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comment by WanderingEng
WanderingEng  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 10, 2018

I haven't really bonded with my Subaru. I don't like the idea of bonding with a car. It's just a tool. Yet I can't help feeling like it annoys me.

1. The Gracenote musician photos on the stereo.

2. Cruise control dying when adaptive cruise control disables. Ok, fine, you can't tell if there's a car ahead of me. I can. Just hold a steady 60 mph.

3. The volume control buttons on the steering wheel suck.

4. The dealer is everything I hate about car dealers and is everything my Honda dealer wasn't.

5. The driver side windshield washer is pathetic. Above 25 mph it just sprays the bottom of the windshield. Related to #4, the dealer just says "seems fine to us."

6. This is the only car I've ever driven with adaptive cruise control, and maybe it's the best of the best. But I can't help feel like it's stupid. Accelerate toward a car going much slower, then stop accelerating 20 feet away, then coast too close and brake. Even absent the adaptive part, the cruise more generally is stupid. It can't handle hills. Hill starts, and the speed drops. The cruise responds by accelerating, eventually going faster than the set point. Then I crest the hill, the car still had the accelerator down, and now we're going much faster than the set point. It slows the car, maybe even braking, and eventually is slower than the set point. I think it's a PID controller with some shitty gain settings. It needs to put more emphasis on derivative and less on proportional.

7. It thinks there's a passenger with there's a pound of stuff on the passenger seat.

I'd miss the AWD, but I'm thinking about trading for a Civic hatchback. I wish the Clarion was cheaper.

_refugee_  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You don't have to bond with your car, but it really helps if you love your car. Know what I'm saying? I'll elaborate...

I average 20k miles on my car in a given year, pretty much any given year for the past 6 or 7. (This last year is actually the first year I've probably averaged substantially less than that.) I'm not attached to my car, perse - yes, it has a name (Ricardo) - but if I crashed it, I wouldn't cry about it, or miss it like an old friend. I'd shrug, and I'd get a replacement vehicle ASAP, and that would suck, and the process would suck...but I wouldn't be emotionally upset that I lost that specific car to "car-death."

On the other hand - I've thought about this in passing over the years, cuz you have to - I'd probably replace it with the exact same make and model, if I were able to. I love my car. I love my leather seats, I love the sunroof, I love how it handles (every time someone else drives and goes, "You have really responsive brakes!" I nod proudly and am like, "Yep!" - cuz why wouldn't you have responsive brakes if you had that choice, hmm?), it's never given me a real mechanical problem or failure, it just - works. It works well in every way that I need it to work. It doesn't feel too big or too small. Some of the controls are a little non-intuitive and I don't necessarily know how to work them without getting in there and mashing on the buttons...but those controls are things like passenger climate control and the built-in GPS system, they are not things I use much at all, nor is their design impactful to me as a driver in any way on the regular.

Get a car you love. Love cars because they work. I guess - you don't have to bond with a vehicle and doing so, could be kind of silly sometimes, even.

But you do have to trust it.

steve  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    I love my car. I love my leather seats, I love the sunroof, I love how it handles (every time someone else drives and goes, "You have really responsive brakes!"

What do you drive? (if I may ask)

_refugee_  ·  187 days ago  ·  link  ·  

2010 Mazda 3s, Which I got used with about 45k miles on it - but fully loaded with the leather seats, sunroof, 6 disc cd changer, et al. It was actually the first car I test drove and someone almost bought it out under me, but their financing fell thru or smtn.

I will also say I’m fortunate to travel frequently for work but only close enough distances that they’re driveable - I could train or I could drive and I accrued too many really frustrating train experiences (and much prefer the freedom/flexibility driving affords) to really continue the Amtrak route. What I’m getting st by this is I get to drive compact/intermediate rental cars 6x-10x a year and I use it as an opportunity to check out different make/models (basic features across the board but how a car handles matters most to me nonetheless). So I’ve gotten to drive the Ford Focus, basic Kia, basic Nissan, sometimes venturing into even CRV or midsize range depending on what the rental company has available...Basically I’ve been able to test drive a variety of vehicles in about the size & price range that I’ll be looking at down the road, and I’ve definitely tried to consciously note cars I like or cars I don’t. So I’ve gotten some freebie exploring that not everyone can take advantage of.

At the end of the day I prefer the Mazda, absolutely. For a compact 4-door the Nissan, Kia, Ford, just don’t compare. They all feel lighter (pushable by wind) which is a big factor for me (I drive over a couple of windy bridges on route). I tried the Yaris and that just sucked. Once I had a CRV and that was pretty good but that’s more vehicle and gas than I’d need or want IRL. Also it made me feel ridiculous. Generally speaking Nissans aren’t bad (first car was a Nissan) but the Mazda wins out overall. Used to drive a Prius but once I got used to the acceleration of standard cars the Prius became frustrating - Ricardo is v responsive. Just a 4-cylinder. The biggest trouble I have (had) with him is tires, and I’m pretty sure that’s mostly my fault - mine and the potholes’.

