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Old 01-21-2010, 12:10 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Lazarus View Post
Not trying to be a wise guy but what added safety features are in a 2010 model that are not in a 2000 model or the early 90's? Safety features that really add to safety?
Side air bags?

I really don't know what new safety stuff has been put out in the last 10 years that was actually safe. If anything, cars are more "dangerous" now that they are "safe".

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Old 01-21-2010, 12:21 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MadisonMPG View Post
Side air bags?

I really don't know what new safety stuff has been put out in the last 10 years that was actually safe. If anything, cars are more "dangerous" now that they are "safe".
Yes Risk Compensation.

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The phenomenon has been observed well beyond the highway—in the workplace, on the playing field, at home, in the air. Researchers have found that improved parachute rip cords did not reduce the number of sky-diving accidents; overconfident sky divers hit the silk too late. The number of flooding deaths in the United States has hardly changed in 100 years despite the construction of stronger levees in flood plains; people moved onto the flood plains, in part because of subsidized flood insurance and federal disaster relief. Studies suggest that workers who wear back-support belts try to lift heavier loads and that children who wear protective sports equipment engage in rougher play. Forest rangers say wilderness hikers take greater risks if they know that a trained rescue squad is on call. Public health officials cite evidence that enhanced HIV treatment can lead to riskier sexual behavior.
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Old 01-21-2010, 12:33 PM   #23 (permalink)
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...insisting on a 5-star-rated car to drive to work but then riding a quad at 80mph with no helmet on the weekends, having poor diet/exercise habits that put them at serious risk of cardiac failure, sleeping around with anyone who'll participate, sans condom... BUT THEIR CAR HAS TO BE SUPER SAFE!!!
Took the words right out of my keyboard, you did. And of course talking on cell phones/texting while driving (not to mention walking: Driven to Distraction - Pedestrians, Too, Are Distracted by Cellphones - Series - NYTimes.com :-)), or putting video players & internet connections in the front seat.

I admit I've been casually looking around for a "new" car, but it'll be a Honda Del Sol, or maybe an 90-something Miata - unless I can find a really good deal on a used Lotus, of course :-)
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Old 01-21-2010, 12:38 PM   #24 (permalink)
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My newest vehicle is a 92. I like my old cars, they are easy to work on, and parts are cheap and easy to get. Insurance and plates are cheaper too. I also like the looks of the older cars. They actually look more like a sculpture, whereas the newer cars all seem to look like a jellybean.

One thing I always notice when sitting in a newer car is it seems like on all of them, the seats are hard as a rock. Whatever happened to nice soft cloth seats?

I also don't like riding in newer cars. It makes me feel carsick. Maybe it's something with the uncanny quietness and smoothness and the fact that I'm actually moving down the road screws with my head. I like cars where you can feel the brakes, the shifts, the engine, and the road. Makes for a lot safer winter driving too.
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Old 01-21-2010, 01:22 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I know when I went from driving my 93 suburban to driving my 96 contour my insurance went UP! My contour has driver and passenger airbags and a 4 cyld, my Suburban only has antilock brakes, no airbags, big 350 engine, 4 wheel drive, high cventer of gravity. So I asked why? He siad "Because the suburban is a safer vehicle" WHAT? I pointed out the above differences, how is it safer? He fankly said "More metal around the occupants, no one gets hurt as bad in a wreck."

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety determins the safety of a vehicle. If the new cars are "more safe", then why is an old plain jane suburban determined safer?

I dont buy new cars are safer.
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Old 01-21-2010, 01:48 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Rainh2o View Post
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety determins the safety of a vehicle. If the new cars are "more safe", then why is an old plain jane suburban determined safer?

I dont buy new cars are safer.
The SUV is "safer" due to Bumper heights. Bumper heights are not regulate on these type vehicle.

Quote:
In a crash, the higher bumper on many taller vehicles, such as SUVs and trucks, hits a typical passenger car above the car's bumper line and crumple zone, exerting its force into weaker portions of the smaller vehicle and inflicting greater damage.
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Old 01-21-2010, 01:50 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Hmmm collapsible columns were required in 1968.

Crumple zones came on in the 70s.

In fact when they dropped the requirement for 5 MPH bumpers the low speed collision repair costs skyrocketed.

No saying new cars are not better, they are just not that much better, at least in collisions.

Emissions have certainly improved, and air bags have helped reduce traffic fatalities by close to 25% over the decades.

As far as economy I'll take my 94 VX over any new car, and it should be running for at least 5 more years easily, maybe 10.

Comparing my Insight to the VX over the last 20k miles (each has just over 52k miles today).

No problems whatsoever with the VX.
The Insight check engine light has come on 3 times.
Once was the O2 sensor---$400
Once was the fuel vapor system---$750 (replaced the fuel cap and fixed it)
Once was today when the IMA light (bad battery) came on then the check engine light came on 1 mile later when the idle speed dropped and the engine almost stalled. $2500+

So far it has needed
oxygen sensor
fuel tank filler neck upgrade
catalytic converter---$2200
IMA battery

remember the VX is 8 years older than the Insight and has been hit in the rear end hard enough to total the car in 1996.

The prior owner of the Insight told me he spent $750 getting one of the power windows fixed.

Total is $6500 on an 8 year old car with 52,000 miles. Thankfully most of it was warranty, all but the O2 sensor, and the $20 gas cap.

VX has crank windows.

Bottom line from my personal experience and 60k hours working on cars.

New cars are better made than many older cars, with a lot of exceptions.

If you are going to drive a lot of miles, find an older car that has a good reputation for reliability and economy and avoid getting crucified on the depreciation on a new car.

If you are mechanically inclined and don't mind working on your own car and also don't mind occasionally getting stranded on the side of the road, the cheapest transportation is about 12-15 years old and you can scavenge parts from the pick and pay yards for dirt cheap.

regards
Mech

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Old 01-21-2010, 01:58 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rainh2o View Post
I know when I went from driving my 93 suburban to driving my 96 contour my insurance went UP!
insurance companies have amazing complex algorithms to determine risk more than safety.
the ratio of suburbans on the road vs accidents vs injuries could be lower when compared to a contour.
in addition, the car may shift the driver's confidence. a suburban kinda keeps you humble and from taking opportunistic risks, compared to a more nimble car.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:00 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Lots of rationalizing, but the bottom line is I'm safer in one of my newer cars than someone in his 20 yr. old Civic or Metro, assuming we take the same driving risks. All the straw men being tossed out about risky lifestyles are there to divert attention away from the unsafe old tin cans they built in the 80s and 90s, and earlier.

For risk-taking, your biggest risk in life is cardiac failure, accounting for ~650,000 deaths/year in the USA. So how many of you have done 1/2 hour of cardiovascular exercise 3 days this week? I have, so I get to move on to talk about vehicle safety. If you haven't, then you're one of those people going 80 mph on the quad without a helmet, and the 20 yr old car's lack of safety features shouldn't bother you, because you're ignoring your biggest risk - your weak heart.

As for safety features in the past 10 years, the data are skewed because the Bush Administration didn't push for consumer safety, choosing instead to side with industry in crippling most consumer protection efforts.

Nonetheless, newer cars are safer. A 2010 car v. a 2000 car will favor the 2010 with stronger child restraints, including stronger bench seat strength and the LATCH system. Stronger roof crush strength. Safer window glass. Better rollover protection (seat belts, airbags, glass). Traction control. VSC. Better rear crash strength.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:10 PM   #30 (permalink)
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insurance companies uses a huge amount of data, related to cars as they are today, no matter what an administrations does.
if all cars were the same year, make, and model, there would still be huge amounts of data to determine risks on other details.

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