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Is a 1.4L Turbo the right answer?


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GM's new Family Zero engines will span 1.0 to 1.4L with some members including the 1.4 also spawning a turbocharged variant. The family Zero powerplants were designed specifically for economy and will be deployed in vehicles for markets within and without the USA. The question is... are they the right answer to the challenge of developing the optimum compact car power plant?

In my opinion, no. I think GM is chasing the wrong ball -- that of minimizing displacement.

I am assuming that the goal is to make the most economical 140hp power plant to power whatever Civic/Corolla challenger GM has in the works. I do not believe that going to 1.4 liters and bolting on a turbo will improve economy over a 1.8 liter class engine of the same output. The reasons are:-

  1. Displacement is not the biggest determinant of fuel consumption.
  2. Using a turbocharger is detrimental to cruising economy because it precludes resonance intake tuning and a low exhaust port pressure.
  3. Using a turbocharger diverts the engine budget away from more useful technologies.
  4. Using a turocharger adds weight beyond that which can be saved by going from 1.8 to 1.4 liters.

Displacement

Displacement is really LOW on the scale of factors that contribute to fuel economy or the lack thereof. Just look at the Nissan 350Z and the Corvette for instance. The 6.2 liter LS3 puts out more power and twist and comes in at 16/26 MPG. The 3.5 liter VQ35 in the 350Z comes in at 20/27 MPG. The Corvette is a 3200 lbs car the 350Z is a 3350 lbs vehicle. As you can see, practically halving the displacement doesn't buy you much economy. Saving a couple of hundred pounds and having a tall cruising gear probably does more. It takes fuel to make power and it the relative economy advantage of trying to generate the same power from smaller displacement comes from the marginally lower parasitic loss of slightly smaller slugs and tappets, which isn't much. Better results can sometimes be had with a larger displacement but using technologies that enhances combustion efficiency such as HCCI or bearing drag reduction.

The disadvantages of a Turbo

The Turbocharger is great for squeezing a heck of a lot of power from a small swept volume. But it does carry a significant set of penalties. For one, a turbo works only when the engine is being asked to carry a significant load. In short, it works great under full throttle and when you are accelerating with determination. It practically does nothing when cruising on the highway for instance where the manifold pressure is mostly in vacuum. Also, many of the tricks we have learned over the years such as intake resonance tuning and managing exhaust pulses so back pressure is low and an exhaust pulse from one cylinder does not reflect back onto another when its exhaust valve opens are no longer applicable when you drop a turbocharger's exhaust collector and intake plenum into the mix. Also, when you go from say a 1.8 liter engine to a 1.4 liter engine then bolt on a turbo, you add the weight of the turbo, its plumbing and the intercooler which pretty much negates any weight and/or packaging savings you gained from going to a smaller displacement. Finally, a turbo is no free -- they are about $500~600 a pop plus additional incidentals like the pipings, the bypass system, the boost control solenoids and the rather expensive intercooler for about $1000 extra. This is $1000 that can no longer be spent on other technologies such as a mild hybrid system.

What I think is a better formula

Displacement: Stick to a 1.8~2.1 liter

Aspiration: Stick to NA

New features and technologies:-

  1. HCCI
  2. Flywheel integrated alternator/starter + 36V electricals
  3. Complete elimination of the belted accesory drive

HCCI

Using Direct Injection, Dual continuous VVT and 2-stage VVL to implement HCCI allows for a notable jump in combustion efficiency benefiting both city and cruise efficiency. A 1.8 liter HCCI power plant should have no problems matching or exceeding the output of a 140hp . It will also match or exceed the economy gains of a 1.4 turbo.

Flywheel integrated alternator/starter.

The Belt Alternator Starter and 36V electricals used in the GM "mild hybrids" may not win any tree hugger awards, but it is the only hybrid system that makes economical sense even with $5 a gallon gasoline. Everything else requires the owner to fork over thousands of dollars which will not be recouped for 7 to 13 years. But we should go one step further and integrate it into the flywheel. In essence the flywheel will carry a set of permanent magnets, and it will be surrounded by a series of coils setup to turn the flywheel into an alternator/motor. A similar device is already in use by Honda in the Civic Hybrids and is about 1" thick. The device makes 5~20hp and is sufficient to crank the engine or even provide minimal power assist. More importantly, it eliminates one of the most common failure modes of an internal combustion engine -- a failed starter kick mechanism. Most of the time when starter needs replacement it is because the spindle is no longer able to kick out and engage the flex plate or ring gear -- the slamming and springing back over the years have worn out the device. A flywheel integrated alternator/motor has no kick mechanism eliminating this common failure mode, it has no brush contacts, no impact drive, no springs.

Elimination of the belt drive.

Getting rid of the belt allows the engine to basically have no scheduled component replacement for 200~300K miles. Basically, it'll make the dream of a car which you can drive with no scheduled maintenance except for a once a year or two oil change (every 12,500~25,000 miles*). The accessory belt and stuff mounted on it accounts for the majority of non-catastrophic engine failures and work. The belted acceosry drive also forces the location of many accessories to the front of the engine and forces the engine to drive them constantly even when they are not needed. Think about it, the waterpump, the A/C compressor, the Power steering Pump, the alternator. With the alternator already relocated to where the flywheel used to be we can get rid of evertyhing else by making the car more "electric". The power steering system can be electric -- that is already the case on many cars. The A/C compressor can also be electric. The water pump can be driven via the timing chain (ala the GM 2.3 liter Quad-4 of yore). Aside from eliminating belt accessory parasitic drag and scheduled belt replacement, getting rid of the accessory belt drive also frees up the electrically driven A/C Compressor, power steering system and water pump to be located with a lot more freedom. The AC system can be in the trunk for instance in some applications or on the inside of the engine compartment divider wall. The water pump can be on the output side of the engine along with relocated timing chains (ala the Audi 4.2 liter V8s in the B5/B6 S4s for instance where the timing chain is moved to the rear of the engine to shorten the powerplant.

* Yes, 12.500~25,000 mile, 1~2 year oil change intervals can be reliable and healthy for the engine if a good synthetic oil (ala Mobil 1 Extended Performance) is used along with a failsafe bypass filtration and electronic oil quality monitoring.

From a marketing standpoint this combination is also more attractive... I mean what's more a more interesting sell?

A new 1.4 liter Direct Injection Turbo?

Or

A new 1.8 liter HCCI engine with diesel like economy and sporty performance, which requires no maintenance for 200,000 miles?

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Unless GM puts their cars on a serious diet nobody is going to be satisfied with the "performance" of a vehicle with these tiny little engines. Who the hell is going to feel comfortable getting onto a highway in a car that takes 15 seconds to get up to 60 MPH?

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Unless GM puts their cars on a serious diet nobody is going to be satisfied with the "performance" of a vehicle with these tiny little engines. Who the hell is going to feel comfortable getting onto a highway in a car that takes 15 seconds to get up to 60 MPH?

yes, but this will go into cars already using ~150hp engines and less, and if this engine has a flat torque curve like the 2.0L T, then it won't have much problem getting up to 60,70, or 80.

Dwight, I see what you mean with this article, but while turbos are kinda expensive, they know how to use them very well, compared to putting HCCI in an engine, when there is not an engine on the market yet that uses that. HCCI will come around maybe in the mean time, but for the first few years, i think turbos will do fine while they get lots of various use out of the "epsilons" they sell with the HCCI engines to fine tune the tech more and bring the cost down, hopefully.

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I'm thinking that a turbo engine should not be the base engine. In general, turbo setups are not as cheap to build as n/a, and aren't as reliable as n/a. Base engine options on economy cars should be simple, cheap, and reliable.

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I'm thinking that a turbo engine should not be the base engine. In general, turbo setups are not as cheap to build as n/a, and aren't as reliable as n/a. Base engine options on economy cars should be simple, cheap, and reliable.

Do you not consider the Duramax reliable? That is Turbo as far as I know. What about the 3.8T from the Grand Nationals? The SAAB 2.3 seems to be dead nuts reliable (being built for over 20 years in some form probably helps). What makes you think that turbos can't be reliable?

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Do you not consider the Duramax reliable? That is Turbo as far as I know. What about the 3.8T from the Grand Nationals? The SAAB 2.3 seems to be dead nuts reliable (being built for over 20 years in some form probably helps). What makes you think that turbos can't be reliable?

I'm not saying turbos aren't at all reliable, I'm saying the simplicity of a n/a engine inherently makes it more reliable, on top of cheaper to build and repair. Every component added to an engine is another potential fail point. Turbo engines are great options, I'm just saying I'm not sold on a turbo engine being the base engine.

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i would guess for most people the really good 2.2 is a better base engine. and that engine gets great mpg to start with. turbo is fun but often times doesnt equal the same real world mileage when hammered on.

blown turbos because of owner neglect could become a real warranty problem and it adds $$$$ to the cost of the car.

