It’s Not Just the Time that Changed!

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This is the time of year when we’re forced to reset our clocks – Daylight Savings Time. There’s something else that needs re-setting, too.

Our frames of reference for cars.

Let me explain – using some specifics:

There is no longer much amenity difference between “luxury” cars and other cars . . .

There is more price difference than there has ever been.

You can spend as little as $13,000 or so for a new car – or six figures plus. That gap is much wider than the price gap between a 1972 Pinto and a 1972 Sedan deVille.

But today’s $13k car is a lot closer to the six figure car in terms of amenities.

Both will come standard with air conditioning – which was hugely luxurious (and almost always extra-cost, if it was even offered) in other than luxury cars back in ’72. Today’s six figure car may have “three zone” and climate control AC and nicer vents and probably a graphic/LCD display showing you how the air is flowing.

But you’re just as cool inside the $13k car.

Which will also come standard with power windows and locks, at the least – and will probably come standard with intermittent wipers, cruise control and stereo far better than anything available in any Cadillac back in the ‘70s or even the ‘80s and possibly, the ‘90s, too.

It will have Bluetooth wireless and probably an LCD touchscreen interface. Not even a Rolls had sucj things back in ’72… or ’92.

By the time you get to around $35,000 or so, there is even less meaningful difference. You will usually find heated (and cooled) leather seats in the $35k car; many also have heated steering wheels. There will be climate control AC and cruise control – the latter often adaptive (it slows and accelerates the car automatically) just as in the six-figure car.

There will be an excellent stereo. And really good brakes – always four wheel disc brakes – behind aluminum wheels usually a minimum of 17 inches in diameter. The seats will be powered; the car will likely have at least a sunroof and possibly a full-length panorama sunroof. Most 2019s at this price point also have configurable ambient interior LED lighting, too – a thing only the six figure cars had until about five or so years ago.

So what is the difference – other than the price?

The interior of a $20k Hyundai.

The main one is power/performance – but even that gap is narrowing. It is becoming hard to find an objectively under-powered new car. There are simply some cars that are more powerful than others.

At the $35k price point, virtually any car – regardless of make or model – will be capable of getting to 60 MPH in six seconds. Many do it in less. That would have been considered high-performance – bordering on exotic – as recently as the mid-1990s.

Almost all “economy” cars can get to 60 in about eight seconds. Some less. Most current family sedans can be ordered with engines  that make close to – or more than – 300 horsepower.

The interior of a $50k BMW.

In a nutshell you reach a point of diminishing returns after a certain point. The buyer who spends $60k on a car vs. the buyer who spent $35k mostly spent more money. The $35k isn’t “roughing it” in comparison with the $60k car – and neither is the guy driving the $13k car.

There is value in exclusivity, which is part of what you get when you spend more than most other people do on their cars. But it’s not quite the same as it was back in ’72 – when a Sedan de Ville rolled up next to a Pinto at a light – especially on a really hot summer day.

The car’s gadgets will get old long before the car does  . . .

A five year old car with 60,000 miles on it is a car that can usually be counted on to provide reliable transportation for another ten years and 100,000 miles-plus before it begins to become unreliable.

Drivetrains – and bodies – are easily twice as durable and so twice (or more) as long-lived as what used to be the expected norm.

But the gadgets are another matter.

Think how quickly your new smartphone becomes old. Most people get a new one after as little as two or three years because technology changes that fast. You can only update and download so much. It gets to be either not worth the expense – or not even possible. So you toss the old phone and get a brand-new one.

Cars are becoming smartphones that take you places.

Whatever is “state of the art” in terms of things like the LCD touchscreen it comes with and other such will be as dated as MySpace five years from now. But it’s harder to throw away a car you sent $35k on (or even $13k) and just buy a new one.

It is very likely that in the future, many interfaces will become modular – plug and play. New cars may even just come with ports, into which your latest accessory (such as an iPad) can be plugged.

