The Truth About Cars » plastic The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Wed, 23 Apr 2014 16:58:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » plastic Piston Slap: DSG = Das Sticky Gearbox? Mon, 10 Feb 2014 13:09:05 +0000

Arun writes:


I have a 2011 VW CC (2.0 turbo) with DSG that is currently at 35000+ miles without any issues. I love the car and take care of it as much as a first time VAG owner and a first time car owner can take care of it. Problem is that over the last 200 miles or so, I have been noticing that the shift lever moves rough/ hesitates to move as quickly as I am used to it moving.

I am not talking about the actual shifts themselves but the shifter itself being rough to move within the case when upshifting or downshifting in DSG model.

I drive around 35 miles a day but only around 6-7 miles in DSG/ semi-automatic mode per day. So around 200 miles/ month in semi-automatic mode. All services have been done on time and there are no issues otherwise with the car. Posting on vw vortex revealed nothing.

  1. The factory warranty expires in 400 odd miles so I would like to have it seen by the dealer if it is something concrete. Unfortunately with the shifts themselves being smooth as butter, I fear they will just show me the door.
  2. I have the 40000 mile transmission oil change coming up. If this issue is something that can/ will be resolved by the same, I don’t mind pushing the service ahead and doing it at like 37500 miles or so. Again since it feels like the shifter is physically moving roughly (like it needs lube), I am not sure if that service will do anything to resolve this problem.

Suggestions? A speedy resolution is requested because my factory warranty will expire in 400 miles or about 2 weeks from now.

Sajeev answers:

Hey Arun, ask the Service department to lubricate or replace the shift assembly. These things are mostly made of plastic (usually) and asking them to check the plastic for jamming or debris isn’t a big deal.  Go get it done before the warranty goes out.

Arun replies:

Hey Sajeev,

Much appreciated! I have a scheduled a session with the Service Dept for this Saturday. I will update you once its done.


Arun replies:

I got the job done and it was indeed some lube that was needed. The dealership was at a loss as to how that could have happened, speculating that it could have been something that may not have been applied to spec at the factory itself. Somehow I doubt that’s the case considering how fastidious the Germans are about initial quality.

Oh well..I have driven the car just 10 miles since but so far so good.

Thanks once again for the help!

P.S. someday I will drive a Panther just to see what the hype is all about! :-)

Sajeev concludes:

Oh yes, nobody is as fastidious about initial quality like the Germans!  Then again, German initial quality is certainly superior to their overall lifetime value here in the US. But I digress…

There are probably countless reasons why this happened, as perfection is something we strive for but can never own. And most dealerships are used to customer concerns like this, hence why they were happy to check. And you were happy to ask since it’s still under warranty!

Better drive a Crown Vic Sport or Mercury Marauder soon, when your next post-warranty repair bill comes, you’ll be more inclined to embrace DPL (Das Panther Love) over DSG.


Send your queries to Spare no details and ask for a speedy resolution if you’re in a hurry…but be realistic, and use your make/model specific forums instead of TTAC for more timely advice. 

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Consuliers For Sale! Tue, 25 Jun 2013 14:20:04 +0000

The Consulier was a two-thousand-pound, turbo-Chrysler-four-powered attempt to build a truly modern sporting automobile. Warren Mosler, its designer, once famously offered $25,000 to anybody who could beat the Consulier around a racetrack with a street car. Depending on how you read the events that then transpired, he was either vindicated or soundly beaten.

Regardless, due to Mr. Mosler’s withdrawal from the car biz, there are now some Consuliers for sale.

The remaining Mosler stock was acquired by a company that also purchased Rossion. Your humble author has been threatened with a lawsuit in the past for publicly discussing his opinion of Rossion and his experience with various parties who may or may not have been involved in the manufacture and/or marketing and/or sale of the Rossion, so let me just say that I do not recommend the purchase of a Rossion, the operation of a Rossion, or even looking at pictures of a Rossion for more than a moment or two at a time. Motor Trend just produced a very glossy advertorial for the Rossion where they slowly focus on bits of trim and show 1080p video of the car “racing” around a track four feet away from the curbs, but I don’t recommend you watch that video.

I also cannot recommend that you contact the people who have the remaining Consulier stock, but what the heck — it isn’t like I can come to your house and stop you. They are really neat cars, regardless of the parties involved. If you buy a Consulier and you want to share your experience with TTAC’s readers, let me know.

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Vellum Venom Vignette: Less is More…Enlightening? Sat, 09 Mar 2013 11:11:27 +0000 Mark writes:


We can’t let Jeep get away with what they have done to the (redesigned Jeep) Grand Cherokee’s face. This square-peg-in-a-round-hole approach just looks half-baked, lazy, and cheap. Even the choice of filler material used to fill the void is wrong in material, color and pattern.

In short, Jeep’s design team needs to be raked across the coals for destroying what was Chrysler’s best-looking vehicle on the market, and I think you are the man to do the raking.

Sajeev answers:

I’m honored you think I’m worthy of Raking the Design Muck, especially since your concise assessment is spot on: every element presented here is a big car design FAIL.

It leaves very little for me to prove. So let’s dig deeper. Change for the sake of change to a well-received design (i.e. not the Pontiac Aztek) isn’t normally a good thing: be it as eye-gouging as the Ferrari Testarossa turning into the hideous 512M or as minor as a Headlight Fail on the redesigned Grand Cherokee, this change uses R&D money to make something different at the expense of good taste.  Which is sad.

And inexcusable…but far from uncommon.  For example, the 2013 Toyota Tacoma work truck.

Is anyone fooled into thinking those are real fog lights?  Just make a blank panel for the fleet model instead…please! The previous model was far less offensive, even the goofy grilles of the fleet-spec Ford Ranger are better. While the Ranger is an outdated design, time has been the little Ford’s friend. Remember that “change for the sake of change” thing? It leads to the conclusion.

 And now for the key takeaway:  be it in the world of Automotive Accounting, Engineering or Industrial Design, the concept of “Less is More” is true.  Don’t waste money making parts that fight with a design (Grand Cherokee) or make it look cheaper than necessary (Tacoma). So design it right from the start.  Easier said than done, as I’ve heard (horror?) stories of designers working with engineers to get the proper end result.

So do the right thing because people are watching. Off to you, Best and Brightest.

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Quote Of The Day: It’s Plastic, It’s Fantastic Wed, 12 Jan 2011 16:43:25 +0000


“Exterior vehicle parts that have been replaced with plastic materials include front-end modules, beams and brackets, trunk lids, deck lids, body panels and floor panels. More plastics are being used in air-bag containers, pedals and seat components. Plastics are applied to the powertrain in the air inlet manifolds, air ducts and resonators, chain tensioners and belt pulleys, oil pans and sumps, cylinder head covers, and mechanical torsion damper components. Some gears and pump components are also becoming more plastic-friendly.”

From “Plastics outperform metal in automotive applications,”

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