Ford Stops Selling Cars… Others Will Follow

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The company which first successfully mass-marketed cars will soon no longer be selling any.

Well, not many.

Other than the Mustang and maybe a version of the Focus, the only “cars” Ford will be selling in the future will be jacked-up cars (crossover SUVs) and a few real SUVs – the ones based on trucks, like the F-150-based Expedition and Lincoln Navigator.

But bye-bye Taurus (again; this isn’t the first time the Taurus has been cut from the roster) as well as the rest of Ford’s non-crossover/non-SUV lineup.

The reason for the giving up on cars has to do with the giving up of buyers on cars. It’s not Ford cars, per se. It is cars, generally. Toyota and Honda are having trouble selling cars, too. Including two of their cars – respectively, the Camry sedan and the Accord sedan – which have for decades been the best-selling cars on the road.

But getting to be less so.

For example, in March Honda sold about 24,000 Accords nationwide. Last March (2017) Honda sold almost 27,000 of them. And back in March of 2014, they sold almost 34,000.

Sales of the best-selling (well, it was) Toyota Camry are also down. This March, about 35,000 were sold. Back in March of 2014, almost 42,000 were sold.

Both the Accord and the Camry are new models, too. The higher numbers listed above were for sales of the old models. Usually, when a popular car is given a major makeover, people buy more of them. The fact that people are buying fewer is, as the saying goes, not good news.

The news is worse over at Ford.

Well, for Ford cars.

Only about 3,100 people bought a new Taurus each month for the year to date.  Fusion sales are down by half (about 10,000 were purchased this past March vs. almost 21,000 back in March of 2014). The Fiesta’s free-falling, too: just under 5,000 of them sold this March vs. about 6,500 of them in March of 2014.

It’s hardly worth the effort. Which is why no more effort will be exerted.

Meanwhile, sales of the Expedition – a full-size SUV – have almost doubled over the same period. This March, Ford found buyers for about 5,600 of the just-updated 2018 Expedition (my review of this big ballsy bus is here) vs. 3,700 sold back in March of 2014. The Expedition’s upmarket twin – the Lincoln Navigator – is also doing even better. 

Now you know why Ford has decided to stop selling cars and focus – couldn’t resist – on SUVs (and crossover SUVs) instead. It is not unlikely that other car companies will follow this lead, possibly even Honda and Toyota. But the question which is rarely asked (to borrow a line from The Chimp) is . . . why aren’t cars selling well anymore?    

Could it be because they are too damned small?

When sedans ruled America’s roads, they were big. Six people could ride. Huge trunks, with plenty of room for whatever you needed to carry. And there were station wagons based on those cars, which had room for even more. The biggest of them could carry as many as nine people.

But they’re all gone now.

Why?

Did the market lose interest?

Certainly not. The interest merely shifted – to crossovers and SUVs. Which are big in the way that cars used to be. But aren’t anymore – for the most part – because of the pressure to make them ever-smaller, for the sake of achieving compliance with the government’s fuel efficiency decrees.

SUVs were born of these decrees. They came into existence as a way to get around the decrees – which initially targeted “passenger cars” but not “light trucks.” These “light trucks” were given enclosed beds, with seats bolted to them.

Voila, the SUV.

Crossovers – which came later – emulated the idea, but used cars as the building blocks. By this time, the fuel efficiency decrees applied generally – so the crossovers had to comply, too. But people had gotten used to – and really liked – the jacked-up ride height and even if the crossover was based on a smaller car, it still had much more room inside (especially for cargo) than a comparably-sized car. There’s only so much you can do with a trunk – especially if the car isn’t a full-sized land yacht such as average Americans were once able to buy.

But can’t afford to anymore because really big cars are almost all high-end (and high-cost) luxury cars well out of their financial reach.

Most current mass-market cars are mid-sized or smaller. The biggest of them have maybe 16 cubic foot trunks. Most are smaller than that. A same-sized (in terms of its footprint) crossover will usually have at least twice the space behind its back seats – and with those seats folded down, the available space opens up to three or even four times the space you get in the same-sized car’s trunk.

Crossovers and SUVs compensate for what’s been done to cars by Uncle.

And because of Uncle – because crossovers and SUVs now dominate the market – fewer and fewer people want to be riding low in the valley, in the shadow of all those jacked-up crossovers and SUVs. It’s hard to see around them and it’s alarming to see one of them closing at high speed in the rearview. If that crossover or SUV hits your car in the ass, you will – to quote Ivan Drago from Rocky IV – lose.

So it makes sense that Ford has decided to drop cars.

The market already has – because of what Uncle has done.

. . .

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123 COMMENTS

  1. It’s hard to imagine the iconic company of the Model T dropping cars in favor of trucks/CUVs. It’s kinda sad, really. Ford must have spent billions on development of models like the fusion, the focus, and the fiesta.

    The Fiesta ST in particular is beloved of magazine editors at places like Car and Driver for its insanely good handling and fun driving dynamics. Of course, “fun” and “driving” are not words that CLOVERS want to hear in a sentence together anymore, so we must all drive dull grey joyless CUVs to our cubicles.

  2. Really, the sedan has very little redeeming qualities that a crossover can’t offer. The only thing a sedan can offer is an arguably better driving experience and a little extra privacy with an enclosed trunk.

    • Hi C_lover,

      Sedans do generally handle better – but by that I mean handle at high speeds better. Most people don’t operate at speeds high enough to notice the difference.

  3. Not really related to this article but I had to pass along this missive I just read on my FFF email.

    To enact stand-by controls would mean putting into the law of the land a permanent endorsement of a basic tenet of socialism–the principle that control of the vital mainstreams of commerce and confiscations of the rights of private property are sound and just practices.

  4. Eric, I heard a commercial the other day that might interest you. It was for an app called the Fair app. You can basically lease a car for a couple of months. I thought “Uh oh, is the auto industry in that bad of a shape?”

    • I like how everything is an app now….

      No more “Call 1-800….” or “just go to http://www._____ and type in___”….

      No….no matter what they offer you- whether it be a simple clock or a gizmo that calculates the trajectory of your boogers, it has to be an app…so they can get inside your device, and lay their filthy hands on all of your info…..

      Of course, it doesn’t affect me, ’cause I don’t use no stinkin’ devices…..

      • The “word” itself irritates the ever living shit out of me; it’s the epitome of lazy-ass shitheads. “App” isn’t even a word, that’s how fucking lazy-ass it is. This country is turning into one big fat-ass, lazy-ass cluster-fuck. That’s why no one gives a shit that their civil liberties are disappearing, that we live in a police state, or anything else that doesn’t magically appear on their fuck-tardian “smart” phone. Bill is right, 80% of the population is too fat to fit in anything less than cargo van with garage doors on the side! Some lazy fat bitch didn’t want to leave her heifer-mobile for service today because she “would have to walk”. Jesus Christ, that would have probably killed her, or at least taken off about 1/4 ton of excess blubber! This lazy-ass shit it what people want, apparently, and they are about to get it now at 100 mph, up their lazy asses!
        I can’t feel sorry, or even give a damn about 1/2 this country’s population anymore, let alone what it has, or has not, to drive!

        • Hi Graves,

          Yup. Like so many other things, gross obesity has been normalized. It is routine to encounter people equivalent to two or three people. Remember when such people were rare? You and I and others our age can remember when the Skipper from Gilligan’s Island was considered tubby. Or Jackie Gleason. But they were only a few pounds over compared with the marbled mountains of flesh one encounters at Wal Mart and everywhere else today.

          I have no trouble fitting in any new car – even though I am much taller than the average man. But I am also not obese – and that is why I fit in almost any car.

          One of my friends – good dude, but severely overweight – literally cannot fit in probably every other car I get to test drive. It’s sad.

          • LOL, Eric. My best friend is a tub-O-lard too. Between him, and his recently-acquired wife and their 5 year-old, they comprise 800 lbs. That is SCARY! And I freak-out because of late, I weigh 13 pounds more than I did when I was 16.

