By on December 30, 2021

Shutterstock user 35mmf2

Today is the last day of the year for us, and it’s a slow news day following a slow news week, so we’re inviting any of youse who are hanging out online to spend some time chatting with us.

And to ask us (almost) anything you want.

Some housekeeping and ground rules here: First, we’ll be checking this post off and on throughout the day, but we do still have some other things to do, so it might take a bit for us to reply.

Odds are we won’t answer questions that could get us fired, doxxed, personally or professionally deeply embarrassed, et cetera. This is meant to be fun and light-hearted.

So, go ahead, fire away down in the comments, and we’ll answer if we can. Make sure to @ any specific person you’re directing a question to.

[Image: Shutterstock user 35mmf2]

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160 Comments on “We’re the TTAC Staff. Ask Us Anything....”


  • avatar
    ajla

    @Jo.
    What’s the best year and model for an M156 engine and how much does any head bolt repair run? Does the M177 seem to have any greater durability or is it just newer?

    • 0 avatar

      You’re referring to the headbolt stretching on the early M156s? They seem to have figured that out after about 2010, but all the Kleeman blower cars we got in the shop seemed to have those issues, regardless of year. The M177 was a little bit after my time. Never built one. M112/3 or M275 I can speak to, kinda, but it’s been years.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    When will a meteor hit earth and plunge us into a nuclear winter causing a Great Extinction of life as we know it?

    In other words should I sell my Tesla stock now or wait a bit?

    • 0 avatar
      theflyersfan

      @Lie2me – just watched Don’t Look Up? :-)

      Let’s see what happens in 2022 and 2024 before we start praying for giant comets with a bullseye on Earth.

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        Ah, but that’s what I’m trying to find out from our all knowing TTAC staff, will there even be a 2022 and 2024?

        I’ve got a garage full of slightly used cars that I’m trying to time to make the most profit

        • 0 avatar
          Tim Healey

          Well, I never thought I’d see the financial system collapse, a reality-TV star as POTUS, the destruction of the World Trade Center, and a global pandemic — and all of this has happened within 21 years, give or take. So the meteor can’t be ruled out.

      • 0 avatar
        Tim Healey

        Don’t Look Up was such a mess, especially compared to the Big Short and Vice. Yet I didn’t hate it. The messaging was too heavy-handed but that doesn’t make it wrong. The acting was good. Some of the stuff was unbelievable — no way that newspaper is sitting on a scoop about the apocalypse because it wouldn’t play on Facebook — but other satire hit well (the too-happy morning show hosts). Did anyone else think Mark Rylance, playing the Bezos/Musk/Zuckerberg stand-in, borrow his accent from Mike Meyer’s Dutch weirdo in the third Austin Powers?

    • 0 avatar
      Chris Tonn

      Sell now, donate proceeds to TTAC staff so we don’t have to run as many shill “review” videos over the real content.

      Win-win.

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Hopefully sooner rather than later.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    Any TTAC New Year’s resolutions?

  • avatar
    theflyersfan

    OK – these threads might get interesting…I’ll bite –

    Start with an easy one:
    @Corey Lewis: Might I interest you in a slightly used, well kept, attractive, frequently serviced, complete with records VW? I’ll even drive it up there and it’ll have a full tank of gas and everything. C’mon, we know you miss your Golf!

    Now, forget cars and get into the real questions:

    1. Would you rather have all farts be silent but extremely deadly, or all farts be harmless but extremely loud?

    2. Would you rather make your internet browsing history for the last 12 months accessible to anyone for a year, or give up the internet for a year?

    Let’s go deep for a couple of bonus questions:

    3. Do you think there is a difference between living and existing?

    4. Is there anything that you don’t want to die before doing?

    (and if Corey made it to the bottom of the list, the ball is in VW’s hands right now. A case has been created and I should know soon with what they are going to do with the possessed vehicle. So there still might be a VW for sale after all.)

    • 0 avatar

      1. louder is funnier, let’s do that.
      2. people already know I like big asses and FWD mopars. I have nothing to lose.
      3. yes.
      4. I prefer everyone I do to be alive when I do them.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      “2. Would you rather make your internet browsing history for the last 12 months accessible to anyone for a year, or give up the internet for a year?”

      Hahahaha! My browsing history is rated pretty much PG, unless you look too deeply at my snarky comments on car sites

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      1. Loud
      2. My history is already weird because of this job — no one builds and prices that many cars — so I guess the former.
      3. Yes. Living is what we did before COVID. Existing has been the name of the game since.
      4. There are lots of things I’d like to never experience. Like being shot, for one.

      • 0 avatar
        Tim Healey

        I misread number four. As far as things I’d like to do at some point — there’s a shitload of places and sporting events I want to see, I’d love to try skydiving, I’d like to do more outdoorsy stuff, I’d like to play with ATVs and Jetskis more, and if I ever got rich I’d get a boat.

        I figure if I keep this list long, I will keep living.