That way, you won’t have to throw away the car to throw away the dated tech.

You literally do fix flats . .  .

Fewer and fewer new cars come with any kind of spare tire – even a space saver – not because having a spare is unnecessary but because it has become very necessary to achieve compliance with the federal government’s fuel economy fatwas. One way to do that is to shave weight off the car – and a spare tire (plus jacking equipment) in the trunk is easily dispensed with deadweight.

Until, of course, you need it.

What then? You fix the flat tire.

Many new cars come with a tire repair kit in lieu of the spare. It consists of a small air pump and an aerosol can of goop. The goop goes into the flat tire (via the air stem) and then you plug the mini-compressor into the accessory 12V power point (modern PC cars no longer come with cigarette lighters) and refill the now-hopefully-sealed (by the goop) tire and are back on the road without having to get dirty changing a tire.

The bad news is that the repair kit only works if the tire is repairable.

In the case of damage to the sidewall – or the wheel – it won’t be. And then you will only be getting back on the road when someone brings you a spare.

Or, gives you a ride.

. . .

Got a question about cars – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. I remember my 1967 Rambler American. You couldn’t lock the key in the car. It had to be locked from the outside, using the key. Now there’s a feature that would put AAA out of business.

    As a lot of commentators have noticed, cars today are hideously ugly. My 2010 Kia has hand-crank windows, one of the features that attracted me to it in the first place. Every car that I’ve ever owned with power windows failed eventually. Hate ’em.

      • I used to have one back in the day. No sensors. No computers. No air bags. No automated “driver aids.” No complex systems at all – just a nice basic car that for the most part could be maintained and repaired with simple hand tools and inexpensive parts. Ditto for cars like Falcon, Nova, Valiant, Dart, etc.

      • I had one too, a six with three on the tree and pregnancy seats… I used them too. A nice running comfortable car to drive that I never worried about getting home after a long trip.

      • I saw a 60s Rambler at corner used car lot last week. Plain four door car, probably a six cylinder. Decent formally daily driven survivor car by the looks of it.

        • Darn, Brent! I haven’t seen a Rambler in person in probably 35 years….

          Gimme a 60’s Rambler, Comet, Falcon, Fairlane, Tempest(!!!)…with a straight 6 and a stick…..and I’d have an economical car that would outlast me(If I were staying here)

          • I had some friends with an early “Chevy II” with a straight four engine and three on the tree. That was a tough little car; they followed my 4×4 pickup all the way to Alaska via the then very primitive Cassiar “Highway”.

            That little car was way tougher than the current “jeeps”.

            • Yeah, Anon,

              Back when I was a kid in the late 60’s/early 70’s, I don’t think I ever saw an actual 4×4 on the old rutted fire roads in the woods where I’d spend hours walking- other than maybe the fire dept’s brush truck.

              No one had 4×4 pick-ups or Jeeps…you’d older kids(teens) driving old cars on those roads- from the 50’s and early 60’s. Literally never saw one get stuck- even in the snow.

              Instead of payments for the next 6 years, the teens would just buy an old car for a few hunnert bucks…throw on some appropriate tires…maybe throw some sandbags or dead bodies in the trunk…and VOILA! And they’d actually have to learn how to drive!

  2. Good points made today. Of course modern tires are much better than the ones I recall from the 50s and 60s. Far fewer failures. However road hazards are still there. Perhaps a bit fewer in some places but in others likely worse. An excellent tire can be punctured or slashed as easily as a poor one. Or being “broken” in a huge pothole or a large chunk of road debris.
    And in places like Texas you are often very far from a tow or tire repair shop, and perhaps several hours.
    Like wine, doubling the price doesn’t double the quality of modern autos. A $25 bottle won’t be twice as tasty as one for $12.50. And the $60K car won’t be twice as nice at your $30K one. As always status is a major factor. But modern Benzes, BMWs and even Caddies come in some small packages. So what are you paying for there? I laugh when I’m behind some Baby Benz or mini Beemer. That’s not much room or safety for your tarted up econobox. I’m sure the neighbors are duly impressed, if not your mechanic.

