First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

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Teamwork
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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby Teamwork » Mon Aug 15, 2016 10:09 am

Lol, fair point. I don't find myself in many parking garages these days, although I'd also be a bit annoyed if I regularly drove into a garage and had to either turn on my lights or just live with the fact that I can't see my gauges while I park.

I probably am in the minority of having to use a parking garage though. That little slit in front of the e-brake... I literally use that for a parking garage pass. Still wish I had a place to hold coins in this car. My GF goes to a mall (It's crazy I can reference it and you probably know where it is- Roosevelt Field) and we use the parking garage there too. Especially if I'm wearing polarized sunglasses it basically means I can't see jack without turning on my lights.

I too, strive for perfection, which, when mixed with anxiety, is terrible when trying new things, including (but not limited to) manual transmission. I haven't played golf, but I'm sure you'll adapt to it sooner than you think.

I felt a lot of anxiety and pressure too when I first started and it literally lasted for months. Whenever I would trek uncertain roads I'd question what could be an obstacle or sticking point and it kind of drove me insane. I'm always going to be a perfectionist but I've come to the ability to accept where I'm at in this trade.

MH86
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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby MH86 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:55 pm

Teamwork wrote:
Lol, fair point. I don't find myself in many parking garages these days, although I'd also be a bit annoyed if I regularly drove into a garage and had to either turn on my lights or just live with the fact that I can't see my gauges while I park.

I probably am in the minority of having to use a parking garage though. That little slit in front of the e-brake... I literally use that for a parking garage pass. Still wish I had a place to hold coins in this car. My GF goes to a mall (It's crazy I can reference it and you probably know where it is- Roosevelt Field) and we use the parking garage there too. Especially if I'm wearing polarized sunglasses it basically means I can't see jack without turning on my lights.

I don't think I have a slit in front of the e-brake, unless I missed it since I don't have a parking pass. I feel like not too many cars these days have coin holders, especially with more and more parking garages/meters allowing payment by credit/debit card or even app. I'm familiar with Roosevelt Field Mall - I have family that lives about 10-15 minutes from there, plus it's one of the nicer malls within reasonable radius to NYC (although I haven't been to that mall in years). Getting back to your initial topic, the non-backlit gauges in the Jetta are also impossible to see with sunglasses on. As part of my commute, I have to stop at a red light under the Long Island Expressway, and after 3 months, I've come to accept that I don't have legible gauges with the lights off for the 20-30 seconds of that red light.

Teamwork wrote:
I too, strive for perfection, which, when mixed with anxiety, is terrible when trying new things, including (but not limited to) manual transmission. I haven't played golf, but I'm sure you'll adapt to it sooner than you think.

I felt a lot of anxiety and pressure too when I first started and it literally lasted for months. Whenever I would trek uncertain roads I'd question what could be an obstacle or sticking point and it kind of drove me insane. I'm always going to be a perfectionist but I've come to the ability to accept where I'm at in this trade.

I'm well familiar with the fear of "what can be an obstacle," even checking unfamiliar routes on Google Earth. It eases each day, especially as I remind myself that I've already dealt with plenty of "obstacles" and that I probably know enough to take on any new obstacles when they present themselves (so long as I take them on carefully).

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby Teamwork » Tue Aug 16, 2016 9:01 am

I don't think I have a slit in front of the e-brake, unless I missed it since I don't have a parking pass. I feel like not too many cars these days have coin holders, especially with more and more parking garages/meters allowing payment by credit/debit card or even app. I'm familiar with Roosevelt Field Mall - I have family that lives about 10-15 minutes from there, plus it's one of the nicer malls within reasonable radius to NYC (although I haven't been to that mall in years). Getting back to your initial topic, the non-backlit gauges in the Jetta are also impossible to see with sunglasses on. As part of my commute, I have to stop at a red light under the Long Island Expressway, and after 3 months, I've come to accept that I don't have legible gauges with the lights off for the 20-30 seconds of that red light.

