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deletedOct 19, 2023Liked by Sherman McCoy, Jack Baruth
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Amazing the kind of insider knowledge you can pick up while a half dozen dudes are watching you bang someone's wife in a sex club.

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Is Rodney going to any of these first principles meet ups?

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He was at the Detroit one and is a maybe (but unlikely) for Tulsa.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Sherman McCoy, Jack Baruth

What an oddly suspicious follow up question.

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Sometimes I doubt if Rodney is real and not Jacks black alter ego a la fight club.

"Rodney did it" Great excuse.

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27 readers met him in April!

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You would say that… rodney!

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Thanks for making me laugh out loud in the office.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I was just listening to an Irish radio station and heard an add for a 5,000 Euro price drop on the Nissan Leaf. There are taxpayer-funded subsidies on top of that.

My company just announced they’ll be throwing money on the table for anyone who buys a full electric car.

Another anecdote to add to the performance of our economy: A friend owns a company that sells mulch, both wholesale and retail. It’s fairly big, he has a couple dozen tractor-trailers on the road. His sales are down 40% this year. He’s never seen anything like that drop, not even in ‘08.

Buckle up.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I don't know if you are Irish or "Irish" but the Uniparty is coming after your peoples:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2023/10/16/ireland-corporation-tax-budget-surplus-freeloading/

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Don’t I know it, brother.

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Sounds like the Irish government needs to hire some assassins

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If only they had some sort of provisional military force that did stuff like that.

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They could call it the 'Special Assassination Squad!"

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Why? Is IRA taken now?

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It's a joke. Think about it...

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they were so close to calling it the irish protection agency and combine beer and car bombings into one convenient acronym

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founding

The Irish government might be the only government worse than ours. They’re currently pushing through the broadest hate-speech law in the world.

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You're talking about a country were women voted for abortion because they felt bad that their mothers couldn't abort them.

Irish women are fucked in the head. Always have been.

(Half Irish here).

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founding

It’s not just the women. I’m convinced that, like Scotland, a large percentage of the best of the Irish left as soon as they were able.

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Wouldn't you? :-)

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Also Irish. Can confirm.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Sounds like the time is ripe to start marketing EVs to fat female soccer players.

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The range is gonna suffer

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Luckily obese women are used to needing extra time to cover short distances.

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no fat chicks

car will suffer a mild range penalty

excellent bumper sticker material

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Four obese American women in a Rivian pickup gives it a gross weight over 8000 pounds!

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Or about the same as a new Hummer... something you won't be getting in a Rivian.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Will only work if done by Subaru.

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Don't forget the big-ass dogs. They are going to need springs like the Minis in The Italian Job.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

This is hella OT but I figure it will give some of the B&B chuckles.

Update on my 7-seater SUV purchase: The CPO 2020 Audi Q7 I purchased had an electrical freakout on the highway on my way home from the dealer and was towed back within two hours of my signing the papers. The Audi dealer, to its immense and infinite credit, accepted it back and tore my check up.

I am now buying a Lexus GX.

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Great discussion of Audi as a brand, etc. in the most recent Collecting Addicts podcast (Chris Harris and his rich buddies chatting about cars and making fun of each other every Friday).

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

You can’t pay me enough to listen to that.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I started to listen to an episode of Spike’s Car Radio the other day because it had a review of the Emira and I had to turn it off before they even got to it. Yuck.

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Well as a straight man you probably naturally recoil from people sucking each other's dicks online

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Be thankful you have me to tell you what’s going on in the podcast world

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Sherman McCoy, Jack Baruth

Recently stumbled across Spike’s Car radio the other day and thought “well I’ll give this a shot”.

I should have shot myself in the head. They talked about cars for 30 seconds and, well, sucked each others dicks for the remainder of the show I could stand to listen to…

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Somehow, I'm not.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

the only car podcast ep to which I ever listened fully was Farah with you and Bark.

Otherwise it's The Fifth Column, Reason, Tim Dillon and the occasional Rogan.

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Can't believe it's been a decade since that podcast. I mean, I'm so much more emotionally mature now.

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Won't be any cheaper to run but at least you'll have some warning of what happens!

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

The whole thing was so on-the-nose in a "Dear Penthouse Forum: I never thought this would happen to me, but..." way.

Having had Audis since the OG A4 2.8 back in the Clinton Administration, I thought I was smarter than Vorsprung durch Technik but apparently not. Having had multiple Lexuses from the "fat lexus" years (IS300, RX300) that have effortlessly gone 100s of ks miles I am cautiously optimistic. Like you said, running costs will be the same (or even worse given the gas milage of that ancient V8) but hopefully it will be a brick.