    • Modern tires may be “better” in many respects (handling, traction, mileage) but can be even more vulnerable to road damage. I know my old 700-15 bias ply tube tires seemed to be almost indestructible compared to modern “LT” radials. And you could almost always repair the flat when it did happen.

  3. Long time lurker, 2nd time poster.

    So…two things (well…three if you count my question at the end):
    1. Since the title referred to daylight savings time:
    If there were ever a poster child for meaningless rules/governmental control that makes absolutely no sense YET WILL NOT BE REPEALED…it would be daylight “savings” time. Sheesh…abolish it already?! If you have statist friends and you need a handy quick argument about the overarching control of government that almost anyone would agree with…it would be this. How on EARTH did we get here? The answer is some do-gooder thought it would be a great idea to hand us government-mandated control over TIME…TIME (TIME I TELL YA). So yeah…apparently it’s just A-OK for us to be ruled/herded/controlled like cattle…over the concept of time. Madness.

    2. Now I’m not a “car-guy” (but I want to be one when I grow up (which will be when I retire in about 8 years))….but I have noticed lately (I don’t know…maybe within last 5 years?) that all the newer cars are so damned “boxy” that they are flat-out ugly as sin. HATE THEM. And you see all these folks who put their hard earned cash down on these trash-boxes and while I would never want to control what someone thinks they should spend their money on…at the same time…these fools are actually (to my mind) making things WORSE by buying into all of this crap (which then emboldens the government psychopaths and their willing accomplices the car manufacturers to make things even worse year by year). Now…I do some business travel for the company I work for and we get rental cars typically and I thought I would be nice and give these boxy, ugly cars a shot…perhaps just because they are ugly they are still decent cars to drive (been driving for about 40 years now). WRONG! I got into one of the behemoths we rented one time (in Chicago, no less) and, not to be a big baby, but I honestly felt that I couldn’t see CRAP out of these boxes O’ doom. Parking and overall movement in tight spaces was downright scary because I couldn’t “feel” where the ends of the front/corners were. To be fair though, I WAS somewhat impressed with the ability to accelerate and the overall “ballsy-ness” of these types of cars…so that was cool. But you couldn’t pay me to take one.

    Finally: my question:
    So…I live in Washington State (the “other” Washington – much prettier and much less density of mentally deranged govco freaks), and I have noticed that the overall cost of owning/driving these machines has never stopped rising. Washington is the state that famously told the state regulators to shove off on car registration fees and we trumpeted how we had “$25 registration”. Um…that lasted about 5 years or so and then the average citizen noticed other “fees” creeping onto your registration and now I think we’re up to close to $100 for a typical car (vs. the outrageous at the time: $300-$400 for a typical car..EVERY YEAR – back in late 80s/early 90s this was a lot of money – pretty much a car payment at the time). The lesson I learned from this (and I was NOT libertarian at the time and I STILL understood what was going on): you never give govco an inch of your life or money because if you do they will NEVER NEVER STOP. They will just end-run you every time. And don’t even get me started on the insurance mafia out west. I’ll never forget accidentally slamming my S-10 car door and shattering the side window. I go to the body shop place and the FIRST QUESTION out of their mouths was (wait for it…you all know what I’m going to say doncha?): are you claiming insurance on this? WTF? I should have shot back: “tell me my choices and I’ll tell you whether I’m claiming insurance”. I told my Dad what they said and he exploded and threatened them with tattling to the state insurance mafia boss (my dear Dad wasn’t libertarian either or he would have known not to do that…). And now that I have 2 adorable 18-year old girls (twins) on my insurance, it’s upwards of $500-$600 per month for THREE LOUSY OLD CARS. Sigh.