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I like the idea of BAS being standard in every vehicle, but OEMs probably have to absorb part of the added cost as people don't want to pay significant price premiums for those technologies.

HCCI seems a little too far out for the time being.

I think a DI 14.L turbo I4 can be powerful enough to move whatever vehicles use bigger displacement engines in the 120-150hp range. EDIT: I don't think reliability is an issue.

Edited by ZL-1
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I like the idea of BAS being standard in every vehicle, but OEMs probably have to absorb part of the added cost as people don't want to pay significant price premiums for those technologies.

In the short-term, BAS standard isn't doable, as GM has been having trouble even making very many of them available due to battery supplier issues. They should keep reducing cost and increasing reliability and performance (mpg performance mainly), and maybe someday standard BAS will make sense for them. I'm not sure I would want it forced on me, though. Remember, some people still prefer manual window cranks, as they want less things that can break. I'm sure the same applies to drivetrain technology, so making it standard too soon could be a big mistake.

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I like the idea of BAS being standard in every vehicle, but OEMs probably have to absorb part of the added cost as people don't want to pay significant price premiums for those technologies.

HCCI seems a little too far out for the time being.

I think a DI 14.L turbo I4 can be powerful enough to move whatever vehicles use bigger displacement engines in the 120-150hp range. EDIT: I don't think reliability is an issue.

No, I am saying:-

(1) Integrate the alternator into the flywheel and get rid of the accessory belt drive.

(2) A 1.8 liter with 140 hp can be just as efficient even without HCCI, just as light and just as compact as a 1.4 liter Turbo making 140hp*

*Because the 1.4T carries additional plumbing, the Intercooler, the Turbo itself and other "stuff" associated with turbocharging. The reason -- displacement really doesn't matter that much when it comes to economy. Also, the turbo exhaust and intake manifolds are inefficient at cruise or light loads.

Remember 140hp is nothing from a turbo, we should be able to get 180~190hp out of a 1.4 liter Turbo in the same state of tune as the 2.0 liter LNF. The problem is that this is a economy car and it precludes the use of premium gas which puts a cap on how liberal we can be with boost.

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Unless GM puts their cars on a serious diet nobody is going to be satisfied with the "performance" of a vehicle with these tiny little engines. Who the hell is going to feel comfortable getting onto a highway in a car that takes 15 seconds to get up to 60 MPH?

In real world conditions, most people take this long to reach 60mph in cars which have the capability to get to that speed in half the time. The only people likely to notice much difference are inexperienced teenage drivers who feel the need to constantly thrash their cars.

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My '87 Dodge Shadow ES was a POS in so many ways, but to Chrysler's credit the turbo never gave me any troubles, even well after 100,000 miles. (The same cannot be said of the 2 headgaskets, rack & pinion, 2 starters, ignition linkage and myriad of other things that went wrong with that car from new.) If Chrysler could do it 20 years ago, I am sure a reliable turbo can be had today. Coupled with VVT, direct injection, etc., I think an ecotec could be quite a rice burner at 1.4 litres.

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In real world conditions, most people take this long to reach 60mph in cars which have the capability to get to that speed in half the time. The only people likely to notice much difference are inexperienced teenage drivers who feel the need to constantly thrash their cars.

Yeah, you've never been to LA, Houston, Dallas, San Diego, or Phoenix. Nice try, though. :rolleyes:

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(1) Integrate the alternator into the flywheel and get rid of the accessory belt drive.

Great idea... there's a little problem with Honda holding the patent on it.

What about making a stripped down version of the two-mode transmission for use on lower end cars?

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Yeah, you've never been to LA, Houston, Dallas, San Diego, or Phoenix. Nice try, though. :rolleyes:

I've been to three of the cities you've listed - and experienced traffic congestion in all three. I think the "nice try" is firmly in your direction. Some of the teens on here treat the whole world as if they'd fallen from the top of a Christmas tree.

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In real world conditions, most people take this long to reach 60mph in cars which have the capability to get to that speed in half the time. The only people likely to notice much difference are inexperienced teenage drivers who feel the need to constantly thrash their cars.

Here's the problem - he's talking about a car that when pushed to its fullest takes 15 seconds to get to 60. Normal people in everyday driving don't/won't push their car as hard as it will go, but more like half to 2/3 of what it will do tops. That means a car that can do 0-60 in 15 seconds will be doing it in 25-30.

You've long made comments about how much (or rather, little) hp people need. You still don't seem to get that sales are based on what people want, and many people don't want a car that can't get out of its own way if pushed, let alone at a leisurely engine load.

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Here's the problem - he's talking about a car that when pushed to its fullest takes 15 seconds to get to 60. Normal people in everyday driving don't/won't push their car as hard as it will go, but more like half to 2/3 of what it will do tops. That means a car that can do 0-60 in 15 seconds will be doing it in 25-30.

You've long made comments about how much (or rather, little) hp people need. You still don't seem to get that sales are based on what people want, and many people don't want a car that can't get out of its own way if pushed, let alone at a leisurely engine load.

Thanks for your concerns, but I'm entitled to my comments. Americans are already starting to squirm with petrol as cheap as $4/gallon. Trust me, when you get to $6 and $7/gall plus - which will come, you can count on it - most people won't give a toss whether their cars get to 60mph in 8 seconds, 15 seconds or 30 seconds. How do I know that? Because I've already lived through such transitions.

I'm confident Americans will go through the same transition, perhaps an even more pronounced one ... because most Americans generally drive incredibly slowly to begin with, especially once off a motorway. That's the reason I find the bickering on here over a couple of seconds' 0-60 laughable!

Seriously though, what's obvious to me is that many on here clearly don't have a great deal of experience of small cars, or cars with modern small engines. For a B-segment hatchback, 85bhp is quite ample and provides ample acceleration for practically all real-world everyday needs (unless your surname is Fittipaldi, perhaps). 105bhp from a 1200cc engine as is the case with VW's new TSI in its Polo really is phenomenal, and in a car of that size will take just about anything you intend to throw at it. I understand the problem is what people want, but the real problem lies with not knowing the capabilities in the first place because of culture-based perceptions. As economics change, so will those wants, and indeed that's already happening in the States. You're not fooling me for a second, mate.

Edited by aatbloke
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If there is any construction on the highway, there are days my car never gets to 60mph, its reasonable to think I'm not the only person who experiences this, and it is reasonable to assume Americans will accept a slightly slower car if they get better mileage.

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Guest aatbloke
Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Ocn Fittipaldi.

Then I hope you have the former F1 driver's money - in the next couple of years you'll need it.

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Well, I am not American and we are used to $1.35 a litre and climbing. Anything less than 100 hp is a joke, IMO. My '87 Shadow had around 130hp (if memory serves correct) with the turbo and with the 5 spd stick it was a little more than adequate (although steep hills in northern Ontario had to be run at), but the 3 spd auto I test drove at the time was sadly lacking.

Fast forward 20 years and normally aspirated engines can easily get 120 hp (like on my Optra 5), however, one has to take the vehicle with a manual if one wants to get a) decent mileage and b)any sort of power. Not in the city traffic I drive through every day, thanks.

Toronto has the Worst Traffic in the Known Universe, and that is nothing to brag about. Even though many days I am not able to go above 30 km/hr on the 'freeway,' when I get that hole in the lane beside me, a quick shot and surge of 50 meters makes my day, but even with 120 hp on my Optra it can be scary trying to spool up the motor to do the quick shot.

It is going to take a long time to convince many people on both sides of our border that anything less than 100 hp is adequate. My recent trip to Chicago was done mostly at 130km/hr and I wouldn't have wanted to do that in a Corsa, thanks. At least not the ones I rented in Brazil.

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Well, I am not American and we are used to $1.35 a litre and climbing. Anything less than 100 hp is a joke, IMO. My '87 Shadow had around 130hp (if memory serves correct) with the turbo and with the 5 spd stick it was a little more than adequate (although steep hills in northern Ontario had to be run at), but the 3 spd auto I test drove at the time was sadly lacking.

Fast forward 20 years and normally aspirated engines can easily get 120 hp (like on my Optra 5), however, one has to take the vehicle with a manual if one wants to get a) decent mileage and b)any sort of power. Not in the city traffic I drive through every day, thanks.

Toronto has the Worst Traffic in the Known Universe, and that is nothing to brag about. Even though many days I am not able to go above 30 km/hr on the 'freeway,' when I get that hole in the lane beside me, a quick shot and surge of 50 meters makes my day, but even with 120 hp on my Optra it can be scary trying to spool up the motor to do the quick shot.

It is going to take a long time to convince many people on both sides of our border that anything less than 100 hp is adequate. My recent trip to Chicago was done mostly at 130km/hr and I wouldn't have wanted to do that in a Corsa, thanks. At least not the ones I rented in Brazil.

