QOTD: Flee, Go Underground, or Give In?

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
qotd flee go underground or give in

They’re coming, and if you want to hang on to what’s near and dear to you, you’ve got to make a decision. And fast.

Well, maybe give it a few years.

As lawmakers and wannabe lawmakers go hog wild on proposed internal combustion bans in Europe, the idea has taken hold in North America. Different culture, different travel distances, different landscapes, but the same rhetoric. Same solutions. Same challenges, too, though there might be a few additional ones over here.

When they come for your car, what will you do?

Oh, you’ll still be allowed to buy a new vehicle, alright — it just won’t have any cylinders pumping beneath the hood. Under proposals issued by the Justice Democrats in the U.S. and the Green Party in Canada, all internal combustion passenger vehicles would have to disappear from new car lots in 10 years. A lot of other things will also have to disappear to reach the goals of both manifes- er, proposals. But that’s another matter.

Given the astronomical amounts of cash needed to fund the other policies stuffed into each plan like a legislative Kinder egg, it’s hard to imagine EV subsidies will be of the sky-high, I-don’t-care-as-long-as-I’m-getting-all-this-cash variety. The free ride will be found at your local college, not in your driveway.

It’s hard not to think of that Rush song at times like these. Frankly, I don’t relish the thought of having vehicular choice taken away from me any more than I like the idea of watching Jim Hackett try on a halter top and a pair of Daisy Dukes. It’s nice to choose between environmental stewardship and a vehicle that satisfies other needs, including versatility, range, price, and that visceral feeling of being in control of an amazingly complex mechanical beast. A vehicle with a throaty (or any) exhaust.

Maybe EVs will be everything we could ever dream of in a decade’s time. Maybe they won’t. But there’s a set of crosshairs placed over the ninety-eight-point-something-percent of new vehicles sold today by people who might eventually get what they want.

Sure, you might be able to keep your existing car come 2030, but driving it to work on the daily? Entering urban cores? This remaining fleet could be, as they say, problematic. Owners might find their movements severely restricted. Maybe these reviled relics will even become the automotive equivalent of a “wall hanger” firearm — something that, while nice to look at, is deemed unfit for actual use.

Should such laws come to pass, do you plan to go gently into that good, green night, or is your plan to rage against the dying of the (check engine) light? What form will your resistance take?

[Image: Murilee Martin/TTAC]

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  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Sep 20, 2019

    Daimler Benz, the company that invented automobile, announced that they stop development of IC engines to focus on EV development. If it isn't the writing on the wall then I don't know what is. ICE is doomed because car companies will stop offering cars with ICE. EV is more efficient, less problem prone, simpler, require much less maintenance, faster, have more torque, more space, electricity can be generated using any available source of energy including renewables (try that with ICE), electricity easier to deliver to charging stations, it is safer. Model 3 beats any ICE car, even Porsche.

  • Schmitt trigger Schmitt trigger on Sep 20, 2019

    @SCE to AUX A little off topic, but I finally understood your screen name. What an incredible Apollo 12 story!

  • Secret Hi5 Cream of mushroom interior looks good. Impractical for families and denim jeans wearers.
  • Matt Posky Hot.
  • Lou_BC Murilee is basically correct on the trim levels. People tend to refer to Ford's full-sized cars as "Galaxie 500" or "Galaxie's" even though that's just the mid level trim. I was never a fan of the '69 snout or any of the subsequent models. The vacuum controlled headlight covers typically failed. It was a heavy clunky system also found on the Mercury's like the Cougar. The XL's and LTD's could be purchased with factory bucket seats and a center console with a large shifter, similar to the type of throttle on an airplane. The late 60's era Ford cars had coil springs in the rear which rode nice. The shape of the fender wells did not lend themselves to fitting larger tires. The frame layout carried on to become the underpinnings of the Panther platform. I noticed that this car came with disc brakes in the front. There was a time when disc's were an upgrade option from drum brakes. Ford's engines of similar displacement are often assumed as being from the same engine families. In '69 the 429 was the biggest engine which was in the same family as the 460 (385 series). It was a true big block. In 1968 and earlier, the 428, 427, 390's typically found in these cars were FE block engines. The 427 side oiler has always been the most desired option.
  • Drew8MR Minivans are expensive new if you are just buying them for utility. Used minivans are often superfund sites in back compared to the typical barely used backseats in a lot of other vehicles and you aren't going to get a deal just because everything is filthy, broken and covered in spilled food and drink.
  • Arthur Dailey This is still the only 'car' show that our entire family enjoys. This is not Willie Mays with the Mets style of decline. More like Gretzky with the Blues. It may not be their 'best' work but when it works the magic is still there.