    It’s so damned frustrating that it has led me to seek out an alternative: hence my question:
    Can anyone point me in the direction of these types of cars that are muuuuch older (and not actually that expensive) and they don’t require all the hoo-hah (and thus fees and costs) that the newer cars require? I actually love some of these older models and, while I don’t have the know-how to work on them myself, I would probably do the research to find mechanics in town that COULD work on them. My point: I want out of the car matrix. I probably wouldn’t be one of those guys to go to all the old car shows and parade around and all that BS, but I WOULD silently snicker at every pig I pass because I would have avoided much of the crap they hassle us about (plus everything seems to be less expensive if you go this route – insurance, registration, no car payment, etc.). I guess what I’m saying is that I’m trying to find the absolute LEAST cost solution to driving today and it seems the “antique” car (not sure of the terminology) is the way to go. I am reasonably well off and could probably have no trouble affording one or two of these gems. I’m just so totally clueless that I don’t even know where to begin to look for this stuff. I *WILL* say that for about 20 years now I have not purchased a new car. Period. The Dave Ramsey school of thought regarding new cars totally made sense to me and thus I have avoided that snare. But then the rest of the costs kill you too…so that’s why I’m curious.

    Love this site and all you peeps…read it every day!


    Kevin B. Selby

    • My answer would be late 1980s up to mid-1990s as the “sweet spot” between simplicity and technology. They had simple fuel injection but not all the other crap. I’m partial to GM (at least of that era and before, can’t stand them today) but “your mileage may vary.”

    • Do a bit of looking, Craigslist and such, and find a solid early 1980’s turbodiesel Mercedes with anything under 250K on the clock. VERY solid comfortable car, great llooking, and of all the cars I’ve ever owned (200+) none have provided more service for the dollar. Mileage mid to high 20’s or 30 MPG with the five cylinder turbodiesel>>Since it is “of a certain age” you can get Collector Plates, which, as I am given tonunderstand, do NOT incur an anual renewal fee. There are no restrictions as to use, frequency, etc, the only requirement is that you have at least one car with “normal” plates on it. As tosafety, I don’t think even today’s super safe crash tested certified DOT cars are any safer in real world collisions. Lap/shoulder belts, no more. But the passenger cage is built so well it is all but impossible to collapse it. I’ve known of 300 SD cars to still be going strong after 700K+ miles with nothing more than regular maintainence… no major repairs. Common repair parts are still on the shelf at most nmajor partshouses…. water pumps, starters, alternators, belts, hoses, brake parts….. and more serious parts, as suspension parts, window lift motors, etc, are most times available overnight or a day out.

      Your Darlin Baby Gurls will be the queens of style driving a 300 SD 126 body. Insurance costs are reasonable, too, as they do have a very high safety rating and low repair cost. DO carry comprehensive. Oh, and the cars DO come equipped with a fifth wheel/tyre identical to the other four, a wheelbrace and such for changing it “out there”. The tyres, on their very stylish aluminium wheels, are not heavy, nor very dear because of exotic sizing.

      • Man, those 300D’s were the REAL diesels! Not like these computer-controlled high-pressure oil-fired injected monstrosities they call diesels today!

        Nissan actually made a diesel Maxima in the early 80’s too- another indestructible run-forever beast, with a straight 6 (IIRC) diesel. I only ever saw one of them- picked it up for “junk” actually- but it wasn’t junk- sold it to friend for $600, and he loved it. They were very rare in this country…I don’t know why- but it was an awesome car too. (Faster than the Benzes…but I prefer the Benzes, as they were real tanks).

        Hey guys, be careful about antique/collector plates though. Your insurance may not care…but der state does. Every state, far as I know, states that they are only for use going to and from events and shows; test-driving; going to and from repair shops, etc.

