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GM in-car distraction systems, whether you want it or not.


CaseyJ955
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JD Power 2017 Initial Quality Ratings and Awards - http://www.jdpower.com/cars/awards/Initial-Quality-Study-by-Segment/2410ENG

Top SUV - Kia Sorento

Small SUV - Kia Niro

Compact Car - Kia Forte

Small Preimium Car - BMW 2 Series

Midsize Premium Car - Lexus GS

Compact Premium Car - BMW 4 Series

Midsize Car - Toyota Camry

Large SUV - Ford Expedition

Midsize Sporty Car - Ford Mustang

 

(BTW....Kia is owned by Hyundai)

 

Quality by Make - http://www.jdpower.com/ratings/study/Initial-Quality-Study-%28IQS%29-by-Make/2430ENG

I have to laff at the JD power awards anymore. There are so many classes now due to GM using $$$$ that the wards are meaningless.

Watch a Bowtie comercial for a truck sometime then pause it and read the fine print.

best in class horse power? fine print truck rated at 2000lbs or less using a 6 cylinder engine with automatic transmission of less than 5 forward speeds. guess what the colorado is the only truck in that class!! Ford and Dodge both have 6 speeds! easy to win HMMM.

 

GM is not the only one to play that game the Chrysler 200 won dozens of awards for innovation and quality and is now on the do not buy list with several used car rating sites!

 

Initial quality survey of new car buyers having never bought that brand before, taken within 90 days of purchase.

 

I'd like real surveys, say 13 months into the "new" car, Id be willing to bet the numbers would change dramatically.

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I'd like real surveys, say 13 months into the "new" car, Id be willing to bet the numbers would change dramatically.

 

Yes, it is funny. You see magazines rave about new models when first released and then after a year they show up on Consumer Reports or other sites as "do not buy".

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I have to laff at the JD power awards anymore. There are so many classes now due to GM using $$$$ that the wards are meaningless.

Watch a Bowtie comercial for a truck sometime then pause it and read the fine print.

best in class horse power? fine print truck rated at 2000lbs or less using a 6 cylinder engine with automatic transmission of less than 5 forward speeds. guess what the colorado is the only truck in that class!! Ford and Dodge both have 6 speeds! easy to win HMMM.

 

GM is not the only one to play that game the Chrysler 200 won dozens of awards for innovation and quality and is now on the do not buy list with several used car rating sites!

 

Initial quality survey of new car buyers having never bought that brand before, taken within 90 days of purchase.

 

I'd like real surveys, say 13 months into the "new" car, Id be willing to bet the numbers would change dramatically.

 

Yes, it is funny. You see magazines rave about new models when first released and then after a year they show up on Consumer Reports or other sites as "do not buy".

 

I agree that JD should be taken with a grain of Na. I respect Consmer Reports as being about as unbiased as one can get. Im not currently paying but I tried to get a worst and best article here

https://www.cheatsheet.com/money-career/consumer-reports-ranked-these-cars-worst-in-reliability-for-2018.html/?a=viewall

https://www.cheatsheet.com/money-career/consumer-reports-most-reliable-car-brands-2018.html/?a=viewall

 

I was surprised to see Audi on most reliabe top 10, even more shocked to see Buick there, it really raises questions but its an indicator.

 

I know German cars are usually regarded as unreliable, and that is not without merit, but a note on that. The reason so many 10-20 yr old German cars are out of sorts is lack of maintainance. They are expensive to maintain and when steps are skipped things go wrong. It was pleasing to see Germans hit the best list too. These are for 2018 and real.world reliability doesnt really show up until a car turns 10 and we can see how it worked over time. I suspect the vast majority of these have some form of touch screen with varying levels of function. I wonder which, if any, can have their contents or function altered without the mfr actually getting their hands physically on the car. It looks like GMs Onstar allows exactly that. I suspect im not the only one that finds that alarming, what other mfrs have set themselves up with this ability?

