By on June 30, 2014


Rust never sleeps, and neither does TTAC, as we bring you a completely random yet utterly essential selection of recent automotive news.

But The True Impact Is To Your Chances Of Breaking Your Two-Year “Dry Spell”: The World Cup has given a lot of people a chance to show how refined and “Euro” they are by loudly decrying the officiating during the Botswana-Tibet quarterfinals. It’s also caused a bunch of people to put the kind of flags on their cars that in the United States are typically seen proclaiming some utter moron’s complete devotion to a group of millionaires who take their direction from a billionaire. But Treehugger notes that driving at 65mph with just one flag on your car is wasting an extra quart of fuel every hour. Unless you’re driving to a soccer match which you loudly proclaim to be a “football” match, in which case you’re wasting all of your fuel.

Never Has A Guitar Rocked Less: According to Autoblog, “Harrison Guitar Works” has decided to build the “ultra-exclusive” Alfa Romeo guitar they’ve been threatening to build for a while now. They’re going to make just eleven of them, in the hopes of selling two. At the most. Seriously. Your humble author has spent new-car money on individual guitars before and I wouldn’t waste a hundred bucks on this thing. Nobody else will either.

And Nobody Thought About Asking Anna Paquin To Endorse It Once upon a time, Nissan built the X-Trail, a sort of too-rough-around-the-edges-for-American-consumption cute-ute. It was an ugly square thing but apparently it was the sole home of a 280-horsepower turbo version of the mighty SR20 engine. Now the X-Trail and the Rogue have been unified in a single homely product, and Nissan says it will double global sales as a result. Sales are expected to be highest in the United States and China. “Because that’s where all the stupid people are,” a Nissan representative very carefully did not say.

That’s Not Quite The Gilette Model, But It’s Not Quite Not, Either: Replacement battery packs for a Nissan Leaf will cost $5500. There’s an additional $225 for early Leaf owners and three hours of labor at your shop’s local rate. Core charge is a “stack”, which is what the kids on the street call $1000. There might be a finance plan.

The Question Is, How Could You Tell It Was Happening: NHTSA is going to investigate the 2012-2014 Nissan Versa for unintended acceleration. Apparently, the piece of carpet that trims the transmission tunnel can trap a driver’s foot. Expect a fair amount of government spending, terminating in abject apologies from Nissan executives who never considered how easy it would be to get your foot stuck in a Nissan Versa carpet trim, mostly because they’ve studiously avoided ever driving a Nissan Versa.

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34 Comments on “While You Were Sleeping: June 30, 2014...”

  • avatar

    I know it’s their grille, but that guitar looks like a gutted boat. Also the link doesn’t work Jack I had to google it.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      Not only ugly, but the guitar looks uncomfortable too.

      I’d read that the Fender Custom Shop used automotive paint so several “classic” pastel colors were simply popular car colors when those guitars were first sold.

  • avatar
    Tom Szechy

    Dear Americans,
    The name “Football” is the name of a game where the ball is mainly played by the players’ feet. The sport that’s called “football” in the US should actually be called “handball” (oh wait..). But it shouldn’t be called “football”.

    Also, please believe the rest of the world when they call football “Football”. That’s the name of the game. Soccer exists only in the US.

    • 0 avatar

      A couple of others call is soccer too.

      • 0 avatar
        Tom Szechy

        Thanks for the insight. Still, the majority of the world calls it football. But at least they don’t make a fuss about their own (wrongly named) sport :)

        • 0 avatar

          All of those countries had players who faked traumatic injuries and cried like like little baby kittens and entire teams who couldn’t score a single point in an complete game, including overtime. Soccer it is. The world is wrong.

          • 0 avatar

            The reality of soccer relative to the hype surrounding the world cup is Obamaesque. Bad calls are about all there is to talk about. The US advanced by losing to a ‘good’ team that scored one goal and had a draw against the worst team in their group. Mediocrity, arbitrary and biased officiating, and not much of anything else: a sport for the rest of the world, and soon to be one for the US if we don’t stop aspiring to 3rd world economic and security conditions.

        • 0 avatar
          George B

          I’ve discovered that watching soccer/football is tolerable while drinking Peticolas Royal Scandal.

          Watching the end of the US vs. Portugal game while drinking Saint Arnold Fancy Lawnmower was unsatisfying.

          What serious sport allows a game to end with a tie?

        • 0 avatar

          The term “soccer” was originated in England.

          And yes, countries that have their own variant of a game called football often refer to that other game as soccer.

