Home » What Car Has Been Forever Ruined For You And Why?

What Car Has Been Forever Ruined For You And Why?

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Cars are emotional items as well as practical ones, which means our reactions to them are not always purely logical. In a rational world, all cars have value only relative to their usefulness. In that world, a Ferrari GTO is less valuable than basically every Toyota Corolla ever built. We don’t live in a rational world, which is good, because I don’t think I’d function well in a place that relies purely on quantifiable measures.

If it’s true that our love of a car can be irrational then our hate for a car, too, could be based on something more than cold hard facts. This is what I’m curious about exploring today. It’s fine to dislike a car because it did you wrong, but I want to probe the deeper reasons why a car was ruined for you. Why you can’t stand that particular vehicle?

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Here’s a tough one to talk about, though I think I’ve mentioned it before. A good friend of mine, an extremely talented actress, was doing a summer stock theater program in New Mexico before heading off to New York for an internship. At the end of the show, she got into her 7th gen Mazda Protegé to meet up with her parents. She never made it. A dumb kid in a modified truck was street racing, collided with her, and killed her instantly.

The world lost an incredible person that, I’m certain, you’d all know today were it not for the accident. It’s rare these days, but whenever I see that generation Protegé I think of her and, while I cherish any time I have to remember her, the car is never going to be separated from that terrible moment when I found out what happened.

Sorry, this is a bit of a downer, but it was just her birthday and I was thinking about her. It’s also a good reminder to not street race. It’s not worth it.

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Ok, here’s the question: What car has been ruined for you? Why?

 

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Shooting Brake
Shooting Brake
4 months ago

Matt, it is with a lump in my throat (seriously) that I ask whatever happened to the Cretin that killed your friend. Was justice served?

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
4 months ago

I’ve always driven cheap/basic cars… so I would go in with low/lowish expectations. So no cars have been ruined by ownership experience for me.

But not long ago, I used to think that any Ford Focus or Fiesta with the manual and the 1.0L Ecoboost was a ‘holy grail’ of a daily driver/commuter car.

And then it got ruined when I watched an I Do Cars teardown of the 1L Ecoboost… and the stupid design decisions Ford made with that engine:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0yx1-50iqnA

Clark B
Clark B
4 months ago

Early 2000s Plymouth Voyagers, particularly ones in white. My ex’s dad had one and it was the most horrible thing you could imagine. It had over 300k miles and burned so much oil he never changed the oil, just added more. It was always breaking down, from belts flying off to wheels almost coming off to tie rod failures and everything else in between. He maintained nothing, and would drive around on ancient, cracked, bald, used tires. It was a danger to other road users. But worst of all? He was smug about his lack of maintenance, criticizing us for having his wife do things like buy new tires and get her oil and filters changed on a schedule. He claimed he saved so much money buying used tires (even though one on his wife’s car blew and almost killed her) even though he was probably spending $300+ a year on them. I fucking hated that van and was glad to hear from my ex that it finally died. It was just emblematic of his dad’s general cluelessness about things and childish behavior.

Oh, and it’s not like they were poor or anything. They had lots of money, the dad just preferred to live like he was in poverty for no good reason.

And to top it all off, that van has a fucking twin and I drive past it every time I leave my neighborhood.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
4 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

Not the van’s fault.

My dad had one too, a base SWB 4cyl 3AT Caravan. He bought it very nearly new and proceeded to treat it like crap like he treated all his posessions. 10 years later he still had it and it was somehow still running despite his negligence and poor driving skills. When it had an overheating problem I checked the coolant to find it was full of milkshake. The engine oil looked fine (he had been in a collision which had damaged the transmission cooler). My stern and impassioned warnings went unheeded, he couldn’t be bothered to even flush the coolant. Surely enough a week later as he was driving it the transmission fried. He managed to limp it home. Only then was I allowed to replace the radiator and coolant. From there it went to the shop for a $1500 rebuilt transmission.

