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View Full Version : One spent some time looking at cars today . . .


Loose rivets
29th Sep 2013, 00:00
. . . #$#$% waste of time.


One rather like a red Peugeot 407 Diesel. It was auto and had all sorts of kool stuff on board. I was rather taken aback to find it was 475 quid a year to tax it. (Sixty bucks for everything in Texas - and 12 bucks for the MOT.)

The bloke said autos are much more to tax. :confused: I had no awareness of this. It seems to be true and blames the torque converter, but many modern autos return the same gas mileage, so how can they be penalized?

Peugeot? It was strongly built, and clean as a whistle, but French. One French car was enough, or so I thought until I saw this pretty vehicle.

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=peugeot+407&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=dV1HUveWHYeRhQe82YCABQ&sqi=2&ved=0CEAQsAQ&biw=1440&bih=750&dpr=1#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=40Txekt2UMgIgM%3A%3BA6XIl3U8vFYDWM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%25 2Fupload.wikimedia.org%252Fwikipedia%252Fcommons%252F9%252F9 b%252FPeugeot_407_Coup%2525C3%2525A9.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%25 2Fen.wikipedia.org%252Fwiki%252FPeugeot_407%3B2677%3B1525

onetrack
29th Sep 2013, 04:02
LR - A mate in the country has one of the 407 diesels. He's a Per-Joe aficionado, he just loves them, and they are the supremely perfect car, in his estimation.
He brags to me about the 1000km range of the fuel tank. Then, in another conversation, he revealed in hushed tones, how a stone flicked up from a passing car and broke his windscreen. It cost AU$1500 (£865) to replace! Ouch!

I well recall an RAC patrolman who turned up to do an inspection on a Toyota Camry I was selling. An interested buyer wanted a full RAC inspection report on the car.
The patrolman and I got to discussing the reliability of various makes and models, and the patrolman stated that Toyotas were noted for build quality and reliability.

Then he turned to me, and said in a tone of exasperation - "NEVER, EVER buy a FRENCH car!!! They are UTTER and COMPLETE CRAP!!! Just total RUBBISH!! I have to go out and fix them EVERY DAY!! They drive me INSANE!!" :eek:

I then gathered from his tone that he seriously didn't like French cars, and perhaps there are some features in their designs, that make them less reliable than they should be. :) :)
Perhaps it was due to having to remove bumpers and fenders to change light globes?? :E

A little while later, a friend turned up with a near-new Citroen C4 and her key remote had fallen to pieces, and Citroen wanted - wait for it - AU$800 for a new remote!
Some detective work Googling "C4 remote" found suppliers willing to supply aftermarket replacement bodies for the remote, that just involved pulling the innards from the original, and installing them in the new plastic body.
I think the total cost came to about AU$25.00. She was ever so grateful. :)

Ancient Mariner
29th Sep 2013, 04:25
We've had a number of French cars dating back to the early 80'ies, Citroens, Renaults and Peugeots, haven't had more problems with those than with our German, US, British, Italian/Spanish or Japanese cars. Quite the contrary, worst cars we had were LR Discos and a Nissan Navara. :yuk:
French diesel engines are excellent, just ask Mercedes, and a host of other manufacturers.
Per

sitigeltfel
29th Sep 2013, 06:07
The bloke said autos are much more to tax. :confused: I had no awareness of this. It seems to be true and blames the torque converter, but many modern autos return the same gas mileage, so how can they be penalien. (https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=peugeot+407&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=dV1HUveWHYeRhQe82YCABQ&sqi=2&ved=0CEAQsAQ&biw=1440&bih=750&dpr=1#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=40Txekt2UMgIgM%3A%3BA6XIl3U8vFYDWM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%25 2Fupload.wikimedia.org%252Fwikipedia%252Fcommons%252F9%252F9 b%252FPeugeot_407_Coup%2525C3%2525A9.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%25 2Fen.wikipedia.org%252Fwiki%252FPeugeot_407%3B2677%3B1525)

Maybe the new DSG (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Direct-Shift_Gearbox) boxes are more efficient but standard auto boxes will always make a car thirstier. You will find emission data and VED tax bands for the estate version of the 407 (http://www.parkers.co.uk/cars/reviews/facts-and-figures/peugeot/407/sw-estate-2004/running-costs/) here. The auto box versions consume more fuel, placing them in higher tax bands.

Blame the Greens.

Effluent Man
29th Sep 2013, 09:25
I can confirm the Gallic build quality problem.As a secondhand car dealer I see most problems.I would say that without any shadow of a doubt Renault are head and shoulders above every other manufacturer for failures,largely electrical and expensive.We had an electric window regulator fail on a three year old 11k miles Megane.

Renault kindly offered a 75% contribution,so it cost £110! Peugeot/Citroen are not far behind.While Japanese stuff is most reliable the majority of these cars are not driven very much and cossetted by their elderly owners.Overall the German stuff is best.

UniFoxOs
29th Sep 2013, 09:39
Mate of mine has the 407 estate. Regularly gets 50+ mpg. It's manual. He tried the same model but automatic, never got much above 40 mpg.

OTOH I rented a VW Tirane(?) from Hanover airport a couple of weeks ago. Big chelsea tractor sort of thng (cheap upgrade from the one I'd reserved, as usual). 2 litre engine, 7-speed double-clutch gearbox. Astounding performance from a diesel, brilliant gearbox, and, as far as I could tell on less than one tankful, 35 mpg - and I wasn't hanging about - 160 kph+ on autobahns.

mixture
29th Sep 2013, 09:39
.As a secondhand car dealer

I didn't know Swiss Toni was a PPRuNe member...is a Gallic car "a bit like making love to a beautiful woman" then ? :E

http://www.aronline.co.uk/blogs/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/arswiss-e1330072662460.jpg

Effluent Man
29th Sep 2013, 10:25
Much more likely to be in my shorts than a shiny suit,that's the advantage of being in the sticks.On the previous point a lot of people don't realise the vast difference there can be in the economy between a manual and auto.10mpg seems about right IMO.I don't want to pay 25% more just to save stirring the pudding myself.

Capetonian
29th Sep 2013, 10:51
Before cars became computerised boxes of circuit boards I used to enjoy working on them, in fact it was one of my main pastimes, if only out of need. I had the mixed fortune of owning a couple of French models (four wheeled, not two legged). Like their two legged counterparts, they looked good from a distance but the closer one got, the shoddier and cheaper they looked. Like their human counterparts, they also smoked and drank too much, smelt bad, and required servicing on their terms and when it suited them, rather than the owner. They were temperamental and unreliable, but fun to drive until they broke down, which they did with frequency.

Our last French car headed for the breakers' in about 1990 and since then it has been German, apart from the Saab.