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A good friend of mine has a 2013(ish) A6 TDI, and he drives around Florida all day for work. A couple years ago, the a/c failed and it took weeks for the dealer to figure out, they eventually replaced the compressor and charged him $7k after giving him a discount because they felt bad about an earlier misdiagnosis. Later on, he took it in for a slight oil leak while the powertrain was still under warranty. The tech sent him a video of the engine and transmission sitting on a table, I guess that's the service position.

He loves the car, once it was out of warranty he upgraded the turbo so it now makes over 400 ft lbs and still gets mid 30s mpg. The cars look nice, and for the money I think it's hard to beat Audi interiors, but they're really not designed to be kind to the 2nd or 3rd owners, which is a shame.

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How can an AC compressor cost $7000?

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And B8 S4s are considered reliable, especially by Audi standards.

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German software engineers are the worst. Almost as bad as the Chinese.

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There is nothing like their short and meaningful table names. Because everybody knows what table TVLVT stores.

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I'm taking a hard look at a GX after our 3rd $1000+ trip to the dealer in our XC90 this year.

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Wow. We've had nothing but regular maintenance on our XC90, admittedly only to 40k miles though. We had 3 other Volvos and they were also pretty low maintenance.

Some recurring issue?

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Rear Diff exploded at 36k, covered by warranty

Rear rotors and pads plus a hole in the flex pipe = $1700. Not counting the air conditioner leak that was covered by the extended warranty and would have been another $1000

Front brakes plus the 70k regular service = $1500

Check engine light keeps coming on and off intermittently

Exhaust Smell we're waiting on the dealer to get back to us on. Average wait for a Volvo service appointment is one month in VT

Front headlight condensation problems

Yeah yeah yeah "Gotta pay to play" in the "luxury" space but it seems a bit excessive. We service at the dealership because we purchased the extended warranty too. I love driving the thing but the weird Euro issues are super annoying.

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Sorry to hear about all that. Our XC90 is our 4th Volvo and we've avoided a laundry list like that.

Although I did replace rotors on the V70 at least once. I was told the Volvo uses a softer steel, and to get aftermarket rotors instead.

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Mrs. Higgins threw in the towel on German car ownership, and recently acquired a 2023 GX460. She sees V8’s going the way of the Dodo, and wanted in while it is still possible. I’ve driven it a few times, and it has exceeded my expectations with regard to comfort and power. Doesn’t hurt that the Lexus dealer was willing to play ball to get it off their lot.

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I'm just waiting for the day the Audi burns me. So far though, I'm a huge fan. I did recently find out my TPMS don't tell me which tire is low. Slightly annoying on a 60k car.

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Possibly wheel speed based which is what's in the $24k Mazda 3!

Have to put it in learning mode every time I swap from all seasons to winters.

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I can just reset them to say "This is the proper pressure" It's a dumb system.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

It is, VW has it. On the plus side, no more TPMS sensors.

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Honda is the same way, though they have some models which will calculate the pressure in each wheel.

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Oct 18, 2023·edited Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

My 3.2 Turbo 6spd Allroad was dead nuts reliable in all situations.

Wait, no, that wasn't it at all!

Edit, 2.7. just saw one on the road and I feel like a fool.

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That's the car even MacGyver couldn't fix!

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The 4.2 Allroad was that car.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Was that the one with the wear item timing chains that require an engine out to do?

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Absolutely. They were on the back of the engine or something like that. I think my Phaeton was the same way but I didn't keep the cars long enough to get bitten by it.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I have wanted one of these for so long for kids duties. Fortunately I have never found one close to me.

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It was nuts anyway

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my 3.0 6mt a4 avant was dead reliable. 4.2 6mt s5 not so much...

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Same here, weird setup.

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From my experience with my C7 A6, they dont have tpms and measure tires by the wheel speed sensor or whatever else and as far as the Audi experience goes.... $24.000 bill to replace the “matik” plus a two month wait....

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I’m going to have to get the extended warranty in a couple years if I’m not sick of the car yet.

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Considering my cats fell apart by the end of my ownership, all I can say is definitely get the warranty (CPO is a godsend) it makes things way less stressful

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I have the factory one for three years I think. I didn’t buy the extended one upfront but I’ll probably get the Audi one in a year or so.

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I wuz admiring a well kept couple-of-decades-old a4 wagon beside me at a traffic light a couple of days ago.

A couple of things turned me off the first of which was a 2.0 badge on the rear hatch, and the second was the very obvious check engine light blazing on the instrument cluster. I was transported back through time to my ‘07 turbojetta experience which alternated from deep passionate feelings of love to murderous raging frustration.

Never again!

Well, almost never again.