Los Angeles, with its ancient and poorly planned freeways, isn't much better. The Pasadena 'Freeway' was built 80 years ago, when cars were slow and few, and 500 ft to accelerate to the speed of traffic (if any existed) was deemed sufficient. Compare that to today, when cars come out of a bend charging at you from a stupid 70 mph, and you've just run out of on-ramp. Every bit of reserve power is useful in these situations, in the same way strong brakes and good handling can help avoid accidents.

Just the other day, the freeway I was on merged with a faster-moving freeway, and I needed to get across 7 lanes of traffic to make the soon approaching off-ramp. Again, it helped that I had a good amount of power, because I used every one of those horses getting my six passengers up to speed.

I would gladly sacrifice 2-3 mpg (US) for the extra level of safety you get from greater power reserves. According to the NEDC, the 200PS Golf GTI gets just 5.6 fewer imperial mpg, combined, than an 80PS 1.4 Golf. And at high speeds, small engines labor as large engines dawdle. Last week's episode of Top Gear nicely illustrates how at high speed, small petrol engines can have higher fuel consumption than larger ones.

I drive up a 6% grade hill everyday, and I've found during that stretch, I average higher mpg in a 2.8 liter inline-six than in a 1.8 turbo. The 1.8T occasionally needs third gear to maintain 50 mph, which makes instantaneous consumption increase to a lovely 7 mpg. The big inline-six soldiers on in fourth.

Edited by empowah
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In my reality, with freeway construction and traffic congestion, I rarely get above 60 mph in the day to day drive...most of it is 45 or 55, with one brief stretch 65. With metered ramps to get on the freeway, acceleration is important, but my 4.0L Jeep (which is probably in the 9-10 sec range for 0-60) is fine..

20 years ago, I drove a 2.0L 52hp Escort diesel, and it was probably 15-20 sec to 60, with a manual trans. Wouldn't want to drive it now (too basic) but the 50+ mpg highway would be nice. Even my 5.0L 225hp Mustang got over 25 mpg highway back then..

Edited by moltar
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This is where 6 speeds... <and 7 and 8 speeds> are going to become important. A 1.4 litre turbo with a 4 speed auto probably wouldn't do well... with a 6 speed... well it'd probably be tolerable.

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This is where 6 speeds... <and 7 and 8 speeds> are going to become important. A 1.4 litre turbo with a 4 speed auto probably wouldn't do well... with a 6 speed... well it'd probably be tolerable.

Yes, gearing and weight are going to be key factors.... I can see a 1.4L moving around a 2500lb car decently, but a 3500lb car?

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Well, I am not American and we are used to $1.35 a litre and climbing.

No, you're Canadian. $1.35 a litre in Canada is only very recent, and once you add another dollar to that price per litre and then I'll consider your prices high. Essentially you have the same basic issue as Americans - virtually zero experience of high fuel prices for any length of time, or small cars/small engines (and no, choosing between a handful of small cars from Daewoo, Toyota and Honda doesn't constitute a great deal of experience). If you think less than 100bhp is a joke, then that tells me you have zero such experience - but then again, this is an internet forum with a bunch of young males comparing the size of their genitalia, and not a reflection of the real world.

80mph on a lengthy journey in a Corsa is easy, only perhaps being a little arduous in the base 1.0 3-cylinder version - assuming you adhere to decent standards of driving such as proper lane discipline, etc. But then again, neither the US or Canada are anything like Western Europe in that regard, so in that respect I see your point.

Edited by aatbloke
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Yes, gearing and weight are going to be key factors.... I can see a 1.4L moving around a 2500lb car decently, but a 3500lb car?

The Cobalt gets by just fine with 155hp and about 3000lbs and is more likely to get that type of engine. 3500lbs is first generation CTS weight. I don't see them putting a 1.4l turbo into something that size.

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The Cobalt gets by just fine with 155hp and about 3000lbs and is more likely to get that type of engine. 3500lbs is first generation CTS weight. I don't see them putting a 1.4l turbo into something that size.

Exactly. A 1400cc turbo would be optimally used in a B-segment or C-segment sized car up to roughly 2800-2900lbs, nothing larger or heavier than that.

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No, you're Canadian. $1.35 a litre in Canada is only very recent, and once you add another dollar to that price per litre and then I'll consider your prices high. Essentially you have the same basic issue as Americans - virtually zero experience of high fuel prices for any length of time, or small cars/small engines (and no, choosing between a handful of small cars from Daewoo, Toyota and Honda doesn't constitute a great deal of experience). If you think less than 100bhp is a joke, then that tells me you have zero such experience - but then again, this is an internet forum with a bunch of young males comparing the size of their genitalia, and not a reflection of the real world.

80mph on a lengthy journey in a Corsa is easy, only perhaps being a little arduous in the base 1.0 3-cylinder version - assuming you adhere to decent standards of driving such as proper lane discipline, etc. But then again, neither the US or Canada are anything like Western Europe in that regard, so in that respect I see your point.

Ya just like throwin' round the insults, don't you? I drive an '07 Optra. It is 119 hp. It is gutless. I personally don't care. I averaged 31 mpt (Imp) on my recent trip to Chicago. NOt bad for 130 km/hr., I'd say. NO way you'd convince me to drive a SmartCar or a Civic with 83 hp.

I'd take the subway, first.

For the record, I'm 47 and quite comfortable with the size of my, er, appendage, thanks for asking.

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Ya just like throwin' round the insults, don't you? I drive an '07 Optra. It is 119 hp. It is gutless. I personally don't care. I averaged 31 mpt (Imp) on my recent trip to Chicago. NOt bad for 130 km/hr., I'd say. NO way you'd convince me to drive a SmartCar or a Civic with 83 hp.

I'd take the subway, first.

For the record, I'm 47 and quite comfortable with the size of my, er, appendage, thanks for asking.

pics?

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No, you're Canadian. $1.35 a litre in Canada is only very recent, and once you add another dollar to that price per litre and then I'll consider your prices high. Essentially you have the same basic issue as Americans - virtually zero experience of high fuel prices for any length of time, or small cars/small engines (and no, choosing between a handful of small cars from Daewoo, Toyota and Honda doesn't constitute a great deal of experience). If you think less than 100bhp is a joke, then that tells me you have zero such experience - but then again, this is an internet forum with a bunch of young males comparing the size of their genitalia, and not a reflection of the real world.

80mph on a lengthy journey in a Corsa is easy, only perhaps being a little arduous in the base 1.0 3-cylinder version - assuming you adhere to decent standards of driving such as proper lane discipline, etc. But then again, neither the US or Canada are anything like Western Europe in that regard, so in that respect I see your point.

Hell, I did a trip across Germany and France in a 2006(?) VW Touran TDi with just a bit over 100hp and we did just fine with 3 guys plus luggage at 130kph. My only complaint was the car had no cruise control.

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Guest aatbloke
Ya just like throwin' round the insults, don't you? I drive an '07 Optra. It is 119 hp. It is gutless. I personally don't care. I averaged 31 mpt (Imp) on my recent trip to Chicago. NOt bad for 130 km/hr., I'd say. NO way you'd convince me to drive a SmartCar or a Civic with 83 hp.

I'd take the subway, first.

For the record, I'm 47 and quite comfortable with the size of my, er, appendage, thanks for asking.

I'm not insulting you, it's merely an observation - but then again, in all honesty, I'd expect more from a 47 year old than off-the-wall comments such as the the popularity of 4x4 sales being based on the size of a particular country. An Optra is a C-segment sedan, and even at that 100bhp would be enough. 85bhp from a B-segment machine (that's Yaris-sized) is more than ample even for motorway driving. Plenty of people around the world see this is quite normal - but most average North Americans have never had to think that way. Soon however that situation may change.

31mpg imperial at approx 75-80mph from a C-segment car would cut it back in the 1990's, but not these days. Then again, the Optra's mechanicals can be traced back to the old Astra B. A 2 litre petrol D-segment Mondeo gets almost 34mpg at a steady 75mph.

Edited by aatbloke
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Hell, I did a trip across Germany and France in a 2006(?) VW Touran TDi with just a bit over 100hp and we did just fine with 3 guys plus luggage at 130kph. My only complaint was the car had no cruise control.

Well said!

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Hell, I did a trip across Germany and France in a 2006(?) VW Touran TDi with just a bit over 100hp and we did just fine with 3 guys plus luggage at 130kph. My only complaint was the car had no cruise control.

That's 177 lb-ft at 1800 rpm for ya.

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I'm not insulting you, it's merely an observation - but then again, in all honesty, I'd expect more from a 47 year old than off-the-wall comments such as the the popularity of 4x4 sales being based on the size of a particular country. An Optra is a C-segment sedan, and even at that 100bhp would be enough. 85bhp from a B-segment machine (that's Yaris-sized) is more than ample even for motorway driving. Plenty of people around the world see this is quite normal - but most average North Americans have never had to think that way. Soon however that situation may change.

