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The Test Drive That Shattered Your Dream

Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
Have you ever had this experience? I sure have.

I get all excited over the hype, reviews, magazine articles, Internet "buzz" that I'm hearing about a new or near-new car.

Finally I work out a way to get a *real* test drive, where I can take my time and really work the car. (something more than around the block). Shoot, I might even think about buying the darn thing!

And then..........WHAT a disappointment!!

I'm shocked. I'm speechless. How can the reality be so different than the hype? It is ME?!!

I turn in the keys and I don't even WANT to start negotiating. I don't want the car at any price.

I'd like to hear your story. I'm interested to know what you were expecting, and why it was so different from what you experienced. I'll share mine as well a bit later on.

Do you think if you had heard NOTHING about the car, you would have been more forgiving?

Who or what do you blame for this dis-connect?

Did it take a while for the "truth" (subjective truth, of course) to sink in, or did you know right away that this was not the car for you?
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Comments

  • michaellnomichaellno Member Posts: 4,300
    Seems that many of us have been disappointed by a convertible or sports car. My story is the same.

    I'm a big fan of Saturn - the family has had 5 of them, total - so I was particularly interested when the Saturn Sky was released. First time I saw one in the showroom, I had to sit in it.

    Yep, you guessed it - too tall (even though I'm just a fraction shy of 6'). I was looking directly into the windshield header. Plus, the steering wheel didn't adjust high enough, so everything between about 9:30 and 2:30 on both the speedo and tach were obscured.

    Sigh.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHMember Posts: 21,891
    Back in the 90's I was interested in the Acura Integra Type R which seemed to promise keen handling and plenty of power but I found it a bit underwhelming during a test drive, it seemed only little faster and no more visceral than my wife's '85 Prelude (a very nice handling car in it's own right.) I found the brakes did not have the "don't worry you're gonna stop NOW" feel of my Saab's brakes.

    I was expecting an updated VW Rabbit GTI but it felt more like a Prelude Si hatchback....disappointing to say the least.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I think it took a while for Japanese cars to develop that "keen-ness" that we find in the German cars, if they ever really got it. This is why, apparently, Japanese cars are modified so enthusiastically and why the aftermarket is so strong for these cars.

    My "shattered dream" was when the Audi TT Coupe became available in the USA. Yeah, I know, these days it's a somewhat forgotten car, but back in 1996-1997 there was a LOT of buzz, and, to be fair, many styling cues of the TT are found in today's cars (the window "arc line" front to rear, the satin-finish knobs and switches, that "future-tech" interior trim---all comes from the TT).

    ANYWAY :) I took one for a test drive and while it was "okay" I was not prepared for the dead spot in the steering coming off neutral into left or right. I was expecting BMW level of precision here. Also I didn't find the car all that fun to drive, and the exhaust note was underwhelming.

    I wanted a sports coupe ala Porsche Cayman but what I was driving was a kind of mini-GT car. It was like a German Toyota Celica.

    I never drove another one again, or even looked at one. I'm sure owners like 'em, and they are just fine for what they do, but not for me, that's for sure.
  • lokkilokki Member Posts: 1,200
    Very sexy looking; Mercedes-based; Chrysler-prices. What's not to like?

    But on the testdrive, I couldn't fit in the car. Too tall to see out the windshield.
    Bummer.
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAMember Posts: 15,306
    Wanted my girlfriend to consider a new Chrysler 300, but when she test drove it she said she couldn't see out of it due to the narrow windows and thick pillars.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,491
    but the first time I sat in a 1973-77 era GM intermediate as an adult, it just didn't seem as roomy inside as I thought they'd be! About 7 years ago, a local park and sell lot had a '76 LeMans coupe for sale, and it looked good from a distance. Unfortunately, not so good up close. I just remembered sitting behind the wheel and thinking that it seemed no better inside than my '68 Dart...a car that was marketed as a compact!

    I think the biggest killer though was when I started it up and immediately thought...that doesn't sound like no V-8! Turns out it just had a Chevy 250-6 under the hood. I guess 0-60 in a car of that bulk would've been around 20 seconds? :sick:

    Anyway, it wasn't enough to turn me off to that type of car. A few years later, I found another '76 LeMans. It just happened to be in much better shape, had a 350-4bbl V-8 that fixed most of my acceleration worries, and has a power seat that can contort into almost obscene positions, so it gives me the legroom I need.
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 53,180
    I had the same experience in a SLK55 AMG. Not long ago a local high end used car lot had one that looked like a good deal, I was bored and stopped to look at it. I was just too tall to fit properly, the top of the windshield was an issue and I had the seat all the way back too.
  • oldfarmer50oldfarmer50 Member Posts: 17,795
    "...I couldn't fit in the car..."