Well, maybe I’ll just take a new one for a spin. No harm no foul, and surely audiwagen has got on top of these historical issues? Right?

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Us idiots keep buying German cars for a reason. When they're running, they are really nice.

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Is it different in their home market? I wonder if it’s somehow much less expensive and less painful to own a German car in Germany..

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German inspection rules are ridiculous where it’s cheaper to get a new car every 5 years than it is to get a used car up to code

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given thats the last of the v8 toyota off-road trucks, there's few mass market things that you can buy on the lot today that will hold their value as well. I wish I bought a v8 4runner when I had the chance, now they are all beat to shit and overpriced

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Back in the day, seeing a picture of a B5 S4, with its front clip off for a timing belt change was enough to keep buying Japanese. The only non-Japanese car I've bought (a new Fiesta ST) 'made' me trade for a Toyota.

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Oct 18, 2023·edited Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Funny you mention the A4. As any ACF reader must know, I got a new 2023 S4 this year. It replaced my last unfortunate new car in forever, a Mark VIII VW GTI that I put up with for 3 months. The Audi has a cornucopia of buttons, switches, and knobs, located in an ergonomic way on a traditional dash. It has a screen, like they all do, that is plainly tacked on to an old design. Aside from the screen, the interior is wonderful. I can perform most any function physically and redundantly. Since I'm not a moron I can remember where hard switches, dials and knobs are located and what they do.

I have no doubt that when the new A4 chassis arrives it will be as fucked up as the new VW. It will be built for morons who can only absorb a screen interface. It will be built cheaper and nastier, so the few physical controls can be left unmarked and subject to software updates.

I bought the "old" Audi figuring that it will likely be the last car they make that won't irritate me. I'm pretty sure that's not what VW had in mind

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As someone who also got a new 2023 S4 this year, I completely second this.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I was considering a '23 A5 hatchback. Does this forum say NEIN? I truly respect the opinions.

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They're beautiful cars and I don't know what else would serve the same purpose for you.

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At age 51 I have somehow never experienced the utility of a hatchback. I love Mazdas but the 3 might be a little small. I do love the proportions and size of the A5 5 door and would rather be dropped into an active volcano than give BMW any money, so I arrived at A5. With a warranty of course.

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For hatchbacks, the answer is always Prius.

That Audi is gonna cost, what $4k per year to run, whether leased or purchased? It's not a lot to scratch the Audi itch, I suppose, in some privileged context, but then again, maybe it is. I'm not knocking you. I love hatchbacks and Audis too. Audi let us all down.

Thus ... Prius.

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I love hatchbacks! The Saab 900 was great, and the Fiat 500 was, too.

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Love the 500, both new and old.

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Oct 19, 2023·edited Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Jack's jaunt to southeast Ohio sent me reviewing old PCOTY articles leaving me teary eyed reminiscing my beloved Fiesta ST.

https://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture/a5850/2013-road-and-track-performance-car-of-the-year/

Fuck you Ford Motor Company. Fuck you.

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I have a '23 A5 Sportback. Purchased new back in March. I actually originally intended to get an S3 but decided it was too small for my snowboard gear and the A5 sportback was looking damn good in the showroom. The car, IMO, looks like a million bucks and while I wouldn't consider it "sporty" I do happen to think it drives really well. It's fast, fairly good on gas and rides like a dream on the highway. I can't tell you about reliability but I get bored of cars easily and am unlikely to own it for more than 3 years.

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Also, food for thought, VW Arteon is similar to A5 sportback in form. Has the nice hatchback, but it is slightly bigger. It is basically a glorified euro-version Passat. Nice thing is though, a top trim Arteon will be about $4.5k less than the top trim A5 sportback, and the VW engine tune will be a bit more powerful. It would be a choice of which design you like better, because they are closely related.

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I rented a 2022 Q3 earlier this year. It soured me on any new product from the brand. Felt cheaper than my Bolt, drove like any other FWD crossover, and had several obvious problems at 44k miles.

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These are made for status seekers who want the badge. I had a loaner of it's more or less equivalent BMW X1 when I had an old BMW wagon in for service and it was such crap. My 13 year old wagon was nicer in and out by leaps. To get the stuff Audi or BMW (if you can stomach the styling which I can't ) were known for, you need to go to the upper trim non SUVs.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I wouldn’t fuck Rapinoe with Jack’s dick (or more accurately, I suppose, a strap on) but I at least understand how she can model lingerie. She’s fit. It’s the land monsters modeling it that I don’t get. As someone who is nearly land monster adjacent (dammit gotta get back on that Peloton and put down the cheese fries) no one wants to see that shit.