            I remember in elementary school, in the early 70’s. Obesity was so rare- there was ONE obese kid in our school- and I still remember him, if only because he stood out because of obesity being so rare then- ‘specially among kids. (And he was a nice happy-go-lucky kid, too).

            Today, the one or two non-obese kids at any school would stand out…..

      • Nunzio,
        An app is what used to be called an application program, when computers wouldn’t fit in your pocket.
        It is impossible to use any communications network without getting some skin in the game.
        If it isn’t an app, what else would you call the necessary software to make any computer operate?

        • But the difference is, Beeeal, that the processing USED to take place on the vendor’s server, rather than on your device. i.e. your computer would just transmit the input data, and it would processed, and the necessary info returned to you, like when you order something on Amazon. No need to replicate that process on the computer/device/phone of every single customer….UNLESS one is just looking for a handy excuse to put a lot of other crap on your device, for purposes of snooping- which invariably almost all “apps” do- and if people would read the user agreements which they agree to when installing these “apps” they’d see that such is spelled out in black & white- albeit usually buried amongst a bunch of legalese.

          There’s no reason to have a program or application on your device, unless it is something that will be used when you are offline.

          • Businesses give away customized apps, Nunman, that only allow the user to access their website. It is a very reliable way to insure customer loyalty to a much higher degree than loyalty cards.
            A browser is an application program because it isn’t part of the OS.
            Anything that isn’t part of the operating system on any computer is, by default, an (app)lication program.

    • I’m sorry I used the word “app” here, but it is the features and content of this application that I really wanted the attention on. I don’t like what I think it represents.

  5. Eric,
    It could also be because, with diabetes becoming endemic, the population is getting too big to get into cars.
    It doesn’t matter to me. All of my Fords have been full sized vans. The smallest car I’ve owned was a 1974 Toyota Corolla.

    • that is a big part of it with all the fat slobs around but one thing I see is fat grey beard guys that never worked a day in their lives just got inheritance or got on disability buy a super duty heavy duty truck bragging they got 40000 lbs of torque pull down empire state building and NEVER do any work with the truck. so they think the truck makes them tough guys. even women want to act like men and soccer moms want to drive jacked up SUV. gas was cheap which led to that but it will get high and ford and others better keep the means to make cars again

      • Work? What’s that?

        Sounds like one of my nephews. Middle-aged asshole who has 3 kids by 3 different women (2 of whom now have baby niglets, to ease the transition to national slavery)- The dope has never even owned a home, but came into about $50K for some kind of bogus insurance settlement, and what does he do? Buys a fancy sports car!

        And sure, why not, when Uncle will give him our money for the other stuff- like a place to live and food for his mottley collection of mixed-race offspring, and free medical care, etc. etc.- thuis freeing up the actual cash for the goodies- like fancy cars……

        • No one ever said it better than the woman who owns and operates her own camping supply store in Twin Falls.
          She moved into a smaller store 10 years ago, so she wouldn’t have to have help.
          She said that “kids know a lot of four letter words, but none of them is work.”

      • Hi SPQR,

        Just yesterday, I found myself sitting beside a really nice ’76 Ford F truck at a traffic light. The thing was sanely sized. The glass around the cab was expansive. The bed walls were not as high as the cliffs of Dover. Then I thought about the 2018 F-150 that’s in my driveway now – they just dropped it off for me to write about – and my teeth began to ache…

        • Ha Eric: I got the same kind of comment last week, when I was at the dump w/my 02 Chevy S-10 2WD. Random guys said, “Hey, a truck you can actually load and unload!” Since my truck is only running on 2 and half cylinders, I am seriously debating getting it fixed, rather than buy a replacement. I was in a parking lot the other day and saw a nice ’06-’08 Ram 1500 4WD, and the gunwales of the bed are up to my neck! In the Wal-Mart parking lot the other day, I walked up to a Sierra 2500 4WD, and the gunwales were up to my forehead!!!!

          How do you load anything in those trucks? Can you get lowering kits for 4WD?

  6. Eric,
    Thanks, another great article. Gotta agree things keep getting more ridiculous. One thing that even compact sedans beat the mini crossovers is longer wheelbase, which results in a smoother ride and less wandering. I look at these short wheelbases and think “why in the world would I want to drive that thing?” That’s why we’ve stuck to mid size and compact sedans for my wife and errands around town. I keep my pickup safely in the garage except for towing and hauling, or to exercise it every couple of weeks.

    • Thanks, Vic!

      I also like a long-wheelbase car. I wish Ford had been able to keep the old Crown Vic going – or something like it. But CAFE and saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety (Uncle) killed that one, too…

      • Yeah Eric,
        The Crown Vic was a great car. When my parents lived in Vegas in the 90s, we toured all over the Southwest in their ’91 while they were in their RV. Great car, smooth, steady and reliable. And roomy.

        • The Second Generation Crown Victoria was to me at least, a very good looking car.

          Clean lines with no oddball features.

          Simple, straightforward horizontal beltline that results in a large rear window with good rear visibility.

          • The ’92 looked very youthful compared to its predecessor and successor. I actually remember people under the age of 50 buying them.

  7. Ford is one of three big “American-made” companies. Only this year they gave up and went to Mexico for their labor and gave up the label when they did so.
    GM tried the same thing. Every citizen here ought to reject these cars simply because the companies betrayed the American public when they decided to not produce them here.
    Consumer organizations that record down the mess of bad engineered cars place them at number one.
    That is they are the worse cars on the road for all three “American-made” automobile companies.
    And that comes from consumer complaints.
    The reason Toyota Camry is the most popular car on the road is “record of repairs”. Not that they are any angels either but they do put out a reasonable good car.
    I still own a 1995. I still own a truck from 1985 because it still runs.
    Ford 150s proved to be a good truck. So people came back and bought second and third vehicles.
    People do their homework on the internet and elsewhere nowadays.
    I had an accident of less than 5 miles per hour on my Nissan Frontier truck backing out of my driveway.
    The other vehicle was a Chevy Equinox. I think it almost totalled the Chevy. I got a serious bump on my back bumper. My back bumper is steel covered in chrome. Her vehicle is junk.
    There are a lot of government rackets going on and that is part of the problem.
    People do not want vehicles that cost too much money and one tap on the bumper totals the car.
    We cannot afford vehicles like this.
    My daughter has a Ford Taurus. It is basically a good car. But she is on her third starter motor. She is on her second alternator. No wonder they want to get rid of Taurus as well as other Fords.
    Piss Poor engineering on overpriced new cars puts salesmen out of business when they want to sell you a new one. You have to produce a car that lasts as long as the loan in order to get return sales and they think they are still the only market in town which they are not.
    Government strangulation of the industry does not help matters.
    We simply do not have the same rules here as they have in Japan.
    We have to obey Antitrust laws that the Japanese cars do not in the development of well engineered cars.
    Thus the big three are brought down by economics and bad judgement on the part of our Congress.
    If Ford wants my business they would have to change their entire way of doing things.
    Good riddance to dinosaur industry kept alive by government. Yes they loan our money to keep GM running.
    What I want in a car is engineering kept simple enough for anyone with a socket wrench to do simple maintaining of a car. Like keeping the spark plugs accessible. Like making it easy to change parts that might go wrong by making them accessible. Like doing away with complicated electronic computers that go wrong.
    There is engineering out there that will get good mileage. Try heating the fuel line so the gas is used more efficiently. Try dispersing the gasoline better in the cylinder so more of the gasoline ignites instead of going out the tail pipe.
    Try engineering a battery that works for 15 years on an average hybrid engine.
    Put your local engineering colleges to work on redesigning the gasoline engine and then give it to the American industry for free.
    Put out a product that people can survive a major accident in and still have a car to drive afterwards.
    But most important quit ham stringing our industry to the benefit of the foreigners.
    Quit putting very poor engineering in our cars and quit overcharging us for a new car.