After he passed I inherited that van. It very literally smelled like a homeless encampment AND a wet doghouse, had a front fender so crumpled the door wouldn’t open all the way (that was the second replacement fender BTW), was full of trash, old food and God knows what else.

It did run though. Surprisingly well despite its lifetime of mistreatment. An afternoon with a wet/dry vac and a hazmat kit got rid of most of the stench, stains and litter. I managed to get the door to clear the fender enough to be useful. A replacement door and fender could have been had for a couple hundred bucks. It was still a serviceable van.

I loved it.

Clark B
Clark B
4 months ago
Reply to  Cheap Bastard

That sounds just like his van, down to the fender having to be pried out to open the passenger door and the smell (there were things growing in his!). Know it wasn’t really the van’s fault, but every time I see one I’m reminded of him. We never really got along, and he was always trying to get under my skin.

I was impressed it ran as long as it did, and it wouldn’t have bothered me if he had just kept it safe to drive. I’m talking missing lug nuts, all four wheels different sizes, failed suspension components, one wiper that didn’t have a blade and just etched a deeper and deeper groove in the windshield, a serpentine belt that came off when he drove through large puddles or a lot of rain, tires worn down to the threads. He almost lost a wheel on the highway and had tie rod ends fail on more than one occasion. He drove around for a while with a tire that leaked air so badly he had to air it up at stoplights. Honestly, I felt kind of bad for the van.

Not to say I don’t love a good beater van. My aunt had a similar vintage town and country, with the bluest interior I’ve ever seen. About 250k on the clock. I drove it for a month while moving between cities and without seats, you could haul damn near anything. It was pretty comfy too! Any time I had to step on it, steam (smoke?) came out of the dashboard vents, which was a little unsettling.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
4 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

It wasn’t until he had passed it occurred to me my dad may have actually been clinically mentally ill. Growing up with that in your life, well its just how it is, especially given he was an engineer (you know how those are) and when it progresses slowly enough you don’t notice.

Sounds like your ex’s dad may have been in the same boat.

Clark B
Clark B
4 months ago
Reply to  Cheap Bastard

Yep I get it, my dad is an engineer. And I suspect my ex’s dad was mentally ill, based on other aspects of his personality. I think he’s doing better now though, for what it’s worth. Apparently he wants to buy a NEW truck soon.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
4 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

God help that poor truck!

Naterator
Naterator
4 months ago

The Chevy Cobalt.

My ex girlfriend had one, and that car was one of the reasons we broke up. (the other was because she was crazy) I would’ve been a rich man if I billed her for the amount of time I spent working on that stupid crap can of a car. It was incredibly cheaply built, and plagued with recalls. She often had to borrow my vehicles, and even rear ended someone with one while her Cobalt was getting fixed. To top it off, she always kept it cluttered. That car ruined me with anything GM.

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
4 months ago

Virtually every Mini from 2013 on excepting the convertible and roadster that hung into the previous body style until 2015. After that, well they aren’t mini are they?

Mini Mini was a car.
Mini Mini grew too far.
Mini Mini isn’t mini, is he?

R53 Lifer
R53 Lifer
4 months ago
Reply to  Canopysaurus

Fact: The F56 is 8 inches longer than an R53 and….33 inches shorter than the current Civic…

R53 Lifer
R53 Lifer
4 months ago
Reply to  R53 Lifer

(I wasn’t a fan either until I bought an electric one – it’s just as stupidly fun as my 02; the turbos just never really stirred my soul)

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
4 months ago

Nissan Maxima, the 2009 generation with the CVT. I thought it was a great-looking car and the specs certainly seemed good. I had driven the previous generation quite a bit and loved it. Once I got in, I noticed that the interior seemed… cheap. Whatever, I bet it’s fun to drive.

Nope. That CVT ruined the VQ engine. It never seemed happy and the revs never seemed to be where they needed to be to make the thing move. It didn’t even sound good. It didn’t just drone, it mooed. The fake shift points on the transmission only served to emphasize how lousy the whole package was.