    I too was intrigued by the Crossfire. Liked the looks. Like you I was worried about fitting into it (6'2" 225 pounds). Just managed to fit inside.

    The big turn-off was power. 215hp just didn't give it enough guts to make it worth the 30K plus they were orgionally going for. The SRT version was much better but so far out of my range I couldn't consider it.

    I was also turned-off by the cramped feeling of the Altima Coupe and the handling and power of the 6-cyl. Mustang.

    2019 Kia Soul+, 2015 Mustang GT, 2004 Chevy Van, 2000 Chrysler Sebring convertible

  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,491
    I'm actually disappointed with most modern convertibles. Between the high beltlines, thick roof pillars, windshield header right in your face, etc, I swear I get a more out-in-the-open feeling driving my old pickup truck!

    Even with the top down, it still feels like they're trying to cocoon you in, away from the outside world.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Windshield height vs. one's torso length is *very* important. Once your head gets into the windstream and your vision is blocked by the top bar, the driving experience in a convertible goes from enjoyable to annoying in a red hot minute.

    The old MGB was somewhat of an offender in this regard. It was impossibly to keep a baseball cap on! But the Alfa Romeos of 1981--1993 had no such issue. It was better thought out.

    I realize that designers want a low windshield profile and a nice rake angle, but not at the expense of too many potential buyers.
  • michaellnomichaellno Member Posts: 4,300
    Back when I traveled for business, I was lucky to be able to rent a convertible a few times - usually a Mustang (previous generation) and Sebring.

    Neither one would be considered real sporty, but I had no problems fitting into either one of them.

    A few years ago at the auto show, I sat in most of the current German roadsters - SLK, Z4, Boxster, TT. The only one I felt truly comfortable in was the BMW. The seat went back far enough and I wasn't looking over the windshield.

    Another car that was disappointing to me was the first-gen Pontiac Vibe. In some respects, it was a very nice car - good rear seat room. However, the driving experience was not that great. Granted, we drove an AWD version, which only comes with the automatic. Slow, slow, slow.

    Now, the new generation with the 2.4L engine might be a bit better.
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,699
    I'll second the TT. My wife had an Integra at the time. The Integra was faster, roomier, and far more fun to drive. The TT felt and drove like a mid-sized family car with an incredibly small passenger compartment.

    My classic car dream was ruined by an early '60s Vette with a base engine. It drove like a '60s Chevy truck that had been lowered to the ground.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    That's because a 60s Vette WAS a Chevy truck that was lowered to the ground--LOL!

    Can you imagine those big blocks with no power steering, and leaf springs to hop around on, and side pipes to roast your butt? Phew! Rough ride!
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJMember Posts: 10,379
    I have to admit that my old Sebring was a perfectly comfortable convertible. A bit of a slug and a perfectly average car with a great stereo but well though out in terms of having the top down.

    Of course I am short and it had the same problem as my Celica in that respect - if I lean my arm out my elbow has to come up almost to my shoulder!
    2015 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2014 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback, 1999 Mazda Miata 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999.
  • wesleygwesleyg Member Posts: 164
    You sparked a memory there, In 1970 my best friend sold me his 1969 Vette convertible, dark bronze in color, sporting a 427, 4 speed etc. Since I had already owned two other big block Vettes, a 62 and a 65, I bought this sight unseen. Get out my way.

    Pick it up, it's mint, about 8000 miles on her. NO POWER STEERING. Now I'm a small guy, 155 lbs, and with tears in my eyes I sold it after two months, could not drive it. A 427 sitting between the front wheels steers like a cement truck overloaded.
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,699
    I bet it was really fun to go straight in that old beast. Probably sounded pretty good too.
  • wesleygwesleyg Member Posts: 164
    You could only go straight, no options to turn, but boy would it go straight. Also jump out of the drivers seat after driving it, if you hit the side pipes with your ankles, you could smell flesh burning.

    To this day, who in their right mind would order this without power steering, it was probably only a $65.00 option in that time.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    If we presumed that in today's money the 69 would have cost 10X, or around $47,000, then the $105 p/s option would be about a $1,000 option today.
  • wesleygwesleyg Member Posts: 164
    Well, putting it in that context, I can at least see the thought in someone's mind, but it would have been easier to drive with 3 tires rather than without the p/s option.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Many cars in the 60s were bought specifically to street race, so maybe that's what the owner had in mind.