31mpg imperial at approx 75-80mph from a C-segment car would cut it back in the 1990's, but not these days. Then again, the Optra's mechanicals can be traced back to the old Astra B. A 2 litre petrol D-segment Mondeo gets almost 34mpg at a steady 75mph.

Why is it that every thread I see you in, you are trying to show off the size of your intellect? We all have opinions, some are based on the city or state we have lived in, others are based on the dozens of countries we have visited or lived in, but they are just that OPINIONS. Whether someone is 18 or 48 really doesn't matter. You're not proving anything by butting heads with half the members on this Board.

YOU JUST HAVE TO TRY AND CUT EVERYONE DOWN TO SIZE. Why is that? Thread after thread, I see you picking fights with people. Honestly, what other websites have you been thrown out of that you are haunting this one now?

Just so you won't lose any sleep over where my opinions come from, I have been to South America twice and travelled everywhere in North America, from the Bahamas to Florida to California to Vancouver to Hudson's Bay and New Brunswick, more than once, too.

Any idiot can see that $5 a gallon changes the game - a point that I have made many times in the past on other threads (usually ones lamenting the demise of fire-breathing RWD V-8s) My point is that there will have to be a Made in North America solution to this so-called energy crisis because it takes longer to cross Ontario than it does most of Europe - so there is one very big difference in our cultures. I rented a '81 Datsun 210 once upon a time that couldn't even pass a dumptruck on a hill in northern Ontario. A great big UNACCEPTABLE there.

I am not one of those people who believes that SIZE has anything to do with power; however, people will not drive go-karts in either Canada or the U.S. and only a go-kart could possibly afford any level of safety on or off a freeway with 80 hp. A 1.4 litre turbo that put out 120 or 130 hp would be great, especially if put in a vehicle that weighed under a ton.

What snarky remarks can you come up with on that?

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Why is it that every thread I see you in, you are trying to show off the size of your intellect? We all have opinions, some are based on the city or state we have lived in, others are based on the dozens of countries we have visited or lived in, but they are just that OPINIONS. Whether someone is 18 or 48 really doesn't matter. You're not proving anything by butting heads with half the members on this Board.

YOU JUST HAVE TO TRY AND CUT EVERYONE DOWN TO SIZE. Why is that? Thread after thread, I see you picking fights with people. Honestly, what other websites have you been thrown out of that you are haunting this one now?

Just so you won't lose any sleep over where my opinions come from, I have been to South America twice and travelled everywhere in North America, from the Bahamas to Florida to California to Vancouver to Hudson's Bay and New Brunswick, more than once, too.

Any idiot can see that $5 a gallon changes the game - a point that I have made many times in the past on other threads (usually ones lamenting the demise of fire-breathing RWD V-8s) My point is that there will have to be a Made in North America solution to this so-called energy crisis because it takes longer to cross Ontario than it does most of Europe - so there is one very big difference in our cultures. I rented a '81 Datsun 210 once upon a time that couldn't even pass a dumptruck on a hill in northern Ontario. A great big UNACCEPTABLE there.

I am not one of those people who believes that SIZE has anything to do with power; however, people will not drive go-karts in either Canada or the U.S. and only a go-kart could possibly afford any level of safety on or off a freeway with 80 hp. A 1.4 litre turbo that put out 120 or 130 hp would be great, especially if put in a vehicle that weighed under a ton.

What snarky remarks can you come up with on that?

You're not the kind of person I'd choose to associate with in real life, and really don't that take much interest in what you have to say on a forum, either. In coming from Europe and having years of experience of high fuel prices and owning/driving small cars, then I am entitled to say my piece and make my contribution on here. If because that goes against the grain of your perceptions I am "cutting you down to size" then so be it, and in all honesty I don't give a toss, because the comments I see here from North Americans when it comes to small cars tends to demonstrate their relative inexperience. That inexperience comes from years of cheap motoring negating the need for fuel efficiency; economics not only change perceptions but also realities, and that is only now beginning to happen. As a result, I firmly believe the US and Canada are going to feel the greatest pain of all in adapting to high fuel costs - because it drastically changes their "big car" culture.

Most people simply don't use cars to drive across countries (or Canadian provinces) on a daily basis. A 1.2 litre Corsa would be quite at home whether it be commuting around Manchester or Toronto; likewise a Land Rover Discovery diesel would negotiate a mountain forest just as easily in Labrador as it would in Snowdonia. A 2 litre Mondeo would be just as comfortable on a road trip across US States as it would going from London to the south of France.

If you want to carry on driving your "fire-breathing" V8 that's entirely your choice; however I have no sympathy with those who moan at the consequences of doing so.

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I'm throwing in my .02 cents here, mainly because this was an interesting thread that I think has been hijacked by two peoples disagreement.

Aatbloke, the fact is that most people, Carbiz included, will admit small cars with higher fuel economy drive trains are going to be very important in the future of the NA automotive industry. I think Carbiz argues so passionately with you because he preceves, and he is by no means alone in this perception, that you talk down to other people in a very condescending way and dismiss their opinions rather harshly out of hand while backhandedly insulting them with remarks about the ignorance of the North American consumer and their tastes in cars.

Quite frankly I don't think you act YOUR age after you've accused half this forum of being young and ignorant. I'm not trying to take any sides in terms of this small car debate. I am pointing out that you are not acting in a constructive manner and if you don't want to be insulted, chastised, or treated badly in return present your opinions in a respectful manner, don't shove them down peoples throats and if they don't come around to your point of view don't act superior towards them or ridicule their beliefs.

If you do that more people will respects you, people will debate issues with you but not attack you, and a few more may even come over to your point of view.

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I'm throwing in my .02 cents here, mainly because this was an interesting thread that I think has been hijacked by two peoples disagreement.

Aatbloke, the fact is that most people, Carbiz included, will admit small cars with higher fuel economy drive trains are going to be very important in the future of the NA automotive industry. I think Carbiz argues so passionately with you because he preceves, and he is by no means alone in this perception, that you talk down to other people in a very condescending way and dismiss their opinions rather harshly out of hand while backhandedly insulting them with remarks about the ignorance of the North American consumer and their tastes in cars.

Quite frankly I don't think you act YOUR age after you've accused half this forum of being young and ignorant. I'm not trying to take any sides in terms of this small car debate. I am pointing out that you are not acting in a constructive manner and if you don't want to be insulted, chastised, or treated badly in return present your opinions in a respectful manner, don't shove them down peoples throats and if they don't come around to your point of view don't act superior towards them or ridicule their beliefs.

If you do that more people will respects you, people will debate issues with you but not attack you, and a few more may even come over to your point of view.

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Don't worry CARBIZ, he won't be so smug when GME closes Vauxhall down and changes every assembly plant, car dearler and car name back to Opel in the UK, as it should be. Because it is under discussion as we speak. Muuuhahahahahaha! :ph34r:

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Don't worry CARBIZ, he won't be so smug when GME closes Vauxhall down and changes every assembly plant, car dearler and car name back to Opel in the UK, as it should be. Because it is under discussion as we speak. Muuuhahahahahaha! :ph34r:

I wonder if closing the UK plant really makes sense. Russia is about to more than double the cost of natural gas. European industrial costs will be skyrocketing. Western Europe have some alternatives (Norway) but Opel plants in Eastern Europe (if any) will be under tremendous strain.

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I wonder if closing the UK plant really makes sense. Russia is about to more than double the cost of natural gas. European industrial costs will be skyrocketing. Western Europe have some alternatives (Norway) but Opel plants in Eastern Europe (if any) will be under tremendous strain.

I didn't say that the plant would close, just the name "Vauxhall". Let's face it, every car they sell is just a badge engineered Opel oh yeah and the one Holden Zeta they sell.

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Don't worry CARBIZ, he won't be so smug when GME closes Vauxhall down and changes every assembly plant, car dearler and car name back to Opel in the UK, as it should be. Because it is under discussion as we speak. Muuuhahahahahaha! :ph34r:

Given you're a purported "employee" of GME, you'd know the discussion was held by GME in 2002 to change the name to Opel when development began on the Vectra replacement, which would have been the first Opel-branded car in the UK since 1985. I personally supported the change to the Opel name as I think that brand name befits the models better against its arch European rivals. The move was ultimately dismissed though as it was their view the marque had too much value in the UK to lose. I've heard no industry ramblings to the contrary since then, and indeed the marque's logo has been redesigned for use on the Insignia onwards. If the Vauxhall name disappeared from the car plant I wouldn't be bothered one iota; however the plants in Luton and Ellesmere Port are unlikely to close and I'd find that more disconcerting for the British car industry.

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I didn't say that the plant would close, just the name "Vauxhall". Let's face it, every car they sell is just a badge engineered Opel oh yeah and the one Holden Zeta they sell.