My friend who bought it kept it for about six months before ditching it. This is someone who usually keeps cars for years.

I’d love to see the flip side of this question… what car did you hate until you actually drove it?

Livinglavidadidas
Livinglavidadidas
4 months ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

Maxima used to be so good. Circa ’96 Maxima I would argue was one of the icons of that generation

Mike Smith
Mike Smith
4 months ago

I had an ’02 Maxima SE – first year with the 3.5 VQ, which was a huge upgrade over the previous V6 in terms of performance. The SE also had some of the best factory wheels and tires ever put on a mid size sedan, IMO.
That car ended up having its issues, but it looked good and went great, I enjoyed driving it and was proud to own it while I did.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
4 months ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

I’d like to know how often the answer is Minivan.

Cerberus
Cerberus
4 months ago

I tend to like cars mainly for irrational reasons and hate them for rational ones and, while I associate people with their cars, in spite of my misanthropy and all the dark triads I’ve known, I can’t think of anyone I really disliked enough that it also became associated with their car. Plenty of cars I think positively about from associations, though. I have an ex who hates Buicks because her abuser when she was a kid drove one. Not necessarily a model, though, but any of them.

LTDScott
LTDScott
4 months ago

Saabs. Or at least Saab 900s. Had such a horrible time racing one in Lemons years ago and dealing with an incompetent team captain that my experience netted me Comment of the Day on the old lighting site.

https://jalopnik.com/cotd-vortex-of-ls-insanity-edition-5865683

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
4 months ago
Reply to  LTDScott

I never read that story… but I read it now. HOLY SHEEEEEET. I would have been pissed too!

Years ago, I thought about starting a ‘Blame Canada’ Lemons Team. But the way I wanted to do it was get a car together with the cage and in acceptable running order and THEN form the team.

However I never had the combo of free time and money to pull it off. Though that might change in the future.

But I can say that I think I could do a better job running a Lemons team than ‘L’. For one thing, I wouldn’t make plans to race unless the car was ready first and I had the funds to do it all myself

I would only count on team members to share driving duties and share in the costs… and if someone flaked out, it wouldn’t mess up my plans in any big way.

Stef Schrader
Stef Schrader
4 months ago
Reply to  LTDScott

Hooooooooly crap. I know some guys seem to gun for Heroic Fix, but you always hope the team itself is in on that plan. That’s, uh, not it. Not it in the slightest.

Vetatur Fumare
Vetatur Fumare
4 months ago

Porsches, as they tend to swamp the local car meetups and stand around and discuss color-coded seatbelts and brake calipers.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
4 months ago
Reply to  Vetatur Fumare

Plus all the Porsche-branded clothing. This is a good take.

Farty McSprinkles
Farty McSprinkles
4 months ago

Kia Soul – 2 people, a close friend and a cousin, were killed in separate accidents in a Kia Soul. I know it is irrational to blame the car, but I could never own one.

Pontiac Fiero – I was a broke kid who purchased one and it made my life miserable with constant issues and left me even broker. Stupid piece of shit.

05Mil Machine
05Mil Machine
4 months ago

Thinking aside from a mechanical reasons here…. the Toyota Prius. Never driven one and just couldn’t imagine ever doing it. Some of the most insufferable people I have ever had to suffer piloted those things.

VanGuy
VanGuy
4 months ago
Reply to  05Mil Machine

*raises hand to say something*
*is a Prius driver*
*slowly pulls hand back to avoid proving you right*

05Mil Machine
05Mil Machine
4 months ago
Reply to  VanGuy

I have no doubt that I require a fair bit of grace myself. In a shocking twist, I should probably run out and buy one of these right now. 🙂

Jonathan Hendry
Jonathan Hendry
4 months ago

You should probably have qualified the question by specifying “apart from Tesla, we know why it’s been ruined forever”.