        • 0 avatar
          theflyersfan

          @Tim Healey – age is just a number. It all depends on how you feel that morning. I have skydived once (tandem as required for the first dive and it took some “motivation” to take that step) and it’s a thrill like you wouldn’t believe. It doesn’t matter if you’re 20, or 40, or 80 – physically if you want to, do it. My friends in West Virginia keep me entertained with ATVs and dirt bikes and one instance of making sweet love to a large tree with the right side of my body told me that my future doesn’t lie with small “motorcycles” with crummy traction. That one hurt, helmets save lives, and cracked ribs take a while to heal.
          There’s one special moment on the water to share. Me and my brother rented some jet skis to take into the Gulf of Mexico off of SW Florida’s coast. Water was smooth like glass and we were skimming at near top speed. I look to my left and there’s a pod of dolphins racing us. They would show their heads to see us and keep swimming. I kid you not, but when we slowed down, a couple of the dolphins did as well and popped up to take a look. No fear in them – I think they were just having some fun.

          There’s a few things that I remind myself each day to do to keep living:
          1. You’re only as old as you feel.
          2. You must learn something new every day.
          3. You are never truly dead until those around you no longer remember you or stop talking about you long after you have died, so make each day better for both yourself and those around you.

          And that’s how you keep living.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      1. Farts – typically louder the better but a room clearing SBD is awesome if delivered tactically win a manner where someone else gets the blame.
      2. I’d probably rather reveal my browsing history than give up internet for a year. It’s basically fair game already the way google and other browsers data mine.
      3. Living versus existing – awesome question. Living is being conscious of your existence.
      4. I take you mean, what do I want to do before I die? Live!

  • avatar
    arj9084

    I’d be curious about a piece/opinion as to a maker likely to continue to make a number of investments in/produce ICE cars for the next 15+ years. Reading so much about VW/Kia etc. cutting on this and will need to buy another car soon but don’t want to buy from a company that won’t have good/complete support for non BEV vehicles in the 2030’s, usually hold cars for 10-15 years.

    Maybe I’m the only one?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      I suspect you aren’t the only one. I think the transition to EVs will happen, but slowly, and the ICE will be around a while. I suspect most automakers will have ICE-only trucks, large SUVs, and sports cars for a while yet.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      “Maybe I’m the only one?”

      I don’t personally keep cars that long but I think this would be a good topic for TTAC. For companies “all in” on EVs how are they planning to support existing nonEV customers during the transition? And for how long?

      • 0 avatar
        arj9084

        Thanks. My concern is that for a ‘discontinued’ product line like consumer ICE vehicles, it will be onerous to maintain facilities/parts to support these “dead end” products. Plus, mechanics won’t be trained/retained to work on their (older) products for as long (outside perhaps of commercial applications).

        To my knowledge, BMW, Ford, Volvo, GM, Stellantis, Daimler/Benz,Kia/Hyundai and of course VW/Audi/Porsche are all out by 2035, so they are 100% out from my list. I think Honda/Acura (until 2040) and the other Japanese brands are still not ‘closing the door.’

        • 0 avatar
          Tim Healey

          Just because they say they’ll be out by 2035 doesn’t mean they will be. It’s a promise, not a given.

          Also, with so much money to be made in service, and how slow the fleet turns over, I suspect parts for ICE will exist for a LONG time.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “Just because they say they’ll be out by 2035 doesn’t mean they will be.”

            I know, right? I’m still waiting for those flying cars that shows like the Jetsons promised me in my youth

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          None of that is actually going to happen short of major unforeseen geopolitical events (Peak Oil, Chinese/Soviet nuclear strike, extraterrestrials, the Tribulation, dinosaurs return, Giant Meteor wins in 2024 etc.).

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        “how are they planning to support existing nonEV customers during the transition? And for how long?”

        Let’s take a look at the predecessors to ICE vehicles:
        https://www.hansenwheel.com/

        So, I’d say no problem. The toughest issue might be fuel. Especially in larger metropolitan areas. Although, the neighbors don’t seem to have a problem getting hay delivered. ICE owners and enthusiasts will probably get fuel delivered to their homes. I plan on keeping ICE toys and won’t convert them. I’ll probably go to a tank and deliveries.

        I don’t even think it will be the government that drives away gas stations. I think it will be the free market. They’re already starting to add charging ports at gas stations and if the charging is more profitable, they’ll want to replace more gas pumps. If the owners see their income going up, then adios to the gasoline. I think that’s exactly what will happen.

        At some point, you won’t be able to easily go coast to coast without a jerry can. Especially with limited range ICES like a 224-mile range Shelby. Don’t know when that date is, but it’s coming.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “Let’s take a look at the predecessors to ICE vehicles:
          https://www.hansenwheel.com/”

          I’m sure you’d agree there is a difference between “a hobbyist can figure it out” versus “the 9YO Palisade that’s my family’s main transportation is down for a month because Hyundai ended all ICE part support beyond the absolute legal minimum.”