Takan Inchovit
29th Sep 2013, 11:09
RE: the 407 Pug. AT least when something goes wrong, you can blame ze French.

bleeke
29th Sep 2013, 11:31
I bought a new MB C220 CDI two years ago. Six months later the fuel filter went, immobilising the car and spilling a full tank of diesel on the road. A year later the water pump had to be replaced, again the car was immobilised. Now there is a rattle in the suspension, the dealer suspects it could be a rod or something. Two of the original tyres burst on the motorway, not at the same time fortunately. The bloke in the tyre shop said he had never seen run flat tyres go like this. Average mpg over the last 20000 miles is 45 mpg, the car has an auto box. The most reliable car I ever owned was a Renault 19 diesel, basic non- turbo, manual everything. So much for the legendary MB reliability.

Loose rivets
29th Sep 2013, 11:33
The one I looked at, VF36JUHZJ21491834 KWO7 JHJ seemed extraordinarily sturdy. Doors felt every bit as sturdy as the MB E500, and we all know they can bear the weight of five men hanging on them - the telly ad tells us so.

On the 407 I liked the way the side window dropped a few mills when opening the door, and then sunk into the rubber when closed again. The rear detector showing the zone of objects was in a way more attention getting than a camera. Seats were superb cream leather, and the trim quality in general was impressive. However, at just over 5 grand, one repair could have brought it up to the price of a newish 'normal' car. Two significant repairs, could mean scrapping it.

Yesterday morning, I looked at a Honda Civic 1.8 i-VTEC 5dr Auto at the dealership. Ex Demo with under two thousand miles. Looked mint and had 2.5 years of warranty left. Lifetime MOT etc., etc.

I thought the gearbox was sucking power out of the equation, but it was hard to tell. Almost immediately it was slipping through the speed limit, and 30 seemed like walking pace. I've never been so deceived. Paddle gear change worked well, and generally felt better, nay, much improved over the older (3 years) manual one I tried. If I had a normal life, I'd probably buy it, but I fear I'm still going to be spending time in the US, so money wasted while it rots.

It was Tax band F. I checked the manual, and it was no different - unless I'm doing something wrong. The 1.6 showed blanks. Does that mean zero tax??!!

I'd purchased a Civic as soon as I got home, but gave it to my daughter cos the Accord was just not feeling too good and I didn't want her kids in that.

I went and looked at said 17 year old Accord. Poor old friend. Deserves better. The CV joint I fitted last time home was a failure. Made a noise right away. Don't know if I can change the entire shaft with the few bits of kit I've got here. My vast garage in Texas has half my stuff from here and loads of Sears tools. Oh, my. I wish I'd never discovered America.:ugh:

Effluent Man
29th Sep 2013, 16:09
I run a manual CDi 220.I got the higher powered Sport version,simply because that is what came along.In two years 50000 miles nothing has gone wrong.It's had a few tyres and the rears are bigger than the fronts 225's which are a bit pricy but apart from that nothing.On holiday through France it was doing 57mpg.

Teldorserious
29th Sep 2013, 16:34
Here in the states you can't get a car that does 57 mpg unless it's a hybrid. Wife's car is in the shop for what should be a simple fix but requires NASA to work on a timing chain issue, that was a built in obsolesence factor in the design.

Can't imagine buying into a new car, overpriced, constant service, not meant to last. It's just a way to get you on a payment treadmill.

That said Diesel fumes are now considered to be a causality of lung cancer, and with a few of those on the block, their fumes permeate the area and you can just feel how unhealthy and toxic the fumes are. Avoid them.

G-CPTN
29th Sep 2013, 16:55
Here in the states you can't get a car that does 57 mpg unless it's a hybrid.That's because your pumps don't supply a full (Imperial) gallon.

RJM
29th Sep 2013, 16:56
Time for a rant about my old MB.

My 1984 230E has done around 400,000kms. I treat it to regular oil changes, and since I've owned it, it has given me no trouble. Everything on it is engineered for simplicity. The radiator, for example, (which I've removed and flushed) is located by two pegs in rubber grommets at the bottom, two clips at the top, and the hose clamps on the top and bottom hoses - which are both led to the top, for your convenience. Time to remove or replace - 3 minutes.

The car drives smoothly with no squeaks or rattles and is roomy and comfortable. It has a four speed auto, cruise control and a superb original sound system. Everything still works, from the sunroof to the vacuum operated lock on the fuel filler lid. The car, while built like a tank, is quite fast, brakes and steers extremely well and is relatively economical. IMHO, it's close to the perfect sedan.

All for $3,000 AUD. What more could you want?

ShyTorque
29th Sep 2013, 17:39
Here in the states you can't get a car that does 57 mpg unless it's a hybrid

Yes, as G-CPTN said, in the USA you're a pint short of the full gallon so you'll only get 7/8 as many MPG.

But in balance, your octane ratings are better than they appear when compared to the European system.

My wife has a French car. The rear screen wiper stopped working. She took it to a Citroen specialist, thinking it would be a cheap fix. Wrong! The body computer had failed and said "Non!" To buy and fit another cost £600, almost half the car's market value. I fell out with French cars in the 1980s when they began fitting road wheels held on with just three bolts. Insanity, probably as a cost cutting measure. Lose the torque on one and the wheel could easily come off.

Saintsman
29th Sep 2013, 19:30
Can't imagine buying into a new car, overpriced, constant service, not meant to last.

Quite a few dealers in the UK are offering free servicing, some up to 5 years, on new cars. Whilst undoubtedly a saving, modern cars don't need servicing that often. Average mileage is once per year. Again, most have at least 3 years warranty so it should be trouble free motoring.

We all want nice looking cars that are cheap to run, but at the end of the day, most people want a car that won't let them down when they need it.

On a different theme, my wife and I visited the Mercedes dealership in Southampton. What a bunch of arrogant t*ssers. After waiting over 10 minutes to see a salesman, he moaned that he hadn't had his lunch yet. We were there for his convenience it seemed.

Still, the Jaguar dealership were happy to see me.

racedo
29th Sep 2013, 19:30
Have a C5 Diesel Estate with pneumatic suspension and second one I have had. Told it is a BMW engine but its smooth as anything.

Smooth comfortable and probably one of best cars I have had and was 4 yrs old with low mileage when bought.

I struggled with back pain when I had a number of GM models and now avoid but year ago did a solo 1500 km run in the C5 with a 2 hr break for a sleep and performed beautifully.

Remember with first C5 Diesel puzzled that no diesel exhaust smell, similar to now that the smelly tractor diesel smell is old hat on it.

Donkey497
29th Sep 2013, 19:37
I ordered a new car earlier this year. It's a model with some unusual preferences, so I knew that I'd have to wait a while whilst a new batch was produced at the factory & then shipped to the UK.

My nice new car arrived at my local dealer over three weeks ago. They, and I still have no clue as to when I will be able to pick it up.

All of the paperwork to transfer my number plate from my existing car to my new one was submitted to the DVLA within an hour of the car arriving at the dealer, which claims an eight calendar day turnround for these transactions.

So far we are at 21 and counting. The DVLA's efficiency and communication is simply overwhelming . All I need is a tax disc - please.

Previously, when you could do this locally, it was possible to do this fairly simple transaction inside 48 hours at worst. Now that the "local" offices are shut, God knows.......:ugh::(:ugh::{:ugh::(:ugh:

vulcanised
29th Sep 2013, 20:57
I fell out with French cars in the 1980s


It happened earlier than that for me.