    Road testing the "classic cars of our dreams" is often a shock, although occasionally one is pleasantly surprised. "It depends". But let's face it, 60s American muscle cars were crude things.
  • jakeinswitzjakeinswitz Member Posts: 7
    What I loved about those old cars was that fast actually felt fast. My last American car was a 1970 Mustang Mach 1 with a 351 Cleveland engine. I loved working on it and spent every penny I made as a Lance Corporal in the United States Marine Corps back in the late 80's to keep it faster than the new breed of muscle. That's about $175 a week :cry:

    As long as you didn't try to turn it would do a 13.5 second 1/4 mile. The front wheels would lift off the ground, the G force would drain the blood out of your head, and it was loud enough to drown out the screams of your passengers.

    Now that I make just a little more money I have gone in search of that same feeling. Test drives with today's cars that deliver that kind of performance just don't cut it. On a recent test drive of a Lexus IS 350, a car capable of that 13.5 second quarter mile, I noticed my wife was playing with the knobs on the stereo as I gave it all it got. Did time slow down over the years?
  • lokkilokki Member Posts: 1,200
    I sort of had that problem back in 1974 when I bought an Alfa Spider.
    I had been running around in a VW Beetle, and then a Honda Civic.
    I came into some money, and bought a Spider.

    It was a great car and it handled beautifully. However, it was sort of boring to drive in that, at speeds that were "Prepare to meet Jesus" in the VW, the Alfa was as smooth as a living room sofa.

    So, logically, in order to recreate the sensation I'd had in the Beetle and the Civic, I had to drive much, much, MUCH, faster.

    I'm sure you all understand. :shades:

    Gosh, I miss that car.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Member Posts: 29,082
    Like others, I also went to try out the Crossfire when it first came out. Unfortunately, I didn't even get to the actual test drive because I couldn't fit in the car well enough to drive it.

    That's a similar story to many vehicles for me. Boxster, S2000, TT, RX8. All ruled out for their lack of tall-person accomodations. The only one I actually drove of that group was the TT. In coupe form, I was close to fitting, so I gave it a spin. Wasn't until 10-15 minutes that I realized I couldn't live with it.

    TT wasn't really a "dream." But the others were.

    Lesseee... ummm... well, the only car that really comes to mind (at the moment) outside of the "fitting" problem is the A6 2.7T. I always drooled over this car. When I finally drove a used one, I was kind of disappointed. I liked it, but I didn't love it. It didn't live up to the "dream."

    ‘21 Camaro LT1, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '13 Fiat 500c, '14 Town&Country Limited. 54-car history and counting!

  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    I get all excited over the hype, reviews, magazine articles, Internet "buzz" that I'm hearing about a new or near-new car.

    First time I drove the Honda Ody back in '04 the "All thing Honda is Great" media blitz went down in flames. This turned out to be a plain looking minivan that did not stand out in any way above any of the other minivans. Ended up with a Mazda MPV which is a lot better van.

    Who or what do you blame for this dis-connect?

    I blame Edmunds. :P
    They built Honda Ody up to god like status like all the other web sties/mag rags.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,699
    That'll teach you not to dream about minivans, I hope.
  • ajvdhajvdh Member Posts: 223
    We considered an Infiniti G20 when it first came out. On paper it looked good: Everyone raved about the handling and build quality, it got good gas mileage, the dealer experience was great, yada*3. Then we drove it: That the dealer practically threw the keys at us and said, "take it for the weekend," should have been a warning sign. The 4 banger was smooth for a 4 banger, but it was pretty gutless, even with the 5-speed. We wanted something with at least as much interior room as my fox chassis T-bird, and the G20 didn't quite qualify. Wound up with a Maxima, which gave up a little in handling, but it rode better, had far more guts and decent interior room. And it was cheaper.

    The EVO story, which happened to a friend, is even worse in that he wrote the check before having his dream shattered. He's a long time DSM (Diamond Star Motors - google if you need to) fan. The kind of guy who owned an AWD Eclipse that ran high 12s here in CO. So when it was announced that the EVO was coming to the US, he was about the first on on the waiting list. He put down his deposit and waited, and waited, and waited. Finally got the car, and at first it was everything he thought it would be. He took me for a ride, and I was impressed. There was one thing I found off-putting: At the time I owned an E36 M3 set up for track and auto-x, which translates to a suspension that would allow me to run over a quarter and tell whether it was heads or tails. Compared to the EVO, it was cushy. He wasn't too bothered, it was part of owning a hot car. His only objection was that the seats had too much lumbar.