    • There is engineering out there that will get good mileage. Try heating the fuel line so the gas is used more efficiently. Try dispersing the gasoline better in the cylinder so more of the gasoline ignites instead of going out the tail pipe.

      Wow! There’s still a dinosaur out there that believes this debunked crap. The IC engine isn’t going to get more efficient than what we already have.

      • The Honda CVCC engine from the 70’s achieved such efficiency and low emissions it was exempt from the pollution controls of the time. And it wasn’t some Rube Goldberg-esque monstrosity of complexity and electronic….just good old Jap engineering. They’ve (we’ve) never topped that….it’s only been downhill ever since.

        • Yup. I remember my parent’s ’76 Civic didn’t have a catalytic converter, so it could safely run leaded or unleaded gasoline. Two-speed semiautomatic transmission. We drove from Albany, NY to Daytona, FL (and back) in that little car!

      • We certainly won’t get a better IC engine while ignorant bureaucrats have more to do with their design than competent engineers are allowed to.

  8. But what happens when the price of fuel goes sky high not to mention the cost of maintenance? It may take a day for smart cars to get “from Albany to Buffalo,” but — “low bridge, everybody down” — at least they’ll be on the road.

    • Hi Imbroglio,

      The problem is that the government is interrupting market signals. Let the market determine how “efficient” cars ought to be – not Uncle!

  9. I lament just the opposite: car buyer demands have turned modest, economical little cars into much bigger and more expensive versions. The early Honda Civics looked like and were about the same size as potato beetles. Perfect. Easy to park and store, great mileage, etc. But they, like nearly all cars since, have gotten bigger, heavier, costlier and complexer, exactly those things I don’t want in my cheap transportation. I’ll do whatever hauling needs to be done in my aged Mopar trucks.

    As usual, though, the market hath spoken and I either float along with the mass tide or walk. I put over 300,000 miles on my Geo before it met its untimely demise on its side in a ditch but have two more parked in back. Even when gas was cheap I drove the Geo because I was cheaper yet. When gas prices reach the stratosphere again Americans, good automatons that they are, will rush to buy small cars again. But there won’t be any.

    • I agree: Seems to me that especially, the Japanese nameplates start off small, then grow larger and larger, and eventually a new model comes in as the “small” car. Examples abound: Toyota Corolla to Yaris, Nissan Sentra to Versa, Honda Civic to Fit. For the domestics, sorta the same thing, except they bring in a new/different model, usually from an overseas mfr. OBTW, they also do a completely horrible job at this, all of those first tier small cars with domestic brands are ALL pos’es: Chevy Aveo vs Cruze, Ford Festiva/Aspire vs Escort. The key to those is be sure they are NOT made overseas. I believe the new Chevy Spark and Ford Fiesta are US-made, and they are leaps and bounds better than the old Aveo/Festiva lineup.

      • Most of those changes were not driven by the manufacturers, but by the buying public. Yesterday’s Civics have grown to the size of yesterday’s Accord, And today’s Accord is about the size of yesterday’s full size Fords.

        WHY? Because the ones who had the little cars ten years ago now want the larger versioins. So they make them, and they get bought.

        • Tio, the public doesn’t know what it wants half of the time. It’s wants and desires these days are created by reactions to what industries and Uncle does [e.g. raise gas prices…they want small cars again…] and by what advertising tells them they should want [Which is why, for the last 40 years, instead of using valuable ad space to extol the virtues of their products, advertisers instead use psychology and imagery to sell a “lifestyle’ which they want you to associate with their product…]

          Case in point: When they first came out with front-wheel drive, was it because people were demanding that someone invent and implement it? No. It was invented and implemented as a cost-saving measure for the manufacturers, and then any virtues it had were wildly promoted [Good traction in snow, no hump in the middle of the car…so they could fill the space with a center console anyway…] while negative aspects were kept mum [Not as durable as rear-wheel drive; tire wear problems…] and it was promoted as the latest and greatest thing since sliced bread, so that suddenly everyone “wanted it”- but if it hadn’t been for the TV commercials and ads disguised-as-journalism in car magazines, etc. no one would have ever said “Gee, I sure wish they’d make cars with front-wheel drive!”.

          You can find a documentary on Youtube about this kind of stuff, and how Edward Bernays (Sigmund Freud’s nephew) used psychology to control society and politics through advertising and publicity stunts/psy-ops/propaganda, etc. -it’s called “Century Of The Self”. One of things it shows is how he even got smoking to not only become acceptable among women, but even desirable- at the behest of the tobacco companies, and how simple it was to do so.

          People are controlled to a level few of us even realize- and it’s been going on for almost 100 years now.

    • Though I’d never drive one, I do miss seeing [i.e. people having the option of buying] those small, simple, light, rear wheel drive Jap cars of the 70’s! So simple; so economical! Cars that could get 40MPG, haul 4 people and/or lots of cargo; and there wasn’t a thing on ’em that a competent teenager couldn’t fix with basic tools, on the rare occasion that they’d break! Deathtraps, yes…but no more so than a motorcicle, and what business is it of Uncle’s the risks we choose to take?

      • Or the Chevy Chevette. I had an ’80 Chevette that got 40mpg, could haul 4 people but not a lot of cargo. I bought it with 40,000 miles on the clock, beat the shit out of it for a few years and sold it with over 100,000 miles. In the time I owned it I had to repair a wire in the distributor and a broken link pin in at the bottom of the 4 speed shifter. Total cost of those repairs were under $100.

        Too bad they can’t make small and simple like that today.

          • They were tough little cars- but they were to driving what Draino is to eating!

            I actually bought one a few years ago for $500 in nice shape. Always hated ’em, but thought’d be cool to have a cheap retro car just for fun. Got bored with it adfter driving it about….once. Put it on Ebay and sold it for almost 5 times what I paid for it. Now I almost have a favorable opinion of ’em 😀

      • A buddy of mine has an old Toyota Corolla lift back that still gets over 50 miles to the gallon. No AC, and it’s a little dusty, but it runs great with over 350k miles.

  10. One reason for the demise of cars is that you are compelled to buy things at Walmart or Costco that need to be carted home in big boxes.

    • Never liked cars after real crossovers became popular in the ’90’s. We owned a Tahoe and a Blazer way before GM went b’rupt, then we switched to x- overs Sorrento’s and Tucsons and never looked back. Plenty of cargo space for hauling stuff home. Five year warranty on Kia and Hyundai. Wealthier folks drive real SUV’s on truck frames, and can afford to pay for the gas. Top tier gas must be used in all newer vehicles.

  11. ..can you imagine if people were allowed to build cars and sell them. The cottage industry of innovation that would. Spring up, with the technology and information sharing That is available for almost everyone with a desire and know how. It would be no time that they would be 3D PRINTING car bodies and such. But …..they regulate coffee in the waiting room for Christ sakes …..there is no hope.

  12. I think a major contributing factor to the elimination of cars in Ford’s lineup has to do with with the brutality with which speed limits are now enforced on government highways.(maybe add urban congestion too which didn’t exist to the degree it now does 40 years ago)

    Policing speed and decaying infrastructure has effectively helped to make vehicles appliances. Since it’s a 6 point violation to go over 80mph in many states, there’s no room for even a quick blast in your average car before entering legal jeopardy.

    So, if your opportunities to explore your cars performance on the street are few and far between and filled with legal risk, you might as well not have to “fall” into it’s seats and instead enjoy the seating benefits of a high roll center SUV(or pretender) since you’ll be droning on in traffic and not doing anything out of the ordinary during your drive, let alone zinging it around a corner.

    Boring vehicles, many of which are “pretenders”(crossovers)- for the down trodden/over policed masses.

    They’ve rolled over and are playing dead. No excitement wanted as it’s too costly.

    • Hi Ho hum,

      I agree with you. Decades of browbeating about “defensive” (i.e., passive) driving and a system which crucifies anything other than languid, slow-motion mindless deference to all Traffic Rules as “aggressive” or “reckless” driving has had its desired effect.

      Cars have not only become appliances, the people within have become meatsacks.