You just dislike all things British, and you only post such things to get a rise out of me. You're wasting your time though. I've owned several Vauxhall/Opel products over the years - my favourite being an '86 3 litre Senator - but I would never buy a GME product these days. Too bland, with poor residuals.

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I'm throwing in my .02 cents here, mainly because this was an interesting thread that I think has been hijacked by two peoples disagreement.

Aatbloke, the fact is that most people, Carbiz included, will admit small cars with higher fuel economy drive trains are going to be very important in the future of the NA automotive industry. I think Carbiz argues so passionately with you because he preceves, and he is by no means alone in this perception, that you talk down to other people in a very condescending way and dismiss their opinions rather harshly out of hand while backhandedly insulting them with remarks about the ignorance of the North American consumer and their tastes in cars.

Quite frankly I don't think you act YOUR age after you've accused half this forum of being young and ignorant. I'm not trying to take any sides in terms of this small car debate. I am pointing out that you are not acting in a constructive manner and if you don't want to be insulted, chastised, or treated badly in return present your opinions in a respectful manner, don't shove them down peoples throats and if they don't come around to your point of view don't act superior towards them or ridicule their beliefs.

If you do that more people will respects you, people will debate issues with you but not attack you, and a few more may even come over to your point of view.

Respect is always earned, and lack of experience hardly commands respect when opinions are being made. You'll never find me putting the world to rights over vehicles such as American muscle cars or pick-up trucks, because my personal experience with such vehicles is virtually nil. When it comes to people blankly saying that a small car with less than 120bhp is a "joke", all that tells me is that they have precious little experience of such vehicles - irrespective of their nationality - especially when in many parts of the world, countless people use such vehicles as family transport and they serve many needs quite adequately.

It isn't a big deal. This is an online forum and there's nobody on here I'll ever meet nor really even wish to in all honesty. I put in my "two cents" and people like or they don't - I don't care one way or t'other. As far as the issue of respect is concerned, I'm happy enough with car talk amongst friends and industry colleagues alike in the real world! I appreciate you taking time out of your day to write to me directly though.

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Given you're a purported "employee" of GME, you'd know this discussion was held by GME in 2002 when development began on the Vectra replacement, which would have been the first Opel-branded car in the UK since 1985. The move was ultimately dismissed as it was their view the marque had too much value in the UK to lose. I've heard no industry ramblings to the contrary since then, and indeed the marque's logo has been redesigned for use on the Insignia onwards.

That was then, and this is now. GM will save $$$$ by having one Opel brand in Europe. As Rick Wagoner has stated, all things are on the table. You might want to buy a Vauxhall T shirt, so you have something to remember the Vauxhall name! :smilewide:

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You just dislike all things British, and you only post such things to get a rise out of me. You're wasting your time though. I've owned several Vauxhall/Opel products over the years - my favourite being an '86 3 litre Senator - but I would never buy a GME product these days. Too bland, with poor residuals.

Not true at all, I belong to an online UK gaming clan. I'm in game with my UK friends about 10% of my free time, and when we are in game together, we use a software program to speak to each other while we are in game together, I am helping them learn American. I also will be in Scotland in September for a wedding, and have been in the UK many times, even have been to Wales. Hate all things British you say? Once again you are incorrect. :AH-HA_wink:

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That was then, and this is now. GM will save $$$$ by having one Opel brand in Europe. As Rick Wagoner has stated, all things are on the table. You might want to buy a Vauxhall T shirt, so you have something to remember the Vauxhall name! :smilewide:

Save money how? The cost of rebranding everything in the UK - from dealerships to lithography - would be enormous. Legal fees involved in changing the company name and parent of its various subsidiary companies wouldn't come cheap, either. Stamping a different name out of plastic for badges makes little difference whether they're Opel or Vauxhall inscriptions. The whole idea of rebranding to Opel back in 2002 was image; many at GME felt the Vauxhall name sounded old-hat, which I agreed with. Whether in all reality this would make much difference in terms of UK sales is probably negligible, which was GME's eventual conclusion in 2003.

You're not listening to me or reading what I'm saying. Vauxhall could throw t-shirts at me for free and I wouldn't wear one. Same goes for Opel. I'm not an ardent fan of either. All that would concern me would be jobs at Ellesmere Port or Luton, which is unlikely to change especially with the contract in place with Renault, for example.

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Not true at all, I belong to an online UK gaming clan. I'm in game with my UK friends about 10% of my free time, and when we are in game together, we use a software program to speak to each other while we are in game together, I am helping them learn American. I also will be in Scotland in September for a wedding, and have been in the UK many times, even have been to Wales. Hate all things British you say? Once again you are incorrect. :AH-HA_wink:

Give me a break, you have nothing good to say about the UK. I've even e-mailed colleagues some of your comments regarding Vauxhall and the UK at large, and their conclusion about you was the same as mine ... that said, I wouldn't tell you the full extent as to what I think by hiding behind a computer on here, I'd sooner fly over to the States and tell you directly to your face. If I remarked the same about Americans I'd be immediately branded as anti-American. You're as anti-British as they come.

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Anti British hardly, just anti-aatbloke! There's a big difference. :smilewide:

Hey I don't care what you think of me, I'm never going to ever meet you! Your remarks are certainly anti-British and the industry colleagues I've directed your comments to about Vauxhall and England to in the past - the one about Luton was classic I recall - think the same.

Like I said, if you think that by chastising Vauxhall you're having a pop at me - which is what today's outlandish claims were all about, weren't they after all - then you're truly wasting your time. I don't even remotely think in the same way as you do.

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Hey I don't care what you think of me, I'm never going to ever meet you! Your remarks are certainly anti-British and the industry colleagues I've directed your comments to about Vauxhall and England to in the past - the one about Luton was classic I recall - think the same.

Like I said, if you think that by chastising Vauxhall you're having a pop at me - which is what today's outlandish claims were all about, weren't they after all - then you're truly wasting your time. I don't even remotely think in the same way as you do.

Wot u on about Governor? :smilewide:

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I'd find that more disconcerting for the British car industry.

What British car industry? It's all been virtually bought by and assimilated into other non-British automakers. Vauxhall are under the total control of the friendly folks at Opel und GME, Jaguar and Land Rover are property of Tata and then Ford before that, Lotus are owned by the Malaysians, Jensen is pretty much dead, Triumph is dead, Austin is a memory and the only notable car to come from that automaker, the Mini, is now under control of BMW, TVR is owned by a Russian kid with too much money ... it goes on and on. The U.K. has a few plants and that hardly makes up a thriving automotive industry in my opinion. It's just what's left over, for the most part.

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What British car industry?

The U.K. has a few plants and that hardly makes up a thriving automotive industry in my opinion. It's just what's left over, for the most part.

I thought the component and engineering end of the business was doing better. Also the compaines you listed still employ people.

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When it comes to people blankly saying that a small car with less than 120bhp is a "joke", all that tells me is that they have precious little experience of such vehicles ...

One-hundred and twenty raging brake horses would be the output of the 2.2L four-cylinder found under hood of my Sonoma and the S-10 I had before it. I can say that I've had experience with that power output and, honestly, it is a little on the pathetic side and it shows painfully in Interstate conditions.

There are ways and available technology that we can use to achieve decent power ratings that reach past the 150bhp mark and still get decent fuel economy. Why not use them?

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I thought the component and engineering end of the business was doing better. Also the compaines you listed still employ people.

Yes they do, but the way I see it, for example, Vauxhall employees are not employed by Vauxhall, as if were it's own singular corporation, they are employed by GM. Vauxhall employees are the same as Opel employees or Chevrolet employees and not much different, as it is all GM, if I am making sense here.

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What British car industry? It's all been virtually bought by and assimilated into other non-British automakers. Vauxhall are under the total control of the friendly folks at Opel und GME, Jaguar and Land Rover are property of Tata and then Ford before that, Lotus are owned by the Malaysians, Jensen is pretty much dead, Triumph is dead, Austin is a memory and the only notable car to come from that automaker, the Mini, is now under control of BMW, TVR is owned by a Russian kid with too much money ... it goes on and on. The U.K. has a few plants and that hardly makes up a thriving automotive industry in my opinion. It's just what's left over, for the most part.

The British car industry that is Nissan, Honda, Toyota, PSA, Ford, Vauxhall (GM), Jaguar, Land Rover and BMW, not to mention the suppliers, the design and engineering centres and distribution networks. A country's car industry is not determined by the domicile of holding or parent companies.

The British car industry currently builds roughly 1.6 million cars a year, of which some 70% are exported. In addition, it builds a quarter of a million commercial vehicles, of which more than half is exported. It generates the equivalent of US$100 billion in revenue, employs some 852,000 people and its exports (roughly US$50 billion per annum) contribute a significant sum to this country's trade balance.

Ten years ago, when Rover was in existence, the British car industry built only 100,000 more cars than it does now. that figure fell to a low of 1.4 million in 2001, but has been gradually rising ever since. Ten years ago, the UK industry exported only 55% of what it built, so the increase to 75% since then has had a more positive impact on the country's balance of trade.

