The MGB GT V8 has good brakes but you control the braking by foot pressure. My Golf GTI had good, four wheel disc brakes and I doubt many cars have better brakes than my single seater racing cars did; but if you wanted to stop quickly, you pressed the pedal hard. I can see that having a powerful servo means less effort for the driver but there seems to be no happy medium; the brakes are on or off.

I wonder is this why so many people seem to drive right up the exhaust of the car in front; because they rely on fierce brakes and ABS? I have noticed when cycling, that cars seem to go by as if on tow and I don't think drivers of cars behind the first can see the bike ahead, because all they can see is the back of the car in front of them and only when that swerves out, do they know that there is something ahead. Some just swerve out, as if on tow and nearly collect oncoming traffic :roll: . I try to pick my times but this morning was a little later, as I had returned the hire car before setting out for work.

I won't start on people, who assume all bikes travel at 10mph because they can't make one go any faster (I've touched on that elsewhere).
Last edited by Blaketon on Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:24 am, edited 2 times in total.

philthehill
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Re: Modern cars

Postby philthehill » Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:04 pm

You are right about the harsh braking of modern cars - too much servo and no feel back through the brake pedal.
The lack of feel back is one of the reasons I do not have a servo fitted to my Minor fitted with Marina front brakes and Wolseley 1500 rear brakes. I would rather push a bit harder on the pedal and have good feel back.
I have only ever had one brand new car and that was a Hyundai i10 and the brakes were the same - harsh and not much feel back through the pedal.

Phil


irmscher
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Re: Modern cars

Postby irmscher » Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:29 am

Golf GTI brilliant car I used to love mine :) .My son has bought a brand new one its a lot faster but has not got any character and everything is electronic :roll:

Blaketon
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Re: Modern cars

Postby Blaketon » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:22 am

philthehill wrote: I have only ever had one brand new car and that was a Hyundai i10 and the brakes were the same - harsh and not much feel back through the pedal.

Phil
As it happens, the one I hired this week was one of those. It's not just me!!

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Re: Modern cars

Postby palacebear » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:31 am

Mine's a 2015 Ford Focus Eco-boost. 999cc petrol turbo. Performs better than my previous Focus (2012 1600cc petrol Zetec) and more economical with approx 44mpg around town and up to 60mpg on motorway, and £20 road tax. BUT... grabby brakes. Hill-start assist can be beaten and causes jerky pull-aways on inclines. Engine auto stop/start only works when it feels like it... and acharacterless rattle-box. Electronics everywhere can be a curse or a blessing. A few days ago the tyre pressure monitoring system started beeping at me. Inspection revealed a 3 inch wood-screw in a rear tyre luckily found before I joined the motorway network for a 160 mile journey.
1956 4-door called Max

SteveClem
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Re: Modern cars

Postby SteveClem » Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:32 am

Don't get me started again about fierce modern brakes! I became obsessed with them when my wife had the horrible Golf!

Chipper
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Re: Modern cars

Postby Chipper » Fri Nov 24, 2017 11:47 am

Indeed, working in a body shop, I get to drive lots of moderns and most have very grabby brakes, not to mention the annoying electronic handbrakes that are either full on or full off, assuming you can remember which way to pull/push the switch. :roll:

I suspect these could be quite dangerous in the event of foot brake failure, where you may need to carry out stopping using just the handbrake, if it's so binary in operation!

My Traveller, on the other hand, has Ford Escort/Sierra ventilated disc brakes up front, standard drums on the back and no servo and gives a very progressive foot brake as well as an effective handbrake - way better than my daily driver 1997 BMW E39, which has a pretty feeble, albeit conventional handbrake.
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Blaketon
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Re: Modern cars

Postby Blaketon » Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:19 pm

It was once the case that all round disc brakes didn't make for good handbrakes. My father had a Lotus Elan (The original type) and that had a poor handbrake (Made worse by the lever being a push pull affair under the dash); my Golf GTI handbrake was better but I still don't know if it was as good as a drum brake type.

I've heard about these electric ones, that come on if the car stops. One driver had a Passat and when it broke down, in the middle of a roundabout, he had to wait for the breakdown service to "Plug into it", before the car could be moved out of the way.

I have driven the ones that cut out when you stop (The one this week didn't do that) and all I could think of was the wear and tear on the ring gear!!

alanworland
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Re: Modern cars

Postby alanworland » Fri Nov 24, 2017 5:56 pm

Keep the old ones in fine fettle! My daily modern is a 98 Astra 1.8 Estate, just enough electronics to make it drive nice without doing away with it's 'soul'!

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Re: Modern cars

Postby kennatt » Fri Nov 24, 2017 7:06 pm

not to forget the need to strip the front bumper off to change the headlight /side light bulbs on most produced in the last 10 years or so,absolute madness.

simmitc
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Re: Modern cars

Postby simmitc » Fri Nov 24, 2017 7:12 pm

My older daily driver is a 1969 Traveller. My modern daily driver has none of the vices that seem to affect other cars. What is it? A 1971 Traveller, it's the most modern car I own 8)

Blaketon
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Re: Modern cars

Postby Blaketon » Sat Nov 25, 2017 9:18 am

alanworland wrote:Keep the old ones in fine fettle! My daily modern is a 98 Astra 1.8 Estate, just enough electronics to make it drive nice without doing away with it's 'soul'!

