Cars with personality

What ? My friend has been given credit for this advanced technology. Just ask him. Few people ever intentionally use the stater motor as a dual use motor. You give him no credit. He is now collecting royalties from Toyota/GM for his advanced thinking. :=(

In his defense, he is a wonderfully bright kind young man. He treats everyone (and all animals with complete respect).

My biggest concern with people who treat cars this way, is not their perceived respect to those around them. but their actual respect for the safety of their passengers and everyone else on the road. That, and letting a car die at a ripe old age of 86K ? shows a likewise disdain for practical economics. Leave the dents, tears and faded paint, but don’t let it become an unreliable a death trap. You owe that to your passengers.

Hopefully his friends will treat him car-less and offer to take theirs instead.

In addition to the block/head design problems (or is that simply blockhead design problems?), they had countless other defects. I only had mine for four years, 74,000 milles, and in that time the idle stop solenoid braket broke and the solenoid fell into the accelerator linkage, jamming it open, the cooling system had to be modified with a coolant reservoir (they came without one…or the one they had was too small, I can’t remember for sure), the door hinges were so worn that the door had to be lifted to close, the seat back was falling backwards off of the seat, the tranny came loose from the bellhousing and self-destructed, the cheap plastic valance panels had long since crumbled away, and, of course, there were the engine and axle problems. The idle stop solenoid and cooing system problems were recalled after I had already done my own modifications to fix them, and I had the axle checked under recall by two different dealerships before it came out. Both said mine was fine, but all the recall specified was for them to check the endplay. It was a cheap, dirty, dishonest, and unconscionable way for GM to avoid the cost of actually modifying axles, and they did it at the expense of people’s safety. They would have been perfectly happy to have let me die in a firey crash in order to save a few bucks on a redesigned retainer clip.

After the axle was put back in, I drove the car straight to a Toyota dealer and bought a new '76 Corolla. I drove it and drove it and drove it. It started every morning and ran flawlessly. I had no idea that a new car could come without rattles and malfunctions to be fixed under warranty, without recalls, and without glitches. Toyota taught me that I should expect that in a new car. It was 19 more years before I bought another GM, a '95 Saturn SL, and I realized that GM had not changed much. The Saturn came with all those little “covered under warranty” problems that my Toyotas never did. And, while my ex got the Saturn, it ended up with head and/or headgasket problems just like the Vega.

I learned not to buy a GM small car again. So did my kids. And, based on GM’s bankruptcy, so did millions of other people out there. Now I know many of you have had good luck with GM cars, and I’m happy for you. But that’s my story.