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She's never going to be a looker but she could be traditionally attractive (like 6/7) if she tried even a little bit. She wants to look like a freak

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

The word loathsome should always precede Megan Rapinoe’s name.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Truth

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One of those 'I can't be a 10 so I'll be weird' people.

This is probably also the reason she's a lesbian.

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Oct 18, 2023·edited Oct 18, 2023

Fuck whoever you want, but don’t represent the USA in international competition, disrespect it, then crow about it.

Fuck her. I almost never wish ill will on anyone, but I hope Karma teaches her a lesson.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

replace her personality and face and shes not half bad

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I remember Bud Bundy describing one of his fuck mags as showing "absolutely no faces."

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maybe the muslims were on to something there

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I consider that Victoria's Secret picture of Rapinoe to be tranny porn.

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maybe thats victorias secret

a dick

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No, that's your mom.

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but my mothers name isnt victoria

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I'm not putting down the Reese's and YOU'RE not putting down the cheese fries. Quitting is for losers. NEVER GIVE UP, NEVER SURRENDER.

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My wife, who is Catholic, always tells me what she is giving up for Lent. She then asks me what I am giving up. I always reply, “I’m giving up not eating chocolate cake”. It is a running joke for us.

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I gave up giving up things for Lent years ago!

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It's a vow you can keep!

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I give up beer every year and make an exception for st paddy’s day. Hope god forgives me for that one.

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Usually the local Catholic Bishop grants special dispensation if St. Patty’s falls on Friday, so you’re probably OK!

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I cannot read these after everyone has gone to bed...many times end up laughing too loud.

Galaxy Quest was great...

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I won't say Galaxy Quest is the greatest movie ever made, but I can't NOT say that, either.

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By Grabthar’s Hammer, watching it never gets old!

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The line about Gilligan's Island might be the single greatest joke in the history of cinema. If I ever blast off into space that's one of the very few movies I'd take with me.

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I’ll be honest, I had to watch that on YouTube; had remembered the scene for the historical documents line.

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I’m basically starving myself to get back to a respectable weight.

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Some time after I hit 200 pounds (down from a measured high of 235) I asked myself the hard question: Just how slim do I want to be? This feels just about right, although if I accidentally lose another 20 lbs I won't feel sad about it. I'm just not going to stop stress-eating sweets to get there.

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I was 220 at 30 and it was a "Ok, the discipline to get down to 200 just isn't going to happen" At 40, I'd like to be close to 220 which gives me sixish months to lose 20-30 lbs.

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It's doable. I'm 42 now and I've lost all my weight since I turned 40. But it was hard. I suffer through some of my workouts. I posted elsewhere I follow some hot Scandinavian chick on youtube. She's motivating to watch. The Asian girl I watched a couple of times had a weird sort of vapid smile on her face and that was disconcerting. There's another blonde girl, I'm not sure where she's from, but she's ripped like classic She-Hulk (and honestly a little intimidating!) and her workouts are brutal but in a fun way. Sometimes on the weekends I do hour-long sessions. I have a slight motivation to run a marathon and eventually do a triathlon, but I don't know if those are in my future. I'd have to stop eating sweets and I don't like the sound of that.

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I went from 265 to 215 at 30. Crept back up to a steady 235 where my diet didn't have to be draconian. Then last year hit and I stress gained 25lbs. It's 98% diet for me. Cardio just makes me hungry. Fortunately I don't like sweets or more accurately I don't like them enough that I can't stop eating them. Unfortunately, I do like beer, wine, and assorted spirits. I'm doing the same thing now as I did then but it's 1. Taking longer 2. The discipline is harder because my wife always has snacks in the house for the kids. When it was just me, if I got hungry at 2am, I made sure there was nothing to eat.

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Be very careful of marathons. They are super stressful. Remember, the first guy to run one, died.

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It can work. I was diagnosed as a danger zone diabetic (A1C over 11) in July. No warning signs or family history but a hugely carb heavy diet the last few years due to some other health issues. Was told I needed to get it under control soon or I was in danger of all the really nasty diabetes side effects (blindness, kidney failure, loss of circulation in feet leading to amputation, etc). Removed almost all the carbs from my diet. Dropped from 248 down to 215 as of this morning. Average blood sugar levels put my A1C in the 5.3 (aka non-diabetic) range. Just for fun my blood pressure and cholesterol levels have also improved notably.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

So, you are telling me fat chicks and lesbians don't sell overpriced lingerie? Next you are going to tell me AI is real or EV's are the future. Just kidding, thanks for a couple of interesting pieces writing this week.

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Well, not REAL-LIFE lesbians...

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F1 Prediction: Oscar Piastri on the podium at some point over the Sprint Weekend in Austin.