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I think also that "reliability" is one of those things that varies with one's expectations. Growing up I had a close friend who bought brand new a Subaru back in the early 80's. He wanted 4 wheel drive and didn't want to pay Jeep prices. Well his car was amazing to him. Scheduled service was remove valve cover and reset valves every 6000 mile or 10000 Kilometers. Remove head and replace gasket at every 40000 miles. Mandatory dealer serve every 10k miles where various bits and pieces were retorqued re lubed re placed as needed with a bill to match. His wife had a 1972-ish dodge with a slant six. that had never been serviced and he occasionally would change the oil if he found a deal (once a year or so) he ended up replacing the water pump at 110000 miles, and complained that the car was unreliable. I've seen similar attitudes to people who buy Hondas Lots of maintenance and by the book oil changes and back to the dealer for every squeak rattle or flutter, and pay for the privilege, all the while touting the amazing reliability!! However, the same people would complain about the second family car often bought used or handed down from the primary driver having well over 100K miles being faulty or junk because of the occasional alternator or power steering pump issue costing $125.00 installed. But on the Honda $700 for a pump at 98K miles was expected or routine.

 

For a laugh go to a site like EDMUNDS and read the customer reviews of a nissan 350 convertible or even a Benz from the mid 80's expensive and castrophic failures are common place, but the cars are ranked higher in satisfaction than a Camaro or Mustang convertible because of fit and finish!!

 

Me I keep my 21 year old detroit iron for a bit longer, and ride the bike every day there's no hurricane ( well i have ridden during a hurricane, whole nuther story)

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What worries me with all this new computer intrusion into cars is the potential for hacking.

All brands have something similar to On Star where the car can be accessed remotely.

But now that cars have a fly by wire throttle, brakes, steering, and most all of the controls in the car, what is the possibility that it is not far off where hackers will create a car virus that when the car hits 60 mph the throttle goes wide open and the steering turns hard left and the brakes, shifter and power switch are disabled?

ANY system that can be accessed, can be hacked.

Hackers can and have already unlocked the doors and started the engine.

 

Even though my truck is still fairly new (by my standards, its a 2011) I am thinking of getting a new one that does not yet have the ability for the computer to turn the steering wheel for me. The idea that the computer might think it knows better than me how to handle an approaching emergency absolutely terrifies me. The ditch, or moving into the oncoming lane might just be a much better option than what is coming at me head on with a closing speed of 120 MPH.

 

I do know how to parallel park, I do not need the car to do it for me, I can also back up a trailer just fine all by myself.

 

On the other hand I do like my creature comforts, I like my power seats windows and locks. Cruise control and the new radar cruise that can slow me down to match the speed of the car in front of me, I do have a size 14 foot that is made of lead.........a nice sound system is a must.

 

It really irks me that the way some of these new features like automatic braking or lane assist are advertised to be able to save you wile you are doing something OTHER than driving the car. I only see these things as making people feel safe to be not paying attention and is in the not to distant future are going to get people killed.

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What worries me with all this new computer intrusion into cars is the potential for hacking.

All brands have something similar to On Star where the car can be accessed remotely.

But now that cars have a fly by wire throttle, brakes, steering, and most all of the controls in the car, what is the possibility that it is not far off where hackers will create a car virus that when the car hits 60 mph the throttle goes wide open and the steering turns hard left and the brakes, shifter and power switch are disabled?

ANY system that can be accessed, can be hacked.

Hackers can and have already unlocked the doors and started the engine.

 

Even though my truck is still fairly new (by my standards, its a 2011) I am thinking of getting a new one that does not yet have the ability for the computer to turn the steering wheel for me. The idea that the computer might think it knows better than me how to handle an approaching emergency absolutely terrifies me. The ditch, or moving into the oncoming lane might just be a much better option than what is coming at me head on with a closing speed of 120 MPH.

 

I do know how to parallel park, I do not need the car to do it for me, I can also back up a trailer just fine all by myself.

 

On the other hand I do like my creature comforts, I like my power seats windows and locks. Cruise control and the new radar cruise that can slow me down to match the speed of the car in front of me, I do have a size 14 foot that is made of lead.........a nice sound system is a must.

 

It really irks me that the way some of these new features like automatic braking or lane assist are advertised to be able to save you wile you are doing something OTHER than driving the car. I only see these things as making people feel safe to be not paying attention and is in the not to distant future are going to get people killed.

 

Oh yes on the comforts. Im spoiled by all the goodies like the zillion-way adjustable heated leather seats with awesome lateral support, columbs tilt/tele, cruise and great sound deadening. There is something to be said for a door that closes with an easy but solid rattle-free thump. Its not only the features but the way the car speaks to you when you slide in andd it barks to life. That wont be on an equipment list, it has to be driven. I even take a reliability hit to experience this.