Alan
At first glance, you might call that a modern car but then you realise it's nearly twenty years old and if it hadn't been for Mr Brown, it would be tax exempt in six years time. Fast forward twenty years and I don't think anyone will be talking in the same vane about their 2018 Astra. I'm surprised you can still get bits for a 1998 model and suspect that if you compared it with Minor spares back up, it would be more limited. All credit due, despite the fact that they wouldn't want it in central London, it's been far greener than the types of things they appear to want in London, most of which will be lucky to see a service life of ten years (And which may well leave a trail of dead batteries along the way).

irmscher
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Re: Modern cars

Postby irmscher » Sat Nov 25, 2017 4:09 pm

The question is where will the old batteries go to as there weight would make it none cost efficient and there disposal.I had the chance to go down the salt mines at Northwich cheshire and there was millions of batteries disposed of down there and even four ford transits and some fork lifts all rotting away.

alanworland
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Re: Modern cars

Postby alanworland » Sat Nov 25, 2017 6:24 pm

Amazing how we are all encouraged to be green but we now chuck a complete assembly of whatever away because a bush or a very minor part is defective/worn out!?
Crazy.

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SteveClem
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Re: Modern cars

Postby SteveClem » Sat Nov 25, 2017 6:54 pm

Didn't I read that most of the environmental damage caused by cars is in their construction and destruction? So running a classic car as daily transport is good...

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Re: Modern cars

Postby TDV102 » Sat Nov 25, 2017 9:03 pm

Much is made of modern fuel economy - my old minor was doing 50 mpg on a run in 1980!
It was cheap and easy to maintain, didn't need special oil, changing a head gasket was an hour or so, changing a bulb 2 minutes.
Moderns do go faster though... how many of us got a ticket in a Minor?
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Re: Modern cars

Postby sid » Sun Nov 26, 2017 7:09 am

my 'modern',is a 1999 Citreon Xsara 2.0 diesel saloon.had it 11 years.don't see many of these about now,but has been a good car so far. also, have a Mk 1 Ford Focus,with an engine problem,that will hopefully be on the road next year.

philthehill
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Re: Modern cars

Postby philthehill » Sun Nov 26, 2017 9:54 am

The modern car has much better power to engine size ratio than cars from the 1960s - 1970s and before.
The torque generated by my Honda Jazz is superb which allows me to stay in 5th for so much longer and at much lower speeds and of course the top speed of the moderns is much better and so suited to our hectic lives. :wink:


Blaketon
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Re: Modern cars

Postby Blaketon » Sun Nov 26, 2017 12:54 pm

SteveClem wrote:Didn't I read that most of the environmental damage caused by cars is in their construction and destruction? So running a classic car as daily transport is good...
It was put forward by Charles Wares - https://www.morrisminor.org.uk/68-the-green-apple-award . This was an example of how different parts of the same government don't know what other parts are doing, the then chancellor being very much against classic cars (I never did get an answer as to how he reconciled his claim, that road tax rates were "Environmental", with this award; I don't know how post production Minors fared but it was just luck that regular production models were all over 25 years old before he landed in No.11). I think this kind of thing has appeared elsewhere and whilst I am not a fan of Wares, I have to give credit for their promoting this aspect of classic car ownership.

I don't really think that many environmental initiatives are any more serious, than the late Tony Hancock's attempt to go back to nature (https://www.twine.fm/saiyanswedengmail/ ... -the-woods), hence the apparent preoccupation with exhaust emissions (And it would appear some of them are fiddled), which perhaps allow those, who cannot be seen in an old car, an excuse (Beyond simple vanity) for buying a new car, when there is no real need. It would be foolish to suggest that everyone can drive a classic car but cars could be made to last longer (The corrosion treatments are there), not only be making them less complex and easier to repair but by cutting the need for people to travel as much as they do and by encouraging people to look after them better. That said, given the nature of modern society, it would be political suicide, for any government to try and work toward that end (But I think that goes beyond the remit of this post and certainly could breach the forum's policy of avoiding politics). Sorry if this sounds cynical but in a lot of cases I feel being "Green" is OK, so long as it doesn't cramp one's style or involve too much inconvenience. I don't profess to be an eco warrior but I haven't been in an aeroplane for ten years and even during cold, dark mornings, I will still climb on to my bike, to set off for work, ten miles from home. If we were all given "Carbon" coupons, I don't think I'd be needing to turn off the heating too often, in order to make good excesses elsewhere.

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Re: Modern cars

Postby panky » Sun Nov 26, 2017 3:23 pm

TDV102 wrote:... how many of us got a ticket in a Minor?
:oops: I'll hold my hand up :oops:
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