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Actually yes...some are ok...

I've always said that if you are gonna go big stick to GM or Ford V8's. Stay away from 4 and 6 cyclinders. For 4 bangers, stay away from any domestic. Go with Toyota, Mazda, etc. but not all the import are good. They also can't make the the big V8's like we do. All makers have some issues and recall and none are perfect.

Problem is, in this economy, and the way gas prices have been, everybody is buying lighter, more economical 4 cyclinders to save money.
 

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Former Bike Wrench
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I would disagree somewhat with the 4 and 6 cylinder statement

I have a Saturn Vue with the EcoTech 4 cylinder and there is nothing wrong with that engine. It has been reliable and durable. I also own a Toyota and its 4 cylinder is also a great engine, but it actually idles rougher (and it has 55K less miles on it).

The issue has nothing to do with engines, GM has issues but its not the engines that are the problem (in 4,5,6,or 8 cylinders that they make).

Ford and GM have both done very well in their quality and have even surpassed the Germans in initial quality. In fact, it was the German's who fuct up Chrysler so bad. The problem is that they invested so heavily in those large Dinosaurs called SUV's that they got left holding their wangs when people started to switch to fuel efficient cars. Ford is better of than the other two with their hybrid Escape, Focus, and soon to be released hybrid Fusion. Not to mention the Fiesta (NOT Festiva) coming to the US for 2010. GM on the other hand has no REAL hybrid, the Cobalt is not that great of an overall car, the Aveo is even worse (Korean made) and they simply haven't marketed themselves well. They have good stuff, like the new Saturn Astra, Chevy Malibu, and the Vibe which is co-produced with Toyota in CA.

They also need to get rid of the UAW and all the stupid benefits they pay. I'm all for standard benefits like health care and retirement...but paying for workers who aren't working...dumb. The Japanese companies don't do that in their US factories. The big three will not be competitive until they get their labor cost down. Either the UAW needs to conceed a little or US cars will all be made in Mexico (where Ford already has plants).
 

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I own 2 GMs - but appreciate the poster

I am not that old, but have had a number of cars, including 2 GMs at the moment. One is the beater truck (S-10 4 cyl), that is actually my favorite to drive. Other is a 2008 HHR SS. I bought the HHR SS for practicality, domestic loyalty, price, etc, after getting out of an unreliable import. The HHR (6 months old), is on its 3rd transmission. Yup, 3rd. I about had a stroke when it started giving me trouble. But, is a 4cyl, and the motor (2.0 turbo) is its greatest asset.

I have had 2 Nissans that were good, a crappy old Jetta, a crappy 80s Camaro, I am 50/50 on Mazdas, and I had one of those Saabaru turbos, which frankly, I should have kept. The last 2 (brand new) cars have had lots of issues, and will definitely affect future purchases, although probably just redirecting me to used cars. I know many with GMs that have had no problems, many with Honda\Nissan\Toyota with no problems, etc. To some extent, its luck of the draw. Even with bike stuff, I have had POS examples of very highly regarded products.
 

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anything out there will go 200k easy when you take care of it the way it should be taken care of . some people can ruin an anvil if they have a chance.
 

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thecentralscrutinizer
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dadat40 said:
anything out there will go 200k easy when you take care of it the way it should be taken care of . some people can ruin an anvil if they have a chance.
:thumbsup:
 

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That poster is pretty funny, I laughed. And it's most likely true.

For the record, I currently drive a '99 Chevy Lumina LTZ (top of the line model) and it's pretty much crap, just like the poster says. I haven't had any major issues yet, just replaced lots of various parts myself, but it does have 155k on it so far. I have heard good things about the new Malibu, but a few good products in the past couple years can't make up for decades of crappy vehicles.

oscarc said:
I've always said that if you are gonna go big stick to GM or Ford V8's. Stay away from 4 and 6 cyclinders. For 4 bangers, stay away from any domestic. Go with Toyota, Mazda, etc. but not all the import are good. They also can't make the the big V8's like we do.
Yeah, that's right, no other company can make V8's as bad as Ford. I mean come on, a 4.6L V8 only makes 300hp, and in the past it only made like 260hp? Nissan makes a 3.5L V6 with 300hp, and BMW made a 4.0L V8 with 290hp, and both of those get better gas mileage and performance then the Fords as well.
 

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Me and some of my auto tech friends called American cars "100k mile throwaway cars". It's always fun trying to pull out those back sparkplugs in the transverse engines, let alone the longitudinally mounted ones.

