The Truth About "Planned Obsolescence"

Conversations With Clover - Part Deux

2014 Nissan Altima

Death Song For the Manual Transmission

2014 Nissan Altima

You may have heard this story: Back in the mid ’60s, that wild and crazy guy John Z. DeLorean –…

New Car Reviews

2014 Nissan Altima

'14 Altima lead

You may have heard this story: Back in the mid ’60s, that wild and crazy guy John Z. DeLorean – father of the GTO – almost fathered a Pontiac rival to Chevy’s Corvette. It was a slick two-seater called Banshee (internally, XP-833) that got disappeared as soon…

2014 Toyota Camry Hybrid

'14 Camry hybrid lead

Does the Camry hybrid – vs. the regular Camry – make economic sense? Or is it an emotional (and political) thing primarily – as in: Hey, look how much I care about the environment? Hmmmm . . . On the one hand, the Camry hybrid will cost…

2014 Audi A8

'14 A8 lead

Two things about the Audi A8. First, it’s a relative bargain. $75,100 to start – and that’s with Quattro all-wheel-drive. To put that in some perspective, Mercedes wants $92,900 for the least expensive Mercedes S-Class . . . without AWD. Now, the Benz does come standard with…

2014 Jeep Cherokee

'14 Cherokee lead

Here’s what didn’t work: Liberty (2002-2012). Commander (2006-2010). Which probably accounts for the new Cherokee . . . and what it’s not. It isn’t a traditional SUV. Reason? They’re a hard sell these days. At least, as mass-market vehicles. Despite Jeep’s boulder-hopping rep, the truth is most…

2014 BMW 328d

'14 "328d" badge

Downsizing is hitting diesels too. I wrote a week or so ago about the 2014 BMW 320i – a new, economy-minded (for a BMW) and smaller-engined/lower-powered version of the 3 sedan. This week, I’m writing about the 328d – “d” for diesel. BMW has sold a diesel-powered…

2014 Honda Insight

'14 Insight lead pic

There are two hybrid models on the market that address what’s arguably the most persuasive argument against buying a new hybrid: They cost too much. Or, to put a finer point on it: Their cost to buy is too high relative to what you’ll save on fuel. …


Conversations With Clover – Part Deux

clover king

It is important to understand what we’re up against – those of us who oppose human interactions based on violence. And what we’re up against is . . . Clover. This Unknown Troll has plagued EPautos for years; but as annoying as he is, he does serve a valuable purpose. His posts give us insight into the mentality of the sort of person who believes violence ought to be the basis of human…

Untergang for GM?

Utergang 1

Picture that scene in the bunker. The Fuhrer railing at his generals, spittle-spewing maledictions about their treachery and lies. Cue GM CEO Mary Barra – poor woman – inside the tube towers, ashen-faced subordinates sitting around the big table… . How could this have happened? And (probably) Why must I be surrounded by idiots? Actually, they were pretty smart. I mean, the people responsible for what will likely prove to be GM’s untergang.…

What Might Cars Cost If We Had a Free Market?


It’s a common gripe that new cars cost too much – and, they do. As of last year, the average transaction price paid for a new car exceeded $30,000 for the first time. Of course, it’s still very possible to buy a new car for less than $30,000. But even the least expensive new cars start around $15,000 – and that’s a lot of money for many people. Too much money for many…

Another “Option” Now Mandatory

back-up 1

Rearview cameras are now mandatory – or soon will be, starting with model year 2018 vehicles (see here for more). The government takes the position that you and I cannot back into a parking spot or out of a driveway without driving over a small child . . . unless we have the assistance of a closed-circuit camera system built into the car. Ironically, it is because of the government that people have…

Do Away With Dealers?


Did you know it’s illegal to buy a new car from the manufacturer? That’s right. In most states (48 states) so-called direct-buys are unlawful by statute. It is a crime to not go through a dealership. Or rather, it’s a crime for you – if you decided to manufacturer a car – to try to sell it without going through a middleman. The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) has seen to it –…