 

You bring up an excellent point my friend! As far as I know on most cars the ECU that tells the car how to steer and brake, and adaptive cruise functions are not directly linked to the infotainment systems and a hack would not be able to control any of that. With GM onstar im not sure. When I first saw it years ago it creeped me the **** out that someone somewhere else could lock/unlock, access microphone/speakers, know my exact location and start/stop my car. Thats beyond okay for me. I dont fully understand the system but maybe someone who does can comment on the specifics on its reach.

 

I found on some VW/Audi cars I can plug in with a VAGCOM and change steering boost level at speed, light and lock behavior, make windows/sunroof controllable with the key fob remotely, I can tell the car it now has LED lights, or not, its a huge list along side watching precise engine parameters like cam advance and position of N devices and sensors. It has no wireless access, you have to go key on and access the OBDII port to even see it. Hackability comes with wireless connectivity but I believe (dont know for certain) that access to infotainment grants a remote user access to vital car functions. Maybe they can lock you in and blair Miley Cyrus until you suckstart your own Glock, dunno. Im still hot/cold on a car that senses an imminent front end collision and slams on the brakes, how many of our brothers and sisters would still be alive if all cars had that?

 

The auto swerve and auto park I find laughable. If you cant park your car than hang up the keys and call uber. I am excited about self driving cars, it has so much promise to save lives. Protection from hackers or external devices that can scramble sensors is still something that concerns me. How great would it be if anyone caught using a phone or drinking while driving had to use self driving technology in order to keep their license. It would clear up dangerous drivers faster than police patrols IMHO. I worry about my wife and kids on the road and if anything can help protect them from drinkers or cellphone wielding idiots, lets hear it and have a sensible discussion about pros, cons and ways to make it less intrusive and safer. We've all seen drivers that need something more to be safe.

 

A lot of this tech seems like a real double edged sword but all in all I think we're findning some good uses for it, maybe not GM, but others.

 

Can a hacker access vital functions, or can a hacker get in at all remotely without wireless/BT function?

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Oh yes on the comforts. ...

 

But what seems like unnecessary equipment and gizmos become tomorrow's "must have" items.

 

Automatic transmission? Power windows/locks? Heated mirrors? Heated seats? Lane assist/warnings? GPS? Infotainment system? Before people had them they were unnecessary.

 

Look back at the Model T....far cry better than horse and buggy but at the beginning people were saying they didn't need a auto-mobile, that their horse was reliable, springs in the seat were enough creature comfort....progress....who needs it !

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But what seems like unnecessary equipment and gizmos become tomorrow's "must have" items.

 

Automatic transmission? Power windows/locks? Heated mirrors? Heated seats? Lane assist/warnings? GPS? Infotainment system? Before people had them they were unnecessary.

 

Look back at the Model T....far cry better than horse and buggy but at the beginning people were saying they didn't need a auto-mobile, that their horse was reliable, springs in the seat were enough creature comfort....progress....who needs it !

 

Point taken. I guess its all relative. I still dont like automatics :duck:

 

I live up high so I sure like heated stuff. I find it hard to fault features that increase safety, but I was pretty down on air bags until I cleaned up a few fatality accidents, and accidents that should have been fatal. The older I get, the more safety conscious I become.

 

I really cant say which features are wanted by which drivers but I sure take exception to ones that could potentially compromise safety, like any interface that requires more steps or time than simple controls. I cant see why a touch screen would be a problem if it takes no more time than turning a dial. I just hope we are not using modern technology in ways that increase profits for mfrs while possibly hindering safety. I dont really care if someone wants to use e-commerce or the like, thats none of my business until it compromises the safety of the rest of us. Privacy concerns aside, this e-commerce looks like nice tech but its use is for profit of GM and seems to have the potential to be a safety issue.

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I had no idea Hyundai/Kia were comparable to Toyota and Honda. I knew they were catching up. I have massive respect for Toyota, cemented by how well the LS400 is put together. Its almost like an S class except everything works and nothing ever breaks. I have full service history and I cant find one single instance of unscheduled service. I had to do the PS pump, it had a slight groan at 188k. Its evident how much R&D Toyota did on this car, being the first Lexus model introduced to the public. It really shows what a car mfr can do when they really strive to make the best car humanly possible. At 200k it runs and drives like a new car and I really have to wrestle the keys away from wifey. The moment I came home with the Audi she snatched up my lexus. She was forced out of it today by 6" of fresh snow (RWD) and back into her Acura. It often gets comments from passangers about how eerily quiet and well composed it is.