I was employed as a grease monkey (service technician) by a local Renault dealer at the time of that splendid :rolleyes: Dauphine.

Among it's many unpleasant or undesirable features I soon discovered that working underneath one was fraught with danger. The proud craftsment at Renault didn't bother to smooth off the many jagged edges which tore at your clothes and flesh.

Blues&twos
29th Sep 2013, 20:59
I've owned French cars since for the last 19 years and have found the ones I've had pretty good. My first one, a Citroen AX 1.4 diesel, I bought new from a dealer, and it was exceptionally reliable and very comfortable. Had it for 10 years, used for a 70 mile round trip every day and had a clutch arm fracture after a year (faulty part replaced under warranty), a battery failure after 3 years a diesel shutoff solenoid leak after about 5 years and an alternator failure after about 8 years. That was it, until the head gasket started to leak after ten years and 172,000 miles. Got rid of it and bought a Scenic, which was good, but had some minor easily fixed electrical niggles (no surprise there).
Currently have a diesel Peugeot, which I like.

C130 Techie
29th Sep 2013, 21:16
Nearly new is the way to go when buying cars. Just taken ownership of a Mazda 3 Sport. £22k new. Mine is 9 months old, has done 2,500 miles and I have saved £6k on the new price.

Loose rivets
29th Sep 2013, 21:54
Difficult one, that. At what point do you leap in with being secondhand?

My MB E500 Sport was about two years old when I bought it. $72,000 buckeroos, down to 27k. Almost no miles because it had been stored for a year. Maybe that was the problem. Maybe they don't like being stored, but my 'savings' were eaten up by . . . well, you know the story.

The Honda 1.8 Auto with paddle thingies was very, very nifty. It takes a lot to impress me, but they said my savings were nearly £3,000 at a sale price of 19,000. Mmmm . . . that's the full retail price, right?

So many deals where you order on line . . . one bloke here got a car for a vast sum under retail. He'd never seen it, or the vendor, but it all worked out very well. I imagine Honda would not approve of such shenanigans. One will look. And get this. The agent was obliged to honour the servicing agreements. Huh! I can just imagine. Bring out the gritty oil, Bill. It's one o they on-line sales.

spekesoftly
29th Sep 2013, 23:28
I fell out with French cars in the 1980s when they began fitting road wheels held on with just three bolts. Insanity, probably as a cost cutting measure. Lose the torque on one and the wheel could easily come off.

A number of French cars were fittted with road wheels held on with just three bolts long before the 1980s. The 1948 Citroen 2CV is just one example. Is there any evidence that such three-point fixings were the cause of wheels coming adrift?

ShyTorque
29th Sep 2013, 23:57
Is there any evidence that such three-point fixings were the cause of wheels coming adrift?

The one I was following did.... :eek:

Mach Turtle
30th Sep 2013, 00:05
The 407 has been superseded by the 508. I have a 2011 Diesel variant of the 508. Very satisfactory.

G-CPTN
30th Sep 2013, 00:13
Richard Hammond on the Passat Alltrack: It's a 4x4 for those bothered by SUV stigma - Richard Hammond - Mirror Online (http://www.mirror.co.uk/lifestyle/motoring/richard-hammond-on-the-passat-alltrack-its-943912)

Used Volkswagen Passat Alltrack for sale on Auto Trader (http://www.autotrader.co.uk/used-cars/volkswagen/passat-alltrack)

Should have a low floor - but is the roof high enough?

cattletruck
30th Sep 2013, 01:50
Two weeks ago I thought I could do car hopscotch and avoid the horrendous city parking fines by driving two cars to my brothers house after he was hospitalised - I know I know, I should have put more thought into it :ugh:.

I gave up near an inner city Citroen dealership and called a tow truck. As I waited for the "towie" to arrive I checked out the potential buyers that were entering this trendy looking dealership. I would say without any doubt that none of them knew anything about the mechanicals of a screwdriver, left or right handed - maybe they were all hair dressers - well we are talking inner city here.

The tow truck driver finally arrived and expressed surprised when I told him there was nothing wrong with my brother's vehicle until I explained my predicament. As we got talking he told me the French badge features predominantly on the tray of his truck, and that it's good for his business. Shame, because I do like the styling of the new Renaults even though I can't cut hair, but if they aren't capable of going anywhere then I'd settle for a picture of one instead.

RJM, +1 for the venerable W123.

RJM
30th Sep 2013, 09:12
You're not wrong, cattle truck. I can't kill it, and that's saying something.

Alloa Akbar
30th Sep 2013, 09:24
Am about to replace my Audi A6 - Been looking at the new A6 Black Edition and the BMW 5 Series M-Sport.. The A6 definitely has the "wow" factor, especially inside the cabin, but when all is said and done, the BM has a head up display.. how fcukin' cool is that???!! To paraphrase our American cousins.. "I have gotta get me one of those!" :ok:

The SSK
30th Sep 2013, 09:43
We’re car buying at the moment, which is fun. It’s the first time we have been in the comfortable position to be able to pick and choose a bit. Mrs SSK is on her second new-bought Citroen C3 and has been entirely satisfied, not the slightest glitch in nearly eight years.

We’re looking for something bigger as it will be our sole car (and she is the sole driver). We need (a) petrol (b) automatic and (c) something you get up into, not down into. First stop was Citroen (C4 Picasso) and the next door showroom Peugeot (3008). Both are extremely innovative in many respects but – no petrol autos. The Peugeot had a HUD as well, Mr Akbar

We’re now down to a shortlist of four – Toyota Verso, Ford C-Max, Mazda CX5 and Skoda Yeti. Three will be road-tested next weekend, the Skoda the week after that. We’re pretty sure it will come down to the sensible Yeti vs the sexy Mazda.

We’re finding the quality of the salesmen varied much more than the quality of the cars.

chuks
30th Sep 2013, 10:43
We had a Passat VR5 estate car (old shape) with AWD for 14 years, from 1999. It finally had to go, with a bad camshaft and a big hole in the exhaust central collector box, when VW wanted 1200 euro just for the exhaust! Das war eine Unverschämtheit!

I just bought a 2012 BMW 330D X-Drive Touring to replace it. It has an automatic box, but it doesn't, according to the test figures anyway, burn any more fuel than the manual box version, plus it has those funny flippers behind the steering wheel, if one feels like playing "boy racer." The 330D has the inline six, where the smaller engines only have four cylinders, so this six has lots of torque, and it's very smooth-running. The six-speed automatic means that you don't have to row your way with the shift lever, chasing the relatively narrow powerband of the turbo-diesel. (Our other car is a 2002 BMW 330Ci with a petrol engine, normally aspirated, with a manual 5-speed gearbox; that engine has a very broad powerband.)

The 330D delivers about 7.5 to 8.5 litres per kilometer of diesel, and the 330Ci about 8.5 to 9 litres per hundred kilometres, burning 95-octane petrol.

It's very impressive, the way that new cars come with "chips galore"; all sorts of little functions are now automated. Great fun, so long as it all holds together. We shall see....