    • Valid point, there. I used to LOVE driving real CARS…. Jaguar, Rover sedans, Porsche, the English sports cars, Volvos and Mercedes… but these days with bounty hunting revenooers with their blue blinking lights have made such sport potentially dangerous. Get caught 20 over the posted artificially reduced maximum posted, insurance can double, and the fines can bankrupt all but the wealthy, which class I’ve never occupied. Last “moving violation” was back in 1994, despite te fact I rarely drive legal” even today. But I’ve grown content to potter elong just a tick or three over posted, in some older thing that runs well and is paid for, and happens to deliver a great return on a gallon of fuel, whether its petrol or diesel. I refuse to feed the porkers.

      • Morning, T!

        Ho Hum’s point is depressingly on the money. Combine silly speed limits with statutes that define as “reckless” exceeding them by more than 20 MPH – and you have a recipe for behind-the-wheel ED. Example: The three lane Interstate spur near me (I-581) is still posted 55 MPH. It is an Interstate highway, no different than I-81 (which it connects with) where the limit is 70. But if you drive 76 MPH on I-581, you can be charged with “reckless” driving because 76 is 21 MPH over the posted limit. They can arrest you. Take you to jail. Even if they don’t, the “reckless” cite is catastrophic. You must hire a shyster (at least $750) to try to get the charges reduced because if you’re convicted, you will be paying double (at least) what you currently are forced to pay for car insurance. Plus a big fine from the court. Plus the court may suspend your “privilege” to drive as well.

        It can easily amount to many thousands of dollars – as bad as a DWI conviction.

        This is why people are cowed.

        It’s understandable, but depresses the Hell out of me.

        • eric, seems like you devoted an issue to Patrick George of Jalopnik who got caught doing 93 in Va.

          I can remember a time in Tx. when somebody got caught well into the 3 digits a butt chewing resulted with a ticket you paid easily.

          I and a friend who lived near me got in our cars(67 Malibu, 66 SS Chevelle 427) at 3am and raced from the signal light downtown out well into the country. We were running straight exhaust so we didn’t have to phone anyone we were coming…..fast as we could. A couple blocks before the edge of town was a truck stop all the late nighters were in including the sheriff.

          When we went by with speedo’s buried I remember seeing the sheriff standing there with everybody else watching a neck and neck race. There wasn’t a winner, never was one with those two cars. We came back by a few minutes later, bofus out of gas and coasting. I could see people laughing….including the sheriff and shaking their heads.

          Just another Saturday night when boys just wanted to have fun. BTW, the sheriff never said word one about it.

          https://jalopnik.com/never-speed-in-virginia-lessons-from-my-three-days-in-1613604053

          • Morning, Eight!

            Damn, I can remember days like that myself. Sad they’re gone. Like being able to get on an airplane without a stranger fondling one’s crotch. And being able to ignore a cop if the cop couldn’t come up with some legitimate legal reason to hassle you.

            Sigh.

            • I’m glad I got to experience the America idealized in the American Dream during my lifetime.

              Memories of hopping in one’s car and going for a drive without wondering whether one might get pulled over by a cop and winding up shot to death for no reason whatsoever.

              How sad to think that it’s now a way of life that is “Gone with the Wind”.

              I sometimes wonder whether it was real. Did I just imagine it? Was it all an elaborate false memory?

              But then one realizes that no, once upon a time, a far freer America did exist. We lived it. We reveled in it.

              But now it’s gone, perhaps never to return within our lifetime. It’s tragic beyond words, and makes me indescribably sad.

              • So true Bevin! I’m not condoning or glorifying this in the slightest, but when I was in high school it was quite common for my peers to undergo the humiliation of having to dump out all their alcohol as well as their dope on the ground. That was a “bust” to the ego, and a minor dent to one’s wallet sometimes. Now, you get a one way trip to jail, your wheels are sold at auction and you take the bus for the rest of your life.

                • The saddest part about all this is that “we”, meaning “the masses”, not the vanishingly few who know better, allowed this to happen.

                  The mass belief in the Myth of Authority reifies the Leviathan State, Homeland Security, the TSA, cops who casually murder unarmed individuals merely because they “feared for their lives”.

                  • When I was a kid, I used to wonder how things ever got to this point (similar to the point it is now at here) in Nazi Germany.

                    Now, having seen it played out here in what must be a very similar way, I understand.

                    Once the masses get the majority of their information from a pro big-government media/propaganda organ, it is easy.

                    The gross abuses perpetrated by the state and it’s mercenaries are simply not kept off of the average person’s radar.

                    Police killings of civilians are “only something that happen to black drug dealers”, because the myriad more frequent abuses of the average citizen are simply never reported by the major news sources; and those who oppose the infringement of their liberties and privacy must either be “criminals or have something to hide”, since those are the only types ever being shown as being victims.

                    After all, “Why would anyone oppose that which is being done to keep us safe by the Protection Squadron?”, or as it is called in German “Der Shutzstoppel” or SS for short.

                    Any attempt to enlighten people is met with the attitude of “That is not a trustworthy reliable source of information, but just tin-foil hatters who hate the brave heroes who are keeping us safe”!

                    Such a system is self-perpetuating, since to be counted a trusted source, one must spend years and lots of money acquiring a degree to be a “journalist” and then work for a “trusted news source”, and if one does not propagate the required storyline of highly selective BS and lies by omission, they are quickly dismissed by “the trusted news source” and become independent “tin-foil hatters”.

                    People think they are so educated and sophisticated, but in reality, such a system (and it applies to just about all all industries and institutions) is nothing more than a dressed-up version of the guilds of the Middle-ages, which existed to closely control participation in all occupations, and keep the public in ignorance except for their own atrea of specialty, while maintaining the status-quo of the king and the Catholic church.

                    • People think they are so educated and sophisticated, but in reality, such a system is nothing more than a dressed-up version of the guilds of the Middle-ages, which existed to closely control participation in all occupations, and keep the public in ignorance

                      Dead on.

                    • Morning, Nunz!

                      Yes. I’d also add that the system depends on most people never developing the capability to think. I mean in the old-timey, classical Liberal (18th century/humanist) manner. That is to say, conceptually. Applying a principle to particular things. Most Americans are morally unconscious precisely because they never developed the habit of thinking conceptually. That is why they are “all over the map” and do not see the (to us, obvious) contradictions of their various positions (e.g., the “conservative” who says he believes in liberty but wants to have people who do things with their bodies he disapproves of put in cages; and the “liberal” who preens about gay rights and other such idiocies).

                      Government schools exist precisely to prevent the development of critical/conceptual thinking. To instill rote knowledge, in order to create – as George Carlin put it – obedient workers.

                    • So true, Eric!

                      “Obedient workers”

                      John Dewey and the host of commies who made the pooblik skools into what they are today, did not even mince words…..they openly admitted that the primary function of the schools was to train children to be on-time and do what they are told, etc. so that they would be adapted to a life of working in factories and offices.

                      Of course they have to squelch critical thinking. Why would anyone who is capable of critical thought, trade their valuable time for some hourly pittance, and then have half of that taken from them by Uncle?

                      My mother is a product of the first generation of these modern schools from the FDR era…

                      To THIS DAY she still uses the term “good worker” to describe what she considers to be a positive attribute of someone’s character. To her, it doesn’t matter if you spend your life working for minimum wage, as long as your a “good worker”.

                      And ironically, I think it’s even gone downhill from there. At least back then, the schools did manage to at least turn the children of immigrants into somewhat useful functional adults…..

                      Today, by contrast, they’re turning out kids who are totally dependent and who can’t do anything- and now the only things the children of immigrants are being assimilated to, are socialism and our bastardized degraded culture.

  13. I think that Ford has put some effort into determining how much demand there will be for the 53 mpg Obummer Safety Mobile which they need to come up with in just a few short years. Then comparing that against how much money they need to spend to make a heavy safety car which can’t get out of its own way. The cost benefit analysis woukd have determined that there will be few buyers of such automotive turkeys. Obvously, people would rarher drive larger cars which we ate not allowed to buy.