World24
World24
4 months ago

That’s deeply saddening and I’m sorry you had to go through that. I believe that was a similar situation to my other aunt….
I’d have to say the car that’s ruined (at least, feel ashamed for it) for me is the Mach E. Literally everything about it has been “meh” to “why yes, that rally spec one you just announced is amazing”, but because it’s also a Mustang, I just shake my head and say “oh, you poor bastard” to each one I see driving.
I also say that about every H/K I see too, but those are brands, not a single car.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
4 months ago
Reply to  World24

Good one – for me, I’m mostly saddened that Ford resorted cheapening a storied name all b/c it lacked confidence in what turned out to be a great vehicle on its own.

The potential for the Mach-e being the launch of an entirely new, eventually storied, car line was really squandered while simultaneously chipping away at the Mustang’s.

The Bishop liked Torino, and I personally liked Galaxie, but if Ford had unveiled the Mach-e as a totally new thing instead of appropriating something else’s, it could be really been great, and something on which to build new brand equity.

I don’t see where it all goes once Ford puts out an actual electric Mustang of the traditional sort…

Stef Schrader
Stef Schrader
4 months ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

Preach. The Mach-E isn’t a Mustang and genuinely deserved to stand on its own. It’s supposedly a decent car, but the Mustang visual cues don’t even fit it. They just look awkward and forced.

World24
World24
4 months ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

for me, I’m mostly saddened that Ford resorted cheapening a storied name all b/c it lacked confidence in what turned out to be a great vehicle on its own.

Agreed.

I don’t see where it all goes once Ford puts out an actual electric Mustang of the traditional sort…

Maybe they’ll call it the “Mach-EC”…. so they can try and build up the name from there rather than doing it a better way.

Ben
Ben
4 months ago
Reply to  World24

The Mach E is a great answer. If they had just called it the “Mach E” and left off the Mustang part I’d probably like those fine. As is, I am annoyed every time I see one.

World24
World24
4 months ago
Reply to  Ben

 If they had just called it the “Mach E” and left off the Mustang part I’d probably like those

Same, and I honestly would put that previously mentioned rally Mach E at the top of the list of EV’s I’d own.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago

Sorry about your friend. That sucks, but happy birthday to her nonetheless.

Again I will offer two. First was, as has already been mentioned, anything VW. My sister had a 2005ish Passat V6 AWD. It was a great car, unless you needed it to get you somewhere, or you had to work on it. As the designated family mechanic, I set out one morning to change the cats on it. 3 bolts on either end, 12 in total. I got this. Unfortunately they were impossible to get to, and naturally, crazy rusted out. Took me 12 hours, and that’s on a lift with occasional help from actual techs who knew what they were doing. It was terrible and after that I told her I was never touching the car again so find another mechanic or sell it. She traded it in on an alien green Kia Soul, and as much as I hate to admit it, that was a huge upgrade.

Second one is less acrimonious, but still. The 2005 Lotus Elise. Or really any Elise that’s not the first gen. I bought it after an NA Miata, and it just wasn’t good enough to justify the price. I put 30k on the old Miata over the course of a couple years with no real issues. The Elise had electrical issues that left me stranded on a couple occasions due to the stupid alarm system they have, no matter what I tried, I could never get it to stop squeaking, the AC was nonexistent, and while overall it was a fantastic car, it was unreliable and troublesome, and maybe 15% more capable a car while being 10x the price. It was a huge case of never meet your heroes for me. Saw one pop up for sale recently and didn’t even look at the ad wheras before I bought mine I typically knew of every one for sale in a 100 mile radius, even while I was in high school and had no possibility of affording it.

MrLM002
MrLM002
4 months ago

Lamborghini LM002. Biggest, scariest POS I’ve ever driven. If your engine quits (which with infamous Italian reliability is very likely) you lose power steering and power brakes. Your steering wheel is too small to work without power steering due to the massive tires, and brakes that won’t stop you either. So you got a 6000lb $400K freight train made of fiberglass and steel tubing that’ll go wherever the wheels are pointed until it runs out of kinetic energy.