        • 0 avatar
          Jeff S

          Would be good to have a series on parts suppliers that are furnishing replacement parts for ICE vehicles. I would agree with some of the comments above that there will be many remaining ICE vehicles after manufacturers transition to EVs. There are some of us the keep vehicles longer than average and there are areas of the country especially rural areas and professions like farmers who keep work trucks like flatbeds and grain trucks for years especially if those vehicles are used to transport grains to storage or market. It is common to see old trucks from the 50s, 60s, and 70s still being used in farming operations and the same with tractors. These farm trucks usually have lower mileage and there is less of a concern about mpgs than the cost and availability of newer replacements.

    • 0 avatar

      Mazda is actively developing internal combustion engines with an eye specifically to the SE Asian markets. As for good support for cars 10-15 years in, that’s a thing of the past, it seems, unless you’re going for a Porsche or something similarly high end — but even Bentley is starting to cut back on its parts supplies, so who knows?

  • avatar
    sayahh

    Which are the favorite and least favorite cars each writer has owned? Driven?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      I loved my Mustang and my Accord. I hated my Grand Am. Loathed, really. I would’ve loved my Bronco II, probably, had it not had constant drivability issues.

    • 0 avatar
      Chris Tonn

      Favorite is the ’91 Miata I still own and use as a shelf for folding chairs and a couple of coolers.

      Least favorite? Hmm. While the ’06 Trailblazer (still being used as a first car for my teen driver) is boring and full of stupid things, it doesn’t strand me.

      The ’87 Volvo 740 wagon I bought 12 years ago for $300, however…it’s probably the car full of the most failures I’ve ever had. Fuel pickup issues stranded me a few times in the six months I owned it. Used a quart of oil per week – at least. Worst? Wife drove it once while I took our then-newish Trailblazer on an out-of-town day trip with the kids, and it blew up on her. We went to flat-tow it home (couldn’t afford a tow truck)and my wife couldn’t maintain a constant speed with the Trailblazer causing me to ride the brakes on the dead Volvo. Soon, she saw flames shooting from the wheels of the Volvo since I’d worn the pads away and was on the backing plates…

    • 0 avatar
      Adam Tonge

      Owned: I miss my 2009 GTI. Although, my current vehicle, a 2019 Ford Ranger, is pretty great. I’ve never really hated any of the vehicles I’ve owned. So the 2012 Ford Focus with the PowerShit transmission wins.

      Driven: I love the Shelby GT350 and Jag F-Type. But for a normal car, the Mk7 GTI was just about perfect. My parents have a CR-V and a Trax and I think they are both awful. While I understand why both sell, they are terrible. My least favorite vehicle to drive is the Toyota Tacoma. Truly a hateful thing.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      I missed the “driven” part. Hmmmm….been doing this since 2008, so I’ve driven a lot of cool stuff. The standouts — the C7 Corvette Z06. The current C8 Stingray. The Shelby GT350 and GT500.

      As far as worse, well, I just rented a Chevy Spark. I’ve driven the Fiat 500L (blarg), a Mirage, and in a former life, too many ’80s and ’90s crap cans that were falling apart.

      • 0 avatar
        Adam Tonge

        I forgot about driving a 500L. Yikes.

        • 0 avatar
          Chris Tonn

          Missed the “driven” part myself. Yeah, I’d like to forget the 500L as well, but that’s too easy to shit on.

          Hmm.

          Well, fave is gonna be V8 powered. The latest Camaro, Mustang (either Mach-1 or GT350), and Lexus RC-F have to be at the tops.

          Least fave? It’s probably also too easy to dump on the Mitsu Mirage or the previous-gen Outlander (current one is pretty damned good, honestly). I really dislike the Caddy XT4/5/6 same sausage/different lengths ennuimobiles. Standard of the world? Ha! Hardly the standard of GM even.

          • 0 avatar
            Tim Healey

            Forgot the Mach 1. So, so good. I’d also add the last Bullitt — which is mechanically similar to the Mach 1 — to the list.

    • 0 avatar

      Favorite cars were my Lancia Betas, with the 1975 1800cc carbureted coupe being my favorite. Terrible little shitbox, but I loved it.

      Least favorite? Hard to say. I don’t remember buying many cars I didn’t like. The car I’m most embarrassed to love was a Hyundai Scoupe. SO FUN.

  • avatar
    whynotaztec

    So the infamous chip shortage (and probably other factors) has greatly reduced the amount of new cars for sale. Just looking at new car lots, this has been noticeable for quite some time, over a year. Yet today, at least near me, it appears that no progress has been made, and the new inventory is lower than ever.
    So I have to wonder, will they ever catch up? Or do they not want to flood the lots again and put cash on the hood?
    I wonder if the automakers might want to get to a place where cars are ordered by the customer, and they can keep prices on the higher side. To me, selfishly, I hope that means we see colors again, unless people really do just want black, white and gray.
    Anyhow sorry to ramble, curious for your thoughts on this whole thing – will we ever see lots overflowing with cars while desperate dealers try to move the metal?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      My gut feeling suggests that yes, they will catchup, though I suspect OEMs will be a bit careful to avoid flooding the market too quickly, for the reasons you describe.

      To be clear, this is just a gut feeling, and I don’t have inside info to back it. Dealers want inventory, so the OEMs will oblige, I would think.