EV Commentary: I have seen exactly ONE Ford Lightning, ever. I shared some of the recent articles about flagging EV demand with a friend of mine in the Porsche dealer principal world; he confirmed that Taycans are tough to move at the moment, especially with Evil Elon lowering prices (“dumping” in the parlance of dismal scientists) and winter coming - who wants a $90K base Taycan that’s RWD and can get to 60 MPH in 5+ seconds? What’s more, is Porsche the newly public company going to do anything other than add 15 bhp, tweak the bumpers, freshen the color palette inside and out, and add 8% to the MSRP when the Taycan is facelifted?

Car Aging: I think this is a bit of a horseshoe theory phenomenon, a la Paul Fussell’s “Top out of Sight” and “Destitute” classes having much in common. The reliable sales success that is still in heavy demand despite being long in the tooth and having its tooling paid off doesn’t necessarily merit heavy updating. The “dog” products with limited demand are at the other end of the horseshoe. Examples of the former = Ferrari’s 458/488/F8 platform; Range Rover (particularly the L405). Examples of the latter = Nissan 370Z (I remember the first time I saw a 370Z; my high school best friend had just told me about this new thing called “Twitter”).

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One of my clients was looking at getting the lighting for a business truck. It matters for tax planning. "I don't think I'll get it this year and at this point I'm just going to get the v8 and supercharge it" I told him "Good plan"

The kicker. This client is literally in the Battery business. One where batteries actually make sense.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I don't follow it so I figure I would axe the expert, does Corvette not run in the Motul Petit Le Mans? I don't know what the different series are so just based on the classes I thought they would be there.

re-car aging, my fleet has 16 and 9 year old cars purchased new, and a 2019 that I acquired in August and is the greatest automobile that man's hand has yet made.

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Corvette Racing - the factory team - did race in the “GTD Pro” class. I believe they DNF’d on Saturday.

Corvette has a GT3 class customer car coming next year; good chance a client of mine is driving one in the WEC.

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I caught the tail end and the results and was like "Where's them dang ol' corvettes man? Talkin' bout '1, 2, 3' man, always win."

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Sherman McCoy, Jack Baruth

Yes, the Vette competed but experienced engine failure while leading at around the 5 hr mark. We cheered the flatbed as it cruised by.

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After all those years GM strove mightily to keep it out of USA GT3!

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They had no other option, and they’re salty about it.

I don’t understand the rationale, and I asked Christie Bagne about it during dinner in Austin in August. She said “that’s just always been our strategy.”

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Any idea why GM ended the Corvette Racing team?

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Forced to by rule changes mandating pro-am driver lineups in certain series.

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"It's always been that way" Truly the worst business thought ever expressed.

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I’m 34, and Christie is several years younger than me (probably late 20s). It was clear to me from the group dinner at which we both happened to be present that she fell into the role. It is effectively the old Doug Fehan seat.

Also, this is Government Motors we’re talking about here. IF they get into F1 with Michael Andretti, I look forward to them circulating at the back, 3+ seconds off the pace.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

The first couple Lightnings went for $20k over and now they are pretty much lot poison.

Hard sell to people use a truck like a truck. Or, perhaps more accurately, people want to look like they use a truck like a truck.

Relatedly, I saw my first ever Lightning XLT today. Cloth interior, but heated seats and the like. The price? SEVENTY TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS.

For a truck with cloth seats. For the SAME PRICE, you can find yourself in a 5.0 Lariat with the 502A package. Which is also insanely expensive but at least you’re getting something worth bragging about there.

They make a HELL of a lot of sense as a government fleet vehicle though. Perfect for it, really.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Fleet use is the reason Ford offered the base model Lightning. It makes perfect sense for fleets - In most cases those vehicles don't go far, they typically return to a centralized depot (makes charging a snap), and the savings in fuel costs and emissions are more significant.

I think the biggest challenge to the Lightning is the Mach-E. It's smaller, lighter (the Lightning weighs something like 8000 pounds IIRC), and a hell of a lot more vehicle for less money when you consider what you get for $60K before the various tax credits. (Full disclosure: my wife and I have owned a Mach-E for 13 months and love it. We did not qualify for the tax credits and paid full freight.) The Mach-E is, IIRC, the second most popular EV here in California after one of the Teslas (can't recall if it's the X or the Y), and to my mind, Teslas are vastly inferior cars. The one advantage they have is the Supercharger network, but that's gonna vanish once Ford adopts the Tesla charging port, which I believe happens next year.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I want to thank you for being an advocate for electrics. I think it’s important to hear from someone who is happy with that choice and makes a good case for that choice.