It's pretty cool that there's someone here who knows the land marks and such of the Island. For some reason I keep forgetting you have a 2016 Jetta with the 1.4L and my mind keeps going back to the 2.5L 5 cylinder (probably because I was considering it for so many years). This car has like 3 different areas to store SD cards (which I don't use) but 0 places that are adequate for holding a cell phone or change. My cup holders basically is where my cellphone goes (I put my phone inside my sock and place it in there). Not sure if you've kept up with some of the other threads but I actually put a small sock over my shift knob when I park the car. Two reasons I've been instructed to do this when I was first starting out: A) Obviously to keep direct sun/heat off the knob, B) Kind of like a red flag to remind me that the car is in gear. One of my favorite things about this car in terms of storage is the simple fact that the door pockets are lined with carpet so I can actually put something in there without it rattling.

I'm well familiar with the fear of "what can be an obstacle," even checking unfamiliar routes on Google Earth. It eases each day, especially as I remind myself that I've already dealt with plenty of "obstacles" and that I probably know enough to take on any new obstacles when they present themselves (so long as I take them on carefully).

Can't say I've done that but I can see it. You really start to recognize all of the inclines/declines you've been riding on for years but never really paid much attention too.

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby MH86 » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:59 pm

Teamwork wrote:
I don't think I have a slit in front of the e-brake, unless I missed it since I don't have a parking pass. I feel like not too many cars these days have coin holders, especially with more and more parking garages/meters allowing payment by credit/debit card or even app. I'm familiar with Roosevelt Field Mall - I have family that lives about 10-15 minutes from there, plus it's one of the nicer malls within reasonable radius to NYC (although I haven't been to that mall in years). Getting back to your initial topic, the non-backlit gauges in the Jetta are also impossible to see with sunglasses on. As part of my commute, I have to stop at a red light under the Long Island Expressway, and after 3 months, I've come to accept that I don't have legible gauges with the lights off for the 20-30 seconds of that red light.

It's pretty cool that there's someone here who knows the land marks and such of the Island.

On that same note, it's nice that there's someone here who knows Long Island - and also Queens/Brooklyn, based on my previous thread.

For some reason I keep forgetting you have a 2016 Jetta with the 1.4L and my mind keeps going back to the 2.5L 5 cylinder (probably because I was considering it for so many years).

Interesting that you were considering the Jetta 2.5 and ending up springing for the GTI. I was initially thinking of the GLI, but then I decided that it wouldn't be worth it to spend the extra 5K or so. My Jetta SE is still reasonably well equipped - I have heated (cloth) seats and Android Auto, 2 features that I was really excited about.

This car has like 3 different areas to store SD cards (which I don't use) but 0 places that are adequate for holding a cell phone or change. My cup holders basically is where my cellphone goes (I put my phone inside my sock and place it in there). Not sure if you've kept up with some of the other threads but I actually put a small sock over my shift knob when I park the car. Two reasons I've been instructed to do this when I was first starting out: A) Obviously to keep direct sun/heat off the knob, B) Kind of like a red flag to remind me that the car is in gear. One of my favorite things about this car in terms of storage is the simple fact that the door pockets are lined with carpet so I can actually put something in there without it rattling.

I never thought of putting a sock over my shift knob, for either of those reasons. I'm incredibly OCD and have ingrained into my mind to immediately put it in neutral when I get into the driver's seat. That is an interesting way to remind yourself that the car is in gear, though. My door pockets are hard plastic, but I do have the generic version of the Jetta, and I will admit that the interior is quite plain, although most of it looks durable and the infotainment system is fairly straightforward.


I'm well familiar with the fear of "what can be an obstacle," even checking unfamiliar routes on Google Earth. It eases each day, especially as I remind myself that I've already dealt with plenty of "obstacles" and that I probably know enough to take on any new obstacles when they present themselves (so long as I take them on carefully).

Can't say I've done that but I can see it. You really start to recognize all of the inclines/declines you've been riding on for years but never really paid much attention too.

There are way more inclines/declines around NYC then I ever realized, even in Brooklyn which is mostly flat (aside from a few neighborhoods).