      • 0 avatar
        Matt Posky

        Large dealerships are making a killing right now since demand is so high. However, I think we’ll see fuller lots once people get tired of paying super high prices.

        As for the chip shortage, I’ve heard everything from “it’s basically been solved” to “it’s going to stretch out into 2023” all within the last month.

        • 0 avatar
          theflyersfan

          @Matt Posky – I’m leaning towards 2023 just by what I’m seeing at work. The Zebra label printers that keeps us humming along used to take a week, tops, when we placed a large order. Now, April at the earliest. We have been cobbling together good parts from bad systems to keep our laptops running because we just can’t get enough new ones in a reasonable amount of time. It just isn’t the auto industry, and this is such a spectacular mess that the entire world has fallen into with these chips that I’m flat out amazed that economies haven’t tanked yet because of this.

          I see some major harm coming to all economies if this drags on for another year. If the only new cars for sale are going to be over $40,000, that’s going to force a lot of potential buyers to hang onto their cars for another year. That starts to cut off the used car market, causing those prices to keep rising. Eventually you’ll reach a point where personal mobility becomes too expensive, and reasonable ways to get to work or school start to vanish.

          I only see two outcomes. The first is the dire one. Inflation continues to eat away at our incomes, and eventually prices get too high for people to consume and spending drops and we fall into a steep recession or depression. The other is that we get these chip and supply chain issues fixed by expanding infrastructure like ports and railways to get goods to us quicker and end these shortages. Only then will people feel comfortable to spend again. But I think that idea is pure fantasy.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      It looks like the OEMs are going to favor maximizing profits instead of profits and volume (or revenue). This means the mfrs may shrink, and the market will continue shifting toward higher-income buyers.

      The little guy will have to buy used.

      I predict a reduction of the industry standard 60-day inventory to a much smaller figure as the new normal – maybe even the current 15 days that Matt Posky cited recently. That means you’ll have to order what you want, or else bid/fight over cars as they roll off the carrier.

      It also means smaller dealer acreage, fewer salespeople wandering around, and more online sales.

      Nobody will care about these changes once mfrs can reduce lead times. If I can receive my online ordered car in a month, why would I buy off the lot except in an emergency?

      Personally, I think Covid set the US market on course to reduce or eliminate the dealer franchise sales model. Mfrs will be the push behind the change, as a way of reducing costs.

      In other words, I don’t think the end of the chip shortage equals a return to the old way of doing business.

      Sorry – that was my answer, obviously not a TTAC answer.

      • 0 avatar
        JMII

        I too think this current inventory situation will become the new norm. Profits are up and its hard to say: well screw that we are OK with making less money next quarter. No CEO would survive making such a statement. Every company-wide meeting I have every attended in my life talks about YOY growth, any time the numbers dip people get pink slips.

        Sadly I don’t see the dealer model going away. Dealers are making more money with less people, they are loving this and can now stay in business without the investment in inventory or lot space. With people having to place orders the whole “relationship” model with sale will only get stronger. Its like not I can blow off my sales guy and transfer my order to someone else down the street. Dealers now have a more captive audience.

        Like everyone else this is just a guess. However if one OEM floods the market the whole thing could flip back again. Its only working right now because no-one has inventory. I personally never rush to buy a vehicle but I have co-workers that literally bought a totally different vehicle (brand/model) just because they found a color they liked down the street. New and shiny is all they cared about.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “However if one OEM floods the market the whole thing could flip back again.”

          Exactly.

          wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner%27s_dilemma

          Artificially keeping prices high through reduced inventory *when the capacity exists* will be difficult to maintain even if they want to. Like you said, first time YOY growth stutters, someone’s head is on the line. That’s when a brand will turn the taps back on. And, outside of the super brand loyal it will be hard to get folks to pay $2K over MSRP on a Colorado when they can get a Frontier for $5K off.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          “if one OEM floods the market the whole thing could flip back again.”

          I will laugh my ass off and dance a jig, but rest assured the Brandon Administration and its backers will NEVER let that happen.

      • 0 avatar
        Matt Posky

        SCE is making a lot of good points and that 60-day inventory has been gone for a couple of years. I think were hovering around an 18-day average presently. But it was 15 in November and October.

      • 0 avatar

        Euro has always been build to order…if you look at, say VW, there are dozens of paint colors and multiple interiors. They don’t really understand our fill the lots mentality. Custom order from the big Germans is super easy and I even got a car once with no sunroof and a German catalog interior…. Contrast this with Honda, where every car comes in A, B or C spec. Honda makes it for the US, where they know it becomes dealer stock purchased by a sales manager.

        Dealers exist to absorb production shocks, because when factories run, they go one speed, and sales don’t.

        If nothing else, maybe it will break the “no sport packages”, grey, white and blue-grey cartel.

  • avatar
    watersketch

    Carshare services – Will they be coming back?

    I was all hyped up for Zipcar and Maven but Maven is dead and Zipcar – I don’t know.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Did they ever leave? I thought Zipcar was still around. Their website is still active.