I’m not a fan of having the government jam them down our throats, but that’s not the same as believing they are absolutely without merit.

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Oct 19, 2023·edited Oct 19, 2023

I'm happy to do it, in part because the ACF audience is a smart bunch that knows cars. I realize I won't convince everyone, but maybe I can get at least a few naysayers to reconsider their opposition to the technology.

I've been an advocate of the technology since the late aughts with the original Tesla Roadster, Nissan Leaf, and the Chevrolet Volt. I concede that the cars aren't for everyone, but I also believe they are a good choice for more people than most people want to believe. There are still a lot of misconceptions and outright misinformation about the cars, their range, and the amount of time required to charge them. There also are, just as there are with conventional cars, crappy models and bad user experiences. The difference is, no one looks at a car like the Dodge Journey or a gas station with a broken pump and uses it to characterize all ICE cars as inferior.

That said, I also am not a fan of the government mandating them, nor do I see ICE being completely eliminated. I think Akio Toyoda made compelling arguments for hybrids with regard to their being a more efficient use of rare earth and other critical minerals with regard to overall emissions reductions. It's also not lost on me that electric vehicles require a lot of the same extractive practices as fossil fuels, particularly coal, and any successful large scale adoption of the technology must include efforts to avoid repeating the worst impacts of that (mountaintop removal mining, for example).

And all of that said, I am not some radical environmentalist out for your Hellcats and F250s. I still love driving my 993 and riding my VFR and lately I've been pondering an M54-swapped E30.

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Oct 20, 2023·edited Oct 20, 2023

Well said and echos my thoughts on the matter completely.

Related, the wife and I are at 19k miles and counting on her Escape PHEV with over 10k electric miles and 84mpg average since it came off the lot. I hop in it 10/10 times for commuting/errands over my ICE truck. It's about a dollar a day to charge it at home (she "tops it off" for free at work) and does her commute for months without a fill up. Conversely, we take the ICE truck 9/10 times for longer trips. I don't see that changing with our current technology and have no interest in a Lightning. It does make us both want to go full EV for her (I'll keep the ICE vehicle) once we get bored of the Escape (it's still an Escape after all). The Mach-E and Cadillac Lyriq are both high are her list right now.

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I have owned an EV for 4 1/2 years now and it stomps any comparable ICE vehicle, absolutely without mercy, for the particular mission it has.

I believe that almost every second and third car in American garages would be more satisfying to the owners as an EV. They're not ready to tow your 10,000 lb trailer across the country but most American households need only 0-1 vehicle that does that.

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Not that I am really trying to argue with your point, but if you look at the going rate for an XLT now with a few options, they are low 60s. $72k for a XLT Lightning less the fenderal tax rebate starts to put them in the same ballpark.

I say this as my buddy just got a loaded XLT PowerBoost and the sticker was $68k (he got $12k off sticker though).

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Sherman McCoy

Some of the older platforms just don’t need updating - they are just plain ole awesome.

I just picked up a 2017 L405, green on tan with 42K miles. I love it as the 2nd car // drive 4-6K miles per year (with extended warranty). Thing is smooth, powerful, and wonderfully appointed.

Assuming they can make em more reliable as the platforms age - then why do you need to make a whole new car? Just continue to iterate something very good and make it slightly better.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

A guy in my town who is best described as an ultra libtard trust fund layabout, gleefully purchased a Ford Lightening 6 months ago as a not so subtle attempt to show the people who actually work that no one needs a ICE powered pick up. Less than a month later the truck was in his driveway with "For Sale" sign on it.

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author

I would love to be described as “an ultra libtard trust fund layabout,” especially in my hometown!

I think the Rivian is the better flex on the normies, though. I’d have one with a custom vinyl across the rear window bearing the text: “DON’T BLAME ME, I’M A DEMOCRAT”

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Hope you don't mind your tailgate being riddled with bullet holes.

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They’d have to catch me first!

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which admittedly is very hard to do in a rivian

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

I'm certainly dragging down the average with a 15yo daily, mostly out of cheapness but also because it still works. Is it possible modern platforms have matured to the point where they don't need frequent updates? I'm thinking of the way desktop OSes got to the point where there wasn't much left to add features wise.

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I would've kept my 335 forever if it didn't have 15 year old BMW repair bills.

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Even on a 15-year-old 335 the repair bills probably aren't as bad as new car payments. I can definitely see moving on due to inconvenience.

My plan is multiple old cars and hope they don't all break at once.

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You know that internet dude who only pays cash for cars? That's 80% me. I technically have my first car payment ever on the Audi but hope to pay it off in the next few months.

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author

That’s also me.