    So Ford decided to focus their marketing elsewhere in the world.

    I expect that GM and Chrysler might make similar decisions.

    • Hi JvG,

      My prediction: This has to stop, because it can’t go on. Either sanity will be restored to a meaningful degree – or most people will simply no longer buy new cars.

      I was talking with some friends last night about trucks. About the fact that you have to spend well in excess of $30,000 to get into the least expensive 1500 with any capability (V8/4WD) and realistically, more like $40,000-plus.

      For a truck.

      Family cars now come with micro-turbo fours and ten speeds.

      6-8 air bags and if two of them deploy, the car is in peril of being totaled unless it’s no more than a few years old.

      An analogy: Imagine if the government mandated minimum square footage for new houses such that everyone had to buy at least a 2,500 sq. ft. home and then the finance system wheedled people into … financing granite counter tops and soaring atriums and other such they really can’t afford…

      Wait. Whoops! They already do that, too…

      • Eric, I think THAT is exactly the point of all the car regulatory BS- to slowly phase-out private cars for the working classes; get everyone dependent on “[m]ass transit” and ride share, and living in tiny boxes in crowded cities where they walk and bicycle everywhere in their very limited sphere of existence.

        Heck, most of the good old “old cars” that are long-term sustainable are either rusted away or so valuable because of their scarcity that they are not practical as daily drivers…and it’ll be getting worse, obviously, as more people figure out the obvious.

        I like the way you tie houses into this, too! Same deal: When do you see a modest 2 bedroom 1000 sq. ft. house being built in a populated area anymore? Many places now have minimum square-footage requirements…..and essentially demand that all houses be McMansions. Can’t afford that? Then it’s subsidized low-income housing for you!

        No matter how ya slice it, they’re using their usual bag-O-tricks- gradulism- to herd everyone itno highly controlled, high-density environments…while making it seem as though it’s just a natural organic thing that “the people want”…..because unlike we here, most people do not connect the dots between all of the legislation/regulation, and it’s true overall long-term intent and consequences.

        Yet another reason why there’s no fighting it: Can’t get people to fight something which they won’t even acknowledge exists. And even when you point this stuff out to them, they still deny it, because it’s not stated for them, from the source, in black and white. They’ll give their kids lives to fight Uncle’s causes…so they’re not going to believe you or I when we show them that Uncle is really up to no good.

  14. On the bright side, Ford does have some exciting utilities for the debt serfs to look forward to. Soon, they will be launching the new RWD-based Explorer, which will offer a performance upgrade. The Bronco should be very exciting. Ford has a Raptor model planned for that along with a Bronco-mini called “Maverick”.

    Since most of Lincoln is under-performing, expect Lincoln to be turned into an American Range Rover (good move, IMO).

    • Pfffft! Yeah…no thanks! Li’l 4 cyl or maybe Crappy V6 injuns with turbos and direct injection and variable valve timing, and 9-speed automatic trannies, with aluminum bodies to save 100 lbs. (which makes absolutely NO difference in MPGs, but sure makes a difference if ya need body work! $$$$$$)- with delicate drive-trains with traction control and stability control and tire-pressure sensors….and 13 airbags and a back-up camera and automatic braking, and lane-keeper, and a touchscreen…..

      Just the above is enough to constitute the price of an entire car…and we haven’t even gotten to anything remotely necessary for the operation of the vehicle….

      THAT’s why Ford doesn’t want to build cars anymore. How can ya pack all of that into a $15K car, when all that stuff alone costs $15K? They need to sell $40K+ vehicles to even make it worthwhile, and who the hell is going to pay $40K or more for a Ford sedan?

      They’ll soon run out of people who are willing/able to afford the SUVs (especially when the credit dries up), and then they’ll likely ax those, and just make fleet vehicles….cop/government SUV, and pick-ups and vans.

      • BTW, they’re also replacing the amazing, proven 6.8L V10 with a 7.0L V8 with…..direct injection.

        I know there are some auto executives left that wish the industry had fought this shit from the beginning. The only problem is, they would have been branded evil by the consumer protection commies, which the public is programmed to believe. They must not care for their customers’ lives for refusing to put 13 airbags in a car! What about the chiiilllldren?!?! That kind of irrational BS.

        • The 6.8 is a piece of junk, especially the 3-valve version. I’ve lost count of how many I’ve done that have dropped valves into the cylinder and either spit pieces back into the intake to mess up other cylinders or crack the block.

          • I used to drive one occasionally. I’ve never seen a bare pickup use that much fuel as it does. The company owner didn’t put a battery on it for a couple months simply because he’s such a cheapskate he doesn’t want to buy gas for it. I used my own pickup in its stead and was glad to do so. That pickup also rode like a wagon and wandered around over the road with 165,000 easy miles on it.

            • 8, I just don’t get the disparity between yours and mine experiences with Ford trucks! Ones I’ve had all had at least 165K on ’em when I got ’em. Ride beautiful, and exceptin’ for my current F250 which blew a tranny (only because it had been owned by a 15 year-old before me), I’ve NEVER had to do a major repair on a Ford pick-up or van. My friend criss-crosses this country with an old F350 with the 7.3, towing 20K lbs. Has half a million miles on the beast, and almost as many on the former one, and exceptin’ fer all the PITA 7.4 high-pressure injection BS and sensors and oil leaks…never has a problem. I just don’t get it, unless the trucks you’re talking about are abused and neglected because they’re driven by employees who don’t care…and even then, my friend is pretty rough on his….

                • No, it’s more than that, BILL.

                  We’re talking about quantifiable stuff here. I’m sure 8 knows what he is talking about when he says they wander. OTOH, I’ve always been very sensitive to steering/tracking myself.

                  There’s more than preference here. Maybe it’s environment, or what the truck has been used for, etc. etc. but I’d say the dis[arity in our observations is real.

                  Maybe it’s just the way a little truck feels after you’re used to driving a big one with a lot more wheels.

                  But sheesh, give 8 and myself more credit than to merely say it’s just personal preference!

                  • 8 deserves more credit than you have ever earned.
                    You can do the same things with a Ford, Chevy, GMC, or Ram, in the same way as you can do the same thing with a Freightliner, Mack, Peterbilt, International, Kenworth, or Autocar. The only difference between them is engineering style, which can’t be anything but a matter of preference.

                • You know too, Bill….

                  8 often says that he noticed the big change to overt police state after 911 on GWB’s shift.

                  I say I noticed the big change in the mid 80’s on Ronnie Ray-gun’s shift.

                  Is it a mere difference of opinion? Is one of us wrong?

                  No.

                  In NYC (where I lived at the time) and in other leftist places, like CA and TA[TAxachussetts] etc. those changes WERE implemented much sooner than they were in TX or KY (Which was still lagging behind when I moved here just after 911- and still is somewhat, compared to most other places- thankfully).

                  So you see, 2 people can have contradictory experiences, and yet both still be correct…..

                  • The difference is in your different levels and competence in discernment, not to mention a totally different point of view.
                    The big change that I have noted came in the first term of the first Republican traitor in the White House, long before there was a public school system to dumb anyone down.

              • He’s likely had his experrience on the 150 series rigs…. I’ve never had much resppect for ANY of the 150 series from any of the big three. 250 is marginal, 350s are about bulletproof.
                I bought an E 350, now 20 years old, at 130K, has Powerstroke 7.3, for a fair bit under ten grand. That was in .05. Now has 345K on it, I’ve done almonst nothing to it. Ball joints some years ago, a couple glow plug relays, finally rebuilt the turbo last summer at about 330K. STILL does not need oil added between changes, and I have extended change interval to 25K miles. Oil remains pretty clean between changes even with that interval. Had to replace vacuum pump, too. Oh, and the starter finally packed in a year ago. At 340K. It always starts, runs well, leaks nothing, handles well….. mileage has dropped off since I got it, but I attribute most of that to the changes in fuel formulation, incliding the low sulfur content. Just does not have the calories in it any more. And I have worked it HARD. Long highway trips with a huge trailer, GCW at about 26K. Stupid thing STILL gets 16 mpg moving that much down the road!! My old Kenworth drank a gallon in only 6.5 miles running empty at about the same GCW. I’m thinking about finding another to buy and park as a standby in case….. I also learaned on a road trip to Texas a year ago that the silly thing has passing and hill power at 85 mph. Surprised me.

