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How many people here who hate imports have ever owned a newer one? Looong.

Discussion in 'Car Forum' started by vart, Mar 6, 2005.

  1. vart

    vart

    11,266
    1,228
    Feb 17, 2000
    The Palouse
    I used to be a hard core "Buy American" kind of guy up until about the late `90s.
    Before then, I had owned almost exclusively domestics, except for a `92 Toyota 4x4 I bought new and sold it 6 months later because it was too small.
    I was a big Ford fan and owned countless Fords, a few Mopars, and a 1965 GTO that ran 11's.
    I learned to drive in a `70s Datsun B210 wagon in a potato field in Southern Idaho in `84, and my first car was almost a mint `80 Datsun 200SX, but it was $1500 and that was over my budget.
    I ended up getting a `70 Ford Torino coupe with lots of bondo and a 2v 302 for $300.
    I loved American cars and owned dozens of them up until I bought that `92 Toyota. I was impressed by it's capability off-road, but it's regular cab was just too cramped for me and I ended up getting rid of it.
    I then went back to domestics. I owned an `82 Buick Electra Estate Wagon that was a great car, then a `91 Tempo that was junk, then an `87 Cadillac Fleetwood D' Elegance that was great for about 6 months before the brakes went out and I was quoted $2500 to replace the master cylinder ;P . Then came a wife and two kids and a couple of Tauruses, a Crown Vic, and finally a `97 Nissan Pathfinder in `99.
    I had started to notice that ever since the `80's, the domestics were just not very solid feeling. I started to have a lot of problems with them and they seemed to be falling apart pretty quickly.
    I bought the Pathfinder and was amazed at how nice and tight it felt. It never had any check engine lights coming on, no rattles, no squeaks. It just worked and never complained. Sure, it didn't have as much power as I was used to, and wasn't as roomy as I'd liked, but it was a great little rig.
    I bought a couple other full-size domestic trucks after the Pathfinder got totalled after it rolled 5 times down an embankment. I was in the shop at least once a month with each truck; a `99 F150 with 36K miles on it and a 2001 Dodge Ram 1500 with 16k miles on it.
    We then bought the Infiniti for my wife and I just bought a 2005 Nissan Sentra S for me. Haven't been in a shop since `03 when we bought the QX4.
    After looking at cars today for fun, I can't believe how cheap and crappy these new domestics are inside, especially when compared to the new imports.
    You'd have to be retarded to not notice the difference in quality and fit and finish between a Ford Freestyle and a Toyota Matrix.
    Then I remembered a remark my grandma made a couple years ago when I asked why she kept buying domestics when they gave her so much trouble.
    She said that she rode in her friend's Toyota Corolla once and the seats were too firm and it seemed too plain inside for her tastes. She said she never considered owning an import since then.
    When I told her that I didn't think the new Corollas were plain inside, or had uncomfortable seats, she remarked, "well, that was in 1982 or so when I sat in that one Toyota. Maybe they've gotten better".;P ;Q
    That got me to wondering just how many of the current import bashers here on GT have actually any extensive experience with a newer Toyota, Honda, Nissan, etc.
    After driving my entry level cheap Nissan and then getting into a $30k Ford cutting-edge Freestyle, the Ford really looks bad.
    So, if you hate imports, have you actually owned one newer than a `90?
     
  2. El Duderino

    El Duderino Go Gators!

    1,462
    0
    Dec 29, 2004
    My wife just had to have an Xterra. I have no idea why, but that never matters. We both grew to hate it within a matter of months. Ok, her within months and me the first time I had to deal with Nissan on a service issue. They were masters of..."Technically sir it's just a TSB at this point, when it becomes an official recall we can better assist you...."

    Long story short, we traded what was quickly becoming a full fledged foreign lemon on a brand new, nice and shiny Ford Expedition. Smooth sailing and happy camping ever since.
     


  3. vart

    vart

    11,266
    1,228
    Feb 17, 2000
    The Palouse
    I've heard of lemons, and occasionally an import will be one, but it is much rarer than domestics. How many imports have you had before the Xterra?
    So, did you notice any difference in the fit and finish of the Expedition? The door panel on my `99 F150 just reeked of cheap material and sloppy engineering.
    I thought my `01 Dodge was much better, and the `01 Infiniti to be way better than both.
    If your Expedition has the 5.4 V8 and is an `01 or older, then you better check your passenger-side cylinder head for leaking oil. Seems Ford sold tens of thousands of 5.4s from `98-`01 with improperly machined cylinder heads that cause oil leaks. My `99 had the same problem and was in the shop for a week to get it fixed.
     
  4. El Duderino

    El Duderino Go Gators!