I can't tell you how many we've pulled and then tried pulling out the siezed plugs and then only to find that all others were changed except those back ones.

While I was on some lots here looking for cars, the dealer on the next lot for Fords tried to entice us over to his lot. I had to tell him "I'm sorry, but not even Americans buy American cars". He saw that I was American and took it and walked away.
 

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I had 71' malibu 4 door

with a 305ci in high school. it had a sweet bondo job that my uncle performed after my granny sideswiped a RTP bus leaving tire/wheel marks down the side. hey it was free.

i like the saturns and the euro made focus options. The pontiac vibes are cool. Me im on my 2nd subaru
 

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Yeah said:
Sorry, no disrespect meant, but I always have to laugh when people talk about horsepower. Auto companys have learned that most people can identify with horsepower so it is used as a marketing gimic. More HP must be better...The horsepower doesn't mean anything if you don't have torque and can't put the power to the wheels. Torque is what makes the car move, accellerate or better carry loads. For example, a 180 hp vehicle with 200 lbs. of torque is going to out accellerate a vehicle with 200HP and 180lbs. of torque. Look up a bunch of cars and you'll see that most will have a wide range of torques vs HP, there's a bunch with torque values up 100 lbs. less than HP. The better proportioned cars will have a peak torque almost equal to or higher than the HP.

My initial statement is in general...for example 8 out of 10 what evers that I or other techs worked on had similar pros or cons. I've been under just about everymake and model out there bumper to bumper. I used to drop engines in and out of cars all the time, brakes, front end, you name it. But I hated doing electrical, what a pain, VW Jettas come to mind...Hyundai, dispose of after 20K miles, Ford trucks, can't get that twin "I" beam suspension out of my head and that horible front tire wear, good that they redesigned. Hondas and Toyota great, next in line was Mazda.

Of course there are personal experiences, not everybody has a bad one. BMW, they always had better build tolerances. I can't remember what company it was but does anyone remember the commercial with a car that was suspended in air. In the commercial, they rotatated the car around with a marble that rolled along the hood gap. The purpose was to show that the gaps on both sides of the hood and fender had even spacing. Of course most people don't get that as they don't have that attention to detail. Of course you paid more for that attention.

As far as trucks go, I'll take a Ford or GM over Nissan or Toyota any day.
 

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Birdman aka JMJ
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GM cars

mtnbiker72 said:
I would disagree somewhat with the 4 and 6 cylinder statement

I have a Saturn Vue with the EcoTech 4 cylinder and there is nothing wrong with that engine. It has been reliable and durable.
I think the EcoTech engine is a Saab design (unfortunately also owned by GM).

Great Mistake - no thanks.
 

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thecentralscrutinizer
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oscarc said:
For example, a 180 hp vehicle with 200 lbs. of torque is going to out accellerate a vehicle with 200HP and 180lbs. of torque. Look up a bunch of cars and you'll see that most will have a wide range of torques vs HP, there's a bunch with torque values up 100 lbs. less than HP. The better proportioned cars will have a peak torque almost equal to or higher than the HP.
I'd like to add too that the HP rating on alot of those engines are at or near the upper end of the RPM range.
 

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mopartodd said:
I'd like to add too that the HP rating on alot of those engines are at or near the upper end of the RPM range.

Absolutley, it's always peak hp or torque.
 

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mtnbiker72 said:
They also need to get rid of the UAW and all the stupid benefits they pay. I'm all for standard benefits like health care and retirement...but paying for workers who aren't working...dumb. The Japanese companies don't do that in their US factories. The big three will not be competitive until they get their labor cost down. Either the UAW needs to conceed a little or US cars will all be made in Mexico (where Ford already has plants).

What folks fail to remember (or to know in the first place) is that the UAW HAS been making concessions for many years now And what have these workers got in return? The very real possibility that their jobs are going away anyhow.

If GM's hourly work force agreed to work for minimum wage it wouldn't make any difference because of the poor decisions made by management.

And the big three setting up plants in low wage countries just puts more money in the corporate coffers. Unlike Japanese auto companies, they tend not to use it to do real R&D to improve their product.

Example.......the Chevy Avalanche is made in Mexico. This is a high dollar truck but the fact that it's assembled in Mexico has no impact in lowering it's retail price. I know, I know, if they made it in the US then it would cost even more. Blah, blah, blah.

