OT: buying cars

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I read it was OK to ask about other stuff here if I put it to OT first, so here goes.
I recently test drove a Fiat 500L and loved it, but then I went to looking for customer reviews, and all I'm seeing are mixed feedback. Some love the car, others have problems from the get go.
I'm getting frustrated trying to figure out how to get a car that doesn't have something wrong with it, and the reviews I read were on the new Fiat500L's.
Any advice? thanks!
--
Emma

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wrote:

The problem with Italian cars is the quality control is spotty and the work force is entitled. A car built on a good day is as good as anything out there but on a bad day they build junk. Spin the wheel and take your chances ... sort of like American cars of the 70s.
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In alt.home.repair, on Wed, 5 Aug 2015 13:28:14 -0700 (PDT), Uncle

Back in the 70's they said Fiat stood for Fix it again, Tony. but that was a long time ago.
I rented a really smal Fiat in Israel fo 9 days and I had no complaints. It had room for four people and had a little bit of space for luggage with a door in the back. Short and easy to park.
In your case, you can buy the car you want or buy the one that's rated. It reminds me of looking for lost property where one dropped it or where there is light for looking. Or you can just keep looking for ratings of your model.
When I buy a used car, I look for one in nice condition because body work and upholstery work is expenisve, and I put aside 1000 dollars for repairs. Well, that was a long time ago. Now it's 2000 dollarss. But I've only had to spend the 1000 once. Most times under 200.

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On 8/5/2015 2:17 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

not good. I want it to work, so it's not looking like I should pursue that particular car model.
--
Emma

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wrote:

If you loved it that's all that matters. There is no significant difference between the 'quality" of cars today. They are all excellent despite the misleading "quality" ratings you get from places like JD Power. That said, the Fiat is on the low end of the excellent scale. Instead of it having 1.5 problems in it's first year it may have 3, all which will be fixed under warranty for free. My recommendation if you plan to keep the car for a substantial length of time beyond the original warranty is to buy an extended warranty from www.warrantydirect.com and not worry about anything anymore. Yes, you will 'lose' about $100 a year in the cost of the warranty if nothing much breaks but $100 a year is pretty cheap "worry insurance".
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On 8/5/2015 6:41 PM, Ashton Crusher wrote:

Difficult to do a real comparison. Fiat is ranked dead last in every reliability survey so it is not something I'd want to buy.
It is better than any car built in the 1950s though I think that is how you arrive at your conclusion about being on the low end of excellent. My father bought a 1959 Chevy and it had a list of over 20 items for the dealer to correct.
I was a GM guy all my life and every one had to go back for something. I got fed up with my last Buick and bought a Hyundai Sonata. Highest quality car I ever had. Only one of three needed a warranty fix at 57,000 miles. I plan to buy a 2016 when available.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Also even if Fiat ran well depreciation rate is pits. Not a good car in cold climate like in Canada. I am eyeing KIA Sportage or Hyundai Tucson (same thing mostly) for wife's next car.
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wrote:

I'll reserve judgement on the new Fiat for a few more years. The fact that there are 3 year old ones on the road and looking pretty good means they are better than they were in the seventies!!!!
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On 08/05/2015 09:31 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Yeah, I owned my Spyder for a couple of months. During one heated discussion I offered to park it on the saleman's desk if we couldn't work out something. I wound up with a '73 Mustang. I'd gotten to like the 'Tang since it was the loaner I was driving for most of those two months.
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rbowman wrote:

I had similar experience with Sunbeam Rapier. Had to work on it every week end to make it road worthy. I passed it onto my friend who put in a Ford Pinto engine. I still shudder when I think about Lucas parts. After driving company car almost 40 years, I settled on Acura and Subaru for family. So far so good. No major issues.
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wrote:

With British cars you need to open the hood and fondle their nuts every day or two to keep them happy.
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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca posted for all of us...

And suspect everything marked Lucas... Are they still in business-maybe making beer warmers...
--
Tekkie *Please post a follow-up*

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Tekkie? I think not.
Have you ever owned a British sports car or motorcycle. I have. Lots of 'em. Smith and Lucas were steady performers, in my experience. Even Wikipedia sez "this title is undeserved"[1].
[1] Prince of Darkness
nb
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Not if you ever actually owned or worked on one.
Too bad Lucas never built Vaccums. But then again, they would likely be the only Lucas produvt that didn't suck -----.
People say the reason Brits drink warm beer is because they use Lucas refrigerators. This is not correct, by the way. Britts drink their beer at room temperature. Anyone who has spent any amount of time in Britain knows that is NOT warm!!. Perhaps because they use Lucas central heating plants???
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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

If I ever dreamed about Lucas it'd be nightmare for sure, LOL!
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Ummm..... In my youth, I was a professional motorcycle mechanic. I owned and worked on Triumphs, BSA, Matchless, Nortons, etc. Cars included Spitfires, Austin Healys, MGs, etc. I even worked on Japanese copies of British bikes (Kawi W series). I repaired far more electrical failures on Japanese motorcycles.
<
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kawasaki_W_series#/media/File:1967_Kawasaki_W1SS.jpg
> People say the reason Brits drink warm beer....
Most ppl know spit about British beer.
nb
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On 08/07/2015 02:51 PM, notbob wrote:

Guilty on the sports car, not on the bike. The Lucas components were no more primitive than the rest of the car :) I do miss spending Saturday mornings with my head under the bonnet listening to the SU's whistling there little tunes.
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The Brits used a zener diode, on their m/c's, to drain off any excess charge from the generator to the battery, but sometimes over-reving would blow the Lucas light bulbs. I had this occur jes once. Replaced the bulbs and was good to go.
The Japanese, OTOH, went with a real alternator charging setup. It worked great, but they never allowed enough charge to reach the battery. Electrical failures on early Japanese m/c's common and extensive. The Kawi 2-stroke twins and triples hadda really weird electronic capacitive discharge system. A real "black box", it was awesone while it worked. When it failed, it failed completely and was mega expensive to repair.
nb
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On 08/08/2015 07:50 AM, notbob wrote:

The CDI module on my Suzuki DR650 died a few weeks ago. $140 on eBay and about 3 times that from Suzuki. Same deal, I went out one morning and it wouldn't start. Of course when I ran down the troubleshooting tree in the service manual all the cheap stuff passed inspection until I got to the most expensive piece.
The module on my Harley failed a few years ago but it was a gradual failure and it would start after it cooled down. That was a strange one. The Screaming Eagle performance module was $100 cheaper than the OEM replacement, about $180 iirc. It bumped the red line up a few hundred RPM too.
I've got a Suzuki DL-650 too. Love the bike but it scares me, FI and so forth. I'm thinking that would be a real expensive one to work on.
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On Thu, 06 Aug 2015 21:57:19 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Or do you mean teh bonnet?
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