        Local pigs start seeing you on the street every day with ’em, or doing your grocery shopping, and they’re gonna get ya. And today, with all the license plate readers and all, I wouldn’t doubnt that they even have some scheme where if an antique plate shows up in the scans too often, it’ll alert them. Could end up costing ya way more than the few bucks a year extra that ya’d pay for a regular plate- not to mention unwanted encounters with the goons in black….

  4. Typo: Not even a Rolls had sucj things back in ’72… or ’92.

    > And then you will only be getting back on the road when someone brings you a spare.

    I have a AAA membership because my SUV is 14 years old and it could leave me stranded at any time.
    If you have a modern spare-less car, you’ll also want to join an auto club, and you’ll need to take that yearly cost into consideration when making your purchase.

    • Or, one could just buy a scissors jack, tire iron, and wheel/tire for a one-time investment rather than paying those recurring membership fees.

  5. I had a chance to ride in my sister’s new BMW the other day. I guess it’s about 5 or 6 months old. I kept feeling a weird, rolling, bumpy type movement and didn’t know what it was. Turns out it was the automatic on/off feature. I did not like it. I remembered reading your articles about that. Makes no sense to me.

    And yes, all the new cars look alike now. I always have to see the name of it to know what kind it is.

    • Hi Elaine,

      I loathe this “feature” – especially as it’s not optional in more and more new cars. It is being made standard in order to help with CAFE compliance. Another idiocy brought to us courtesy of Uncle.

  6. From The Chrysler Group Navigation web page:


    $150 to upgrade the maps to the latest build? I realize they’re actually Garmin nav systems, but come on! I get maps for free on my phone, or I can buy a fairly good stand-alone Garmin GPS nav system with lifetime updates for a hundred bucks on Amazon. For what I paid for the nav system on my Cherokee they should be including updates. But no one does that, so none of the manufacturers feel like they have to offer it.

    Oh and if you have the fancy “app” for remote unlock and start, that’s another $150/year. How often do you lock your keys in the car? Or need to warm it up? When I had it (the first year was included thanks to drug pusher marketing techniques) the process was:

    1) decide to travel.
    2) Remember I had the remote start app.
    3) send the start command
    4) walk toward the vehicle -like many middle-age men, in a mall or other mass parking situation I usually park fairly far from the entrance so it will take a little longer to get across the lot.
    5) get within 5 feet of the vehicle and watch as it started before my very eyes!

    That’s if it actually started at all. There were many times when the Sprint Cellular network wasn’t available so I just got epic fail message. And it isn’t like the thing takes forever to warm up/cool down anyway.

    • $150/yr. and a smartphone subscription in case you lock your keys in the car! LOL

      I only buy vehicles that have old-fashioned mechanical keys….and always carry two keys on me. Problem solved! (Have done that ever since I locked my keys in the car once, in 1984)

      • Hah, you only locked your keys inside. I learned that lesson at the beach one afternoon. Walked miles down the beach with the only key in existsnce in the coin pocket of my Levi’s. Came back, no key. Had to thumb a ride home. Too late in the evening for anyblocksmith to be open. Did write down the key code number off the monkey box door. Went to a dealer the next day and he punched a new key to that code, It worked. I had him make a second. From that day to this (that was early 1970’s) I’ve never had a car without first making certain I had two or more keys for it. That is as standard equipment as a real identical to the other four spare tyre AND wheelbrace.

        • Oh, I got off easy, Tionico! When I locked my keys in the car, I had just parked it half a block from where I lived at the time! So I just walked home and got the other key. 🙂

          That was an easy lesson!

    • Ah! When commercials could actually be good!

      I use the Gray Poop-on scale…

      If it’s so dirty that it looks gray; and lots of birds have pooped on it….it’s luxurious enough for me!

  7. 2017 Chevrolet SS had a FULL SIZE spare tire as a $500 option otherwise it was the ‘tire inflation kit’ as Eric mentioned. I paid the extra $500. Well worth it, as it was a proper speed rated tire, and a matched rim to my other 4. Another dealer who had the same car on the lot, but without spare tire, actually tried to convince me how it’s better without it as you save weight and get fuel economy. After rolling my eyes I made my way to the other dealer.