As it turns out, it’s not easy to stroke a $350-$400k check for a car, which is why I don’t have one (yet, hopefully).

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+1. In 2017, I replaced my Tennessee-built, 12-year-old car with... a Japanese-built 12-year-old car. I guess my car is now legally an adult in the Republic of Molossia, but it does everything I want and nothing I don't want. What can replace a compact-ish "298 HP" 6MT "sport sedan?" Nothing, so we press on into the future together.

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What is that 6mt sport sedan for inquiring minds?

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Nissan skyline

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Scott nailed it. I talk about it too much, so it didn't seem relevant to name it yet again. :)

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Wait, really? Is it a GT-R?

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American branded infinity G35 or g37. I think g35 based on the year. Don’t Remember hp off the top of my head. Last cool Nissan/infinity.

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Oct 19, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Scott's correct again. The last *Skyline GT-R* was the one in the Fast 'n Furious. Nissan stopped making a GT-R version of the Skyline in '03 when they completely rebooted the Skyline from the R34 to the V35 edition. They finally made a left-hand drive variant of the Skyline, to be sold as an Infiniti G35 -> G37 -> Q50/60. Besides removing the rear windshield wiper on the sedans, they didn't do anything to change the Skyline 350GT into the G35.

My car's previous owner bought it in a shuttered Hollywood Infiniti dealer, put S K Y L I N E 350GT badging on it and traded it in 12 years and 55K miles later to Lexus Santa Monica for the last GSes they were making. It's got 77K miles now and doesn't squeak or rattle. The seat leather is wonderful. But it's *very* Japanese:

* A pamphlet from the factory the previous owner left in the glovebox had the signature of the test driver, apologizing for why the car had (hand scrawled numeral) four miles on it--they had to test it on their track before shipping it to America, you see.

* The cup holders can only fit a 12oz coke can.

* There's a functioning cigarette lighter.

* There are goofy slots above the doors on the ceiling to hold your debit or credit cards

* The switchgear for adjusting the seats is super minimal and cool-looking, but utterly inscrutable, not ergonomically positioned, and completely unmarked.

* There's a separate interior trunk release in the trunk lid with Japanese on the handle, but they had to make the giant glow-in-the-dark big handle for US DOT regs, so it has two means to open the trunk if you're trapped inside!

* Like the same-era Avalon, the rear sedan seats recline. But only ~2". What's the point??

* Hearkening back to the dying Nissan Corp of the early 90s, they made an astounding number of variants of the V35 chassis: 4 doors, 5 seats. 2 doors, 4 seats. 2 doors, 2 seats. Hardtop coupe. Convertible coupe. RWD. AWD. Small V6. Big V6. Automatic. Manual. Whatever you wanted, you could get.

The GT-R is now a standalone car, based on the V35 "Front Midships" platform that all RWD Nissan cars used from '03 - '23. Albeit I think they've killed every one of those cars except the current Infiniti Q50/Nissan Skyline V37. Who wanted a 6MT 3.7L V6 with 330HP that revs to 7500 RPM in a ~3600 lb sedan or 2+2 coupe? No one, apparently. (T_T)b

Final asterisk: Nissan *did* cram all the insides of the '07 dedicated Nissan GT-R into the Infiniti G35 coupe/2 door Skyline chassis. 3.8L twin turbo + its fancy AWD system. I've seen a few other pictures of the insides of these cars and they're just G35s that presumably could smoke four tires at once:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8f/Nissan_Skyline_GT-R_V35.jpg

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6a/NISSAN_GT-R_CONCEPT_at_TMS2001_003.jpg

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Hell yeah dude, those are rad. I think all a VQ ever needed was a set of longtube headers to sound magical.

Almost bought a dark blue metallic one with a six speed and the forged wheels + four piston brakes.

Looked killer.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Interesting point about aging cars. As I've shared (bitched? Moaned?) regularly around these parts, I stand about 6'4 and there are almost no cars available that I fit into anymore. I bought the XTS because it was one of the very few that gave me stretch out room inside. The equivalent Impala or Lucerne would work too. But other than that, there really are no cars that I fit in. SUVs seem even worse, as the combination of the short cushion and my long legs pointing skyward, make it look like I'm doing some odd combination of automotive yoga and prep for an Only Fans shoot. Needless to say, it is not particularly comfortable on long hauls.

So, what the heck is my next car? Believe it or not, the plan is for another XTS. Thankfully, the demographic drawn to buy them new were likely to maintain them well, and not put many miles on them. So the current one will get passed down to my bride, who does less driving, and I'll snag a 2019 V Sport. The only other car I can imagine fitting comfortably in would be an S Class. But dammit if I want to pay their maintenance and repair costs. The outlier option might be a Lexus LS, as I think I remember them adding some seat travel to the newer ones, but I'm not sure. Bonus on the XTS is that, except for trim, magnetic shocks and the AWD stuff, all the oily bits are Chevy Impala, so cheap and plentiful.