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby potownrob » Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:11 am

Teamwork wrote:
Lol, fair point. I don't find myself in many parking garages these days, although I'd also be a bit annoyed if I regularly drove into a garage and had to either turn on my lights or just live with the fact that I can't see my gauges while I park.

I probably am in the minority of having to use a parking garage though. That little slit in front of the e-brake... I literally use that for a parking garage pass. Still wish I had a place to hold coins in this car. My GF goes to a mall (It's crazy I can reference it and you probably know where it is- Roosevelt Field) and we use the parking garage there too. Especially if I'm wearing polarized sunglasses it basically means I can't see jack without turning on my lights.
auto headlights FTW :twisted: :lol: 8)
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

For Pizza!!!!

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby Teamwork » Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:57 am

Interesting that you were considering the Jetta 2.5 and ending up springing for the GTI.

Different time periods of my life so taken a little out of context. 4 years back when I was going through for a lease the Jetta 2.5L was in my top 2. The car I ended up getting then wasn't even in my top 3 (it was probably 4th in terms of product alone). If something like dieselgate happened at the time I was looking at this car I probably would've ended up pulling the trigger as price and terms were a huge turn off then. VW dealerships over here are really stiff- like I really think they truly believe they are selling premium cars. Even when I negotiated ("negotiated") terms for my GTI they were still quite stiff but I had good rapport with my sales guy. I don't think I got a really great deal but I don't think I got hosed either. Things were different back then though- my budget being the big thing, and the overall unstability of my work situation. Going into last year most things in my life stabilized so I could have a little more fun with it but back then I was literally looking at a bottom line and a promising sales/service experience.

I was initially thinking of the GLI, but then I decided that it wouldn't be worth it to spend the extra 5K or so. My Jetta SE is still reasonably well equipped - I have heated (cloth) seats and Android Auto, 2 features that I was really excited about

There's no way I'd get a GLI unless they are discounting those things hard. Lack of MQB chasis is a deal break for me. Still think it's using last gen 2.0 TSI too. Really makes absolutely no sense getting this over the MK7 unless you dry heave over hatch backs.

auto headlights FTW :twisted: :lol: 8)

It's definitely annoying coming from a car that had and now being in a car that doesn't. I've done my research about retrofitting and it either is too "sketchy" or too expensive or both.

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby potownrob » Wed Aug 17, 2016 9:25 am

Yeah, it'd be one thing if they gave a big incentive to get the GLI, but they don't; I don't think they even qualify for the leasing and financing deals they have for the regular jettas. On the other hand, VW has their head in their rears when it comes to favoring the Golf over the Jetta in the states... :? :oops: :roll:

Edit: it's also time for them to get it in gear and bring out the new Passat and Jetta. Europe already has a new Passat (not sure if we'll get that version though since they may think we're too fat to fit in it)...
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby Teamwork » Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:11 am

potownrob wrote:Yeah, it'd be one thing if they gave a big incentive to get the GLI, but they don't; I don't think they even qualify for the leasing and financing deals they have for the regular jettas. On the other hand, VW has their head in their rears when it comes to favoring the Golf over the Jetta in the states... :? :oops: :roll:

Edit: it's also time for them to get it in gear and bring out the new Passat and Jetta. Europe already has a new Passat (not sure if we'll get that version though since they may think we're too fat to fit in it)...

It's funny to me how much American's love the Jetta and "US Passat" but aren't too fond of the Golf or CC. I love both the CC and Golf but most American's are anti hatch back (if it's not an SUV) and don't want to pay past 30k for a VW. I actually was reading articles how when the CC first came out it sold really strong for VW but towards the stale end of it's 8 year generation (yes, 8 years!) it basically sells less then a (another stale) Tiguan. Spy photos were released of the new one being tested and it looks promising but I think it's going to be an even harder sell. Status and prestige matter in the US and the Audi A3 has been a pretty high take rate. I think more people would take an A3 over a loaded VW CC just because of the badge alone. Aside from that, VW has had holes in the small SUV/mid-size SUV for a long time now. Those are two highly sought segments that VW basically has no presence in.

