For the past little while, we’ve been working on a new project expressly for our readers: a TTAC forum. And we want your input to help shape it.
Slightly over a month ago, we had a spot of regime change here at The Truth About Cars. At the time, we unveiled a five-point program to improve the site and improve the reader experience. I’d like to take a moment to review these five points and give you a chance to provide further feedback on our progress so far.
Have you noticed that lately we’ve added a little box at the end of most stories asking you to sign up for the “TTAC E-Newsletter”? Sure you have. You’re observant like that. But why would you possibly want to do such a thing?
It’s no secret that over here at TTAC, we like to pay for it – at least when it comes to test cars. Sure, we do go to the press fleet frequently, but when time and budget allow, abusing our Hertz #1 Club Gold membership is a great way to get behind the wheel of select automobiles.
Every so often, the same tired rumor will pop up again, like a particularly resilient pimple that habitually reappears in the same conspicuous spot. Thanks to the incessant hunger for clicks among auto websites, these rumors refuse to die, no matter how asinine they are. How many times have you seen a “BREAKING” or “EXCLUSIVE” story on the next Toyota Supra or some absurd BS fabrication regarding a diesel Mazda MX-5?
TTAC alumni Ed Niedermeyer has an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. The piece discusses the spin surrounding the bailout in this year’s campaign. Check it out here.
Similar to the TWATs, we are seeking to nominate the 10 Best cars on sale today. The nominees are selected exclusively be our readership, just like the TWATs. During the nomination process, we recieved nominations for different models of the same vehicle line (i.e. Corvette 427 and Corvette ZR1, Mustang and Shelby GT500). For the purposes of our contest, these will only count as a single model. If you want to vote for the Ford Focus ST or the Boss 302, you will be voting for the Focus or the Mustang. Voting will be announced shortly. The whole list is below.
Some time ago in TTACs history, the site held an award for the poorest choices in the automobile kingdom. We called it the Ten Worst Automobiles Today – or, the TWATs, for short. It’s been almost 4 years since the TWATs were last run, but for 2012, they’re back.
“And all the troubled world around us
Seems an eternity away
And all the debt collectors
All will be behind us
But they’ll never find us
‘Cos we’ll be dri-i-i-i-ivin’”
-The Kinks “Drivin’”
The last time I made an announcement about my status here at TTAC, I made it clear in the headline that I was bidding the site “au revoir” rather than “adieu.” Having taken an opportunity to work in politics for a year, I was absolutely planning on returning to the fold. Unfortunately, that plan has now changed, and I have informed TTAC’s owners that today will be my last day on the site’s masthead.
A TTAC contributor who shall remain nameless recently raised an issue at our secret conclave regarding the free gifts that automakers sometimes give out to journalists during press trips. Said writer was due to receive a very big ticket item (less expensive than a Rolex, but more than an iPod) and wanted to know if he should accept or refuse it. The answer, handed down by our very own BS, was “take it – and then send it to Derek so he can give it away as a contest prize.”
Interested in meeting your
least favorite TTAC author? Perhaps you’re a fan of my unique lyrical styles, or you’re a lonely female journalist stuck on the West Coast with a boyfriend who plays Goth music through a Les Paul that isn’t even from the f**king Custom Shop. Maybe you’re one of the GM forum loons who nearly crashed your ’96 Grand Am GT automatic into a Jersey barrier when you saw that my awesome article on the Crapillac ATS was translated into German, complete with fun illustrations, and now you want to choke me with the power of your massive, Cavalier-tattooed biceps. Failing all that, perhaps you’d like to appear in the next TTAC video?
Good news! I am doing an international tour during the next two weekends!
With the my Miata now gone (sold to a friend who has given me the right of first refusal when it comes time for him to sell it), I needed a new car with a bit more practicality, and a low price tag. A quick call to my friend Vasco, who functions as Toronto’s version of our own Steve Lang, led me to the car you see above. Did I mention it’s a manual?
Despite debuting over seven years ago, extensively refreshed in 2009 and nip/tucked again in 2011, the Acura RL remains a mystery. Flagship products usually sell in small numbers, but the RL is one of the rarest sedans in America. This isn’t exactly been a badge of honor for Acura. Overlooked by shoppers who flock to the cheaper Acura TL and largely forgotten by the automotive press (after all these years, TTAC has never fully reviewed the RL) With a full replacement due next year in the form of the RLX concept, I hit Acura up for an RL for a week to see how a flagship product from a major brand could manage to sell just 56 vehicles in Canada and 1,096 in the USA in 2011. For those who like statistics, the TL outsold the RL by 2,850%. Ouch.