It was my dream vehicle then I drove it. Never meet your heros.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
4 months ago
Reply to  MrLM002

Plus side, though, you got to drive an LM002. Not many people get to say they’ve done that!

MrLM002
MrLM002
4 months ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

Most people shouldn’t. Even as a paranoid individual I was not prepared for how many times the engine quit on me. If I wasn’t shifting I had one hand on the steering wheel and the other was hovering over the key and even then there were too many close calls for my liking.

The one I drove had the 73 gallon fuel tank so that was cool at least.

Chronometric
Chronometric
4 months ago

A woman in an old red pickup pulled into a parking lot to tell me that my Corvair was unsafe and one just like it killed her brother. She had transferred all her pain onto my innocent little runabout. What do you even say to that?

Idiotking
Idiotking
4 months ago
Reply to  Chronometric

That’s kind of like someone telling you red meat will kill you just before you take the first bite of a really good steak. thanks a lot, asshole.

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
4 months ago

Sorry to hear the sad story, it makes any complaint I have of a car being ruined pretty trivial..

I’ll just have to say my wife’s ‘05 Mini ruined the new Minis for me. I had driven a few and loved the visibility and the handling, they were straight-up fun little cars UNTIL you had to fix something on them. THERMOSTAT HOUSINGS SHOULD NOT BE WEAR ITEMS.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Discovered the same issue with therm housings on my POS Chevy Cruze beater a couple weeks ago. The thermostat is built into the housing, cannot be replaced separately, and the housing is a fragile plastic POS that cracked. Oh and of course it’s $100 to replace the damn thing.

World24
World24
4 months ago

Don’t discover modern Chrysler products then. Starting with 3.6, I don’t think any 2011-current FCA powertrain has a separate thermostat from the housing. The Hemi and Viper V10 are separate, but those were before Fiat’s time.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago
Reply to  World24

Is the housing at least metal so it doesn’t just randomly break every couple years? But don’t worry, I have no intention on going anywhere near a cialis car anytime soon. That is the new name for the company right? Ah close enough.

World24
World24
4 months ago

Sorry for the late reply, but nope: they’re all plastic-fantastic housings.

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
4 months ago
Reply to  World24

I feel like, broadly, you could have stopped at “don’t discover modern products”. Lol.

World24
World24
4 months ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Probably should’ve!

Cool Dave
Cool Dave
4 months ago

The Mini one is also plastic and buried in the back of the engine bay so it’s not even very accessible for service. Between that and the AC compressor I’ve never cursed any car in my life as much as I cursed that Mini.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Good to know. Interesting. Yeah the Cruze was at least right on the front of the engine, only took me like 30 minutes to swap so it wasn’t a huge deal, but annoying nonetheless.

JumboG
JumboG
4 months ago

Late 00s Honda CR-V – same thing.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago
Reply to  JumboG

That one really surprises me. Not that I was looking for one of those, but I will add that to the NO list. Which is about 100x longer than the list of MAYBE cars.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
4 months ago

“Oh and of course it’s $100 to replace the damn thing.”

From who? I’m seeing $25-35 for a 2011-16 Cruze thermostat housing on Amazon.

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago
Reply to  Cheap Bastard

AutoZone or any of the parts stores. Ended up with a cheaper one but when you need a thermostat waiting a couple days isn’t a great option

LTDScott
LTDScott
4 months ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Early in our relationship my girlfriend (now wife) almost bought a newer Mini. I told her in no uncertain terms that I would not perform any repairs on it. That apparently spooked her from buying it and thankfully there have not been any Minis in my driveway.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
4 months ago
Reply to  Cool Dave

Minis were ruined for me by my first interaction with one being a head gasket repair. My niece had bought one and overheated it, so to help family out, I did the repair for just the cost of parts. Worst repair I have ever done. I was basically enraged the entire time I worked on it.