    Then he and his wife went for a 3 hour drive in the mountains. When they got home, between the seats and the punishing ride, his back hurt so much his wife had to help him out of the car and drag him into the house. But he so loved the car, he spent weeks trying to figure out how to adapt it to him, or vice versa. He looked at replacing the seats with adjustable Recaros, but couldn't justify the eye-watering cost.

    So, he sold it. Naturally he'd owned it long enough that the initial feeding frenzy had abated, so he got normal used car money for it, instead of getting his money back as he might have done if he'd discovered the problem right off the bat.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTMember Posts: 15,685
    maybe you should have put some ladder bars and better tires on your old stang. ;)
    2020 Ford Explorer XLT, 2019 Lincoln MKZ Reserve 1
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    You know what would work for you? Get yourself one of the better quality AC Cobra kit cars. They are really fun "like in the old days".

    After driving a VW bug, you could put wheels on a rain barrel and feel like you upgraded :P

    EVO -- fabulous car, but it can beat you up. Same with the STi Subaru. These cars are fast, great handlers, real bargains but boy are they crude compared to an M3.
  • oldcemoldcem Member Posts: 309
    Know what you mean - What's missing is all that low end torque the muscle cars had. I once had a 69 Olds 442 - 400/325 HP that was a blast to drive. Now I drive a 3 liter European car that's probably just as fast to 60, and, has about 30 MPH more top end than the Olds did. When you romp it - it feels like a gas turbine spooling up. You just don't get much sensation of accerleration, but, you glance down at the speedo and you're well over 100 mph.

    Regards:
    Oldengineer
  • huyracinghuyracing Member Posts: 6
    My dream car for sooo long, especially because its so expensive and couldn't afford it... but then the time came when I could afford one, so I test drove a brand new 2002 Acura NSX in Pearl Yellow. So pretty! Sat in the car and my head hair was touching the top... so I removed the Targa top with the help of my friend. Then proceeded to drive... next thing i know I'm stepping on my own feet. Wide feet plus narrow wheel wells is not a good thing. So dream shattered. Fun car, good power, well handling... but i just don't fit! Maybe an automatic would work, but wheres the fun in that?! :sick:
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I had a similar experience with the NSX. It was a GREAT handling car...I think anybody with a shred of competence could run it up to 160 mph with confidence.

    But you know, it sounded and felt like an Acura. It was, in a sense, too civilized for its own good. When I drove a similar year Ferrari, the engine noises vibrated through my whole body. I felt like I was attached to the camshaft---LOL!

    But in the NSX, I could have driven one handed with the stereo on and carried on a conversation at 130 mph.

    There simply was no magic in this othewise fabulous supercar. It would be like having a Superhero called "ACCOUNTANT MAN" .
  • ajvdhajvdh Member Posts: 223
    Ah yes. I remember the first time I saw an NSX with the hood (or whatever you call the bit that covers the powerplant on a mid-engine car) open. I thought, "Hey, this looks like a Legend engine in a mirror." As opposed to Ferraris, where the mechanical bits look either race-car purposeful if they're old, or high-tech sexy if they're new.
  • madmanmoomadmanmoo Member Posts: 2,039
    Was in love with the new bodystyle. Drove a brand new one that a Ford salesman drove over to me. Hopped in, was underwhelmed by the interior. Drove it. Felt like the rear end wasn't aware that we might be going around corners once in awhile. That vehicle was a major let down for me.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I had a similar experience. I remember thinking that the last generation Camaro handled better. You hit a rough patch on a turn and the Mustang liked to pogo-stick.

    But you know, for what you pay you can't expect world-class handling. That's not really fair.
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusMember Posts: 13,008
    Just a bit of a "time warp" thing for me. My older sister had long lusted after the Mustang of her dreams.....not a new one, mind you....but a '67 Fastback with a 390 big block. For a female (especially one in her 50s) you'd never consider her a "motorhead". But, there's always been something (someone?) in her past that made her lust after this particular car.

    Well, after years of searching she found one. Just as important, she found one that was meticulously restored.