All that being said, for the first time in my life, I'm not looking forward to the next gen of my favourite car. While not every revamp or redesign in my automotive lifetime has been a success in my opinion, they usually offered some definite improvements. For instance the move from the second to third gen F-bodies was not all around a great move, but then82s were again beautiful, modern cars. The weight loss was a good thing. Aerodynamics helped a bunch. And once the brought out the L69 in 1983, you could have a fun engine under the hood again. Things were getting better.

However, as optimistic as I am in general, I just don't see anything positive for me in the automotive future.

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At 6'1 I was truly surprised how much seat travel the Outback has, I didn' t need to use all of it. Whether you would want an Outback is a different story.

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I had one. And no, you don’t want one.

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They got worse as they got better.

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Don't get me going!

I drove my parents' 2010 outback a few months ago. It seems to have more in common with a farm tractor or hastily-assembled-from-2x4s-go-kart than it has in common with any post 2000 motor vehicle. I was astonished. It might be worse than the dodge journey

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That gen 4 Outback/5 Legacy was a Lexus in comparison to the first two gens of Outbacks.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

As Matt "Guitar" Murphy said about prison food "They're all bad."

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They still owe you money, fool!

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Check the heat shields.

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Please provide trigger warnings before mentioning "Dodge Journey." The dealership provided one while my Mach-E was in for routine service. It was atrocious. I was almost angry at both Dodge for making it and the rental company for buying it.

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Until someone who knows better says otherwise, I will continue to claim that the Journey was the shittiest and most cynical car of the past 20 years.

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Genuine lol

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I'm not against wagons. I thought the original Outback was a brilliant car. SUVs, to me, are just good cars ruined. I'll definitely give one a try!

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The fun thing about Subarus is that, without exception, they are garbage cars. Charming in their garbage, certainly, but absolutely garbage none the less. People love their garbage though that’s for sure.

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I had a 1986 GL about 25 years ago because it was all I could afford at the time. It was essentially an anvil on wheels. I sold it for $200 more than I paid for it. It's probably still out there somewhere, chugging along at glacial pace. Fuji Heavy Industries was an apt name for the manufacturer.

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It's astonishing how marketing, or popularity, or SOMETHING, has convinced so many otherwise intelligent people to drive these unbelievably shitty cars.

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I’ll be the dissenter. Outback (and Legacy, both ‘18s) apologist here...great cars, not super expensive to buy or insure, virtually unstoppable w/snow tires. Would got another.

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The 4th gen legacy/3rd gen outback, with manual trans anyway had true 25/25/25/25 torque split and the outback had a mechanical lsd in the back. The only thing that could stop it was oil starvation, or a head gasket, or a throw out bearing, or a cv boot, etc. etc.

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founding
Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

We were discussing this at work today. There's a reason 1/2 Ton pickups are the best selling vehicles on the road. Even "big" cars have mile-high consoles that take away knee room.

Personally, I miss being able to pick up a W-Body with a front bench seat. Even the Panther cars I found ergonomically challenging with regards to seat angle; they'd flare up my sciatica something awful. A truck or my old Century had no such issue.

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Oct 18, 2023·edited Oct 18, 2023

I was in a ridiculously comfortable Ram. But, I don't want to sit up that high, I don't need to tow things often, and I don't need a 8 foot long empty box behind me. Just a nice full size sedan is perfect. I made an offer on a 2004 Marauder in black the week Covid hit. Sadly, the guy shut down for Covid and the deal never happened. I wonder how comfortable that would have been?

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founding

Depends on the knee room (for me at least). I’ve never been in a Panther with a console.

Then again, my knee would hit the stock Grand Marquis cup holder so.

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Oct 18, 2023Liked by Jack Baruth

Hear hear, on all counts. As much as I need to sell my S600 due to future crippling maintenance costs ($12,000 engine-out service), I can’t bring myself to sell. 6’4” with an ultra tall torso, which means all these new cars with their high beltlines never have enough headroom for me; the W221 is absolutely perfect. Seat is all the way down, but not all the way back.

Really can’t justify buying anything new these days… apart from a Jack-spec pickup truck, which is cripplingly expensive in the short-term (and MSRPs on the new-gen Fords are $15k more than when Jack bought), nothing excites me enough to deal with the new-car bullshit. Not just the buying process, but the fact that *everything* has to be connected. That’s a bug, not a feature.

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