A Man from Florida
A Man from Florida
4 months ago

“Ask the Audience” questions have been ruined for me. They sometimes make for good discussions, but then they get flipped around as a low-effort blog that just summarizes the comments. And then get turned into slideshows. Boo, slideshows.

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
4 months ago

So you’re saying Chevy Equinox??

That guy
That guy
4 months ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

Pontiac Aztec

Forbestheweirdo
Forbestheweirdo
4 months ago

From the old site I agree, but here that’s never been the case that I have seen. It is just a discussion and that’s that.

Archer
Archer
4 months ago

The Toyota Camry
I know that logically it’s a great, simple car for people who need to get from A to B. BUT I will always associate them with the intense old lady smell of my Abuela’s 2007 Camry LE. That car made me HATE boring cars. It was grey on the outside, grey on the inside, smelled like old lady, and it was somehow yo forgettable and so hateable at the same time. I couldn’t tell you what it looked like, other than a grey sedan, but dear lord I will always loath that machine. It’s ruined all other Camrys (and most other 2000s yotas) for me.

EXL500
EXL500
4 months ago
Reply to  Archer

I’ve driven a few Camrys, and I always get the sense they think I’m beneath them and they’re better than me. I do not like them.

Mrbrown89
Mrbrown89
4 months ago

Ford Escape with the 1.5T ecoshit engine. I always liked the Escape, a boxy SUV, pretty much reliable. Until we got the 1.5T at the end of the production run (2019) thinking all the small issues were figured out by then. Nope, engine ruined before the warranty expired. Fixed and sold it ASAP, never planning to go back to Ford unless its something from the era when they made good vehicles.

GM is treating me better surprisingly lol

Col Lingus
Col Lingus
4 months ago

So sorry for the loss of your friend. I totally understand. Things just really suck sometimes.

Angrycat Meowmeow
Angrycat Meowmeow
4 months ago

The new CT4/CT5. They get so much love from the press. The CT5 is a downgrade in styling compared to the CTS, the interiors don’t look luxrious, and that stupid little C pillar kink just kills me. The V sport model is down on power compared to the CTS V sport. the Blackwings are neat, but lets face it, without AWD they really aren’t that competitive. My tuned S5 will rip off comparable 0-60 times with only 420HP and isn’t far behind in the quarter.

Pretty much all Cadillacs are ruined for me now and I used to be a Cadi Stan. The XT6 is just a fancy Traverse, the XT5 is merely decent, the XT4 sucks, the sedans are meh, the Escalade is a disgusting monument to excess. The new -iq naming convention is dumb. They killed the CT6 in the US, probably the coolest/best car they made. I could go on.

V10omous
V10omous
4 months ago

I agree with some of your criticisms regarding the CT5, that kink really is weird and the interior is worse than the CTS, but count me among those who are very glad Cadillac stayed pure with RWD.

There’s plenty of choices if you want an AWD muscle sedan, and not so many anymore if you want RWD.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
4 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

I’m already seeing CT4V BWs sneak into the low 60s/high 50s, with manuals no less….I hope they keep making them for a few years because boy do I want one, but right now is decidedly not the time to throw money at another car.

Cerberus
Cerberus
4 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Yes! Screw overrated, bland, ubiquitous AWD (four time Subaru owner—none AWD, all better drivers for it with better response and mileage with only marginal less winter capability on decent tires).

Livinglavidadidas
Livinglavidadidas
4 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Lack of AWD was what ultimately kept me from my replacement car being a CT4-V BW but even then I’m glad they made them how they are. Really loved the test drive.

V10omous
V10omous
4 months ago

No hate, but where do you live that you need the four season capability of AWD, but aren’t worried about salt/corrosion?

When my 5BW arrives, it won’t sniff the road between November and March just like my other “fun” cars.