    Calling her baby brother to give it a once over before she laid down the cash, I gave it a thorough inspection. Numbers matched. Researched the net. It had 3 owners (including the current one who did the restoration). As best as my untrained eye could tell, aside from the paint job (arrest me red) and some interior/exterior replacement trim pieces, it was original. I suspect at one point, the seats were reupholstered. But, even they were true to the original. Carpet and headliner were replacements.

    It would be an understatement to say the car is a "looker".

    Time to jump in and drive it. Not sure what I was expecting, but it was imminently clear from the get go how much automotive engineering has advanced in the last 40+ years.

    It makes great muscle sounds.

    Yes, it was fast.....in a straight line. All that torque will break the tires with little provocation, too. You have to plan your stops.......well in advance. Hit the brakes.....and wait....and wait (scary wait). Or, mash them harder and lock every thing up. It didn't seem like there was any in-between.

    To get it to turn a corner, it was more of a fight with the car to set a line around the bend.

    I'm not stranger to muscle cars, and given a bit more time with it, would probably smooth out the way I was driving it. But, it would have taken more than the 30 minutes I had behind the wheel.

    She bought it. For the most part, she doesn't drive it all that much. And, in truth, is better at getting the beast to do her bidding than I am. Great for parades and homecomings, though. She does enjoy looking at it as it sits in her garage, though.

    moo/Mr Shiftright....I owned a recent example of a Mustang GT ('05). They are what they are. V8 in a coupe (or 'vert) with a solid rear axle. Nothing real sophisticated or exotic about them. For roughly $22K-$23K (with rebates), you can get a car with V8 rumble. 0-60 in a tick over 5 seconds. And arguably, it looks good. No fancy intereriors, though. As long as you understand that, they're a lot of fun for the money.

    Then again, I've always like Mustangs (just can't drive a 40 year old one very well).
    2021 Acura TLX A-Spec-Platinum White Pearl
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 9,539
    To me, the current Mustang is the ideal replacement for buying that '65-'72. I know it's not the same thing, but in every way it's better. My on-and-off interest in getting an old one always ends up "Sure, it'll be fun to look at and tinker with, but for the same money I can get a new GT that's fun, period." And they come in 'arrest me red'. :D
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJMember Posts: 10,379
    I know that color! I had always called it speeding ticket red....
    2015 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2014 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback, 1999 Mazda Miata 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Also known as:

    Resale Red
    Mid-Life Crisis Red
    Steal Me Red

    Not sure why Red gets such a bad rap :shades:
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusMember Posts: 13,008
    Seems to me that any car that has even a pretense of being sporty has to be either red, black, maybe bright blue (none of that robbin's egg blue, either).

    Another car that I had high expectations of (maybe too high) was driven a few years ago. This time, it was Lingenfelter Corvette. Without a doubt the very fastest car I've ever driven. But, the quality of the conversion seemed haphazard. This 'vette only had 20K something miles on it. Perhaps they were the hardest 20K miles anyone could have imagined. Maybe it was because this car was made and converted in the early 90s. Maybe Corvettes of that vintage really weren't made all that well.

    No matter. The car did what it was supposed to do. That is go fast....very, very fast. The mere fact that it also felt like every bolt holding it together felt loose may very well be a by-product of the conversion. Or, typical Corvette build quality of the time.
    2021 Acura TLX A-Spec-Platinum White Pearl
  • rpfingstenrpfingsten Member Posts: 154
    My huge dissappointment took place back in the mid 90's. My wife and I stopped at a local Chrysler lot and test drove a "top of the line" Imperial. Interior was so plush I referred to it as the passion pit, car was ( to us ) stunning.. then came the test drive, the second that I pulled out of the parking lot, the rear view mirror literally fell from the windshield and was just hanging there from the electronic cord. Needless to say the salesmas was quite embarassed. I think that was the year I bought a caddy. Not sure, but I know it wasn't the Chrysler.