      They used to have a small lot in my ‘hood — I’ll have to see if it’s still there next time I walk/drive down that street.

      Whether that lot is still there or not, Zipcar appears to remain a going concern.

    • 0 avatar
      Adam Tonge

      That whole “Auto Companies Throwing Billions at Mobility Solutions” seems to be dead. That’s why Maven, Chariot, and Lincoln Personal Driver are dead. I don’t see the OEMs spending cash on car sharing until they can meet demand for vehicles. Maybe a third party comes in to compete with ZipCar. They still have vehicles near me.

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      ZipCar struggled during the pandemic and Avis sold off a bunch of vehicles to save cash. When rental demand resumed, more cars were rolled into the standard rental fleet. Despite the big push for car sharing, often with involvement from big automakers, none of the “disruptors” actually seem to be seeing much growth. I’m not sure if it was a matter of the business model not working anywhere outside of large cities with strong demand or larger rental agencies and legacy automakers buying up these companies to absorb them. But none of them seem to be doing well these days.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    Will the annoying 2022 Tundra video disappear, or will it continue to plague us throughout 2022? Also, will the scroll issues get fixed, so that we’re not posting comments on the wrong threads?

    • 0 avatar
      Adam Tonge

      P A I N

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      I have little control over that, it all comes from Toronto, though the issues with mobile and the site have been noted and are on my list for the next time I have a check-in with the Toronto team. (I’d have already mentioned it, but folks are off until next year).

      As for the scroll issue, thanks for pointing that out. I don’t think infinite scroll is going away, but we can always work to fix it so that it’s more clear which article you’re on.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      +2. These new ‘features’ have hurt the site, especially on small screens.

      • 0 avatar
        Tim Healey

        I think infinite scroll isn’t so bad, and it’s become industry standard, though it’s a problem on mobile and tablets I’ll let the devs know.

        The video is a separate issue and I’ll send feedback on to the right people.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          It’s just as bad if not worse on other sites. I understand that ads are what keep sites up and running, just don’t cram them down my throat making the sites unusable

          • 0 avatar
            PotLizard

            Hit the nail on the head — Ads are fine in principle and if anything, their presence means I’ll get to continue enjoying the content. But it’s completely unnecessary for ads to hijack the screen or otherwise affect the usability of the site, in such cases, the advertisers and ad agencies can go pound sand.

      • 0 avatar
        theflyersfan

        @SCE to AUX – +3. I find the only time I read and comment on this (and a few other) site is when I’m on my work or home PC. It is tough to read on a smaller screen with the never ending Tundra ad taking up the screen.

        SCE – Are you Penn State? Half of my old neighborhood outside of Philly flies their Penn State flags each weekend from September to January.

        • 0 avatar
          SCE to AUX

          @theflyersfan: I and Mrs SCE are Pitt alumni, but are not flag wavers for any school.

          Our kids went to three different schools, including Pitt and Penn State. We encouraged the education, not the affiliation.

          My observation is that PSU grads tend to be pretty rabid, but some of that went underground after the Paterno thing.

          A lesson from scandals is to never put heroes on a pedestal, despite our human nature to do so. We wouldn’t have to tear down statues of General Lee (the man, not the car) if they hadn’t been built in the first place.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff S

        I loved my 99 chevy S-10 extended cab with a 5 speed I4 one of the best running most dependable vehicles I ever owned. Also loved my first car a 73 Chevelle with a 350 V8 very smooth and quick. Like my curren rides a 2012 Buick Lacrosse and 2013 CRV.

        • 0 avatar
          JD-Shifty

          My 96 S-10 longbed with 4.3 auto was bought brand new and still my daily driver that I put about 100 miles on per day. It has 540,000 miles on it. I’ve saved hundreds of thousands of dollars and frequently drive past people who drive much newer vehicles that are broken down.

          • 0 avatar
            Jeff S

            Kind of wish I kept my S-10 which I gave to my nephew. I bought my S-10 new in April 1999 and gave to my nephew in late October 2019 after I bought my neighbor’s 2012 Lacrosse. My old S-10 is still running strong and looks like a new truck. I ordered a new hybrid Maverick which I hope is a good truck but my 99 S10 will always hold a special place along with my Grandad’s 63 IH pickup which my nephew now has as well.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      That ad is a mess and the scroll thing too. I wish the whole comments section would get overhauled but considering this site is free I have no right to complain. Yet here we are. Maybe pivot to business model were we pay to remove ads, like many apps do. I hate even suggesting it but the current situation is pretty crappy.