                • Tionico, I think you summed it up for part of it anyway. It’s only been 25-30 years everybody changed to 3/4 or one tons.

                  I never liked the twin I beam bs up front, nor the way one rode or handled and working a half ton hard isn’t in the 150 playbook, never has been since I’ve been alive. The slushomatics give up early and their gas engines suck the big one. Ever change a Chevy water pump? A Ford water pump?

                  The Powerstroke is another beast altogether and the only Ford I’d drive.

                  The V 10 pickup I spoke of has bumpsteer out the wazoo, something the same year model and a 100K more miles the Duramax doesn’t have and probably never will. It’s “up on it’s tippy toes” rear suspension wise, rough.

                  For decades I fought overheating Fords(150’s) among other problems including bad carbs back in the day and the bad auto-trans they had. Now take that same thing with a 250 on the side, a 390 V8 and a 4 speed manual and you had a good pickup.

                  In Texas a/c is a big deal, something Ford never had in much supply before the 80’s or at least they didn’t last long.

                  I wish I had my old Turbo Diesel back. It got 16 mpg empty, same as the little Nissan I had.

                  It drove well, better than the Z 71 I now drive.

                • bevin, I left a comment somewhere else along these lines. Our generation has witnessed a change no nation should ever make……or have made for it I suppose.

                • Tionico, you must be close to my age and probably recall when Super Duty was a specific truck…as in TRUCK. It wasn’t a silly ass nameplate on a muscled up looking pickup, it was literally a truck, a 1.5 Ton truck that you had to have a commercial license to drive.

                  A friend had one(straight front axle, a veritable truck)that did nothing but pull a large equipment trailer hauling a backhoe every day. Rarely did you see truck and trailer parted.

                  It had a good truck engine(390) and a heavy duty 4 speed. It was easy to spot sitting up taller on the larger wheels and tires, larger rear end and straight axle front. It was Super Duty.

                • Tio. your E350 sounds EXACTLY like the one a friend of mine has, which he got from another friend of mine…same price…same mileage, everything!

                  He used to get Chevy vans, and kill them in short order. Got this E350 in early 00’s, and has never needed another van since.

                  He’s since switched his preferences and has only Ford trucks now.

                  I was going to say that I’ve never owned a 1/2 ton P/U…and I haven’t. Always 250s/350’s- but I did have a half-ton van….E150- bought when it was 3 years old. Sold it 2 years ago…had it 15 years (longest I’ve ever kept a vehicle) and it had 300K miles on it and still ran like a top- and it was the 4.6 gas job!

                  I regret selling it. Should’ve kept it.

          • Grant, ALL 3-valve VCT engines suck, and drop valves.

            I have the good old non-VCT 2-valve V-10, and I love it. If I were planning on staying in this shit-hole of a country, I’d be stocking up on ’em.

            They actually get slightly better MPGs than most V-8’s I’ve owned…and if Ford didn’t gear all of their trucks so damn low, they’d get downright good MPGs.

            • I’ve had all the mod motors drop valves 2, 3 and 4 valve. Never had a 5.4 3v drop a valve. always the VCT phasers which the v-10 doesn’t have but the 3v v10 always drop the valves on 2,3, or 4 cylinder. They are recalled in the commercial F59 chassis and the F650-750 only. Worked on my fair share of them in 20 years at a Ford dealer the only one worth a damn is the 4.2 2v or 4v, or the 6.2.

              • Grant

                Hmmmm…I have a local friend who had a valve drop in 3V 5.4. Heard of lots of others too. I’ve always been leery of ’em. I’m no fan of aluminum motors, period…but I’ve been very lucky with Tritons. Never even had the dread shooting spark-plug problem- not even on a 5.4 in a van, on which the #7 plug appeared to have never been changed in 175K miles. Got that sucker out…never saw an electrode so shriveled! Put some anti-sieze and a new plug, and she was good to go (Someone had paid a lot of money for fleet maintenance, and apparently got a very lazy mechanic!)

                Tritons owe me nothing, but give me iron engines, instead of aluminum and plastic! Who the hell even makes iron engines anymore though?

  15. Was at the mechanic today getting my Uncle-mandated saaaaaaaafety and emissssssssssionsssss inspection.

    In former days waiting rooms would have pots of coffee & white styrofoam cups. You could pour yourself a cup of black Joe at your own leisure.

    In our progressive day today the “healthy inspector” thugs have made simple coffee pots illegal without a bloated & expensive “food service license”. So instead they are forced to use expensive, plastic Keurig machines. The K-cups are $0.50 a pop, which means they have to stick the machine behind the counter, because it’s cost-prohibitive to let people abused the machine.

    As a result of Uncle, business costs increase, which are passed on to the customer. Convenience is diminished along with all common sense. AND, the Uncle who is so concerned with our environment has inadvertently forced a system where instead of 1 compostable coffee filter being sent to the landfill, we have 16 discarded K-cups polluting the earth for all eternity.

    • Man! Ain’t THAt irony! Uncle, as usual, in the name of “saaaaaaaaafety” [picture Eric saying it!] forces ’em to use filthy Keurig machines…which foster mold and bacteria…instead of good old coffee urns/makers! As is the case with most things Uncle does…the very opposite of the stated goal is usually achieved.

      This just serves to prove how far gone Americans/Westerners are. Regulating coffee…while your getting an inspection to drive on the roads you paid for, for which you had to obtain a license and buy insurance and pay a yearly registration fee/tax…..and no one rebels……

        • Hey, ya think that’s absurd, Kevin? How about this?:

          Earn an honest living and provide for you and yours, and if you fail to “contribute” 50% to Uncle, it is a “crime” and you will go jail; but have 7 kids and sit on the couch and watch Orca…err…Oprah all day, and Uncle will give you someone else’s money and everything you and yours need to live a higher standard of life than many working people, gratis….and that is NOT a crime….

          Own a house and live in it as a bachelor- one person, and pay thousands of dollars per year in ransom….err..property taxes to send your neighbor’s kids to the government schools of which you don’t approve……..but be like my sister’s former neighbors, with 11 kids, and pay no taxes, and have all of your kids “edumacated” for free….

          It’s INSANITY.

          This is beyond communism…..at least the commies just content themselves to take your money, and don’t regulate as many of the things ya do.

          • Dead on brother. I respect communist leaders for at least being forthright before they starve and murder you. We get hypocritical politicians telling the sheeple that they are free.

            I will never again stand for the “Pledge of Alleeeeeegents”. “Land of the free”? Right. Forcible stolen from. Spied on by the NSA. Harassed by men & lesbians in blue costumes on the roadways. Forced to pay for gov’t skooling camps. Locked behind bars for growing plants and trading plants. Locked behind bars for so much as talking back to an “LEO”. Forced to give $10,000,000 a DAY to Israel, who uses that money to occupy and trap Palestinians in a hell from which there is no escape.

            Oh, and let’s all applaud the military “SERVICE”-men on every flight, for bravely complying in murdering civilians across the globe for no fucking reason.

            It all starts with a damn K-cup. And then the snowball get really really big.

            • So true, Kevin. And that hypocrisy kills me! That they have the gall to even speak of “freedom” while they are peddling a tyranny that would have Hitler and Stalin salivating!

              And that most people are so brain-dead, that they actually buy into it! “It’s a free country, right?”!

              Oh, and don’t even get me started on “our” mercenary killers! I was just talking to someone T’other day who was lamenting about something she read- an account of some of “our boys” “over there” who happened to suffer some injuries when a local lobbed a small crude bomb into their camp.