    1,462
    0
    Dec 29, 2004
    The Xterra was my first and last foreign vehicle. As for fit and finish, I'll take my Ford any day. I drive an F150 personally and it's doors close like bank vaults. The Nissan sounded more like a screen door. No offense to anyone and no racial stereotypes implied here, but foreign cars seem to be designed by smaller foreign people for small foreign people. The window switches on the Xterra were tiny and flimsy, the doors are paper thin, the AC knobs are a joke, the door handles are the thickness of a credit card, the seats are thin and torturous if you are over five foot eight, turn signal stalk was like a straw and had too many functions assigned to too few buttons, etc...And that's not even mentioning the actual mechanics of the dang thing. Break rotors, balljoints, differential, steering were all under engineered and in no way meant for any real use let alone abuse. I had never cared for foreign cars and the Xterra just served to reinforce that. And yes, I've been in plenty of new ones. My brother and I are somewhat polar opposites. He has never owned an American car and I never claim a foreign one. At present he has a Nissan Xterra and a Nissan Murano. We have the Expy and the F150. I'll stay with my blue oval babies.
     
  5. Wmarden

    Wmarden

    225
    0
    Aug 23, 2002
    The main reason I don't drive an import is I don't like smaller cars in general. And I don't like the looks of any new midsized(which to me is a small car) imports. About the only big import I would want would be a older rolls.

    Well my daily driver was made in Mexico, so I guess you could call it an import. It is smaller than I would like, but it has a style and look that I like.

    I might consider a cheap real(not the modern euro ricer) VW bug if I could find one to modify. The old ones are or can be really cool.

    I also do not like small high revving motors. If I had my druthers I would drive a nice medium to huge v-8 car or truck every day. If i had the money. The deep bass rumble and feeling of power is something I miss in my daily driver.
     
  6. Texas_Preacher

    Texas_Preacher Cranky Old Goat

    242
    0
    May 3, 2002
    Charlotte, NC
    I don't hate imports, at least not the ones with rear-wheel-drive and some actual torque in the usable range. Since so few of them fit the bill, and those that do tend to be more expensive than their domestic counterparts, I drive domestic.
     
  7. Scrappy

    Scrappy

    1,995
    162
    Mar 4, 2001
    PA
    Only thing I hate about Imports is what "KIDS" do to ruin them!

    Huge wings, huge exhaust that make that "FART knocking sound! Stupid lights.........It's called "RICE"
    There is also no such thing as buying American anymore because the parts that are in them are from all over the world, mostly foreign parts at that.
    Now make mine an Honda S2000 please:)
     
  8. c5367

    c5367 Esq.

    1,539
    1
    Aug 1, 2003
    Indiana!
    In my experience, imports are generally very solid cars, particularly the Hondas and Toyotas. A buddy of mine had an '88 Toyota 1/2 ton pickup that we regularly loaded with twice that weight for work. He crashed it a few time but it never missed a beat. 200,000 before it finally died. If it was batter taken care of, I have no doubt it would have gone much longer. I have a old '87 Prelude that is incredibly reliable. I hadn't started it since I bought my VW in July, but when I busted my oil pan I figured I should see if it worked just in case the dealer was slow on the repair. Jumped it, and it started right up. Last winter, even on the coldest days it would start with no hesitation while my girlfriend's '97 Saturn with a 1/3 of the mileage wouldn't turn over for anything.

    That said, I do hate those idiots that put huge wings an a Civic. I wonder if they realize it actually makes their slow car even slower.
     
  9. S9Man

    S9Man

    327
    0
    Feb 15, 2005
    Farm country
    I bought a Toyota after the last two American lable cars feel apart after 50K. GM's. Now have 2 Toyotas. Would consider a Ford. I had a Ford F150 as a company car and that held up well for the 3 year lease, 50K. I never hated imports, but I was buy american, but after two new GM cars that were killing me on repairs and working with people that had Hondas and Toyotas with 200-300K on then and only doing normal wear items I went to a import. Windshield wiper motor failing on a 3 year old car in southern California??? 2 water pumps under 100K, power seat died, alternator after 30K? Cam chain pully? I can't afford to own an American car.
     
  10. Ghetto

    Ghetto Still alive

    789
    0
    May 8, 2004
    Houston
    ^6
     
  11. Rick O'Shay

    Rick O'Shay

    2,451
    5
    Jan 24, 2005
    SC
    I was a Toyota convert, beginning in 1978. I strayed back to domestics twice, and got burned terribly both times. First time was a Pontiac, and it actually cost me more to keep it on the road than it cost to make payments on the Mazda I replaced it with.

    In 1999, I saw a '97 F150 on a Toyota car lot, and it looked so nice in the red/silver paint job I just had to have it. Had it 9 months, had it in the shop 10 times. I traded it in (at substantial loss) for a 1998 Toyota T-100 with about 30,000 miles on it. Best decision I've made in the past decade. The T-100 has 93,000 miles on it, gets 22 mpg, and is a "marvelous piece of engineering". If you don't believe it, check the ads in your local newspaper. You will hardly ever see a T-100 for sale. That's because nobody wants to sell theirs.

    My Corollas fit my family, and I generally get 125,000 miles on them before spending any money, other than routine maintenance. The best bang for the buck I've ever known of.

    My $.02.
     