Our experience (four cars and four bikes) with BMW has been quite positive, better than with VW, plus there's the pleasure of driving a vehicle in the "premium" category. Servicing costs, though... a bit higher than VW, I think, although I do not add up all the receipts for various small repairs to the Passat, where the BMWs have had nothing much go wrong.

My son has just come up needing a car, and I bought a Toyota RAV-4, a 2008 basic model. It looks like a very practical, relatively safe sort of small SUV. It has a 130-kW turbo-diesel and a six-speed manual gearbox, with an extra differential that feeds up to 45% of the drive to the rear wheels when the grip at the front goes away. It's not a real off-roader, more just a good winter car, I think, but time will tell.

Back when, I had a Peugeot 504 estate car. It was a rust bomb, but very dependable for all that.

dubbleyew eight
30th Sep 2013, 10:59
chuks how do you equate all this car buying and driving with your environmental stance on the other thread?

is what you do not a contributor to global warming but what all the other 8 billion in the world are doing is. is that it?

interesting.....

Lon More
30th Sep 2013, 11:02
From the late 80s till last year I had succession of first Peugeots, then Renaults. Only once did I get let down and that was when I dropped the key to my 406 Coupe into a sink full of water and couldn't turn off the alarm.
I had both an Avantime and a Vel Satis, both much underrated cars.
Buying the demo, or the boss's private car when about six months old is the way to go.
Finally went elsewhere hen the cot of a service at 100000km would have been +/- €7000 on the Nissan built engine (it had to be practically removed to change the timing belt)
Now on a Skoda Yeti (bought new, as I was feeling flush) 2.0 litre TDI,DSG gearbox, 4x4 and al the whistles and bells I could wish for.
Downside is the road tax here in NL, €1400 pa. It is based on weight, fuel and the province you live in. Almost no way to get around it, as, if the car is registered to you and the tax isn't paid then you'll end up in court. No use saying you sold it to someone else as the onus is on the seller to make sure the new owner registers it. If he doesn't the seller remains liable for the tax.


SSK The Yeti is excellent, there's revised version on the way. :ok: Petrol versions from 1.2 litres up.

UniFoxOs
30th Sep 2013, 11:23
SSK - a friend of mine is now on her 4th C-Max (following my recommendation after renting one at VLC). She has just taken delivery of the latest. It's quite a good-looking car by today's standards. The Yeti is really fugly by comparison.

Bushfiva
30th Sep 2013, 11:36
Many years ago I worked with a Sudanese guy. Every 3 or 4 months he would buy a Peugeot 504, load it with a refrigerator or washing machine, plug the gaps with random kitchen stuff, and drive it back to Sudan and return about 8 days later, gradually equipping his extended family with washing machines, refrigerators and Peugeot 504's.

Well, not quite as interesting in the retelling, I note...

Loose rivets
30th Sep 2013, 11:41
. . . could have a DSG semi-automatic as an option.

Anyone know much about 'semi-automatics'?


G-C, I saw a super little 'crossover' Audi on the way home yesterday. Neat compromise. However, I'd be afeared to get into computerized 4WD when computerized 2WD is complex enough without a fat wallet. Not much chance of fixing that myself.

That's one thing about being in the US with GM product. I got a main computer for my 'Van' ready programed. I had to train it to be in my car, but then it was fine. $80. Used.

Bloke across the road here paid 600 quid to get his indicators going again. It's the black box, Guvnor. It seems they're very clever: they stop the bulbs from blowing.:ugh:



,,

G-CPTN
30th Sep 2013, 11:42
buy a Peugeot 504, load it with a washing machine,
So, laundering?

Much better way of exporting wealth than carrying cash.

The SSK
30th Sep 2013, 11:48
Anyone know much about 'semi-automatics'?

Offered on a number of the cars we're looking at - but not yet tried.

You have to anticipate when the change will come and lift off the gas momentarily, or you get a jerky change.

The salesman tells you that it becomes second nature very quickly. He would say that, wouldn't he?

MagnusP
30th Sep 2013, 11:53
We've been looking at the Jaguar XF, but at the weekend, MrsP got her eyes on the Audi A6. There's a discussion to be had.

goudie
30th Sep 2013, 12:03
My grandson has just puchased a 1 yr.old Focus with 14k on the clock. It's manual, diesel, has various bells and whistles and is as good as new. Brilliant to drive and comfortable too.
Cost £10,800. Road tax £30.00 per annum!
His previous cars have been Renault and Peugeot, they were unreliable and expensive to repair.

G-CPTN
30th Sep 2013, 12:39
A conventional automatic transmission uses a hydraulic torque-converter (think a paddle-wheel in a tank of fluid that drives the output shaft) and then a series of epicyclic geartrains that are sequentially clamped and released by clutches operated by signals from a computer (or shifting the lever manually).

An automated manual or dual-clutch transmission is effectively two manual gearboxes - each with its own clutch - that operate sequentially by signals from a computer or from a lever or paddles on the steering wheel. Successive ratios are selected whilst each clutch is disengaged then engaged by the clutch whilst the other clutch is disengaged to allow ratio changing (up or down).

See:- http://www.howstuffworks.com/dual-clutch-transmission.htm

Without the hydraulic torque-converter and the epicyclic trains, the manual double-clutch semi-automatic is more fuel-efficient than a conventional torque-converter automatic - even when operated fully-automatically.

Such transmissions have been used on Formula One cars for some time now - then top-of-the range sports cars and now regular production cars. They offer faster gearchanges with less driver effort (and, potentially, better matching of ratios giving better performance and economy).

cockney steve
30th Sep 2013, 13:23
Mid February, I bought a '98 Volvo T4 (1850 turbo-petrol) estate for £200, as a "breaker"...it came with 7 months test and taxed till end of month, so i drove it.

What a cracking car!...reappraising the situation, I retaxed it..(.-and again when that ran out 6 months later) Having scrapped my fusty Escort diesel estate and drawn£160 :) I flashed the cash and re-tested it (will need pads allround shortly, and ifitted one tyre)
Reliable, quiet, smooth (heated leather seats,leccy sunroof +aircon, leccy mirrors and windows,dash-ajusting headlamps.....)
solid underside, driven in granddad mode around 28mpg in town.....hooligan mode (hold tight and enjoy the ride :E when the turbo lights the afterburner,- about 20 mpg....motorway run/mixed , ~35 MPG....an enjoyable and practical machine and insurance was under £400.

All in all, the best motoring £200 in a long while.