 

I know just about any vehicle made in the last 10 yrs should last 100k miles and double that with proper maintainance and no abuse. Just as you helped someone shop for cars you were able to see which mfrs really had their hearts into making an excellent car and which others are trying to gain appeal with flashy features. How a car brakes, turns, glides and just feels in your hands is something hard to quantify but its palpable and more important than any feature list. Also does it still feel that way after a quarter million miles.

 

Im really glad so many are having great luck with the domestics, we absolutly adore the F150s in the family and at work, they outlasted all the other domestics 2:1. But I must say this, if everything were designed and built like Toyota/Lexus auto technicians would be only marginally more in demand than Telegraphists.

 

Casey,

 

Your mention of the LS400 brought to mind a cool story from my past. I spent 9 years in the car business from 1987-1996 at a Ford - Lincoln/Mercury dealership. I think it was one night during 1990, one of the wholesalers showed up at our dealership with a brand new Lexus LS400 he had just bought for his wife. He wanted to show all of us this amazing new creation of an automobile that we had heard of, but really didn't know much about. Lexus at that time was a fairly new name to the market. We had all heard that it was an impressive automobile, but basically had no idea of what the car looked like up close and personal.

 

Well, we were certainly highly impressed with the fit and finish of all of the door, hood, trunk, fenders, and the high quality of the materials inside the vehicle. But, the one thing that blew all of our minds was: this new owner of the LS400 asked me if i would run inside and get a styrofoam cup filled with water. I did that, and he started the vehicle, and sat the cup of water on top of the engine, right on the cover that hides the intake and throttle body assembly. We all stared with our mouths open while the car sat idling, and absolutely no ripple in the water in the cup, none, nada. He then got in the car and revved the engine to a very high rpm, and the water barely showed just a slight tad of a ripple when the rpms were really high. We couldn't believe it! That display of how smooth that engine was, well, we new we were witnessing a game changer in the luxury sedan market.

 

Since that time, I have had a high respect for Toyota, and Lexus. Not to mention the fact that we had a Toyota mini van that we put 388,000 miles on before we traded it, and it was bullet proof.

 

Not that my opinion matters much, but I think Toyota makes a very strong case for being the overall highest quality brand name on the market. Not all of their models do well with quality, but by far, most do.

 

Big Lenny

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It really irks me that the way some of these new features like automatic braking or lane assist are advertised to be able to save you wile you are doing something OTHER than driving the car. I only see these things as making people feel safe to be not paying attention and is in the not to distant future are going to get people killed.

 

I don't view these features as a crutch for inattentive drivers. I view them as safety enhancements. I would suspect the reaction time of the auto stopping feature is faster than most drivers. Especially older drivers. And the lane assist can help all of us if a driver is drowsy and starts to drift. We've all done that whether we admit it or not. On my Denali when the lane assist kicks in it also vibrates the seat at the same time. It also vibrates my left cheek is someone is in the blindspot on my left if I attempt to change lanes to the left or the the right cheek to to the right. And I do like the backup camera which I think is a requirement on new cars now. I still look behind me but it sure helps when backing up to hook up the trailer. No more getting out to see how close you are to the ball.

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I don't view these features as a crutch for inattentive drivers. I view them as safety enhancements. I would suspect the reaction time of the auto stopping feature is faster than most drivers. Especially older drivers. And the lane assist can help all of us if a driver is drowsy and starts to drift. We've all done that whether we admit it or not. On my Denali when the lane assist kicks in it also vibrates the seat at the same time. It also vibrates my left cheek is someone is in the blindspot on my left if I attempt to change lanes to the left or the the right cheek to to the right. And I do like the backup camera which I think is a requirement on new cars now. I still look behind me but it sure helps when backing up to hook up the trailer. No more getting out to see how close you are to the ball.

 

I fully understand the safety aspects of these features. But the commercials on tv show them saving the bacon of an inattentive driver and to me the tv ads are saying that it is OK to not pay attention while driving cuz the car might save you from yourself. If there is one thing people do NOT need is to be told that is is now OK to not pay attention to driving.

 

 

 

Self driving cars is a whole different discussion. Until I see how this technology handles a good Wisconsin blizzard, or some nice fresh black ice, or a curve with gravel on the road, or the ball that rolls out from between parked cars with the invisible kid in hot pursuit, or the various critters that can rump in front of you, just the thought of a self driving car scars me.

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