    • My gf says when we get her snow tires, we need 5 so she could have a real spare

      I’m instead thinking of waiting for spring to get 5 Michelin’s with 17′ lighter weight rims vs her stock 16’s, so I can also add a bigger brake kit as well

      • Larger wheels and lower profile tires will be even worse in the snow.

        I went from 17″ wheels* down to 15″ wheels. Saved enough just on one set of tires to pay for the wheels.

        *5 x 110mm bolt pattern; ya wanna buy em?

  8. This is why, I don’t care for modern cars, or luxury period

    Unless I got a specific goal/car in mind (E55, E36/46 M3, B6 S4/B7 RS4, etc.), Always look for older cars to fulfill my needs (fun tuner)

    With shops offering all you can want Headunits, aftermarket seat heaters, and basically almost any luxury option you can think of, all you need is the $$$ you saved on the monthly payments of something new

      • I know a shop that does them ( and test drove one for a friend once (he cant drive stick at all)

        Loved it, just would of changed the flywheel as it was a bit abrupt, plus sadly we didn’t go faster than 25 since it was in a residential area, but I definitely wanna own one

        Really, would love to own a Real BMW, before they got bloated and/or sold out

  9. Used to be: Even if you didn’t know a thing about cars, you could tell an expensive car from a cheap car, just by looking at it as you strolled through a parking lot. In the late 90’s I had a ’92 Lincoln Town Car signature series. It was big; it was beautiful; it made me feel like a rich dude, and made people think I was rich [I just liked it because I like big nice-looking comfortable cars- but you couldn’t help but to feel and look “like somebody” while driving it.]

    Today: You can’t tell one car from another. Even I, walking through a parking lot, really haven’t a clue as to which car is a $20K car, and which is an $80K car. Only way to tell is if you look at the name plates, and ‘know cars’- i.e. know what they cost and who they’re marketed to.

    Even very expensive cars don’t stand out.

    But I’m not just talking appearence-wise- nor even creature comfort-wise- but rather that you used to be be able to get a BIG, roomy, comfortable, safe/heavy nice-riding car for the extra money one would pay for a “luxury car” (Or further back, even for just a ‘big’ car- sans luxury, for those of us who don’t give a hoot about ‘luxury’)- but now, all you get is another no-trunk short-sloping-hooded toy, just with nicer seats, and maybe a fancier suspension and a few more horsepower, and a ton of useless gadgets and leather seats.

    Meanwhile, the cars some of us really want, aren’t made anymore- and are technically ‘illegal’ to make. But people still pay tens of thousands (!!) extra for a gussied-up whore.

    And for all the extra money, what do ya get? A car that depreciates faster [Cadillac, anyone? LOL. Or Mercedes? Mercedes used to be the cars that held their value the longest; now you can find not-to-old ones in the ‘hoods and housing projects…) and a car that is more expensive to repair and less durable, due to all of the “luxury” complex, delicate “luxury” features, from air-ride suspensions to electronic climate control….

    It seems now-a-days that crazy executives dealing with crazy government mandates make crazy cars for crazy people.

    • That’s why, other than my A4 (Daily I purchased years ago), I only look at unique used cars (Sports coupes, classic cars, etc.)

      Most cars now bore me, everything has basically all you need and tbh, all you truly need is a good set of tires, good brakes and basic know how on driving while keeping off your phone.

      Also, harder to find manual’s unless it’s a certain niche car (Gti’s, muscle cars, etc.), thus again, used cars.

      Now to save up so I can afford a 25 year exempt import

    • 3.0 Liter V6 340 HP Supercharged Engine AWD – All Wheel Drive
      Top Speed: 121 mph³
      0-60 mph in 6.1 seconds
      Highway Fuel Economy: 26 mpg²
      Starts at $78,300 base price for the Jaguar XJ. And you have to look hard to see it’s not a $22,000 Hyundai Sonata.