Hands down recommend any day.

francopoli  ·  186 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That is the car I was set on buying, but the telescope would not fit in the rear doors due to the slope of the roof.

You mention the Ford Focus. What did you think? Did you, like I did, wonder how a car could be that FUCKING TERRIBLE and still sell?

WanderingEng  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'd say I trust my car to not do something stupid. If it was a person, it wouldn't spend the grocery money on lottery tickets. But if it was a person it would put the toilet paper on backwards and burn dinner because they were watching TV and lots of other little things that would bug me.

I liked my last car, but when it was time to change, I shrugged and moved on, sort of like you said. This one, then, isn't a bad car, but it isn't a great partner.

WanderingEng  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  
This comment has been deleted.
francopoli  ·  186 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    7. It thinks there's a passenger with there's a pound of stuff on the passenger seat.

It is due to the sensor. The seat does not use weight but capacitance. When I put my telescope stuff in the seat? not a problem. my Laptop bag? all the alarms. I've got 40K miles on mine and its a car. I don't love it, I don't hate it. The dealer is great for me, however, and have helped with everything that I have had issues with (mostly small crap here and there, nothing major).

The infotainment system is fucking bad. Just. BAD. The new Subarus have been touting the better information screens and user interface, but they suck as well. No buttons on screen, everything a virtual capacitance touch screen, in a moving vehicle bouncing down the road is poor choices, IMO. Next car I get will have Android Auto and will just use a cell phone as the driver for the system. Right now I use the phone, connect it via bluetooth and use VLC to play music and playlists.

The only other thing I really have to add is that the all wheel drive is still taking some getting used to. The first time that the AWD kicked in while hydroplaning? I coulda made diamonds in my ass as much as I was puckered. With the snow and ice this weekend I will take the car out to a parking lot or field and do donuts and test slamming on the brakes to get more practice with the car in shit conditions.

WanderingEng  ·  186 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Thanks, I didn't know the seat sensor was capacitive. I've been driving it for 15 months and the sensor never went off with books, groceries, hat/gloves, water bottles, but then I put my boot traction spikes on it and the alarm is killing me.

I agree the infotainment is awful, but I've driven worse ones as rentals. The Chevy Trax had a touchscreen volume control which was awful. I Bluetooth audio into mine, too, and it drives me crazy that the system doesn't use the phone album or artist art. Other systems do. The system functions fine on a basic level, but it feels like something I'd have expected in 2010, not my 2016 model year.

I've been nothing but happy with the AWD. I've driven it into some pretty snowy hiking trailheads. While I might have done the same with my Civic, it would have been a ton of planning both for the approach into the lot and getting out. With the Impreza, I just drove in and back out. I'm not talking two feet of snow, but 6-9" can be a real concern. No problem in the Impreza.

kleinbl00  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You know why you haven't bonded with your Subaru? Because Patrick Stewart hasn't congratulated you for dropping $90k on it.

(fuckin'A I bonded with my Porsche)

steve  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    I wish the Clarion was cheaper

what is a Clarion?

WanderingEng  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Oops I meant Clarity, Honda's new plug-in hybrid.

steve  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

OOOooOOOOooooo.... I like the sound of those words... I will research!


WanderingEng  ·  187 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It apparently qualifies for the $7500 federal tax credit. I haven't figured out when the credit applies. Best I can tell, it's when filling one's taxes, meaning I wouldn't see that cash until next year in April. That also means either shelling it out now or financing it. I might have to ask someone more knowledgeable to verify.

steve  ·  187 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I think you’re spot on. One of the reasons I leased a leaf when I did is because when you do, Nissan recognizes the rebate immediately, and the price reflects that. At the time, the lease rate was effectively zero, and the post-lease sale price was higher than it should have been - so the delta between the price and the buyout was so small that the payments were ridiculously low. The best part was - they assumed the resale would be MUCH higher than it was, so they took a bath on the thing. I could have bought it for almost nothing at the end of the lease... but that’s another story for another day.

Your mileage may vary - pun intended - but yah... all tax breaks come in April of the following year... and you better hope you’ve got a tax bill of more than $7500 or you may see nothing of it.

snoodog  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Subaru had by far the worst acc of the lot. It was more of a nussance than a feature

ButterflyEffect  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Huh. What model and year are you driving?

WanderingEng  ·  188 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's a 2016 Impreza. As a tool I think it's fine. In modest snow it's incredibly solid. The seats flop down, and putting my bike in the back is a piece of cake. Just, grrr. The little things annoy me.