    • 0 avatar
      Argistat

      I think the Toyota marketing group is too dumb to realize that continuously pissing off every user of this site (I only use it via mobile) by popping up the same obnoxious auto-play video that you can’t scroll past week after week will cost them future sales. Maybe that gimmick works on TikTok but it won’t work here.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff S

        All I gather from the ad from the Toyota Tundra is that Toyota is worried about the success of the new Toyota Tundra with its polarizing design and turbo 6 that Toyota feels the need to bombard this web site with ads extolling the virtues of the new Toyota Tundra. Most of the readers of TTAC are not convinced and are actually turned off to Toyota products with these ads. Might be a good time for Toyota to tone down these barrage of ads before readers acquire a hatred of all things Toyota. A continued barrage of these ads might make me never even look at another Toyota product. Toyota needs to easy up on these ads.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    Will you guys continue to update the dashcam buyer’s guide post as new models come out? I installed a Vantrue S1 two-camera setup (not one of the models reviewed) in daughter No. 2’s 2014 Kia Forte, and it’s a pretty nice design. Their hardwire kit uses plug-in connector that piggybacks onto an existing fuse connector, and the package includes four different ones, to work with the four different types of fuses out there.

    The one thing I wish they’d offer is different length cables for connecting the rear camera to the front camera (as accessories). The one that comes with the camera kit is 20 feet long.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      We’ve been updating the commerce posts here and there over the past year, and we have plans for 2022 to be more diligent about updating the specific products more often. So the answer is yes, but it will take some time.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Which TTAC staff would actually pay to own a BEV as a daily driver?

    If yes/no/maybe, what would you need to change for that to happen?
    – price, range, charging options, more selection, peer acceptance, design, features, government involvement, safety, audio track, etc.

    No wrong answers here today, even if you play the 600-mile 5-minute fillup card, while towing 10,000 lbs at 80 mph in the winter. :)

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      I would, in the right circumstances — i.e. if I lived in a single-family home and could afford/install a Level II. Right now, in an older high-rise with no chargers in the parking garage, charging is painfully slow. There are chargers at the nearest Whole Foods, but it’s not super convenient to park and walk the 10-15 minutes home.

      I’d also hope for better charging infrastructure.

      If I was buying a BEV, I’d want at least 250 miles of range, for that reason. I do like the Mach-E a lot.

      Speaking of, I think Adam has investigated the Mach E.

      • 0 avatar
        Adam Tonge

        I have ordered a Mach E. We’ll see if I take delivery. I have a Maverick and Bronco on order as well. Both will be built before the Mach E.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          3 new cars?

          • 0 avatar
            Adam Tonge

            You can’t get a car that you want unless you order it. My Ford dealer encouraged me to order whatever I wanted and they will sell what I don’t take delivery of to someone else. I will probably take delivery of the Maverick in January, drive it for 6 months, then take delivery of a Mach E and sell the Maverick for more than I paid for it.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          “I have ordered a Mach E. We’ll see if I take delivery. I have a Maverick and Bronco on order as well.”

          My dear sir, did you happen to strike oil in your backyard?

          • 0 avatar
            Adam Tonge

            I ordered a Bronco on day 2 of ordering. I’ll take delivery of that. The question now is do I keep my Ranger, buy a Maverick, or buy a Mach E? It’s probably going to be Maverick because it’s the best all around vehicle of the 3 based on what we use it for.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Does your wife still have her MKT or is she sharing one of these?

          • 0 avatar
            Adam Tonge

            MkT was totaled by a distracted driver that rear ended it at 55+ mph and totaled 4 vehicles in the process. It was replaced by the inferior 2016 MKX that I thought we got a shit deal on because I only had a few days to buy a car. Turns out the market is now insane and we owe $10k less than trade in value.

            My wife will drive the Maverick or Mach E. And probably the Bronco when the weather is terrible.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Ok that’s starting to make sense and I’m sorry to hear of the accident – I hope everyone was alright. Maverick hybrid hands down, I wouldn’t touch a Mach-E for both financial and technical reasons. Here’s how they are doing:

            MY21 FORD MUSTANG MACH-E AWD 4D SUV PREMIUM

            12/1/21 $69,900* 57 – – EL/A Black Regular Northeast Albany
            12/27/21 $56,600 1,024 – – EL/A Gray Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/15/21 $56,400 1,107 – – NON/A Red Regular Northeast New England
            12/9/21 $52,200* 2,334 4.8 EL/A Black Factory Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/3/21 $57,200 2,727 5.0 EL/A White Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/10/21 $57,000 3,057 4.6 EL/A White Lease Northeast Pennsylvania
            11/30/21 $58,250 3,443 5.0 EL/A White Regular Northeast Philadelphia
            12/8/21 $60,600 4,297 4.9 EL/A White Regular Southeast Nashville
            12/17/21 $57,500 4,722 5.0 EL/A White Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/11/21 $57,500 5,175 5.0 EL/A White Regular Southwest Dallas
            12/1/21 $58,750 5,225 5.0 EL/A White Regular Southwest Dallas
            12/8/21 $58,000 5,256 – – NON/A Gray Regular Southeast Orlando
            12/14/21 $58,000 5,516 4.8 EL/A Gray Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/10/21 $59,250 5,932 4.6 EL/A Black Regular West Coast Nevada
            12/15/21 $57,750 6,820 4.7 EL/A White Regular Southwest Dallas
            12/8/21 $56,700 7,212 4.7 EL/A Silver Regular Midwest Kansas City
            12/28/21 $57,500 8,009 – – NON/A Black Regular Northeast Pittsburgh
            12/1/21 $54,000 9,349 4.7 EL/A Blue Regular Southwest Dallas
            12/21/21 $58,900 9,527 4.6 EL/A White Regular West Coast Riverside
            12/10/21 $56,300 14,571 4.2 EL/A Black Regular Northeast New York
            12/9/21 $52,800 16,541 4.3 EL/A Black Factory Northeast Pennsylvania

