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Thread: The demise of the car in North America

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    Default The demise of the car in North America

    So what of GM and Ford discontinuing the production and/or sales of most of their car models in Canada and the USA? Is this being a bit short sighted or not? To be honest, I can look up and down our street and see the majority of our neighbor's vehicles are either SUV's and trucks with a very small sprinkling of minivans - out of the 22 homes on our block there are exactly 5 cars and 2 minivans. Our household currently runs two SUV's but if I didn't need something big enough to carry my tools, I'd most likely be running a very small hatch of some type big enough to carry some 8 foot 2x4's once in a while. I'd still own and operate a car if it met my needs, my wife - she's a SUV person through and through.
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    1. Type of life
    2. Simply a choice

    Plenty of people drive vehicles outside of what they need for whatever reason. I am more comfortable in a truck but no issues in a suv of sorts.

    My girlfriend always drove a car till she started a business and now a suv works better for her.

    The difference between a smaller and suv and a car is so minimal now that unless your a broke ass student, why drive one.

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    Still plenty of cars... but I think anyone that’s buying for pure utility is buying a CUV over a car... those are the same people that would have bought a domestic car. People that don’t give a shit about the fit or finish, or performance and just want to go from A to B

    Let the people that do the car better continue to make the cars for those that want something beyond that and stick to what the public expects from the domestics... trucks and family movers

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    Cars used to get far better mileage, now CUV's are so close, you might as well get the utility from them. Especially families with dogs. If you've got two car seats in the back, there isn't much room for a pup.

    Also... Am I the only one having extreme deja-vu over this thread. Didn't we already discuss this exact topic awhile back?

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    North Americans are fatter (no offence). My flight stopped in San Fran last week and as I was disembarking off the plane, a absolute morbid obese whale walked into the gangway. I was like wtf..? This is the first thing one sees when arriving in the US..? You can't make this ship up.
    As I walked to my transit gate I saw a giant security guard waddling. Waddling! Not Walking.. Welcome to the USA eh?

    I think part of it has also do with the price of cheap fuel, the way our infrastructure is laid out and taxation.
    Im in London at the mo and there is still a market for small vehicles. The cost of living is insane.

    As for north America.. I mean why get down into a car when you can roll into a SUV? GM and Ford are adapting to the 'bigger' consumer base. Its simple.. people are getting fatter. Thats my theory anyway.


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    The debate of SUVs vs. Minivans or Hatchbacks (3 vs 5 doors) has been figured out by literally the rest of the world decades ago. They have no place in an urban environment from a practical point.

    Only in North America does this not apply to urban areas.

    Obviously, SUVS have a clear role in extra-urban situations (eg. acerage where high ground clearance is necessary) and thus they will always have more of a need for that (small) portion of the population segment.

    I see the same trend with N/A model SUVs:

    - more tech (and less that the consumer knows how to use) buried in touch screen menus
    - over styled vehicles
    - all wheel drive for city 'safety'
    - emphasis on driver/vehicle disengagement - ie. less understanding of vehicle behaviour (encouraging autonomic driving? )
    - half ass autonomic driving features that only serve to confuse the owner
    Last edited by revelations; 12-27-2018 at 11:45 AM.

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    CUVs are more practical and drive like cars which is why we have one. I still prefer having a large sedan because I like being lower to the ground. I would never consider a GM or Ford sedan product anyway so this news doesn’t affect me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by revelations View Post
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    The debate of SUVs vs. Minivans or Hatchbacks (3 vs 5 doors) has been figured out by literally the rest of the world decades ago. They have no place in an urban environment from a practical point.

    Only in North America does this not apply to urban areas.

    Obviously, SUVS have a clear role in extra-urban situations (eg. acerage where high ground clearance is necessary) and thus they will always have more of a need for that (small) portion of the population segment.

    I see the same trend with N/A model SUVs:

    - more tech (and less that the consumer knows how to use) buried in touch screen menus
    - over styled vehicles
    - all wheel drive for city 'safety'
    - emphasis on driver/vehicle disengagement - ie. less understanding of vehicle behaviour (encouraging autonomic driving? )
    - half ass autonomic driving features that only serve to confuse the owner
    You mean... like automatic headlights causing people to not have a damn clue on how to use them? I would love to put people into a vehicle with a pull knob light switch and foot based headlight switch and tell them to use the headlights lol.

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    Sales numbers don't lie. thats the reasoning ford and GM use.

    I'm personally for it. I find a larger vehicle to be more useful and comfortable, and with tech these days, the fuel economy penalty is minimal.

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    If I wanted a large vehicle for a family, I would get a minivan. Amazingly practical things. Sliding doors kick ass.

    And yes, the SUV trend is 99% thanks to the automakers and petrol companies who love the increase in markup from trucks/suvs (as compared to cars) as well as the over all increase in consumption. There are increased maintenance costs associated with things like AWD, tires, oils etc. as they need bigger and more of these.

    Corporate win.