    Roland
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAMember Posts: 15,306
    OMG!!! Was it a really hot day by any chance? The adhesive that holds the mirror to the windshield might've melted allowing the mirror to let go. The look on the salesman's face must've been priceless.
  • jlflemmonsjlflemmons Member Posts: 2,242
    I have always liked the look of the current generation Tiburon. The interior, while a bit tight, is well laid out for my tastes. Got the chance to drive one of the "hot rod" versions with the 6spd stick. What a disapointment. The car drove like a sedan. Nice ride, no drama, no nothing. The most 'average' car I have driven in a long time.
    My '05 Elantra GT had more personality.
  • ronsteveronsteve LooavulMember Posts: 930
    My Subaru lust had had a couple years to grow, and when they came up with the Limited version of the WRX, I was quite keen to get one. But when I drove it, there just wasn't enough seat under my lower thighs, and it brought back memories of a Saturn with the same issue, which caused my booty to fall asleep on long trips! So no Rex for me. :/
    2015 Acura RDX AWD / 2013 VW Jetta 2.5SE
  • wjtinatlwjtinatl Member Posts: 50
    Back in the mid-'80s, all the buzz was about the upcoming Isuzu Impulse, Italian styling, Lotus tuned chassis, blah, blah, blah. Thought it may be the logical replacement for my (also underwhelming) 280ZX. One finally appeared at the local Isuzu, Oldsmobile, Plymouth, Nissan dealer (guess where he is today). Jeez... the 280ZX felt like a Ferrari 308 by comparison. It may have been noisy, but at least it was slow! Also, a dashboard only Bill Gates could love. No wonder Isuzu is no longer for this country!

    Additional disappointments from the era included the Chevy Beretta, Olds Quad 4, 3rd generation "Cross-Fire Injection" Z-28 and my dad's Cadillac Seville with the pathetic 4.1 litre V8. GM really was on a roll in the 80's. Thank god fuel injection and OBD II electronics came along, I'd still be looking for a nice '77 VW Scirocco again (rusty but fun)!
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,699
    I bought an '88 Isuzu Impulse Turbo RS Special Edition with Lotus Handling, but that would go under "The Car Purchase That Shattered Your Dream."

    It wasn't a bad car, just not as good as I hoped. Combining that with dismal reliability did not make for a happy combination.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Well okay aside from dismal reliability and disappointing performance, what's not to like? :cry:

    The last new car I bought....I test drove for AN HOUR...I got a pretty good idea of what to expect and so I was not disappointed later on. Also it was a Toyota, so I just got in it and turned the key for the next couple of years.
  • graphicguygraphicguy Edmunds Poster EmeritusMember Posts: 13,008
    No wonder Isuzu is no longer for this country!

    au contraire.......Isuzu is still alive in the U.S. Matter of fact, I see one of their dealers advertise in my local paper from time to time.

    http://www.isuzu.com/index.jsp
    2021 Acura TLX A-Spec-Platinum White Pearl
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    CTS - the press made the original sound like a legit contender. I got my hands on a manual - which the salesman chided saying nobody drives manuals. What a sloppy, heavy, cheap feeling hunk of junk. Seriously, that car couldn't feel any less like the vehicle described by Edmunds, MT, R&T, Autoweek.

    G35 - 2nd gen. Heavy, bloated, muted steering, coarse engine at the upper rev range. The press made it sound like Infiniti G35 had gone from being 90% BMW to 95% BMW. Nope, it actually regressed. As did the e9x BMWs.

    .
  • lokkilokki Member Posts: 1,200
    Yeah - I'd forgotten how bitterly I was disapointed with the CTS the first time I saw it. I was at Narita Airport in Tokyo, and they had one on a turntable rotating around to impress everyone. Well, maybe they impressed somebody but it sure wasn't me.

    Since turntable lifted the car about 3 feet, it made the CTS' fat and heavy buttocks very prominent. When the turntable rotated, the grill was also pretty sad too; it was made out of cheap gray Mattel plastic.

    Overall, my impression was that someone had taken a nice 1964 de Ville and done a caricature of it. The Chevron toy cars came to mind.

    Being an American travelling in a foreign country, I was a bit embarrassed for the home team. My thought was... !%$@%! - all that money invested and GM has blown it again. :mad:
  • wjtinatlwjtinatl Member Posts: 50
    graphicguy
    You are correct sir... Isuzu still makes and sells a very high-quality line of diesel and gas medium duty trucks for the US market. I believe GM also rebrands these vehicles and sells them as Chevy and GMC products. However, Isuzu's consumer business is dead. Announced in January, they are no longer selling the re-badged TrailBlazer and Colorado pick-up. Seems like GM got the better of that deal, high-quality diesel engines and commercial vehicles. Isuzu got two of GM's most underwhelming vehicles that they sell at hefty discounts. Isuzu dealers must have been thrilled. The shame is, Isuzu is well known as a diesel expert, and played a significant role in developing the GM Duramax diesel. Why thay couldn't provide a nice 4 cylinder direct injection turbo diesel for the Malibu and perhaps Lambda crossovers is a mystery. A Malibu with solid performance that could get 40 mpg highway would have made the new Jetta diesel yesterday's news.
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