            There literally were no Maverick hybrids sold yet, here is the FWD in XL:

            MY22 FORD MAVERICK FWD 4C CREW CAB 2.0L XL

            12/21/21 $27,500* 39 4.8 4G/A White Regular Midwest Kansas City
            12/1/21 $28,500 55 5.0 4CY/A Blue Regular Southeast Orlando
            12/21/21 $30,000 67 5.0 4G/A Blue Regular Southeast Orlando
            12/14/21 $27,800 189 4.9 4G/A White Regular Southeast Georgia
            12/7/21 $27,500 195 4.8 4GT/A Black Regular Southwest San Antonio
            12/11/21 $27,500 254 4.8 4G/A White Regular Midwest Kansas City
            12/16/21 $26,000 3,991 5.0 4H/A Gray Regular Northeast Fredericksburg

            oh and AWD in XL:

            12/10/21 $33,200* 40 5.0 4G/A Gray Regular Southeast Tampa
            11/24/21 $35,200* 43 5.0 4G/A Green Regular Southeast Tampa
            12/17/21 $34,250* 48 4.8 4G/A Green Regular West Coast Nevada
            11/17/21 $36,500 60 – – 4GT/A Blue Regular Southeast Birmingham
            12/29/21 $35,000 75 5.0 4G/A Gray Regular Midwest Indianapolis
            12/3/21 $33,500 86 5.0 4G/A Gray Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/2/21 $35,500 209 – – 4GT/A Blue Regular Southeast Birmingham
            11/19/21 $34,750 993 5.0 4GT/A Green Regular Northeast Pennsylvania
            12/8/21 $32,500 1,975 4.8 4GT/A Blue Regular Southwest Dallas

      • 0 avatar
        SoCalMikester

        i really think plug-in hybrids should be more popular even with a short range. most days 30 miles is all i need for the day

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      I would buy an EV if boasted the same range, acceleration, refuel/charging time (in cold weather), and general comfort as a 2020 Chevrolet Impala. The manufacturer would also need to scale back touch controls and make it cost under $36k without government incentives. I understand this will have me waiting a while longer than the average person. But I occasionally cover A LOT of ground in a single day (600+ miles) and owning a vehicle where it’s technically quicker to repeatedly “fill up” to 50% than wait around for a full charge on a road trip feels nonsensical.

      Though I could be eating those words in a couple of years if gas prices continue climbing.

  • avatar
    tane94

    What MY 2000 or newer vehicle that is no longer in production do you wish were still being made? My choice would be the Dodge Magnum.

  • avatar
    Stanley Steamer

    Out of all available passenger cars/crossovers/suv/pickups/people movers/vans/etc available to purchase, past and present, is it possible to determine the safest passenger vehicle in the world?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Definitively? I’m not sure. I suspect someone with plenty of time on their hands and a good head for data and stats could run some sort of analysis using IIHS/NHTSA ratings. There maybe some content on the subject produced by consumer-facing outlets like Consumer Reports or Cars.com, but it probably wouldn’t answer your question.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      There are obvious caveats, too. The difficulty, if not impossibility, of comparing eras, for example.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Volvo or a large Mercedes.

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      Nope. But you can do testing to give you a general idea of how something stacks up vs a wall or something within its own weight class.

      If you’re worried, just buy the biggest/heaviest thing you can afford with the best crash ratings from the relevant agencies.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Is the Mach-E a Mustang or not?

    Wait…

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Which one should I buy
    Nissan Z
    Miata with roof
    Toyota 86/BRZ
    new upcoming WRX

    • 0 avatar
      Matt Posky

      The WRX is so so so ugly. But the model has historically been associated with the ugly stick and I’m told the new one is both very nice to drive and easy to live with.

      Unless you need 4-doors and all-wheel drive, get whatever one you can find the best deal on.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Well, the WRX is the odd one out there, with four doors and AWD. I also have not driven the new one, but most reviews I read were positive. I’m a fan of the outgoing model.

      The new Z hasn’t been driven by anyone in the automotive press yet, to my knowledge.

      I love the handling of the Toybaru twins, and the Miata is never a bad choice, though the roof might be tough if you’re tall. Really, you can’t go wrong with any of these cars.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Used C7 is the route I took. Granted its a bigger car both in size and price.

      I did the Z thing and drove a BRZ on track. The fun factor of the Miata comes down to access to roads – and I live in ruler flat FL so the only twists are highway off ramps. The new Z does fixes some of its flaws but not enough. If you looking at a WRX then the Golf R should be considered as well. Maybe add a used Cayman to your list too? Unless mid-engine + German is too scary, it was for me but my brother jumped in head first. I’ve driven his on track and its reputation for handling is spot on.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        I only like German cars but would not buy it.
        My problem even more broader though… I also like Jeep Gladiator. I can’t decide what do I like more – a man-truck like Gladiator with all the Jeepness of it, or a sports goodness like a small nimble car.
        Only thing I do know is that my car must have a manual transmission.