EDIT: I'm digressing hard but I think it's really gutsy that Honda and Chevy are trying to market hatchbacks for the Civic/Cruze with a "premium" on the price tag. Think they both will end up flopping because of that. US buyers need incentive to buy a hatch and not to get charged more for "barely wanting it".

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby MH86 » Wed Aug 17, 2016 5:31 pm

Teamwork wrote:
potownrob wrote:Yeah, it'd be one thing if they gave a big incentive to get the GLI, but they don't; I don't think they even qualify for the leasing and financing deals they have for the regular jettas. On the other hand, VW has their head in their rears when it comes to favoring the Golf over the Jetta in the states... :? :oops: :roll:

Edit: it's also time for them to get it in gear and bring out the new Passat and Jetta. Europe already has a new Passat (not sure if we'll get that version though since they may think we're too fat to fit in it)...

It's funny to me how much American's love the Jetta and "US Passat" but aren't too fond of the Golf or CC. I love both the CC and Golf but most American's are anti hatch back (if it's not an SUV) and don't want to pay past 30k for a VW. I actually was reading articles how when the CC first came out it sold really strong for VW but towards the stale end of it's 8 year generation (yes, 8 years!) it basically sells less then a (another stale) Tiguan. Spy photos were released of the new one being tested and it looks promising but I think it's going to be an even harder sell. Status and prestige matter in the US and the Audi A3 has been a pretty high take rate. I think more people would take an A3 over a loaded VW CC just because of the badge alone. Aside from that, VW has had holes in the small SUV/mid-size SUV for a long time now. Those are two highly sought segments that VW basically has no presence in.

Even though I went with the Jetta, I might have thought more of the Golf had they not limited the equipment levels on manual models (if I remember correctly, I would not have been able to get the heated seats I desired on a manual Golf). The bigger issue with VW in America is that, as you stated, Americans often expect the so-called "snob appeal" of a luxury badge once the price (of a sedan at least) goes past a certain price. In Europe and elsewhere in the world, it seems that all cars are expensive (compared to U.S. prices), so VW can be more competitive.

EDIT: I'm digressing hard but I think it's really gutsy that Honda and Chevy are trying to market hatchbacks for the Civic/Cruze with a "premium" on the price tag. Think they both will end up flopping because of that. US buyers need incentive to buy a hatch and not to get charged more for "barely wanting it".

It is incredibly gutsy. I think Honda has a shot though, so long as all those enthusiasts who begged for a manual-equipped turbo Civic hatchback actually go and purchase them. Chevy, on the other hand, might struggle, depending on how sporty that Cruze hatch is. Not to digress further, but I had a Chevy Cruze back in 2011 and hated it so much, that I traded it away after a few months. That new Cruze has to be leaps and bounds beyond its predecessor to succeed, especially as a premium hatchback.

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby tankinbeans » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:37 pm

I've driven a Snuze and Clifford was eleventyone million times better. More power, a more sorted transmission, better suspension and, most important of all, not a Shitrolet/Daewoo.
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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby MH86 » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:54 pm

tankinbeans wrote:I've driven a Snuze and Clifford was eleventyone million times better. More power, a more sorted transmission, better suspension and, most important of all, not a Shitrolet/Daewoo.

Yes, exactly. I mean, I've never driven a Focus so I can't report on that, but the Cruze has one of the worst automatic transmissions I've ever come across. As a former Nissan owner, I'll admit I may have become too accustomed to CVTs, but the Cruze seemed to always upshift way too early and resist downshifting. If all automatics shifted as badly as the Cruze's, maybe more people in the States would be driving manual transmissions. As a matter of fact, I'm convinced that the automatic was added onto the Cruze last-minute to prepare it for its U.S. debut (remember, it started out years before in Europe). I know that sounds like a conspiracy theory, but that's just my 2 cents.

Come to think of it, the Cruze also had a 1.4 liter turbo 4 cylinder, as does my Jetta. While the Jetta isn't a rocketship, it can at least get out of its own way and then some.

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby tankinbeans » Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:22 pm

I drove the NA 1.8 and that thing is heavy, underpowered and just reeks of cost cutting. The 1.4T might habe been better, but I highly doubt it. It had a manual transmission that gave my Kia a run for its money as the worst I've had the displeasure of driving.