              I said “Gee, imagine that! The poor sport was upset and resorted to violence just because ‘our boys’ had invaded their country! Talk about flying off the handle!…”

              Next time I encounter that person, I’m going to say “Yesterday I defended my home!” and when she asks for the details, I’m going to say “Well, I drove to the city and hour and a half away, and broke into this black guy’s apartment, and shot him, and killed him, and wounded his family and neighbors who tried to intervene!”.

              And when she asks how that constitutes defending my home, I’ll simply say “Well if I hadn’t had done it, he would have come here and broken into my home!”.

              Lets see how it works when the shoe is on the other foot!

              But it rarely gets to that point, ’cause when they see any sort of logic coming which they can’t refute, they just get mad, rather than addressing the obvious contradictions in their own logic.

              • Nunz and Kevin R, an excellent conversation. You both have it right.

                As for standing for the Pledge of Lies, it is both pathetic and disgusting watching the sheeple mindlessly braying about their loyalty to their own tormentors. Like sheep swearing loyalty to the wolves.

                • I have to laugh out loud every time I hear some local speaking of quasi “freedom” and instilling “good old conservative values” in their kids, which always includes having them mindlessly recite the Pledge Of Allegiance at the government conformity factory.

                  Doesn’t seem to bother ’em a bit whether they’re pledging allegiance to Obozo or GWB or Slick Willy or Trump and to the military-industrial complex and Israel for which they stand…nor that the stupid thing was written by a socialist- Francis Bellamy…..

                  • Since most people place themselves on the left-right political spectrum, which is socialist from the communists on the left to the fascists on the right,
                    most of them consider that to be patriotic rather than jingoistic.

    • I bought a french press years ago. Now I can’t tolerate coffee that’s been filtered with paper. K cups are for people who like “specialty” flavors. I like Pau Pau New Guinea and don’t care who you eat to get it grown……and it’s nearly impossible to find these days and no telling what the cause of that might be.

      • I’ve never been a coffee drinker….but I had an old can of grounds [I know…] in for when certain company used to come, and one day I was feeling a little bored with tea [blasphemy!] so decided to dump some coffee in a strainer over a cup and pour hot water through it.

        Man! That was good coffee! Rich and flavorful and strong! I’ve been on a coffee kick ever since (a few weeks now)….trouble is, that coffee I had, they now don’t make it like they used to, and I can’t find anything like it!

        I actually own a Zassenhaus grinder and a Frog press too (experimenting years ago), now if I could just figger out where to get some beans that I’d like. I heard Sumatran or Fijian is pretty good for dark rich stuff?

        • well, being a coffee guy myself, roasting my own and getting the good stuff, I can accurately say that just soecifiying the contry where it is grown wil not define the coffee well enough. I’ve got sumatran coffees that are all over the map flavour wise. Mild and smooth, rowdy, VERY floral, harsh and bitter, and same with most other origins.

          Getting away from the typicalcountertop brewres (Mr, Coffee and such) is the first step to getting better. Percolators, too. Water temp is all wrong, so the result is always terrible. Much as I like coffee, I’d rather have nothing, or water, than most of that. The venerable Frog pot, your Zasso handcrank, decent beans roasted reasonably fresh (maybe a week or so out of the roaster), brew with HOT water, and I cannot imagine how anyone can tolerate the K Kup Krap. give me plain water.

          • Just ground my 8 O’clock beans(I know, I know)and it’s not a “bad” brew but not what I’d like either. I prefer it to “Pablo’s Pride” I got at Sam’s. The wife doesn’t partake so she asked me what PP was like. I allowed Pablo won’t fall due to being too prideful.

            Seems like nearly everything I can find is “Colombian” grown in Mexico for the main part….and some other SA countries. I used to like Colombian when it was still a pure strain and I liked it with coffee as well as beer.

          • Knowing me, Tio, I’ll be roasting my own beans before long….. Assuming I don’t tire of coffee first, which may happen, as I seem to tire of it rather quickly…..I’ve always been a tea guy.

            Maybe I’ll make like 8-Man and try some 8 O’clock beans…they sure do smell alluring in the store!

            I have always stayed away from the Mr. Coffee/drip coffee-makers.

            30+ years ago, a friend of the family had a brother who used to own a Dunkin’ Donuts store. She’d supply my mother with DD ground coffee…..THAT was some darn good stuff (I’d have an occasional cup)- even from a percolator! But the DD stuff they sell to the public is either different, or they just don’t make it the same anymore, ’cause it don’t even smell the same….

  16. In some ways, that’s too bad. I like the Ford Focus. My brother and daughter each have one, and I almost bought one. (It got sold out from under me….) Large (can you believe I’m saying this?) *2.0* L engine, naturally aspirated, no direct inject, 5sp manual and hand crank windows. <- that's my daughter's car. $12k brand new too! Can't believe they still make a car that simple. Oh well, it was good while it lasted. Now, all we'll have left are itty bitty crossovers with high strung engines… (1.0L engine!!??!!, with turbos??, direct inject??, high octane gas needed???, revving up to 5000+ RPM to get anything out, last a few years maybe??!! ) Oy. No thanks.

    Looks like we'll all be going to 3/4 ton trucks….

    • Sounds like these cars and crossdressers….errr…crossovers, are little more than some sheet-metal wrapped around a small motorcicle engine!

      I’ve been driving 3/4 & 1-ton trucks forever now…even though 99% of the time, all I’m hauling is….me!

      Guess that’s the way Uncle wants it, since he wot let them make any real cars anymore.

  17. And yet another scenario from Atlas Shrugged comes to pass! Too much regulation, and forcing ’em to make cars that no one wants to drive and/or ones that people want to drive but can’t afford to buy nor maintain or repair, especially since they are not durable, with all of the delicate technology they contain…..

    I see these shit-boxes they make… Little crappy look-alike cheesy econoboxes that look, feel and sound like toys…but have luxury options and Star Trek electronics; “crossovers” which are nothing more than cramped little cars with a complicated easy-to-break uber expensive to repair AWD system, that have no cargo room, and couldn’t “cross over” a 6″ deep stream… No personality…no fun…no utility…. You could be driving the Ford Fiesta or the Chebby Sonic or a Hyundai Accident….how can you even tell the difference?

    I couldn’t imagine driving one of these when they’re brand new if you gave it to me for free…imagine when it’s a few years old?! Put a few options in the least of ’em, and after taxes and all, I’m supposed to shell-out over $20K to drive some appliance that is barely adequate to shuttle communists living in the midst of some gray city back and forth to the cubicle? No Thanks!

    Ford made the right decision. The cost to comply with Uncle’s fartwars…to deal with the fluctuations in gas prices, etc. etc. puts manufacturers of small transportation appliances in a no-win sitchy-ation- and they can’t even offer something that we might actually want to buy (much less at a price we’d be willing and able to pay)- like a REAL full-size car with a full-size TRUNK and seating for 6, and a simple unladen engine and controls, and vinyl bench seat and manual tranny….NOoooooo! -because Uncle wont let them.

    Remember the days when an Impala was a “economy car”? Full-size, plain-Jane, run forever, cheap to maintain and repair….. There’s more to economy than getting a few more MPGs.

    • Dear Nunzio,

      Actually, there is a place for hot hatches such as the Fiesta S. They aren’t necessarily the result of Big Brother and CAFE regulations.

      They can be considered the offspring of the Mini Cooper S from the 60s, that world champion race drivers such as Stirling Moss and James Hunt drove.

      https://images.complex.com/complex/image/upload/c_fill,g_faces,w_1100/fl_lossy,pg_1,q_auto/grg4rw2nmreydvkv537b.jpg

      https://www.northamericanmotoring.com/forums/attachments/classic-mini-talk/154003d1501302578-james-hunt-rush-movie-mini-jameshuntrush2013_zpse630a2de.jpg

      • Yup. The BMC Minis from the 1960’s were amazing. I’ve had them from the entry level 850 cc single H 4 SU carburetter up to the VERY insanely fun 1275 Cooper S in stage Three tune, pair of H 6 carbs… 7500 red line, somewhere around 110 horsepower.