Livinglavidadidas
Livinglavidadidas
4 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

I’m firmly in Subaru country in Colorado with a long commute to work and unfortunately having multiple cars just for me isn’t logistically possible anymore. I haven’t had any cars succumb to salt as of yet. I know awd is not end all be all but I’ve been stuck in snow before even on good snow tires but never in an awd vehicle. Very cool that you got a 5BW coming, I hope you love it.

Angrycat Meowmeow
Angrycat Meowmeow
4 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

BMW did it right in the M5, you could have it both ways with a couple taps of the screen.

V10omous
V10omous
4 months ago

Still have to carry the weight of the AWD system around for a car that for me would never see rain or snow. Not worth it IMO

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
4 months ago

Volkswagens in general. I’d heard all of the horror stories about modern VW several times over but I ignored them and sprinted to get a GTI when I bought my first new car in 2020. I didn’t really shop around either. I’d wanted a GTI since I was a teenager and it was what I was going to get. My sister, who I love to death but is a bit of a copycat, went out and bought a Tiguan that summer too. We were both super excited.

…and then reality set in. I literally had to turn around on my way back from the dealership the day I bought my GTI because it was spamming me with notifications about the stop-start system. Within the first 1,000 miles it misfired on me and shut off half the cylinders mid pass on a country road, which was scary. I called the service department at the dealership I bought it from and they were like “lol that happens sometimes it’s no big deal”.

It then did this several more times, which led to me spending 5 hours at a VW service department mid road trip only for them to tell me they had no idea what caused it and to take it to my local dealership/cross my fingers that it didn’t happen again over the next 100 miles I had to drive home.

That appointment yielded nothing either. The technicians told me that their theory was that I was being a cheapskate when it came to gas (this was not true) and gave me a list of VW Approved Gas Stations (seriously). During this ordeal my sister’s Tiguan’s sunroof broke multiple times and flooded the car. VW initially claimed they couldn’t cover it, which resulted in my sister and her husband paying thousands of dollars while they tried to fix it multiple times.

…and then my sister realized Volkswagen missed a recall during the certification process (seriously) that would have fixed the sunroof. She then brought this to the dealership’s attention and they repaired it for free/suddenly acted very polite and apologetic. How do you sell a certified used car that has a serious defect there’s a recall for? Isn’t that like….the entire reason you buy a certified used car?

My GTI then began having ignition issues around 12,000 miles and I said enough is enough and got my Kona N. I looked up the Carfax for it a while ago out of curiosity and it’s continued to live in the service bay. There have been double digit service visits in the first 3 years of the car’s life. My sister and husband promptly sold their Tiguan after the final sunroof repair and now have a Lexus.

…is this the end of the saga? Commentariat, it is not. This year I got to watch my mom’s Audi Allroad grenade itself at 60,000 miles. Literal days after the extended warranty ran out the car totaled itself. Something electronic went bad, the engine completely seized, and that was that. Good old EA888 doing EA888 things. State Farm wound up totaling the car because it essentially needed a full engine rebuild. At 60,000 miles!

So, yeah. I am never touching a VAG product that isn’t a Porsche, and even if I do eventually find my way to Porsche I’m going to make sure it has one of their powertrains (flat 6 goodness baby) rather than a corporate one. I am not touching a boosted VW/Audi engine ever again. No exceptions. Fuck Volkswagen. You’ve tortured my family enough.

Last edited 4 months ago by Nsane In The MembraNe
Beasy Mist
Beasy Mist
4 months ago

My friend got a Tiguan about 2 years ago, lightly used. He’s already replaced the turbo and the entire power steering system. He hates that car.

Hondaimpbmw 12
Hondaimpbmw 12
4 months ago

Shit! Now I’m scared! I just bought a CPO 2020 GTI Autobahn. Before I got it off the lot, I noticed that the left side wheels were bent. I made an appointment to have them fixed and took it home. When I put it on my lift and spun the wheels, the little wow on the outside was a 1/2” buckle on the inside lip. How was this not caught in the 139 pt inspection?!

I’ve also noticed that it is using oil (I’m tempted to ignore the dipstick and see if the engine seizes before the 5000 mile oil change).