I've spent almost all of my working life working within and in connection with the British car industry. Its indigenous industry has indeed seen better days; however the UK companies building cars here which are subsidiaries of foreign parents make a substantial contribution to this country's economy.

It's important to understand that the domicile of the shareholders is almost completely irrelevant to the economic contribution a country's motor industry. What is important is productivity. Take the Chevrolet Cruze for example: developed in Korea, chassis designed and engineered in Germany, and will be built at various plants in Europe, Asia and also Lordstown, Ohio. What's important to the US economy - from employment to suppliers to taxation - is that a version of the car will be built there.

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The British car industry that is Nissan, Honda, Toyota, PSA, Ford, Vauxhall (GM), Jaguar, Land Rover and BMW, not to mention the suppliers, the design and engineering centres and distribution networks. A country's car industry is not determined by the domicile of holding or parent companies.

The British car industry currently builds roughly 1.6 million cars a year, of which some 65% are exported. In addition, it builds a quarter of a million commercial vehicles, of which almost half are exported. It generates the equivalent of $100 billion in revenue, employs some 852,000 people and its exports contribute a significant sum to this country's trade balance.

I've spent almost all of my working life working within and in connection with the British car industry. Its indigenous industry has indeed seen better days; however the UK companies building cars here which are subsidiaries of foreign parents make a substantial contribution to this country's economy.

It's important to understand that the domicile of the shareholders is almost completely irrelevant to the economic contribution a country's motor industry. What is important is productivity. Take the Chevrolet Cruze for example: developed in Korea, chassis designed and engineered in Germany, and will be built at various plants in Europe, Asia and also Lordstown, Ohio. What's important to the US economy - from employment to suppliers to taxation - is that a version of the car will be built there.

Indeed I do recognize your point. It's just when a particular industry of a country is owned by other businesses from other countries, I tend to see it as no longer belonging to that country but of those who have ownership of it. I suppose it is a matter of perception, yes?

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Yes they do, but the way I see it, for example, Vauxhall employees are not employed by Vauxhall, as if were it's own singular corporation, they are employed by GM. Vauxhall employees are the same as Opel employees or Chevrolet employees and not much different, as it is all GM, if I am making sense here.

That isn't true. Vauxhall employees are employed by Vauxhall Motors Limited - which is a limited company and legal entity in its own right. Vauxhall, as a corporation, has its own issued share capital; it has to draw up accounts for UK corporation tax purposes, and it has to be audited. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary company of General Motors in America, however in any country - including the United States - you must have a legally domestic registered and domiciled corporation to employ people in that country. As such, it is the legal employer of its employees and owns its own pension scheme.

Chevrolet is not a corporation in its own right; it does not have issued ordinary shares, has no audit requirement, nor does it draw up its own accounts. It is a brand name owned by GM.

In commenting on issues such as this, it's really important to have a solid understanding of how corporations are structured and their legal implications. It's nothing like as simple as being "all part of GM".

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Indeed I do recognize your point. It's just when a particular industry of a country is owned by other businesses from other countries, I tend to see it as no longer belonging to that country but of those who have ownership of it. I suppose it is a matter of perception, yes?

It's actually a matter of reality. Vauxhall Motors Limited is a British company. It is registered in England & Wales, it must draw up accounts in UK Sterling, it must pay UK taxes. It has subsidiary companies of its own. But as an entity itself, it's also a foreign private subsidiary company of an American parent company.

Likewise, Charter One Bank in Ohio is an American banking corporation. It is owned by Citizens Bank, which is another American-domiciled banking corporation. Citizens Bank is owned by RBS plc, a public company registered in Scotland (which has different company laws to England & Wales). That doesn't mean Charter One is owned by RBS, because it isn't - Charter One is still owned by another American company. But it is part of the RBS Group by virtue of the corporate structure.

This kind of structure does not determine domicile. GMM Luton Ltd, a private subsidiary company of Vauxhall Motors Ltd, has its shares wholly-owned by Vauxhall, a British company. But GMM is British because it is registered in England & Wales. Vauxhall Motors Ltd is a private company, and also British because it too is registered in England & Wales, even though its shareholder (GM) is American. Its parent company - GM - is American, but it is American because it is registered in the United States. GM is a public company, and its shareholders are multinational, not just American. If a company's domicile was based upon that of its owners (ie shareholders) then GM itself would not be American.

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Vauxhall might be a company on paper, and perhaps a British one at that, but when you look at the simple facts, it is treated the same as any other brand at General Motors.

Honestly, Vauxhall hasn't been building a wholly British car for quite some time now. You can't honestly say a Vectra is a British car, regardless of who is building it; any layman could tell you it's a German car that is only remotely British in name.

One could point out that the relationship of Vauxhall to Opel (and occasionally Holden as well) isn't much different from the relationship of GMC to Chevrolet Trucks. There are a few changes made and a new name applied to the vehicle, nothing more. In fact, a GMC is better differentiated from it's Chevrolet counterpart than a Vauxhall is to it's Opel equivalent any more. There are no vehicles which are Vauxhall-exclusive nor are there any GM vehicles which are sourced from or originate from a Vauxhall design.

Vauxhall is a shell, an outlet for Opel cars, like Saturn is here in America. Don't fool yourself. It's not some tired rhetoric. Vauxhall is Opel and Opel is GM.

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Vauxhall might be a company on paper, and perhaps a British one at that, but when you look at the simple facts, it is treated the same as any other brand at General Motors.

Honestly, Vauxhall hasn't been building a wholly British car for quite some time now. You can't honestly say a Vectra is a British car, regardless of who is building it; any layman could tell you it's a German car that is only remotely British in name.

One could point out that the relationship of Vauxhall to Opel (and occasionally Holden as well) isn't much different from the relationship of GMC to Chevrolet Trucks. There are a few changes made and a new name applied to the vehicle, nothing more. In fact, a GMC is better differentiated from it's Chevrolet counterpart than a Vauxhall is to it's Opel equivalent any more. There are no vehicles which are Vauxhall-exclusive nor are there any GM vehicles which are sourced from or originate from a Vauxhall design.

Vauxhall is a shell, an outlet for Opel cars, like Saturn is here in America. Don't fool yourself. It's not some tired rhetoric. Vauxhall is Opel and Opel is GM.

It isn't treated like "any other brand." A subsidiary company is a different kettle of fish to a mere brand. Furthermore, there's no "perhaps" about it - Vauxhall Motors Limited is a British company, registered at Companies House in Cardiff and headquartered in Luton.

Who does build a wholly domestic vehicle these days? The Vectra isn't a British car, nor is it a German one. Its chassis was developed mainly in Germany but also in the United States; its mechanicals are sourced all over Europe; it's built in the UK and in Germany.

You're viewing the entire situation based on the badge on the front of the product. That's completely different from the legal framework in which these companies operate. GMC and Chevrolet are brand names owned by GM. Vauxhall, Holden and Opel are all separate legal entities in their own right, and each has its own legal obligations separate from GM as a parent.

Vauxhall is not Opel, even though these days the vehicles are essentially the same. Both Vauxhall and Opel are GM Europe - it makes all product decisions and most of the development is done at Opel. Vauxhall and Opel however both have individual boards of directors, and both handle their own domestic manufacturing and distribution networks under the auspices of GM Europe.

In addition, Vauxhall has its own contracts with Holden to import a variant of the Holden Commodore HSV, which itself was re-engineered by British engineering company TWR. Vauxhall also has a joint venture contract via GME with Renault to build one of two models of light commercial vehicle. This is carried out by one of Vauxhall's own subsidiary companies, and also exported wearing Opel badges. The other model is built by Renault for Vauxhall and Opel.

The Saturn Sky's design is said to be heavily influenced by the Vauxhall VX Lightning, one of the original four Kappa-platformed concept cars. The VX Lightning's design didn't conform to EU pedestrian anti-impaling legislation and therefore did not make production. The VX220 production car before it was the result of a Vauxhall deal with Lotus - LHD versions were primarily badged as Opels, and a few as Daewoos.

I'm not fooled - I'm an accountant with almost 25 years of dealing with the legal framework of corporations, and I've been connected with the European industry for much of that time.

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Yadda, Yadda, Yadda, same old swan song. An accountant huh? That explains so much. As for Vauxhall's subsidiary status, the same could be said for GM Hughes - On December 31, 1985 General Motors merged Hughes Aircraft with its Delco Electronics unit to form Hughes Electronics Corporation, an independent subsidiary. The group then consisted of: Delco Electronics Corporation, Hughes Aircraft Company, and Hughes Space and Communications Company. The stock was issued under (GM H), speaking of which, where can I buy Vauxhall stock? :smilewide: and look today, it's no longer part of GM, same could be said for Electronic Data Systems (EDS), Stock was issued under (GM E), where can I buy Vauxhall stock again? :smilewide: Anyway EDS is no longer part of GM, so to hide behind Vauxhall's subsidiary status as being it's saving grace is a foolhardy proposition, as GM could pull the plug tomorrow and replace the name with Opel, and I doubt a tear would be shed over it's demise.