      • 0 avatar

        MrBostn, your references are very interesting. Thanks!

        Yours is a much better post than others in this thread.

    • 0 avatar

      Dear Rest of The World:
      We saved you from Hitler. We can call the sport whatever the f*ck we want.

      Edit: I’m being facetious. Kind of.

    • 0 avatar

      Dear Tom,
      Invent electrical AC distribution, the internet, cellular communication, nuclear power, nuclear weapons, hypersonic scram jets, IC’s, PC’s, Television, Telephones, functioning missile defense, and then you can tell us what football is. Until then, it officially involves EU balls and USA feet. Happy independence week.


    • 0 avatar

      You are all misbehaving!

      I will now hold up a yellow piece of paper to show that I am punishing you.

      Hey, don’t you laugh at me!

  • avatar

    Yes, the link is not only merely dead but really most sincerely dead.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      Before seeing the guitar I was going to say Jack was being too harsh. It couldn’t possibly be that bad.
      Then I clicked on it, corrected the address, and well… now all I can say is that the link needs correcting.

  • avatar

    “Is it pick on Nissan day?”

    Must be, because picking on GM is passé.

  • avatar

    That guitar looks fine other than the body and head. It is a true “hollow body”.

  • avatar

    I’ve been seeing a lot of the new Rogues around. Has Nissan finally struck a chord?

  • avatar

    I rather liked the Nissan X-Trail, aside from its supermassive D-pillars, and wish we’d gotten it here in the U.S. The Rogue, in both generations, is wholly ugly in comparison.

  • avatar

    I love this new TTAC feature. It reminds me of Car & Driver back when their writing had real bite.

  • avatar

    Dang Jack, Grumpy before coffee much? It’s good for a stream of laughs, but if it’s indicative of your morning I hope it’s gotten better since.

  • avatar

    thanks a lot – now I have the 1979 Neil Young song playing in my head.

  • avatar

    You can add another couple of hundred thousand Nissan Qashqais in Europe to the Nissan Rogues sold elsewhere. It’s a Rogue with about 100 mm chopped from the wheelbase. Stupidity is more universal than you might suppose.

    American football, a grunting heaving version of Canadian football, started out as Rugby Football until the colonials got fed up with the “no forward pass by hand” rule. So naturally, they dropped the rule. A great change to improve the game, nullified by making the game into a herky-jerky stop-start punctuated by many “let’s all stand around in a circle and carefully ponder our next move” stoppages which ruined the flow of the game, but anticipated TV commercial breaks by 70 years. Having changed the rules of Rugby, the East Coast 1880s Liberals running Hahvahd, Yale and the rest merely dropped the name, leaving its name as just football.

    Soccer or “the poor man’s game” at the British private school I attended in the 1950s, is of course deliberately lowbrow, we were taught. So none of that for us! Any man not capable of playing a good game of rugger was of course unsuitable for Colonial Service or the Army Officer Corps. Plus it’s dead boring unless you are actually playing in a game, although my high school team in Canada was bad enough that I had time to pick and categorize daisies while protecting the right wing.

    All pretty damn useless games that require the ingestion of large quantities of beer to make them viable as spectator sports. And therefore, hugely popular, of course.

    • 0 avatar

      Since the invention of the DVR, I’m actually finding American handegg to be watchable. With most quarterbacks, it’s just one 30 second skip between plays. The commercials are four skips. See North America’s biggest, strongest, fastest athletes physically destroy each other for your entertainment! It’s quite a spectacle.

      I still don’t enjoy the lower-tier Canadian version though, and soccer is simply intolerable to anyone who grew up in Canadian hockey culture. All the pansy-assed flopping is disgusting.

      Jack’s line about the sports team flags is hilarious.

  • avatar

    The soccer world cup is the 2nd biggest televised sporting event in the world, the 1st being the Olympics, so they must be doing something right.
    BTW for any one who cares the 3rd biggest televised sporting event in the world is the Rugby world cup and that is held next year in England. The USA Eagles are participating…

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    “Sales are expected to be highest in the United States and China. “Because that’s where all the stupid people are,” a Nissan representative very carefully did not say.”

    “Hahaha, I’m so edgy because I think Americans are stupid”

    Put another way…sales will be highest in the US and China because those are the only two countries that matter.

  • avatar
    Tom Szechy

    Disclaimer: I merely tried to point out how silly it is to call something “football” where you actually hold the ball in your hands while running like crazy.

    I regret my words, of course you can do/say whatever you want, the world is guaranteed to follow:

    Not a fan of football though (neither types).

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