  10. Never thought of it that way, thx Eric. US’s ever increasing Regs is the only thing stopping our cars from getting a lot less expensive. And why they must keep getting into bed with Uncle to change the game.

    All my families cars have decent compact spares. One of our ‘newer’ priorities in selecting vehicles is tire size, but we like the more sporty types, so the large majority of them come with 40 profiles or less. We won’t buy them anymore after 3-4 flats in two years in one (MB), and 1-2 bent rims.
    We now own a 300, Charger, and Grand Cherokee, all have higher profile tires, and a nice compact spare.
    The only vehicle that didn’t come with one, a Ford Focus, we added a compact spare by cutting out the foam under the back mat, and using that foam to raise the floor a little.
    Long live FCA’s older tech, and larger vehicles, please.

    • update. just took the Grand Cherokee V8 on it’s maiden voyage, 4-5hr drive through metro hell, NY to boston.
      the v8 is impressive. even better is how the trans shifts, excellent, like they used too. screw you GM with your handcuffed mpg-first trans programs. This GC rocks, even without pushing the sport mode button.
      And a pleasant surprise, full size spare. yahoo….. i knew it had a at least a compact spare, but i didn’t know a full size spare was an option that our model got.
      This may end up being by favorite vehicle of all time, only from a utility standpoint. my 300 v8 is also very impressive, but having the 4wd makes the GC more desirable as a do-all, all-weather transport.
      The 300 is overall a little more comfortable on a long drive, it’s a little quieter, rides a little better, etc..
      If you like power and v8’s how they used to run, get one soon, as most likely the next GC update will probably follow suit like the rest with small turbo engines.

      • Thanks for the report. Might have to look at one someday if I can get past the Chrysler poor quality reputation.

        I love my old AMC Jeep but don’t totally trust it. Jeez, why couldn’t they figure out how to make decent cooling and electrical systems?

  11. Another way these stupid rules on efficiency are and will lead to more pollution – So to save “fuel” they get rid of spare tyres, and replace with run-flats or the goo and compressor systems. With a run flat, you either have to change the tyre immediately with a new one (as they cannot be repaired), and the goo and compressor one will only last to the next puncture, as my tyre guy told me that once you put the goo in you cannot re-goo it if it punctures again.

    So what happens to all the fairly good tyres which are no longer repaired and re-used, and the environmental impact of all the new tyres which have to be manufactured….

    But i guess i shouldnt worry…. Sure the good people at the government must be thinking up a new regulation and tax to make it better as we speak…..

    • “my tyre guy told me that once you put the goo in you cannot re-goo it if it punctures again”

      That’s bool-sheet. You can always add more goo, or more likely you won’t even know about the second puncture as the remaining goo in the tire will just seal it. My experience is that the goo works pretty good IF the puncture is small enough and if you drive the car most every day. If you leave it sit for a week it will start leaking again.

      OTOH, there are all sorts of tire failure that goo won’t fix. If you have a flat on the highway and unless you have reliable tire pressure indicators (most I have heard of create so many false low pressure warnings that most people just starting ignoring them altogether) then most likely you will ruin the tire before you realize it is flat and come to a stop.

      It MIGHT be okay to drive around town without a spare, but not across Wyoming.

      • I had a puncture overtaking a heavy goods vehicle on the motorway. By the time I could get over onto the hard shoulder, the tyre was completely shredded. Thankfully I had a proper spare wheel in the back or I would have been very late for work.

        • Hi Gordon,

          Yup. I wrote an article a few weeks back about this and counseled buying a full-size spare even if it does add a little weight and take up some trunk space. One day, you will be thankful…

        • We have the factory “wheelbarrow tire” spare but carry a full size spare tire/wheel on long trips.

          Don’t carry it on shopping trips to town (~150 miles RT) because it takes up so much space.


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