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Things I'm Confused About

Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,990
This topic is to discuss concepts, trends, or even theories on the workings of the automobile, that you just don't quite understand.

This topic is NOT to discuss why your Fiat doesn't start. NOBODY understands that.

Possible ideas:

1. Why would someone buy a car that parks itself?
2 What makes auto glass suddenly shatter?
3. How can a car accelerate unintentionally?
4 What's the difference between a recall and a TSB?
5. Why don't cars have vent windows anymore?
6. Why don't all cars depreciate at the same rate?
7. Why do mice like electrical wiring?

RULES:

1. Please, no "my car doesn't start" questions---we want BIG PICTURE questions.

2. Put your question in the HEADER so that we can run 3-4 questions at once, and we'll know which one we're addressing

I'll start off with a genuine example of my current puzzlement, in the next post.

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Comments

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,990
    Why do Subaru Outbacks get speeding tickets at 2.2 the national average?

    These cars aren't sexy, or fast, or driven by 16 year olds. What's the deal? What am I missing?

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,972
    I have an Outback and I've never gotten a speeding ticket (never in any car though). Mine's red too.

    I was going to guess that Outback owners pass everyone in snow storms, but if that were true, the cops could never catch them anyway, unless they were in a WRX perhaps.

    Flaky source. :P

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    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,152
    Why do Subaru Outbacks get speeding tickets at 2.2 the national average?

    These cars aren't sexy, or fast, or driven by 16 year olds. What's the deal? What am I missing?


    I know the reason. It's because Outbacks are primarily driven by women. And if the driver doesn't mouth off at the cop, her girlfriend in the passenger seat will. :P
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,990
    I get one ticket a year it seems, and I never used to get speeding tickets. No, something IS going on here....! :P

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  • fezofezo Posts: 9,444
    I like one of those sample questions - why DON'T they have vent windows anymore? Is it one of those deals where it's just cheaper not to have them?

    No idea on the Outbacks. They are a fun little ride but no invitation to speed.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,990
    Maybe vent windows don't find into today's trendy styling? I sure miss 'em.

    Maybe they are too expensive to build--separate glass, frame, mechanism, etc.

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  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,337
    That's easy; speed limit enforcement has been stepped up in many places in recent years. More speed cameras, police radar, helicopters, etc. Even if your infractions are constant, the the probability of being ticketed has increased. It may be related more to budget deficits than safety.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,152
    Plus, as vent windows age, they're more prone to wind noise, leaks, rattles, etc. I wonder if those vent windows that Ford used in the 70's and 80's were any better in that regard, though? They would actually roll down into the door, rather than flip out.

    I think the vent window was pretty much killed off by air conditioning, in a fashion similar to roll-down rear windows in coupes. That's another thing I miss, but I guess it's gotten to the point that these days, how many coupes even have an adult-sized back seat anymore?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,338
    That is likely part of it, especially in a place like California. I have no doubt the speedtraps are more common there today than in previous times.

    Also maybe for Subaru, maybe the WRX/STi and the fast drivers they attract have made revenue enforcement officers keep more of an eye on Subarus in general. Probably a good speeding ticket profit margin in those vehicles.

    For wing windows, I am sure it is a cost issue - carmakers don't seem to care much about future quality/rattle issues. What was the last car to have them? I know some larger GM cars had them in the 90s...but they didn't open.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,990
    But vent windows are still very practical, especially in temperate climates. Living in the SF BAy Area, one doesn't really need AC except to keep diesel fumes and traffic noise at bay perhaps----many a time I have yearned for a vent window to bring in that cool ocean air.

    I wonder how many barrels of oil vent windows would save us? I wonder if anyone besides me is crazy enough to figure out a way to calculate that.

    Hey how COULD we calculate it. We'd have to figure out what % of the time vent windows would substitute for AC, ,and then of course we'd have to know the amount of time the AC was on prior to vent window use.

    I think vent windows would be great between 55 and 80 degrees.

    I wonder if non-smoking in cars also killed vent windows?

    There's a theory that cars killed the American front porch you know. :P

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  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 22,152
    I think vent windows would be great between 55 and 80 degrees.

    Well, at those speeds, you could just crack the windows. Usually I wouldn't turn on the a/c until temps were at least high 80's and high-humidity...but then I've always preferred fresh air to a/c.

    One thing I do miss though, is being able to open the vent windows and the rear windows, but leave the main window in the door closed. That would get a nice breeze going, without it buffeting you. I used to do that all the time in my '68 Dart.

    Also, they say that a/c has a minimal effect on fuel economy nowadays, because the systems are so efficient. However, even on my old Mopars with the mammoth V2 compressors and such, I never really noticed a drop in fuel economy when I used it.

    The vent windows in my '85 Silverado sure came in handy though, when the power window in the driver's door quit working. :surprise:
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,337
    "I know some larger GM cars had them in the 90s...but they didn't open."

    Yeah, I've wondered about the purpose of those vent windows that didn't open, but I don't know why some GM cars featured these.
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,337
    "Hey, how COULD we calculate it?"

    I think it would be very difficult to calculate it, considering all the variables. For example, open vent windows increase air drag slightly, and the exact amount of draf depends on the car's design, how much, how frequently and how long the vents are open, and more. Also, average speed varies all over the place, depending on traffic, speed limits, roads and terrain, enforcement, etc.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,338
    Maybe it was some kind of internal sabotage to make people hate GM cars a little more :shades: ...of course, the cheapo interiors and wheezy powertrains of that era could do the job by themselves. But they got good mileage, so I guess someone will like them.

    I drove my old car which has wing windows, today. They don't seem to make any wind noise until highway speeds are reached - but this is a nearly 50 year old car with original weatherstripping, so I can't hold that against it. I do remember the passenger side one would leak in the rain, too.

    That car has such superior ventilation to modern cars. In a modern car, I have to turn the fan on to the lowest or second lowest setting to be comfortable - I can't stand to have it off. In the old car, I can just open the fresh air intake, or maybe crack a wing window if it is stuffy, and everything is good.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,892

    That car has such superior ventilation to modern cars. In a modern car, I have to turn the fan on to the lowest or second lowest setting to be comfortable - I can't stand to have it off. In the old car, I can just open the fresh air intake, or maybe crack a wing window if it is stuffy, and everything is good.


    My 2002 is very similar. The vent windows compensate for a true integrated fresh air ventilation system.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport 1975 2002A 2007 Mazdaspeed 3 1999 Wrangler 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2009 328i Son's: 2004 X3 2.5

This discussion has been closed.