YES, It cost less to buy and maintain in the last 7 months , than some are paying for a routine service.....when it's dead, I'll drive it to the scrappy and still draw ~£150..
that's eccologically friendly as well..the "greens" forget the environmental cost of scrappage and the resources needed to build a new car.....not to mention the time-bomb of all the Pious batteries that WILL expire and need reprocessing.

onetrack
30th Sep 2013, 13:49
The VW/Audi DSG semi-automatic is notorious here in upside-down land as being a troublesome money pit - and many are the stories of woe and outlays of thousands of $$$'s to repair DSG's that failed in as little as 30,000-50,000kms from new.
Google "DSG problems" and you soon get an idea that "VW", "reliability", and "DSG" are rarely found in the one sentence.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXEVuXLwMcs&feature=share&list=UUKcC11ircL-HI7TieCr9XQg

I hired a VW 6 berth Motorhome last year (built on the dual-wheel Crafter chassis) and did around 5000kms in it. It had the DSG transmission. I can't say I was impressed with its performance or driveability or fuel consumption.
It was sluggish when left in "D for Drag", and I found I got better performance and quicker shifts if I shifted the cogs manually. Sort of defeats the purpose really.

Do I also need to mention the operators manual that ran to about 280 pages, and which had about 30 pages alone, dedicated to understanding what all the indecipherable warning lights on the dash meant when they came on?? :rolleyes:

Alloa Akbar
30th Sep 2013, 13:55
We've been looking at the Jaguar XF, but at the weekend, MrsP got her eyes on the Audi A6. There's a discussion to be had

Magnus, she is right.. The XF is looking dated now.. :ok:

MagnusP
30th Sep 2013, 14:20
Ta, AA. We've been in Audi mode for about 11 years now. I fancied a change, but maybe better the devil you know ....

superq7
30th Sep 2013, 14:45
Magnus
I have just come out of three new Audi's two TT's and an A5 convertable lovely cars but a bit boring after a while, two weeks ago I got a new Evoque coupe auto have you considered one of those?

SOPS
30th Sep 2013, 15:26
I'm on my 6th Honda, got the first one when I was 18 ,I'm now 53 . You can't go wrong in my opinion. Great cars, reliable as hell. When I retire shortly, I will but another one, not sure which one, but it will be a Honda.

chuks
30th Sep 2013, 18:07
An alert correspondent has asked how I square being a petrolhead and running nice motors with caring at all about the environment:

My wife has to drive to work, 5 days a week, on German B roads that are often quite slippery. Since I got that first car with AWD, she won't have anything else when the weather's bad: "active safety." A BMW 3-series diesel, even with X-Drive, is no gas guzzler; you pay a high price for the car, but it's economical with fuel.

Another part of this is the car's "pose value," parked outside her dental practice, so no crapboxes, please! There, "passive safety" also comes into it, choosing a car of a certain minimum size that can be made small in an accident, while still leaving one enough room to escape personal squashification. German road crashes can often be extreme, involving high speeds.

Me, I use a motorcycle when the weather permits, and often even when it really doesn't, burning about 6 litres/100 km. and having a bit of fun while not burning such an awful lot of fuel. Or when I succumb to temptation and go blasting down the Autobahn in the 330 Ci at speeds up to about 150 mph when possible, I flog myself with nettles afterwards as a act of penance.

And since it's Germany, we often use public transportation.

I was just visiting London, when I was wafted about in a big, black Mercedes S-class, just because. I know I should feel guilty about that, not using the Tube instead, but I don't. Rush-hour, rubbing elbows with hordes of plebs... that's just so yesterday, somehow. If I don't find another overseas job soon, though, it might be so tomorrow, as well!

Thomas coupling
30th Sep 2013, 19:12
Getting on a bit now - late 50's and last chance to go for my dream car before retiring.
I have a BMW M3 softtop and a TR4, sold the TR within the week! Can't sell the M3 and at this rate my dream car seems as far away now as it did when I was a kid!
I'm looking to buy a Maserati GT as soon as the M3 goes and live in sin for a few years! Anyone out there got one?
Probably one of the most beautiful cars around. And a sound to die for!:cool::cool:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbTxhnlZphU

ShyTorque
30th Sep 2013, 19:36
Rush-hour, rubbing elbows with hordes of plebs... that's just so yesterday, somehow.

PLEBS? Oooh, he said plebs. Resign, that man, resign! :E

glad rag
30th Sep 2013, 19:47
needs volume up mind!

e0gvqLZIQss

nice indeed.

RedhillPhil
30th Sep 2013, 21:59
I ordered a new car earlier this year. It's a model with some unusual preferences, so I knew that I'd have to wait a while whilst a new batch was produced at the factory & then shipped to the UK.

My nice new car arrived at my local dealer over three weeks ago. They, and I still have no clue as to when I will be able to pick it up.

All of the paperwork to transfer my number plate from my existing car to my new one was submitted to the DVLA within an hour of the car arriving at the dealer, which claims an eight calendar day turnround for these transactions.

So far we are at 21 and counting. The DVLA's efficiency and communication is simply overwhelming . All I need is a tax disc - please.

Previously, when you could do this locally, it was possible to do this fairly simple transaction inside 48 hours at worst. Now that the "local" offices are shut, God knows.......:ugh::(:ugh::{:ugh::(:ugh:

Has your dealer not told you that now dealers are no longer allowed to apply a disc to a new car the owner has to apply for a disc. A fourteen day period of grace is allowed for this.
I have a two day a week job since retirement shifting and delivering cars. Letter from the D.V.L.A. stating that has appeared at one of the distribution dealers I collect from in Southall. Mind you, I recently acquired a vanity plate for my classic SaaB convertible and Northampton took 28 days to complete the transfer.

broadreach
1st Oct 2013, 02:31
Semi-automatics: yes, you need to learn when to lift off and when to accelerate but as the salesman said, it's a quick learning curve. My wife's car is a VW SpaceCross (what a name!), just a long Fox with beefed up suspension.

Peugeot: for years I had a 106, then sold it to my son who, three years later sold it back to me (at a substantial profit to him, of course). Kept it for a few years more. It was a simple, sturdy little go-kart of a car and during 18 years of hard driving - and regular maintenance - nothing ever broke. Not for nothing were Poojs popular in Africa, as Bushfiva pointed out above in his post about 504s.

CoodaShooda
1st Oct 2013, 04:11
My wife recently inherited her late mother's car .

2007 vintage, 1.3l Honda Jazz with 21600km on the clock. Genuine case of "driven by a little old lady".

Looked at trucking it home but the costs were astronomical; plus there were three Ford Falcon loads of other items to get home too.

Ended up loading it all into the Jazz, leaving just enough room for me to squeeze into the driver's seat (190cm/120kg) and have a view out the back over the pile.

Did the 4336km trip from Perth to Darwin in 3 1/2 days averaging 5.5l/100km. Most of the trip was at the WA legal 110kph, with the last 700km at NT legal 130kph. She ran out of puff around 140kph when overtaking.

The Jazz didn't miss a beat, brushed off a glancing side impact with a large kangaroo at 110kph and survived a kamikaze attack by a large bustard which hit the windscreen in front of my face, also at 110kph and both without any damage.

And I arrived in good enough shape to unload the car immediately I arrived.

Not a bad little car for getting the job done.

ChrisVJ
1st Oct 2013, 05:13
Forty eight hours for tax? What world are you guys living in?

Buy a new or second hand car here and five minutes after you sign the papers your car is insured, at the dealer by an ICBC agent, and on the road.

Regular renewals, approx five minutes inclusive at local agent.