Guess my little rant is a bit off topic, but I couldn't resist :)
 

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I'm no GM fan, really. My folks own two, and neither one is all that great. My dad's '99 V6 S10 looks like it's falling apart, even though it still runs just fine. My mom drives a trailblazer and for what it is, the seats are terrible.

My wife used to own a 01 Malibu that had some bizarre electrical issue that caused the car to just flat out die at random occasions. It went into the shop a couple times for it, but they never found anything wrong. We unloaded it ASAP, b/c I drove a 2000 suburban (work truck) that had the very same problem...never resolved in a satisfactory manner. No mechanic (dealer or otherwise) had a clue.

My opinion of Ford isn't much better. I drove a 98 Ranger 4-banger for awhile. Even though it ran just fine, I had awful problems with the e-brake seizing up and smoking the drums. Had to take it in about once a year to replace the damn cable, hoping I caught it before it did irreparable damage to the rear brakes. A couple of times I did not, at the cost of a hefty repair bill.

I did own a 91 Dodge Spirit sedan that just refused to die. I owned it until it had about 160k on the odometer and turned it over to my little sister who really needed a car. It needed some basic maintenance at that point (some tranny work, namely), but she never got it done and the car died before it hit 200k. But with some work, it would have kept kicking. I did things to that car that most people never do to 4x4 SUV's and pickups.

My wife currently drives a '02 Jeep Liberty that has been pretty solid for us, but it's only at about 60k on the odometer. It got in for a major service interval this past summer for fluid changes all around. 4wd trannies do cost a bit more to maintain with those additional fluids and such. Goes like a champ. I currently drive an 07 Honda Fit. It just hit 17k on the odometer with no issues, so it's good so far.

Really, I think GM isn't doing so hot, even compared to the other domestic makers.
 

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I've owned cards from every major American and Japanese manufacturer, and the American ones haven't been the worse of the bunch, Mitsubishi was for me. On my fords, I lost power windows a lot, but they've never left my stranded, even the 200k+ Town Car I got for free years ago, I sold it with 236K on it still running like a champ. I currently have a 94 Grand Marquis that I also got for free (I admit, I would be more hard pressed to buy some of these cars...), I use it for towing, it's got 138 or 139k on it now, and has yet to leave me stranded, although the pass side rear window died yesterday (drivers side rear has been dead awhile). I use it to haul my bikes too, and the towing I use it for is to tow the race car my team is building right now (a nissan sentra se-r).

I generally tend to go with Hondas, simply because I've worked on so many of them I can generally fix them easily enough, and I get parts at cost, they are also fun to drive (the older ones, only the new Fit is fun at this point, even the S2000 turned somewhat bland, hence why I sold my 2006 S2000 a few months ago)

For a truck, if you plan on using it, I don't think you can go wrong with a newer GM or Dodge, I don't trust the new Ford PSD's at all, go back to the big motor years for a Ford IMO.

I am currently considering getting an Integra Type-R for a track car (although I already have another Integra...), a C5 Z06 or a 09 Cobalt SS.. so I guess I don't hate GM much. The new Camaro might be nice too for what it is..

Not sure there's a single Chrysler product that I like out there currently..

:shrug:
 

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Nice rant but your logic is way off.

The UAW has made the wages way out of proportion to what the skill level of the work in the auto plants is worth. The Japanese all have auto plants in the US that are non-UAW plants and those workers get very fair family level wages with solid and fair benefits. They aren't Walmart, they are solid jobs with good wages. Those workers make as much as I do (50K) and I've got a solid environmental job with a degree. The UAW workers make WAY more...for what? And on top of that, if they get laid off...they still get paid. Its one thing to have a severance package, its another to still be paid 95% of your wages with little to no motivation to get a new job.

The US companies have had to go to Mexico just to remain competitive, but the cheaper labor still can't overcome the pensions and jobs banks for the UAW workers. So the prices still aren't coming down much.

I own a Saturn and a Toyota...both are made in the US. Both are good vehicles. So why is the Toyota just as well made (at least) as the Saturn if their workers are so "underpaid". Its because they are not underpaid, they are paid good and are provided solid benefits. And they...unlike UAW workers, will continue to have a job for years to come. When GM and Ford (I could care less about Chrysler, their product is pure crap) get their workforce in line with the Japanese US factory workforces, then they will not have to ship jobs to Mexico and they will be competitive again.
 
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