I hear a lot of people tell me that they don’t make cars like they used too. They seem to like the idea of points and plugs and no computers to mess up on their vehicles.
I hear a lot of people tell me that they don’t make cars like they used too. They seem to like the idea of points and plugs and no computers to mess up on their vehicles. So let’s look at the reason most people long for the car of yesteryear.
1) They were easy to work on.
2) There was lots of room in the engine compartment.
3) There were no electronics to speak of.
Here is the reality of “the car of yesterday” when I started working on them in the late 60’s and early 70’s.
1) They were hard to work on.
2) There never was enough room in the engine compartment.
3) Electronic ignition and vacuum lines was very complex.
Looking back we seem to romanticize about our first car or our best friend’s car. In our minds eye they always seemed to run better and look better in our memories. In reality most American made cars were worn out by the time they reached 75,000 miles. It seemed like every time you turned around you had to drop it off at the shop for its 3,000 tune up and oil change. Plug wires and distributor caps were needed to be changed every 15 to 20,000 miles. As your vehicle points wore out the timing changed and your fuel mileage went down hill. If that wasn’t enough to upset you, the carburetor would flood out and leave you stranded. If you were able to do your own “tune ups” to keep your car running in tip top shape, then the cars bodies would rust out after just a few years. Now it was time to trade your car in and purchase a new one.
Then in 70’s the Japanese started sending over cheaper, smaller cars that got great gas mileage. They ran and ran with very little maintenance and upkeep. These cars didn’t rust out like the American made cars and were a great value. Americans started voting with their wallets and purchased the foreign cars over the American made cars. The American car industry took notice and started producing better made cars, safer cars, and more fuel efficient cars. Of course it seemed to be too little too late. Out of the Big 3 only Ford did not file bankruptcy or take a “Bailout”. Americans continued to vote with their wallets, now Ford is taking the lead in sales over its competition GM.
Maybe this is why Government Motors is tearing up their biggest competition, Toyota. It is uncertain that anything, anything at all, is wrong with Toyota's products. Yet the media and government are tearing at the company like a pack of wolves after an injured deer. How long will it be before Ford is in the crosshairs of Government Motors?
If you can’t produce a better car then make up a story about how unsafe your competitions car is.
President Lincoln said once during a debate; "if a cat uses its tail as a leg how many legs does it have?" His opponent stated: "five" at which Lincoln stated, "no, four. Just saying it doesn't make it so".
Live long and Prosper,
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