Second hand car, private sale, ten minutes at agent (have to pay sales tax.)

tdracer
1st Oct 2013, 05:39
A BMW 3-series diesel, even with X-Drive, is no gas guzzler; you pay a high price for the car, but it's economical with fuel.


I wish I could have gotten one of those on this side of the pond. I love my 328xi X-Drive. It has the best ride/handling tradeoff of any car I've ever driven, it's been reliable (6 years, no repairs outside of normal maintenance), the straight 6 sounds beautiful, and it gets respectable mileage. But I wish I could have gotten the straight 6 diesel and great mileage. But BMW America didn't offer the diesel with AWD (they still don't).

Then again, based on the reviews of the revamped 3 series, I see no reason to replace what I've got.

RJM
1st Oct 2013, 05:51
My immediate family has had a combined total of almost 40 years of (regularly serviced) Honda ownership. Other than routine replacements (brakes, belts etc) there has been a single malfunction - a faulty alternator, replaced under warranty.

I've stuck to secondhand Alfas, Lancias, 50 year old Healeys etc and I've tended to modify them. I see it as a lifelong course in backyard mechanics on which my more sober relatives have missed out. :rolleyes:

sitigeltfel
1st Oct 2013, 06:27
My nice new car arrived at my local dealer over three weeks ago. They, and I still have no clue as to when I will be able to pick it up.

So far we are at 21 and counting. The DVLA's efficiency and communication is simply overwhelming . All I need is a tax disc - please.

From the DVLA website...

DVLA Tax Disc Change for New Vehicles 2013

Changes in the DVLA mean that from 22 July 2013 dealers can no longer issue new vehicle tax discs. However, your dealer can register your vehicle with the DVLA who will then post out your tax disc within 14 days.
What this means for you


You can use or drive your newly registered vehicle for up to 14 days from the date of registration, without displaying a tax disc.
Vehicles can be registered up to 14 days in advance any month of the year.
Choose to have your tax disc sent to your dealer, the address of the registered vehicle owner or a fleet operator.
If your tax disc hasn’t arrived after 8 days, you can get a free duplicate by taking your V5C log book to the Post Office.

Your dealer is telling you porkies, he might be using your shiny new car as a demonstrator before letting you have it ;)

Metro man
1st Oct 2013, 08:47
Have a look at The Dog and Lemon Guide - It's like a Lonely Planet Guide to the world of cars. (http://www.dogandlemon.com) for some unbiased advice on cars. Due to the insanely high price of cars where I now live I'm driving a small Hyundai. Most reliable car I've ever owned, service once a year and that's it. It's replacement will almost certainly be another Hyundai, but Honda or Toyota would be quite acceptable.

Mercedes and BMW are great to hire when I'm on holiday and don't have to pay any maintenance costs.

The last good French car we owned was a Peugeut 504ti in 1980.

Effluent Man
1st Oct 2013, 09:07
I have seen the arguments on fuel consumption re Manual/Auto gearboxes and I know the new ones are more efficient.I am into hypermiling though and I use the tried and tested Mexican Overdrive system.To demonstrate this best there is a section of northbound A12 approaching Ipswich.The last mile to the large traffic light controlled roundabout has a slight down gradient.I select the MO setting at the mile mark and am still doing 35 when I reach the lights.This method enables big MPG but you can't do it in an auto.Similarly approaching slower traffic or 30 limits it works very well.

UniFoxOs
1st Oct 2013, 10:04
you can't do it in an auto

Why not?

BTW I assume you know that plod regard it as illegal.

Cheers
UFO

Thomas coupling
1st Oct 2013, 10:47
Unifoxo: Interesting you say that.
My wife has a new Audi S3, the 'auto' box has three settings: fully auto / paddle change / manual stick shift (there is no clutch).
When she selects "economy" mode on the computer, if she is driving down the outside lane at speed, or downhill and takes her foot off the throttle, the engine revs drop automatically to tick over. Isn't this the same as driving in neutral where the cops treat it as illegal?

OFSO
1st Oct 2013, 12:25
2010 Ford Mondeo 1.8 eco diesel, fast enough (for me), came loaded with options free of charge (nav., bluetooth, cruise control, electric driver's seat,) had towhook and tinted glass added by the dealer, free of charge, does 50 mpg.

No complaints.

Japanese cars priced themselves out of the Spanish market by charging for options and by making the most boring cars in the world: and Spanish will not buy boring cars..

Most seen cars here in N. Spain:
Sports = Porsche
Off road = Range Rover
Small off road = Range Rover Evoque
Luxury = Mercedes, Jaguar
Saloons = Audi
Small = Ford, Citröen, Peugeot

Most likely to be driving at 40 kph and holding everyone up: A Belgian- or Dutch-registered Prius.

UniFoxOs
1st Oct 2013, 17:58
Isn't this the same as driving in neutral where the cops treat it as illegal?

Well, I suppose it is, but it is a bit different. If I put a manual box in neutral, or a non-computerised auto, then I have to take steps to regain drive - i.e. put it in gear/drive. In the case of your wife's car she can obtain drive immediately in an emergency by flooring the accelerator. Thus she is "in control of the vehicle" in plod terms and I am not. Don't know whether they would accept this in practice, though. Neither of us would have any engine braking, though, which is said to be one of the major causes of not being in control.

There was a long thread about this a couple of years ago - LINK (http://www.pprune.org/jet-blast/448963-coasting-neutral-why-not.html)

Loose rivets
1st Oct 2013, 18:47
Well, that was a fun link.

I found myself agreeing with posts before realizing it was me posting, (I do that in real life these days) :} and even, at one miraculous stage, found myself speaking furrin.

Oddly, filled with the joy of being in a country with bends in the road, oh, and roundabouts, I have just in the last few days been experimenting with differing modes of operation to refresh handling techniques while driving my aged Honda Accord. I recalled it used to be illegal, but one thing I toyed with was to slip into neutral on long rolls to roundabouts. Engine at 800 rpm, so yes, more fuel going in that an ECU clip, so no point there. And indeed, the join with other traffic at the approach to the roundabout turned into a fumbling mess on a couple of occasions. But it's okay - I have a mop of grey hair and look generally stupid, so people are more tolerant these days. Well, all except young chaps in sports cars.

No doubt about it. The car is just not under proper control in neutral.

Blues&twos
1st Oct 2013, 20:10
Just seen this.

New MoT failure figures reveal surprises - Yahoo Cars (http://uk.cars.yahoo.com/news/new-mot-failure-figures-reveal-surprises-120500051.html)


There will be many variables which may skew the results, like mileage, driving style, typical terrain the cars are used on etc.
My Citroen AX for example, had it's first MOT done at the UK obligatory three years old mark, when it had 105,000 miles on the clock. It failed on emissions, which I immediately put right with a tin of injector cleaner, whereupon it passed.

What would be more interesting I think would be to know mileage and what items they failed on - if it was just a number plate bulb or something non-car related like a cracked windscreen or worn tyres not changed, seems a bit unfair to "blame" the make of the car.

