A 1978 Lincoln Continental is the apex of a luxury vehicle and they used to sell like crazy (I mean crazy). Same could be said for the big Cadillacs as well. Less and less people are able to afford such vehicles (or any decent vehicle at all), but yet they're theoretically in the same financial class as their forefathers. I'd say that has something to do with the vehicle at hand.
And nobody hates the guy with the Toyota, he can comment on this site and thread if he wants to. But he cannot go around putting people down and acting like we're all dummies, just because he feels like an intellectual for some reason. Now his more recent comments have been appropriate, and I don't find much problem with them at all.
The EPA is not loosely related to cars at all. It directly affects the types of cars that are manufactured. You had better believe that cars and engines are going to keep getting a lot smaller in order to meet the coming EPA requirements. I would say the EPA has almost more of an effect than consumer demand.
I think the mileage specs are to remain within the subcompact, compact designation. There will always be bigger vehicles such as SUVs and trucks. They may suffer mileage penalties, passed on to the consumers. Actually the last thing I ever look at is MPG. I look at handling, performance, ride, room and even styling first. I do not want to be crammed up in some horrible riding beater vehicle. I will drive less, and buy used if I have to. I will always own a convertible of some sort and a full size pick up. We do not have to buy underpowered, cramped slugs and then pay on them for 5 years. I will drive 5000 miles a year, and cut my driving habits in half first. Live by work and consolidate food shopping etc.
It is extremely poor taste to make assumptious statements about a person on a forum. We are having an interesting debate here, and so in order to do so, please keep it civil.
As far as the EPA, well the only things they mandate in regards to cars are fuel economy and emissions. They do not in any way force any auto manufacturer to make a certain engine and whatnot.
But let me just say that as of now I am on vacation, and the rental car I am driving is a Chevy Cruz. Let me tell you, this is a FAST and sporty car. What's more, it's also very quiet and I'm getting over 40 MPG. Oh - these cost under 20k. So if some people want to complain about the EPA and whatever, maybe spend a bit of time behind the wheel of a car like the Cruz. Perhaps then tell us things would be better if we still drove cars that got 11 MPG.
I agree with the notion that the EPA and other government agencies have had a dramatic impact on the auto industry in mostly a negative way. Sure, our pollution is down and new cars burn much cleaner than ever before, but because of all the government mandates, new car styling has taken a hit, starting in the 80's, and more so in the 90's, when all cars turned into bath tubs.
So when people say, "It's market driven", I say bull crap. The automakers have less freedom to work with because of the strict mandates set up by the feds. Everything is focused on better MPG now days. Rather than just simply designing a car that looks amazing and will sell in droves, automakers are settling, and they still haven't found a way to work around those strict mandates, and are catering to the average non car person.
As time goes on, it's almost as if the automakers have brainwashed everyone to accept a 4 banger in a luxury car. Why and how would anyone even consider a 4 cylinder in a Cadillac or a Lincoln? Especially knowing that they weigh generally more than a regular car? If I was buying a luxury car, a 6 cylinder would be an absolute minimum. Engines are getting smaller and smaller just to obtain higher MPG, and are being stuffed in luxury cars of all things, yet these engines aren't getting that much better gas mileage from cars in the 90's, but granted, they do put out more power, run smoother, and put out less emissions compared to the older cars, but I still am waiting for that 2.0 4 cylinder engine to get up to 60-70 MPG while outputting close to 200 HP. How else will any automaker be able to achieve that kind of spec without dumping in turbo's and other forms of boosters to get more out of a smaller engine without compromising reliability? I mean really, what's the next greatest thing to come out? The combustion engine hasn't really changed in a 100 years, and there's only so much you can do to make it efficient; we are running out of ideas, and have maxed out the combustion engine as we know it.
Sure, new cars are better engineered and feel better from cars of just 10 years ago, but it's sad knowing that the majority of these cars will never be in future classic car shows, since they lack class and any sense of great styling.
Before the EPA stuck their nose into everything, the pre 1980's domestic luxury cars were probably the last great looking, styled, and most impressive in terms of their size and presence. Performance is another thing altogether, which the EPA barely started to have an effect on. After the downsized cars of the 80's, this is when compromise was set in tack, and nobody could do anything about it, but to hold onto their older models.
Everyone needs to at least experience driving in an old 70's true full size Lincoln and Cadillac to really understand and appreciate why many of us love these cars. They still ride and drive awesomely, and are built to last a lifetime. I think once a person experiences one, they will quickly change their minds about how they feel about them, hopefully for the positive.
Anybody watch Barrett Jackson last night? It's not about MPG for the huge collector market. I drive a boring new SUV vehicle all week. On weekends I like the nostalgia, taste and styling. We have run the EPA topic into the ground on this 70s review. I work extremely hard all week. I have cool hobbies. I have an older 27 Fountain that gets 2 1/2 MPG. That's right, I checked it for fun. But everyone chips in 100 plus bucks each that comes along. Doesn't cover it all, but no one leaves sad and depressed. I likely perform very well at work, as I am upbeat and passionate with my weekend hobbies. A friend of mine isn't into cars etc, but went out and bought a 800 dollar bicycle. Seemed kind of a waste until I saw his demeanor since. You can scrimp and save, and have zero fun.
It seems many over analyze every nickel, and fret over every aspect of what vehicle is going to give them the maximum dollar later. I have seen some that I would hate to even look at, let alone own. It seems the wind tunnel and designing space inside comes before the outside of the vehicles in the econo class. Obviously I am not just MPG. I want room, some performance and a nice ride. If you buy a fun weekend driver, you will not regret it.
Some put down some of the late 70s big cars. I never fault someone, no matter what they drive, that has restored a nice vehicle. I know what it takes to do so. Keeps you young, healthy and in a great mood! I do not sit parked in front of a TV and on a couch all weekend. I attribute it to the above.
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