The manuals I've driven in order of easiest to most difficult are:

1. 13 Focus SE (2.0 NA)/14 Focus ST (2.0T)
2. 11 Jetta SE (2.5 NA)
3. 96 F150 (4.9 I-6 NA)/96 Ranger (2.3 NA)
4. 98 Mustang GT (4.6 NA)
5. 11 Kia Forte (2.0 NA)/93 Escort (1.8 NA)
6. 13 Cruze (1.8 NA)

I found that a nice mix of torque and lightness makes for an easier system to deal with. Of all the clutches I've worked the Escort's was heaviest and I'm not sure why.

Disclaimer: I fully admit to my bias against Chevrolet. The only vehicles I've ever had problems with were Chevrolets.
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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby potownrob » Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:07 am

too much to comment on, way too much to comment on, and way too much fajita in my belly. :evil:
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby potownrob » Thu Aug 18, 2016 6:55 am

MH86 wrote:It's funny to me how much American's love the Jetta and "US Passat" but aren't too fond of the Golf or CC. I love both the CC and Golf but most American's are anti hatch back (if it's not an SUV) and don't want to pay past 30k for a VW. I actually was reading articles how when the CC first came out it sold really strong for VW but towards the stale end of it's 8 year generation (yes, 8 years!) it basically sells less then a (another stale) Tiguan. Spy photos were released of the new one being tested and it looks promising but I think it's going to be an even harder sell. Status and prestige matter in the US and the Audi A3 has been a pretty high take rate. I think more people would take an A3 over a loaded VW CC just because of the badge alone. Aside from that, VW has had holes in the small SUV/mid-size SUV for a long time now. Those are two highly sought segments that VW basically has no presence in.
i'd be lying if i said i thought the golf looked classier than the jetta and passat. the shortness and shoe or boot like shape takes some getting used to, especially for an american used to seeing mostly sedans and bigger SUVs. the golf is more practical, despite not being as big. it is much bigger inside than it looks from the outside, like most compact or subcompact hatches. is the CC really a hatch, or does it just look like one. i don't get how it costs so much more than the passat when it is essentially a variant of the last gen passat. granted, i liked that gen passat better than this one, but it still doesn't make sense to me. i'd try to reach for an A4 before going for a CC, at least for a new one.

Even though I went with the Jetta, I might have thought more of the Golf had they not limited the equipment levels on manual models (if I remember correctly, I would not have been able to get the heated seats I desired on a manual Golf). The bigger issue with VW in America is that, as you stated, Americans often expect the so-called "snob appeal" of a luxury badge once the price (of a sedan at least) goes past a certain price. In Europe and elsewhere in the world, it seems that all cars are expensive (compared to U.S. prices), so VW can be more competitive.
the feature sets on the trim levels are incongruent and inconsistent between the different models and different years of each model. my 2012 jetta 2.5 se was pretty much a stripper other than the (lowend - no lumbar or heated seats) leatherette seats and the bigger engine (base engine on the jetta s was the 2.slow). you had to step up to the se w/ convenience package to get a half-way decent stereo and steering wheel controls (and leather wheel), and probably other goodies i've forgotten about. as i've mentioned before, i might've kept my jetta if i had the convenience package in mine.

EDIT: I'm digressing hard but I think it's really gutsy that Honda and Chevy are trying to market hatchbacks for the Civic/Cruze with a "premium" on the price tag. Think they both will end up flopping because of that. US buyers need incentive to buy a hatch and not to get charged more for "barely wanting it".