But then I would say that...I own a Peugeot.:O

G-CPTN
1st Oct 2013, 20:36
My two MOT failures with the Peugeot was wrong front number plate (replaced several years previously by the garage after a minor parking incident - they had jumbled the numbers), and directional tyres on the wrong way round (left one on the right and vice versa) - wheels swapped over and a retest FOC.

Tester said that at 12 years old it was a very sound vehicle - shame it had to go, really, but it's gone to a good home and I still see it around the village (it's like seeing an old girlfriend :{ ).

The one problem that I thought was going to be the killer was stoplights not working (when I did my pre-MOT check). Bulbs were good - it was the stoplight switch. Got new switch from t'interweb for 99p then read the manual 'remove the fascia'!
What with the airbags etc I was loathe to start that - and reaching the switch seemed impossible, but a squirt of WD40 restored the switch function! Whew!

Blues&twos
1st Oct 2013, 20:49
Had a similar "easy" job on my old Mini when the brake lights stopped working. Turned out mine had a hydraulic switch screwed into one of the brake circuit pipes rather than a microswitch under the brake pedal. Had to go through the whole bleeding the brakes nonsense following replacement. Never seemed to be quite right ever again.

onetrack
2nd Oct 2013, 03:56
My 1932 Chevrolet roadster has a freewheeling device on top gear as a fuel-saving idea. On a downhill run, you're effectively in neutral.

Chevrolet dropped the idea pretty rapidly when it was realised the dangers associated with a lack of engine braking on long downhill gradients, kind of outweighed any fuel saving benefits.

I'm surprised that any car manufacturer in the 21st century, would offer a transmission that effectively disconnects or idles the engine on long downhill gradients.

Stewie1982
2nd Oct 2013, 05:00
I had a car fail on the MoT once for the following two things - a number plate bulb (if they'd asked there were spares in the glovebox) and a nail in a tyre, now given that it was a tyre place MoTing it, they could've phoned me and asked me to replace the tyre and bulb, but no had the inconvience of having to take it back.....:ugh:

twb3
2nd Oct 2013, 05:38
I've found Subarus to be all but indestructible, but they don't sell them everywhere and are considered by some to be agricultural equipment rather than cars....

TWB

onetrack
2nd Oct 2013, 06:44
Twb3 (warning - aviation content) - I guess you're aware that the company that makes Subarus - Fuji Heavy Industries - was originally the Nakajima Aircraft Company? - producer of the various versions of the Nakajima radials that powered those fearsome Zeros in WW2?

After WW2, the Japanese were forbidden by the Allies to produce and research aircraft design and produce aircraft - so Nakajima was reborn as Fuji Sangyo in 1946 - from which FHI was formed in 1953.

I believe the Subaru Boxer engine was initially designed utilising aircraft engine knowledge and technology - of which Fuji has plenty - seeing as FHI was responsible for the design and production of the T34-A trainer aircraft in 1953, and the T-1 Jet trainer in 1957.
FHI also produced the Fuji FA-200 light aircraft from 1965 to 1986, and still produces a wide range of aerospace components.

chuks
2nd Oct 2013, 07:21
Subarus are very popular in southern Vermont, but I never saw one of any age that did not have very bad rust. Even a car just three or four years old would show, typically, rust in the panels behind the rear wheels, what ends as heavy corrosion with the panels rusting through from behind.

Of course there's a lot of salt used on Vermont roads in winter, but why should the Subaru show such unique rust problems, as if the manufacturer has not figured out a fix in the same way that Porsche and Audi have, using galvanized steel in areas that are prone to rusting?

I don't think there was a lot of transfer from Fuji licence-building T-34s, since the engines came from Continental, or perhaps Lycoming, only needing to be bolted into place.

I used to work on early Subarus with the weedy boxer engines, and they were pretty dire, lots of recall problems with water leaks from the cylinder heads. Later, in typical Japanese style, Subaru sorted the engine problems out, so that, today, the boxer engines are powerful and reliable.

As to the unavailability of the BMW diesel models in the States, that might be a problem with marketing diesels in the States. GM built a diesel derived from a petrol V-8, and that was a terrible engine; it gave diesels a bad name with American consumers that seems to have persisted. Too, fuel is about half as dear in the States as in Europe, so that American consumers are not so focused on fuel economy. (The best-selling vehicle in the States is the Ford F-150 pickup truck, which is a bit of fuel hog, I believe.) When it comes to spending quite a bit more on a diesel, compared to burning more fuel over the life of the car, cheaper fuel drives one to choose the cheaper, petrol engine.

Here in Germany, though, the diesel car was not that much more expensive as a used-car purchase, while the fuel consumption was very much lower than that for the equivalent petrol engine, the 335i. The 330i has gone from the model line-up.

In fact, BMW now offer only the 335i, a stonking twin-turbo, 3-litre, as the only relatively large, straight six, petrol engine option; the rest are two-litre, four-cylinder engines that are, so to speak, chip-tuned for varying outputs and badged as 320, 328, etc. I would have loved to have a 335i, except for the way it gulps fuel when you use its performance to the full.

G-CPTN
2nd Oct 2013, 07:42
Rover cars from the 1930s to the 1950s were fitted with transmission freewheels, as were SAAB two-stroke models up to the 96 and also the early model 99.

Most bicycles are fitted with freewheels (as are tricycles of course ;-)

ShyTorque
2nd Oct 2013, 08:40
My late father in law had a Saab 96 van as his company vehicle. It was a very rare model (at least in UK); I've never seen another like it. It had a V4 engine and a freewheel handle under the dash - if you pulled it you could select the freewheel in or out. One of those very quirky vehicles I wish I'd got now.

BTW, with regard to the argument about the legality of "coasting in neutral" - I've heard this over many decades, but how would the police* ever know if you were to do this? I sometimes do it at very low speeds when coming to a stop to save wear on the clutch release mechanism (I'm one of those rare folk who will put the gearbox in neutral and handbrake on while waiting in traffic, rather than waiting in gear with clutch pedal down and foot brakes/ brake lights on). Engine braking for slowing down is less important than it was many years ago, due to the vast improvements made in the brake department of modern cars over the drum setup of 40/50 years ago.

*The police force in my area no longer has a traffic department. Apart from a few unmarked cars on the motorway it's rare to see a police car, let alone be pulled up for "coasting in neutral".

UniFoxOs
2nd Oct 2013, 08:45
Had a similar "easy" job on my old Mini when the brake lights stopped working. Turned out mine had a hydraulic switch screwed into one of the brake circuit pipes rather than a microswitch under the brake pedal. Had to go through the whole bleeding the brakes nonsense following replacement. Never seemed to be quite right ever again.

Yes, old minis are a real bu66er to bleed, took me ages on the last one (same problem with the brake light switch). This is due to the loop of pipe above the master cylinder. I've now (for the just as notorious Rand Lover clutch) made up a pipe that attaches to the bleed nipple and feeds back to the master cylinder. This enables continual fast pumping that will shift the air out of the high points before it has a chance to drift back up while you are topping up the reservoir. I reckon it wil work on a mini aslo.