  12. Cochese

    Cochese Most mackinest CLM

    12,000
    908
    Jun 30, 2004
    Unmarked Rustbox
    Heh, no it's cause they stopped making them after a few years!


    ;e
    93-99 right?
     
  13. soflasmg

    soflasmg

    368
    1
    Sep 3, 2004
    Meeyaami
    I've got a Toyota Avalon as a company car and I love it.

    Had Pontiac Grand Prix (01) and Taurus (02) before and the pontiac was OK but the taurus was a POS.

    It saddens me that the Avalon is such a well engineered car. The styling is kind of grandpa, but man what a joy to drive.

    It makes a lincoln look like junk, ford's flapping interior door skins, cheap materials, failing torque converters, leaky engine and trans seals, etc...

    My next vehicle will be a chev or ford 4x4 though. Any suggestions?
     
  14. Rick O'Shay

    Rick O'Shay

    2,451
    5
    Jan 24, 2005
    SC
    Yeah, a Tundra!
    Seriously, if the choices are only Chevy and Ford, go with the Chevy every time. Their affiliation with Toyota has improved their focus on quality. Ford.....well, I had an F150 for 9 months, had it in the shop 10 times. POS, indeed.
     
  15. vart

    vart

    11,266
    1,228
    Feb 17, 2000
    The Palouse
    Yes, re-read your post and see if you can spot the insanity;) ;f .

    If you need a half-ton that is close to 3/4-ton capability, why not get a Nissan Titan?
    305 hp, 380 ft. lbs. of torque, Dana 44 rear axle, import fit and finish.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Texas_Preacher

    Texas_Preacher Cranky Old Goat

    242
    0
    May 3, 2002
    Charlotte, NC
    Because it is butt-ugly? ;g ;f
     
  17. Ford302Glock21

    Ford302Glock21 Chrome Horsie

    550
    0
    Dec 3, 2004
    Orlando FL
    Answer..both sides have their problems...that means American and import and I see from both views not just the side I choose to take and tell everyone to go my way. You get what you pay for either American or import. I do like SOME imports...and I do HATE many American cars. Thats where everyone gets it wrong. You still have to choose the good ones. Theres many cars you shouldnt buy.

    Yea heres some good high quality fit and finish for you. My girlfriend got an 01 or 02 Corolla about 2 years ago. It was like a topend corolla. It drove pretty good. Well didnt take long for the fancy woodgrain applique(or however you say it) to start pelling off and turning yellow, then driver's door handle broke so she couldnt open her door. Its plastic. Luckily I found a generic black one from a junkyard seller on ebay for 20 bucks and spray painted it white and put it on myself. Toyota: not covered under BUMPER TO BUMPER WARRANTY(I guess thats the middle of the car and not anything higher or lower than 2 feet off the ground). They wanted something like 300 bucks to replace it. It took me about 20 minutes.

    Another friend got something like an 03 Corolla. the driver door handle on the inside broke. Hmmm. Good luck getting that fixed. My girlfriend is now driving a 94 or so Chevy Lumina her parents gave here with about 160k miles. Still runs great and tranny kind of works. Well her outside door handle is broken imagine that...only its nearly impossible to change out. You see you can't win no matter which side you choose.

    So you know what I tell people, I'm a Ford guy because I know how to fix them and repair them daily. Hope you can fix that chevy/toyota!

    Sidenote: Nissans can be fully disassembled with a snubby philips head screwdriver.
     
  18. Scrappy

    Scrappy

    1,995
    162
    Mar 4, 2001
    PA
    If you want a great car buy an import. If you want a great big truck get american.
     
  19. -=DFOX=-

    -=DFOX=- Border Bandit

    199
    0
    Sep 17, 2001
    Arizona
    Toyota Trucks and Honda cars for me, now Honda even has a truck. I sold my 88 toyota truck wehn it hit 189,000 cause I needed a commuter car. That truck is still in town, driven by a young punk, it has 265,000 miles on it, same motor.

    Just picked up a used Honda Accord EX with 19,000. fit and finish is awesome, no need to mention how long the motor will last.

    Bought a 2000 S10 pickup new awhile back, I was in the shop 4 times in 4 months. When I decided to drive it to Tucson to trade it in, the fan fell off at 75 MPH.

    Never again.........
     
  20. Ford302Glock21

    Ford302Glock21 Chrome Horsie

    550
    0
    Dec 3, 2004
    Orlando FL
    Well depends I guess. I wouldnt mess around with a 4 cyl S10 but I had two friends with 95 S10/Sonoma with the 4.3 V6 and one had about 160k and other higher I think and both running quite strong. Both still driving them. Also had a little 89 Acura Integra with 206,000 miles which is owned by a friend now and probably has more like 210-215 now and still running very strong. I'm sure it burns plenty of oil and leaks some water but dman if that thing aint still running like a champ. 2nd gear synchro is messed up but I'm sure that the original tranny and still workin fine. I say, do your homework and you will end up much better. The internet can really help there.