        Funny thing, the lowly 850 returned 55 miies for every gallon of petrol. Of course, the 1275 S could guzzle a lot more…. when right foot deeply embedded. HOWEVER, back off and just cruise steady speed, that nicely tuned monster would ALSO return fifty five miliies for every gallon of petrol, And no, I do not mean Imperial gallon, but US. Wish I still had that one. Sigh…… oh, and handling? NOthING out corners those cars. With a roll centre three inches beneath the macadam, the ONLY way you can tip one of them over is to slide sideways into soe immovable object. We did that once… got out, three guys tipped her back on her feet, checked oil and for leaks, climbed in, restarted, and off we went. The offside looked a little ragged for the contact with the hard, but all the doors worked fine. Windscreen had a small crack radiating from the lower right corner…. easily ignorable.

        Used to e joy watching those things racing at Kent Pacific and elsewhere. They’d be duking it out in the same field with two liter and larger sedans and roodsters. out accelerating, out cornering (often on the inside track going faster) out top-ending down the straight, and outbraking diving into the turns. Well, 110 to 125 horsepower in a 1400 pound car with a skinny driver? Had to happen.

        • Dea Tionico,

          World champion Formula One race drivers such as Stirling Moss and James Hunt did not consider these econoboxes beneath them.

          Why should we?

          I like the first generation BMW Minis too. But the later ones are terrible. Why build a car called the Mini if it’s going to be huge? Talk about losing the plot!

  18. What is really means is “Consumers Not Buying Enough Ford Cars”, nor enough of any others for that matter.
    With the cost of living outpacing middle-class income, how long was this “consumer ass-rape” supposed to go on? We get the living fuck taxed out of us, summarily robbed and murdered by “LEOs” on the “public highways” and then served outrageously inflated transportation options. The Sheeple are not just bleating any more, they are bleeding. They outlaw non-addictive drugs like pot, and yet try to force-feed us “health” care that is driven by the promiscuous “prescription-drug” empire. This has become one terminally ill nation of over-taxed, overdosed, underworked, overindulgent pigs, and it will be getting a lot worse, if this totalitarian police-state isn’t dealt with, soon! This isn’t pessimism, it’s reality, and those out there “rationalizing” that this is just normal, and nothing to be concerned about, are making this shit possible, and are also thereby equally culpable. I’m glad the public is reducing their buying, because that means fewer bankers, lawyers, and govt. agenencies are getting fed, and they deserve to starve. If we have to resort to foot travel and surviving off the local economies as opposed to what exists now, so be it. That may mean the end to just about all technologies we enjoy today, because 99% of our lives are transportation-dependent. You can even kiss basic electricity service goodbye, to say nothing of your current water and food supplies. This is the result of asking the govt to get involved on day 1, and they have only gotten worse ever since!

  19. I don’t like the direction the auto industry is going.

    I’ve owned three Focuses, bought new (one of the purchases was because I was hit from behind and my base-model Focus was totaled — BUT protected me admirably without a scratch).

    Yes, they are small, but they have been 100% trouble-free. I use them for commuting and general driving when I don’t need a lot of space.

    When I need to haul something, I use my base-model F-150 with a six-cylinder and a manual transmission. I paid $13,000 for it in 2008 when gas hit $4 a gallon. But a truck like that is no longer available. The last Focus I bought was twelve grand and change after rebates. Total for two brand-new vehicles: $25,000.

    Those days are gone, though. Not only do I not want to pay $30,000 for a subcompact hybrid SUV or $60,000 for a full-size truck — I can’t afford it even if I wanted to.

    But they are selling these things for stupid money to a lot of people, it seems… I just do not ever foresee being one of them. I don’t know what I’m going to be driving in the future, but it looks like I will be getting another 10+ years out of the truck I currently have. Engine rebuilds are cheap compared to what they’re getting for new ones today…

    • Yep. Unintended consequences. Cars will be cheaper to fix part by part ad infinitum versus buying a brand new debt laden car.

  20. The one being cancelled that I don’t get is the C-Max. People like the easy step-in/out of SUVs and the C-Max has exactly that. It can’t have helped that Ford never marketed it.

    So far as interior space, the C-Max is probably larger than some of the newer compact SUVs (it’s a hatchback).

    My concern is that gas prices seem to be going up (I paid over $3 this week for the first time in recent memory) so chances are good that the automakers will get caught short should another big swing happens.

  21. Ford is suffering from the same problem as everyone else, they can’t compete with cheap Asian labor. In this case South Korea (with Chinese parts suppliers). Kia/Hyundai is kicking butt just about everywhere these days. And you have VW, aforementioned Honda and Toyota and even GM for the middle, and the high end is covered by the European manufacturers. Chrysler is pretty much done with everything other than the Charger (which is subsidized by state Uncles).

    The really interesting thing is that we’re seeing an entire industry react to overregulation. People don’t like the small sedans and hatchbacks. One reason for sure is because we’re all too old and fat and don’t fit in them too well. Instead of designing cars with features like larger doors that cut into the roof (because of Uncle’s mandates for side impact and rollover roofs), they push SUVs that are taller and have larger doors by design.

    The other thing I’ve noticed is just about every vehicle these days has a roof rack. Might as well get some use out of that massive support structure I guess. You certainly can’t put anything in the back. They even have sleeping tents, which seem like a good idea until you have to climb out of the thing to take a piss in the middle of the night. Of course that kills the aerodynamics of the vehicle, and any fuel efficiency gains you might get from a smaller vehicle.

  22. “Now you know why Ford has decided to stop selling cars and focus – couldn’t resist – on SUVs (and crossover SUVs) instead.”
    They finally decided to Ford that river.

    • Ford just got fined $10M for “unconscionable action” over their latest Slushomatic transmission…..the PowerShift(always thought that was a JD trademark which, BTW, were great transmissions)….that shudders and as I recall, has since day one but they went to production with it anyway. Their line that was promulgated and passed through the stealerships was to tell customers it was their driving style that was a fault.
      I tried to post a link but WP thinks it’s spam even though it’s a Google proxy feed. Evidently GP doesn’t play well with Goooo

      • This is a short sighted move on the part of a car company that thinks that gas is going to stay under $3.00 per gallon for the next 10 years. It isn’t. Fuel is on the way up and my most recent fill up was close to $50 in a Lexus ES300 (an old Camry). On my recent road trip I even slowed to 75 mph from my normal 80-90 mph to squeeze what I could out of it mpg wise.

        The car makers are a disgrace. Have been for quite some time. They don’t stand up to Uncle and sell their real customers out for 50 cents. It started after Henry Ford II retired from Ford Motors in 1974 or so. GM was the first to sell out when they decided to install airbags in their cars no doubt from government prodding. GM then actively supported the 55 mph speed limit until we shot it in the ass in 1987 with the passage of 65.

        Although sedans are not particularly practical in this day and age, they become desirable in a time of high fuel prices as they do get about 3-5 mpg better than their CUV counterparts.

        I understand the reason for crossovers. They are a one size fits all transportation solution in a day when vehicle costs keep increasing and people need a car that “does it all.”

        One of my favorite SUV/CUVs is the Acura MDX, a crisp handling, reliable, powerful SUV that costs around $38k in todays money. Driving it, you have a commanding view of the road, and the ability to corner better than some sedans. When you mash the gas, it goes. The downside of it is that it’s a bonafide gas guzzler. It requires many gallons of premium fuel to go 300 miles. Soon, the likes of it won’t be built.

        Back to the topic at hand, Americans are going to want mid-to full sized sedans along with economy cars. Japanese, Korean and German manufacturers are going to fill the void. Ford and GM need new management. It’s a shame Nunally or whatever his name is is gone. He did a great job with Ford. The new guy isn’t worth a bucket of warm spit. This is a short sighted decision. They are doing this too soon. The driverless piece of shit isn’t ready for these asshats yet.

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