Last edited 4 months ago by Hondaimpbmw 12
Cerberus
Cerberus
4 months ago

I’ve known too many people with massive, repeated problems with VWs. I would never have the tolerance to deal with any of it—I’m highly reluctant to buy another Ford because my Focus ST was only Corolla reliable for 180k miles when the closed-deck 4-cylinder Ecoboost coolant issue came up and Ford’s fix is engine replacement. And, hell, the car was still drivable and didn’t even overheat in spite of all the burning coolant! That was after a Focus SE (5 speed, so no DCT) that did over 200k without an issue (totaled).

Beasy Mist
Beasy Mist
4 months ago

Ford Tempo, because it was the car I got rides to and from high school in before I could drive myself. The girl was a family friend from down the street. We didn’t particularly like each other, she was mercurial, had terrible musical taste, and was not a very good driver. In fact she was in a minor crash once while I was in the car as she fought with her brother in the front seat over something stupid.

I hated the grainy and gutless 4-cyl, I hated the motorized seatbelts, I hated the all-vinyl door cards, and I hated always having to sit bitch in the back seat on the way to school. Fuck a Ford Tempo.

Aaron Neilly
Aaron Neilly
4 months ago
Reply to  Beasy Mist

I came here to specifically mention the Tempo! They’re just such a sad, depressing car. The styling was ugly by neglect, it’s like the design team got bored and just stopped working on it.

There were still quite a few on the road when I was an apprentice, and they were always owned by people who couldn’t afford to fix their cars, had hygiene issues, had a rear footwells full of empty beer cans and a passenger seat full of scratch tickets. And they were unpleasant to work on, they rusted like crazy here and used super cheap hardware which always broke.

I haaaaaate them.

A Man from Florida
A Man from Florida
4 months ago
Reply to  Beasy Mist

I’ll always have a soft spot for late-model Tempos in baby blue. It was my first car, inherited from my grandfather. Not a good car by any means, but adequate by the standards of a 17 year old. The engine eventually blew up.

Beasy Mist
Beasy Mist
4 months ago

I think I could have overlooked a lot of its faults if it wasn’t otherwise tainted by all the other circumstances. It didn’t represent freedom for me it represented being up too early and listening to Natalie Merchant against my will.

Nicholas Fine
Nicholas Fine
4 months ago
Reply to  Beasy Mist

My first car was a Tempo and it was the worst thing I have ever driven, but my best friend’s father had a 1987 model that he put more than 300,000 miles on. We both had to keep a collection of replacement alternator belts in the glovebox.

R4ndyD4ndy
R4ndyD4ndy
4 months ago

The F-150 Ecoboost.

After a successful decade of driving Ford Pickups, an 81, an 89, a 95, all with the glorius I6/manual trans combo, I bought into the hype of the Ecoboost when it first came out. Though most of the hype was for good reason, 27 year old me declined a $3500 extended warranty when purchasing the truck, because I wasn’t too afraid of anything that may go wrong, and I didn’t see much value in it.

Truck was excellent until it crossed the end of the Factory warranty, and I still remember what all I had to deal with out of pocket on my 2 year old truck:

Both Turbos right out of warranty. Replaced both turbos, and they lasted about 6 months before going out again. During replacement I had to dig deeper and found that the intercooler was completely flooded with oil. Ford’s official fix at the time was to drill a hole in the bottom of the intercooler. I did so.

After that, it started to rattle on start up. No biggie, probably just Cam phasers. Nope. Timing chain. Nope, all 4 timing chains.

After all this, the engine locked up on me at around 85,000 miles.

This truck completely wiped out my savings and checking accounts, and after dumping thousands and thousands of dollars and time and heartache, I traded it for a 2007 Wrangler, with the 3.8, which, ironically, was completely trouble free for 200,000 miles.

I loved my Fords up until then, but between the experience, and the lack of help from Ford to fix or recall anything, America’s truck is just not for me anymore.

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