ShyTorque
2nd Oct 2013, 08:53
Ah yes, the old Mini drum brakes...... :ugh:

I have a little sports car I built myself which was designed to use the twin leading shoe drum setup from the Leyland Mini. I used all new components but became so frustrated with it that I eventually designed my own disc brake setup and fitted that instead. Now it almost bleeds itself as soon as you open the bleed screws. It also stops in a straight line, which was never guaranteed before with the drum brakes. :eek:

cattletruck
2nd Oct 2013, 10:56
I'm surprised that any car manufacturer in the 21st century, would offer a transmission that effectively disconnects or idles the engine on long downhill gradients.
Mine does that in the name of emmission control :ugh:. Friggin thing starts accelerating on a downhill gradient so you are forced to start glazing the brakes :ugh:. Lucky Australia is flat.

I'm one of those rare folk who will put the gearbox in neutral and handbrake on while waiting in traffic
I'm one of those rare folk too however sometimes I don't even bother with the handbrake. Lucky Australia is flat.

TWT
2nd Oct 2013, 10:57
I'm one of those rare folk who will put the gearbox in neutral and handbrake on while waiting in traffic, rather than waiting in gear with clutch pedal down and foot brakes/ brake lights on

Me too.Makes more sense to take care of the clutch.They are expensive.

RJM
2nd Oct 2013, 11:01
Especially persistent crabs. Oh, 'clutch'... :\

Lord Spandex Masher
2nd Oct 2013, 11:13
This method enables big MPG but you can't do it in an auto.p

You can on mine. However, if you leave it in drive it'll hold the revs just above idle (not sure how it does this but I assume it's something to do with the torque converter) which gives you minimal engine braking and it uses absolutely no fuel whatsoever.

The SSK
2nd Oct 2013, 11:13
Me too.Makes more sense to take care of the clutch.They are expensive.

And not having your brake lights shining in the eyes of the guy behind you is a courtesy, too.

chuks
2nd Oct 2013, 12:05
Many modern motor management systems shut off the fuel on over-run, until a pre-set lower rev limit is reached. That makes the unwise practice of using "Mexican Overdrive" totally unnecessary. My motorcycle has that, for instance, while it's almost impossible to select "Neutral" at highway speeds, given that a bike has a sequential gear selector mechanism with "Neutral" nestled between "First" and "Second."

On the other hand, the BMW motorcycle designers have thoughtfully included an occasional "false Neutral" between "Fifth" and "Sixth," just one of their small, German jokes, one the bike usually pulls just when one is making haste. A huge "waaah" from the engine, and an enormous graunch from the gearbox as one clumsily engages top gear, both make for great fun as one enters a high-speed curve.

603DX
2nd Oct 2013, 12:57
As this interesting thread has some knowledgeable folk contributing, can someone please comment on the "Stop/Start" feature being introduced as a fuel-saving measure on an increasing number of new cars?

Basically, whenever you stop at junctions, traffic queues, etc., the engine shuts down for the time you are stationary. Only on depressing the clutch pedal in the Ford Fiesta I hired recently in Guernsey, does the engine burst into life again. This re-start sounds exactly like a normal starter motor operation, so I don't think it is some clever new technology which avoids turning over the electric motor and engaging the ring gear with its spur gear, so the number of times they have to operate is enormously increased on every journey, particularly in town traffic. And what about the battery? That, too, has to provide the heavy current burst many, many times.

I am puzzled, as although if the engine is not running there is an obvious fuel saving, how long are the starter motor and gears going to last, if they are not simply being operated once, at the start of each journey, but almost continually on stop-start urban journeys? Is the money saved on fuel much greater than the cost of replacing starter motors and batteries more often? Or have these items been so improved in design and quality that they now have very extended service lives?

onetrack
2nd Oct 2013, 14:31
603DX - Good point. The companies claim that the slightly increased starter motor/flywheel ring gear wear, is more than adequately compensated by the considerable fuel savings.
A lot of fuel is consumed idling at lights, particularly when there's a wait of a minute or more. I've practised turning off my vehicle at lights on major intersections, where there's often a considerable wait time, for many years now.
I can't say I've experienced a major increase in starter wear because of my fuel saving habit. Battery life is usually measured in years, not useage cycles.
There's some major pollution buildup from idling vehicles, too, as the fumes are concentrated in one spot and idling generally produces more noxious emissions.
An old real estate friend told me once - "there's a good reason why houses on or right adjacent to major intersections are cheap! The fumes are dreadful during peak hour!"

Lon More
2nd Oct 2013, 14:37
And not having your brake lights shining in the eyes of the guy behind you is a courtesy, too
I leave mine in Drive and put the handbrake on.

Friggin thing starts accelerating on a downhill gradient so you are forced to start glazing the brakes

Just knock the DSG lever to the right and hold a lower gear

The SSK
2nd Oct 2013, 15:01
My BMW 320d had a manual stop/start button. I would use it when caught by lights I knew to be long on the red. On occasion I could calculate that more than 10% of the duration of an urban journey could be spent with the engine off.

Although having been a martyr to the starter motor of my first car (an Escort) I have often wondered exactly the same as 603DX.

Effluent Man
2nd Oct 2013, 17:03
Fiat did that stop/start mallarkey in the 80's.Shy Torque I have a Saab96 V4 in Canary yellow 1973 "M" reg and it has the freewheel device.Not being in control quite honestly is a load of old cobblers.Probably something the police dreamed up around the time of the red flag act.I have experimented widely and I can categorically state that the freewheel method is the most economical.Whilst the overrun uses no fuel the engine braking outweighs this many times over.

sitigeltfel
2nd Oct 2013, 18:36
I read a road test recently of a car fitted with the stop/start system, (forgot which model) where you could look at the on-board computer sub menu to see how much fuel it had saved.

chuks
2nd Oct 2013, 19:05
It was a relic of the 3-cylinder 2-stroke engine that SAAB used, the original one that got its lubrication from a fuel-oil mix. On over-run, no fuel going into the crankcase on a 2-stroke using pre-mix means no oil either, so that the engine could seize if not allowed to freewheel on a long run downhill. (Engine seizures killed not a few bike racers that way.) Then, I guess, SAAB must have just left the freewheel control in place on the later cars with, first, oil injection for the 2-stroke, and then also for the little Ford V-4 engine.

I knew a guy who knew a SAAB rep, and he told me that the SAAB rep used to keep a replacement 2-stroke engine ready to hand in the boot of his car; those engines were known to seize at times of their own choosing.

ShyTorque
2nd Oct 2013, 19:29
603DX,

If I recall correctly, the automatic "engine stop/start" facility was designed to reduce air pollution, rather than to save fuel. Wasn't it so that in Germany it was/is illegal to wait at a railway crossing and/or elsewhere with the vehicle's engine idling?

I lived there for some years and now, even though I'm back in Blighty, always switch off my engine at level crossings... old habits die hard.

papajuliet
2nd Oct 2013, 19:37
When I started driving if a car engine stopped at traffic lights it was a case of get out and push.
I would never buy, by choice,buy a car with stop start technology - if it's unavoidable I'll disable it.