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    Quote Originally Posted by firebane View Post
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    You mean... like automatic headlights causing people to not have a damn clue on how to use them? I would love to put people into a vehicle with a pull knob light switch and foot based headlight switch and tell them to use the headlights lol.
    Yea im seeing a lot more dark vehicles out there (from the rear) with just DRLs on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by firebane View Post
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    You mean... like automatic headlights causing people to not have a damn clue on how to use them? I would love to put people into a vehicle with a pull knob light switch and foot based headlight switch and tell them to use the headlights lol.
    lol, people will figure that out, I grew up driving a bronco with that setup, it’s really nothing special or complicated at all. I actually do prefer the foot high low switch actually

    The problem isn’t that people don’t know how to use them it’s that a lot of manufacturers design the lighting system so that the dash lights still come on even if the lighting system is off/in drl. Moronic design on the manufacturers part.

    Auto lights are a good compromise though. No issues then, other than in blizzards.



    But on the topic of the thread I think it’s due to fuel economy, newer suvs in many cases are as efficient as many cars were 10 years ago. So the old mindset of SUVs being gas guzzlers doesn’t apply in many cases.

    And performance, a even a new F-150 ecoboost will give an accord 6-6 a good run


    Edit: and to further stir the pot AWD absolutely is safer than fwd or rwd in the snow
    Last edited by J-hop; 12-27-2018 at 03:36 PM.

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    It is a response to the market, not a decision made by the manufacturers. It makes sense to focus on the products that make money rather than those that don't. If you are butt hurt that there are no more cars, blame your neighbours... not GM or Ford.

    No different than people that blame oil companies for creating environmental damage... they just supply the market demand, the people who drive cars and heat their home are the ones you should be blaming.
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    And most domestic cars just suck (excluding muscle of course)

    With the exception of the muscle side what American sedan would you ever want to own over an import?

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    Quote Originally Posted by J-hop View Post
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    And most domestic cars just suck (excluding muscle of course)

    With the exception of the muscle side what American sedan would you ever want to own over an import?
    When the imports are built locally and domestics are imported, what difference does it make?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darell_n View Post
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    When the imports are built locally and domestics are imported, what difference does it make?
    I guess I mean foreign based brand vs NA based brand. I can’t think of a single NA based brand sedan i’d Take over it’s foreign based brand competitor

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    Quote Originally Posted by J-hop View Post
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    And most domestic cars just suck (excluding muscle of course)

    With the exception of the muscle side what American sedan would you ever want to own over an import?
    I didnít think I would say this....but a Chevy Malibu. If you havenít checked one out ( buddy has a 16 ) I was floored with how nice it was. Somewhat refined. And lots of power ( plus filled with cool tech such as adaptive Cruise etc) couldnít believe how far it had come... but didnít really matter because nobody bought them. They just canít compete vs Honda, Hyundai, Toyota. Etc. Resale on the Domestics, just get murdered. Another reason I still wouldnt buy Korean vs Japanese. Are the Koreans making great cars ? Absoloutely. But. Some just canít forget and wonít forget about the Pony....
    A Ferrari is a high maintenance chick, you spend money regardless of what you do with her. You can baby the C63, or slap on all seasons, and you won't be spending anything but yearly maintenance. Of course that's like dating a stripper and refusing to fuck her, which would make you gay.

    Originally posted by Rage2

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    Quote Originally Posted by firebane View Post
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    You mean... like automatic headlights causing people to not have a damn clue on how to use them? I would love to put people into a vehicle with a pull knob light switch and foot based headlight switch and tell them to use the headlights lol.
    To be fair, it’s the manufacturers fault that auto headlights are so unintuitive. A properly designed system with a simple ambient light sensor just works.
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    Do domestic car markers really give a shit about total sales out of Canada? No.

    NA sales basically = US sales. And on average, gas is so f*cking cheap in the US such that driving a Suburban because you can, makes sense. If the price of USA gas all the sudden tripled and stayed there, it's only a matter of time before truck/large suv numbers dwindle. Hell people here in AB were talking about losing their big vehicles because of the price of gas.

    Look at the differential between average USA pricing and average EU pricing:

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/gasoline_prices/

    I think there's also a cultural mindset between EU and NA where NA loves big, monsterous and noisy whereas EU wants sleek and sexy - Supercars are a great example of this.

    Need to confirm, but I remember hearing a crazy stat on the radio like Lloyminster was the highest truck sales per capita in NA lol.
    Last edited by msommers; 12-27-2018 at 05:33 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebane View Post
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    You mean... like automatic headlights causing people to not have a damn clue on how to use them? I would love to put people into a vehicle with a pull knob light switch and foot based headlight switch and tell them to use the headlights lol.
    On the reverse side of this, I can’t find a way to keep my headlights off when it’s dark (18 X1). If I leave the vehicle running while I run inside for a minute, it doesn’t matter where the headlight switch is, the low beams will remain on. It’s almost pointless having a headlight switch now if you can’t control anything.

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    Quote Originally Posted by msommers View Post
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    I think there's also a cultural mindset between EU and NA where NA loves big, monsterous and noisy whereas EU wants sleek and sexy - Supercars are a great example of this.

    Need to confirm, but I remember hearing a crazy stat on the radio like Lloyminster was the highest truck sales per capita in NA lol.

    Definitely the case - the EU and the rest of the world have FAR nicer looking cars than we do here. Here, we get a selection of giant, lifted boxes on wheels.

    With regards to Lloyd, places like that are considered extra-urban. Lots of farmers and other industrial users up there.
    Last edited by revelations; 12-27-2018 at 05:54 PM.

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