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Yadda, Yadda, Yadda, same old swan song. An accountant huh? That explains so much. As for Vauxhall's subsidiary status, the same could be said for GM Hughes - On December 31, 1985 General Motors merged Hughes Aircraft with its Delco Electronics unit to form Hughes Electronics Corporation, an independent subsidiary. The group then consisted of: Delco Electronics Corporation, Hughes Aircraft Company, and Hughes Space and Communications Company. The stock was issued under (GM H), speaking of which, where can I buy Vauxhall stock? :smilewide: and look today, it's no longer part of GM, same could be said for Electronic Data Systems (EDS), Stock was issued under (GM E), where can I buy Vauxhall stock again? :smilewide: Anyway EDS is no longer part of GM, so to hide behind Vauxhall's subsidiary status as being it's saving grace is a foolhardy proposition, as GM could pull the plug tomorrow and replace the name with Opel, and I doubt a tear would be shed over it's demise.

Exactly my point. Vauxhall is GM, and is nothing more than another brand in the GM hierarchy, make no mistake about it.

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Yadda, Yadda, Yadda, same old swan song. An accountant huh? That explains so much. As for Vauxhall's subsidiary status, the same could be said for GM Hughes - On December 31, 1985 General Motors merged Hughes Aircraft with its Delco Electronics unit to form Hughes Electronics Corporation, an independent subsidiary. The group then consisted of: Delco Electronics Corporation, Hughes Aircraft Company, and Hughes Space and Communications Company. The stock was issued under (GM H), speaking of which, where can I buy Vauxhall stock? :smilewide: and look today, it's no longer part of GM, same could be said for Electronic Data Systems (EDS), Stock was issued under (GM E), where can I buy Vauxhall stock again? :smilewide: Anyway EDS is no longer part of GM, so to hide behind Vauxhall's subsidiary status as being it's saving grace is a foolhardy proposition, as GM could pull the plug tomorrow and replace the name with Opel, and I doubt a tear would be shed over it's demise.

You can't buy shares in Vauxhall Motors Ltd - it isn't a public company, nor has it ever been. If you'd bother to have read or understand my posts, you'd see that I said that it is a wholly-owned private subsidiary company. Just as GMM Luton Ltd is a wholly-owned private subsidiary company of Vauxhall Motors Ltd. The share ownership isn't in question - what I was disputing was the other poster's domiciliary claims, for the reasons I explained. Subsidiaries tend to be private companies in order for the parent company to have the necessary controlling interest; wholly-owned subsidiaries by their nature cannot be public companies.

I don't understand what is getting your goat PCS. I'm not hiding behind anything. If GME wishes to change Vauxhall Motors Ltd to Opel Motors Ltd, that's fine with me - that reqires a simple change of name application with Companies House in Cardiff. However, as I said before the associated costs would be enormous in the rebranding process and there would be little difference in brand perception to UK buyers - whether Vauxhall or Opel, the product will remain a repmobile which permanently resides in Ford's shadow, but which will sell in bucketloads to fleets and face horrific depreciation once the vehicles moved into private hands. The company as a legal entity itself wouldn't change though, only the name.

If GME wished to completely dissolve Vauxhall Motors Ltd and its subsidiaries, that would be another matter entirely. There would be contractual and union issues to negotiate, and of GME wanted to do any business in the UK again - such as selling cars - it would need to set up a new UK subsidiary company to deal with the distribution. If Vauxhall was aggressively dissolved by GME, it would all but kill off its second-largest market in Europe (not to mention the largest company car market in the world) by burning such an enormous bridge. So, not exactly a wise move.

Does anyone really care what you would or wouldn't shed any tears over? Certainly not I, I assure you!

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Exactly my point. Vauxhall is GM, and is nothing more than another brand in the GM hierarchy, make no mistake about it.

Vauxhall Motors Limited is a British company, registered in England & Wales with issued ordinary shares. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary company of General Motors, an American company registered in the United States.

It really isn't rocket science.

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Vauxhall Motors Limited is a British company, registered in England & Wales with issued ordinary shares. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary company of General Motors, an American company registered in the United States.

It really isn't rocket science.

Look beyond what's printed on a piece of paper and then tell me what you see.

A Vauxhall is a right-drive Opel with an altered grille, nothing more, nothing less. It's about as British as me moving to Liverpool and speaking with a faux-accent. Your tactical facts might say Vauxhall is a company, but the hard-pressed truth says different. Vauxhall is treated like any other brand from GM, by GM. I mean, the last shred of signs of Vauxhall's independence, their design studios, have long since been shut down.

And not to be rude or anything, but that last post does make you sound quite conceded.

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Look beyond what's printed on a piece of paper and then tell me what you see.

A Vauxhall is a right-drive Opel with an altered grille, nothing more, nothing less. It's about as British as me moving to Liverpool a speaking with a faux-accent. Your tactical facts might say Vauxhall is a company, but the hard-pressed truth says different. Vauxhall is treated like any other brand from GM, by GM. I mean, the last shred of signs of Vauxhall's independence, their design studios, have long since been shut down.

And not to be rude or anything, but that last post does make you sound quite conceded.

Look beyond Vauxhall Motors Limited's Articles of Association? I see a company with an annual turnover of the equivalent of some US$8 billion employing roughly 4,200 employees. I see a company with a board of directors headed by MD Bill Parfitt, operating two car plants in the UK and a dealer network. I see its finance and insurance arms, plus its Network Q near-new sales scheme which Vauxhall supply direct. Like Opel, it builds RHD Vauxhall models, as well as RHD and LHD Opel models, and has in the past built RHD Holden badged models. It builds Vauxhall and Opel badged commercial vehicles under and joint venture with Renault. Vauxhall also have their own engineering centre in Millbrook which was opened seven years ago. It has performed work on the Corsa, the Insignia, as well as modifying the Holden HSV Commodore for the UK market with the assistance of TWR.

Since GME was formed in 1978, the models of Vauxhall and Opel have gradually become one and the same, although the process began in the early 1970's. Since 1986 the models have been near identical and since 1991, have shared even the same names. GME develops the cars, using Opel's resources primarily.

Vauxhall is a British company. It's registered as a company with issued ordinary shares in England & Wales out of Companies House in Cardiff. It draws up annual accounts, which it pays corporation tax on. It has a board of paid directors. It gets audited every year. Those are the facts. Plain. Simple. Black & white. How do I know this? They've been a client I have worked on during my career.

Did you mean "conceited" or "conceded"? Because if having to deal with the sheer complete and utter bollocks coming from a number of Americans on these boards makes me conceited, then so be it. And I certainly won't stand for some spotty arrogant teenager who hasn't even left high school trying to tell me how things work in my profession which I have spent almost a quarter of a century working in when it is obvious to ANY professional that the said teenager hasn't a clue.

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A. The conversation at one point was beginning to discuss some of the independent (of major manufacturers) engineering firms of Great Briton. That was informative.

B. 90% of the time no one around here has anything nice to say about accountants. The exception is when some one wants to berate Saturn. How about some consistency!

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Three days of the same old crap.

General Motors of Canada is a registered Canadian company, headquartered in Oshawa, Ontario. Ford Motor Company of Canada is a registered Canadian company, headquartered in Oakville, Ontario.

Are either of these companies truly Canadian? Yeah, right.

What I like about certain 'professionals' is that irony is totally lost on them. Most accountants and lawyers that I have met spew 95% pure crap. I see nothing here to change my opinon on that. Nearly 3 pages of thread dedicated to whether Vauxhall is 'British' or American. Sad, very sad.

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Look beyond Vauxhall Motors Limited's Articles of Association? I see a company with an annual turnover of the equivalent of some US$8 billion employing roughly 4,200 employees. I see a company with a board of directors headed by MD Bill Parfitt, operating two car plants in the UK and a dealer network. I see its finance and insurance arms, plus its Network Q near-new sales scheme which Vauxhall supply direct. Like Opel, it builds RHD Vauxhall models, as well as RHD and LHD Opel models, and has in the past built RHD Holden badged models. It builds Vauxhall and Opel badged commercial vehicles under and joint venture with Renault. Vauxhall also have their own engineering centre in Millbrook which was opened seven years ago. It has performed work on the Corsa, the Insignia, as well as modifying the Holden HSV Commodore for the UK market with the assistance of TWR.

Since GME was formed in 1978, the models of Vauxhall and Opel have gradually become one and the same, although the process began in the early 1970's. Since 1986 the models have been near identical and since 1991, have shared even the same names. GME develops the cars, using Opel's resources primarily.