        • 0 avatar
          theflyersfan

          @slavuta – Mazda is tweaking the 2022 MX-5, especially in the name of better handling. There’s a couple hitting the Louisville area Mazda dealers in the coming weeks so I hope to get some time behind the wheel and compare to the 2020s I drove. And your list looks a lot like mine. I had the Integra on the list, but I think I’m going to have to see it in person before going all in.

          Of all of the cars there, I think the Mazda is going to give you the most fun for the money. The Nissan is probably going to be a blast to drive, but I can only imagine what the markups will be. I’m guessing $60,000 to start.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Best three-row vehicle (any three-row segment, any price point) you’ve driven in recent memory?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Oh, geez. Like seeming every other overfed and underpaid automotive journalist, I think the Kia Telluride/Hyundai Palisade are the best, especially under $60K. I also think the Toyota Highlander is really, really good. Just drove one this month.

      I also just hopped out of a Wagoneer. It’s pricey and awkward looking, but I liked its freeway ride and infotainment. It’s going to give Tahoe/Yukon a fight.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Dear TTAC,

    After hanging out on Reddit’s r/whatcarshouldIbuy -and absolutely cringing- what should the younger hs/college age newish driver buy/lease/do in the new year?

    Thanks,
    28

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      If new, I’d look at Elantra and Civic, though I haven’t driven the latter yet. If looking at slightly used, Civic remains a good choice. The Jetta isn’t bad, either, new or used.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Example of cringe: https://www.reddit.com/r/whatcarshouldIbuy/
      comments/rrsegx/1987_crown_vic_talk_me_out_of_it/

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      Kia Rio hatch. Small, well equipped, good to drive, and CHEAP. Tried my damnedest to talk my kid into one and failed, though I can’t really argue with what she finally got, which was an Elantra GT.

  • avatar
    MitchConner

    Don’t you guys in Canada get sick of seeing the Queen of England on your currency? It’s not like she’s over there going to Ottawa Senators games on a regular basis or anything. Why not give her the boot and put Wayne Gretzky or, better yet, his daughter Paulina in a swimsuit, on the 20?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Our list of contributing Canadians is down to about one these days. Steph took a gig outside the industry and Tim C. has many irons in the fire and just not enough time to contribute on the regular, though he’s still welcome to. So you’ll have to ask Matt Guy. Or our corporate masters in Toronto.

      • 0 avatar
        theflyersfan

        @Tim Healey – I’m drawing a total blank here – isn’t Tim the contributor from Prince Edward Island? I always liked how he wrote about Canada’s little (and hidden) province and was always the best place to recharge the batteries for a couple of weeks with no stress and a turned off phone while fishing in the north Atlantic.

        Hopefully Canada is easier to travel to this summer because that Island is yelling “come back!!!”

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      The old hockey arena in Winnipeg actually a huge portrait of Her Majesty hanging up.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    This seriously amazes me:

    https://www.copart.com/lot/70134871/clean-title-2006-porsche-cayenne-pa-pittsburgh-south

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Talk me about of this for the right money, I can source the roof assembly for $500 (wrong color, but whatever).

    https://www.copart.com/lot/69643661/salvage-2006-mercedes-benz-slk-350-pa-pittsburgh-north

    Wholesale on it is about 8,5, I figure retail is at least 10.

  • avatar
    Goatshadow

    When is this site getting redesigned? WordPress is the last thing you should be using right now. And these comments are a usability disaster. Don’t bother converting the comment contents over when you do redesign, btw.

  • avatar
    shangrimini

    any update on production, delivery of rav4 prime in canada, us, 2022?

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    A year or so ago you put us on notice that TTAC was going to become more selective in the articles you post. Was this to reduce workload to enable TTAC to become the 9 to 5, 5 day a week operation that it’s become?

  • avatar
    JD-Shifty

    “Kind of wish I kept my S-10 which I gave to my nephew. I bought my S-10 new in April 1999 and gave to my nephew in late October 2019 after I bought my neighbor’s 2012 Lacrosse. My old S-10 is still running strong and looks like a new truck. I ordered a new hybrid Maverick which I hope is a good truck but my 99 S10 will always hold a special place along with my Grandad’s 63 IH pickup which my nephew now has as well.”

    I’ve seen the 22k Maverick in articles but wonder if Id ever really find one. I am test driving an AWD Sienna next week. We’ll see

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    I’m wanting to develop a career as a “Loveable curmudgeon” is automotive writer a good entry-level position for that?

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      There are a lot of curmudgeons in automotive journalism. Same with sports, which I also covered in my younger days. I don’t think I’m a curmudgeon, but that’s just how I am wired, I think. The real question is — does journalism make curmudgeons, or do curmudgeons naturally gravitate to journalism?

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