It is incredibly gutsy. I think Honda has a shot though, so long as all those enthusiasts who begged for a manual-equipped turbo Civic hatchback actually go and purchase them. Chevy, on the other hand, might struggle, depending on how sporty that Cruze hatch is. Not to digress further, but I had a Chevy Cruze back in 2011 and hated it so much, that I traded it away after a few months. That new Cruze has to be leaps and bounds beyond its predecessor to succeed, especially as a premium hatchback.
i didn't know about that. i figured the new civic hatch would be a little more, like a few hundred more (like the impreza sedan vs. hatch), but not a lot more. way to shoot themselves in the foot.
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: First Time Manual Driver - 3 Month Update

Postby Teamwork » Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:20 pm

Even though I went with the Jetta, I might have thought more of the Golf had they not limited the equipment levels on manual models (if I remember correctly, I would not have been able to get the heated seats I desired on a manual Golf). The bigger issue with VW in America is that, as you stated, Americans often expect the so-called "snob appeal" of a luxury badge once the price (of a sedan at least) goes past a certain price. In Europe and elsewhere in the world, it seems that all cars are expensive (compared to U.S. prices), so VW can be more competitive.

I would've went Golf TSI as well (over GTI) but I really don't have any complaints where I landed. The model packaging for VW seems to consistently somehow get worse when it started off being pretty bad to begin with. GTI for example takes like one small step forward and then 3 more backwards from 2015 to 2017 (with 2016 in between). I don't really get it honestly- what's the point in taking the surveys if they don't listen to them. I literally don't know any valid excuse of taking away things that were once "standard" within the same generation- in this example: LED Fog lights are no longer standard. My car is a base unicorn now because you don't even have the option to get LP + PP on S trim now.

It is incredibly gutsy. I think Honda has a shot though, so long as all those enthusiasts who begged for a manual-equipped turbo Civic hatchback actually go and purchase them. Chevy, on the other hand, might struggle, depending on how sporty that Cruze hatch is. Not to digress further, but I had a Chevy Cruze back in 2011 and hated it so much, that I traded it away after a few months. That new Cruze has to be leaps and bounds beyond its predecessor to succeed, especially as a premium hatchback.

I know a lot of people who would only buy the Cruze in this class. It seems to check off a ton of boxes on most mainstream American consumers who don't want a cheap small car to feel like a cheap small car. I shopped the Cruze and Sonic both and really didn't mind my time with either. I felt like I could've lived with either and have been satisfied. I really like the Sonic as a small, city, beater... the interior quality though was pretty disgusting but that was really the only thing I disliked about it. The forward collision alert in that car is a joke too.. it literally illuminates a graphic of a comic silhouette of a car crashing if you get too close. I heard the gas mileage in those small turbos for GM are pretty bad though. I'm probably more spoiled then I should be getting pretty decent gas mileage in a "performance" oriented 2.0L turbo.

I would never buy a Ford Focus or Chevy Cruze though if reliability and craftsmanship were a top 3 priority of any sorts. The Ford Focus ST I tested had under 20 miles on the odometer and I opened up the glove box and it literally came apart (like the hinge was broken and it fell out into my lap). Getting my dad to a Ford dealership was a challenge in it's own- he's long sworn off 'Fix Or Repair Daily'.

is the CC really a hatch, or does it just look like one. i don't get how it costs so much more than the passat when it is essentially a variant of the last gen passat. granted, i liked that gen passat better than this one, but it still doesn't make sense to me. i'd try to reach for an A4 before going for a CC, at least for a new one.

It's a traditional trunk but the new spied one is rumored to be a lift back (not sure why these aren't more popular? Maybe more expensive to mass produce?). It costs so much more than the Passat today because the US Passat is literally VW's version of a Toyota Camry. Remember that small time frame period when VW was going mainstream, cheapening out the cars, making them US "big" standards? CC being based off the old Passat is probably a good thing for the most part. It's about 3-4 years overdue for an upgrade. That Mercedes CLS wannabe status wore off it's welcome back in 2010-2011. 200 HP in a car that's over 32k is borderline offensive, honestly.

How I'd try and sell the new one? Liftback/hatch design for uniqueness and practicality. 2.0L from A3 or Golf R as base engine with a v6 option. AWD option somewhere at this price point...

i didn't know about that. i figured the new civic hatch would be a little more, like a few hundred more (like the impreza sedan vs. hatch), but not a lot more. way to shoot themselves in the foot.

They are trying to spin it as a "premium" model. It's basically starting at EX level of equipment and going up from there.


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