Vauxhall is a British company. It's registered as a company with issued ordinary shares in England & Wales out of Companies House in Cardiff. It draws up annual accounts, which it pays corporation tax on. It has a board of paid directors. It gets audited every year. Those are the facts. Plain. Simple. Black & white. How do I know this? They've been a client I have worked on during my career.

Did you mean "conceited" or "conceded"? Because if having to deal with the sheer complete and utter bollocks coming from a number of Americans on these boards makes me conceited, then so be it. And I certainly won't stand for some spotty arrogant teenager who hasn't even left high school trying to tell me how things work in my profession which I have spent almost a quarter of a century working in when it is obvious to ANY professional that the said teenager hasn't a clue.

Fine, think what you want. It's not just me who will tell you that Vauxhall is more of a brand than it is a company.

And I do know about the history of Vauxhall models, thanks.

And perhaps "elitist" was the word I was really searching for. It was late and I've had a very stressful past few days and I didn't exactly choose my words wisely. :smilewide:

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Three days of the same old crap.

General Motors of Canada is a registered Canadian company, headquartered in Oshawa, Ontario. Ford Motor Company of Canada is a registered Canadian company, headquartered in Oakville, Ontario.

Are either of these companies truly Canadian? Yeah, right.

What I like about certain 'professionals' is that irony is totally lost on them. Most accountants and lawyers that I have met spew 95% pure crap. I see nothing here to change my opinon on that. Nearly 3 pages of thread dedicated to whether Vauxhall is 'British' or American. Sad, very sad.

Ford and GM's Canadian subsidiaries are Canadian companies. That's where they're domiciled and their Articles will state as such. That's the rule of thumb as far as company law is concerned. Vauxhall isn't American either, nor would any company registered in England & Wales that could conceivably replace it. Still, you either understand how it works, or you don not.

What's sad is that your mentality is so narrow minded you truly believe the world is out to solely doom American companies. Sorry, but in the business world, cash is usually king and shareholders will invariably be attracted to the highest bidder. Victors and victims in the past have been of all nationalities.

The American car industry is in trouble only because of its own short-sighted avarice. Whilst the Japanese were carefully placing their economy car markers in place in the US market over the past ten years, the American big three practically ignored everything lower than D-segment and instead concentrated on those good 'ole highly profitable leviathan SUVs and trucks. They didn't have the foresight to think of how to deal with a surge in energy prices that we've seen, despite numerous warnings over the past decade, such as the summer spikes of 2000 and 2003, and the wake of Katrina in 2005.

Do I really give a toss? Yes, because I'm a car enthusiast and I don't like to see any car industry in trouble. Unlike you, I'm not judgemental as to peoples' vocations within that industry affected by such problems.

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Fine, think what you want. It's not just me who will tell you that Vauxhall is more of a brand than it is a company.

It's a company. If you like, fly on over here and I'll take you to Companies House in Cardiff to corroborate that fact. I used to work on its annual audit, for crying out loud!

Do you know what an audit is and its purpose?

The sheer arrogance of young American males is truly amazing. Little wonder they are subjected to one of the highest rates of divorce in the world.

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Do you know what an audit is and its purpose?

In a nutshell, that would be the verification of financial-related records of a company. Your point? It's like I said earlier, some tactical facts might suggest Vauxhall is a company, but in all honesty GM treats it as pretty much the same as it would any other brand.

Besides, that wasn't my original point anyway; what I was saying way earlier is that the British car industry is wholly foreign-owned and pretty much has been for a large majority since the collapse of British Leyland, if not totally since the fall of MG Rover Group not too long ago. The only British thing about it would be the workforce that builds the cars and little else. There is really no such thing as a totally British car (meaning totally, 100 percent British-designed, British-engineered, British-built, and British-branded) anymore.

The sheer arrogance of young American males is truly amazing. Little wonder they are subjected to one of the highest rates of divorce in the world.

Good thing marriage is of little interest to me right now! :smilewide:

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In a nutshell, that would be the verification of financial-related records of a company.

Two purposes to a company audit:

a) To ensure that the accounts show a true and fair view; and

b) To ensure the accounts comply with prevailing Companies Acts.

Your point?

That Vauxhall is a legal entity in its own right.

It's like I said earlier, some tactical facts might suggest Vauxhall is a company, but in all honesty GM treats it as pretty much the same as it would any other brand.

It treats Vauxhall as any parent company treats a subsidiary.

Besides, that wasn't my original point anyway; what I was saying way earlier is that the British car industry is wholly foreign-owned and pretty much has been for a large majority since the collapse of British Leyland, if not totally since the fall of MG Rover Group not too long ago. The only British thing about it would be the workforce that builds the cars and little else. There is really o such thing as a totally British car (meaning totally, 100 percent British-designed, British-engineered, British-built, and British-branded) anymore.

You asked ''what British car industry?" and I gave you a response. I said that the indigenous car industry has all but disappeared, but despite the loss of MG Rover, the UK car industry now builds almost as many cars as it did 10 years ago, earns more, makes more money, and exports more. What matters the most in industry is employment, productivity and profitability - whoever owns the shares in all reality makes little difference unless there are severe financial difficulties. Vauxhall has been a British private subsidiary company now for the past 82 years. It's had its ups and downs during the time and seen many changes, but combined with sister company Opel, it's a key player in the European mainstream arena, and critical to the UK's company car market.

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Don't worry CARBIZ, he won't be so smug when GME closes Vauxhall down and changes every assembly plant, car dearler and car name back to Opel in the UK, as it should be. Because it is under discussion as we speak. Muuuhahahahahaha! :ph34r:

what, that hasn't occured yet already? what is a vauxhall anyways? is that like that Indian Jag-u-lar?

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Don't worry CARBIZ, he won't be so smug when GME closes Vauxhall down and changes every assembly plant, car dearler and car name back to Opel in the UK, as it should be. Because it is under discussion as we speak. Muuuhahahahahaha! :ph34r:

what, that hasn't occured yet already? what is a vauxhall anyways? is that like that Indian Jag-u-lar?

a 1.4 turbo is an ok solution, but not for everyone. the turbo solution only works in a light weight car. look at mazda and honda with their heavy cx-7 and rdx. major fuel drinkers. as long as the car its propelling is sufficiently light, then a small trubo will make sense and only then as an option. a larger non turbo base engine makes more fiscal sense for the owner where the turbo is a nice trick to up the cafe chart.

the US isn't europe. small and tiny. people will take 1500 mile road trips. I have a friend who averages 50k a year on his company vehicles, like many other business folks. these folks demand making fast time over large distances.

the 'small' solution is not the best one for everyone.....plus during the week small might not work, but on the weekends you need to tote everyone and use your vehicle. are you supposed to buy an extra vehicle just for commuting during the week? don't think so.

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the US isn't europe. small and tiny. people will take 1500 mile road trips. I have a friend who averages 50k a year on his company vehicles, like many other business folks. these folks demand making fast time over large distances.

The average annual mileage in the UK for Inland Revenue purposes is 12-18K miles for business motorists - the same as the IRS deems for the US. I know British sales reps who clock up 40-50K miles per annum too.

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the 'small' solution is not the best one for everyone.....plus during the week small might not work, but on the weekends you need to tote everyone and use your vehicle. are you supposed to buy an extra vehicle just for commuting during the week? don't think so.

I spent seven years Stateside and vehicle choices were the same as Europe - a C/D-segment saloon car for trips, etc and a B-segment hatchback for commuting. Cheaper to run, fewer CO2 emissions, easier to park.

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what, that hasn't occured yet already? what is a vauxhall anyways? is that like that Indian Jag-u-lar?

a 1.4 turbo is an ok solution, but not for everyone. the turbo solution only works in a light weight car. look at mazda and honda with their heavy cx-7 and rdx. major fuel drinkers. as long as the car its propelling is sufficiently light, then a small trubo will make sense and only then as an option. a larger non turbo base engine makes more fiscal sense for the owner where the turbo is a nice trick to up the cafe chart.

the US isn't europe. small and tiny. people will take 1500 mile road trips. I have a friend who averages 50k a year on his company vehicles, like many other business folks. these folks demand making fast time over large distances.

the 'small' solution is not the best one for everyone.....plus during the week small might not work, but on the weekends you need to tote everyone and use your vehicle. are you supposed to buy an extra vehicle just for commuting during the week? don't think so.

Again. 3 gay guys + luggage + 900km trip across Germany and France + Alps + 100hp VW Touran <same size as a Mazda 5>

We did just fine at 130kmh.

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the 'small' solution is not the best one for everyone.....plus during the week small might not work, but on the weekends you need to tote everyone and use your vehicle. are you supposed to buy an extra vehicle just for commuting during the week? don't think so.

Who said the 1.4 would be for everyone? The 1.4 would probably propel the Cruze, the HHR replacement, and anything below that. We're not going to see it in a Malibu or Impala.

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