We’ve all been there: January 1st nears, excitement builds, and you set a lofty goal for yourself. Eat healthier. Hit the gym 5 days a week. Engage friends and family in conversations that are not exclusively about cars. You know, your typical New Year’s resolution. In the following weeks, Whole Foods will record record sales and gym memberships will spike. But by mid-February or so, we’ll return to our old habits, and my loved ones will still be trying to remember which seemingly random collection of letters and numbers is made by Cadillac and which by Mercedes-Benz. Our resolutions—promises we made and agreed to stand behind—have become more akin to suggestions. They’re now goals to strive for and be congratulated on, not requirements by which to live. Don’t feel too bad: as it turns out, the auto industry isn’t too different.
Sharing nuggets of wisdom is part of fatherhood. How to pronounce “February” (that “r” is in there for a reason). How to tie your shoes (there’s nothing wrong with the bunny-ears approach). How to shave your face (you know, growing a beard isn’t a bad idea). We learn so much from our dads, and driving and maintaining a car stands as a hallmark of any father-child relationship. From learning to parallel park to changing the oil, and from heel-toe shifting to understanding the physics behind oversteer and the inherent superiority of rear-wheel drive, many of us wouldn’t have made it to “Guru” status without a little fatherly guidance.
Sitting in the back seat of a Chrysler Town & Country on the way to the pool, eating Pepperidge Farm Goldfish and listening to the Evita soundtrack—her unfortunate obsession with Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals aside, some of our most prominent childhood memories include driving around with Mom. Mom drove us to school, to soccer practice, to church. Mom drove us to the grocery store, she picked us up from our friends’ houses. To put it simply, Mom is the best. Not only did Mom operate extremely valuable (but hardly lucrative) livery services for her children, but she managed to do so while also meeting the demands of a professional career.
CarGurus is lucky to have more than a handful of fantastic moms as part of our incredible company. With Mother’s Day this Sunday, we decided to interview some of our great Guru mothers and find out a little bit about their first cars, what they drive now, and what they’re hoping to drive in the future.
Honda, once a formidable force in the auto industry and a maker of bulletproof cars to which consumers flocked, has fallen from its mighty throne.
The carmaker used to be known for leading the way in innovation and blowing away the competition when it came to research and development. Today, the company admits it has pursued growth over quality and is now in need of a fundamental transformation.
Quality problems have plagued Honda vehicles in recent years, while competing cars have caught up, or even surpassed, the once invincible automaker. What does Honda need to do to get back on track?
It’s really quite simple.
The Honda Civic hatchback is on just about anyone’s list of cool European cars that Americans can’t have.
The car is built in Europe, for Europeans, and there’s been no sign that Honda would offer it up to a clamoring American public. Why is that? Money, of course.
Adapting the car to fit American tastes and to comply with American crash and emissions standards would simply cost too much, not to mention the costs associated with building in Europe and shipping to the United States.
The math didn’t add up, so the car never came here.
But guess what? Honda has announced that it will ship the next-generation Civic hatchback from its factory in Swindon, England to the United States for the first time ever in an attempt to inject some life into its struggling European division.
Three cars sat in the driveway, and there was only one that I desperately wanted.
The two luxury utes looked like behemoths next to the diminutive Honda, but that’s the one I would’ve loved to take home.
We thought we would follow up our Today’s Most Popular Cars From the 1980s list with its logical sequel: ’90s cars. We looked at our data again and determined which ’90s cars garnered the most interest from CarGurus shoppers. We have to say, this list surprises us a bit less. The ’80s list featured a good number of discontinued cars, but only one car no longer in production made this one. Nineties cars are probably a bit more practical than some of the nearly ancient ’80s models (cars on this list are likely at least 11 years younger), and most of these cars haven’t quite reached collector status.
That’s a phrase that should never be uttered, regardless of circumstances. I called a friend yesterday, asked him what he was doing and he said, “Just driving.”
That got me thinking. This is a world filled with two types of people: those who love to drive and those who have to drive. If you’re behind the wheel, and the phone rings, I hope you’re the kind of person who doesn’t even notice because you’re so in tune with your car and your driving.
I hope you’re NOT the kind of person who is able to fumble for the phone, turn on Bluetooth, answer and say that you’re “just driving.”
If you’re the kind of person who loves to drive, and has the opportunity to drive to work every day, here are some of the most fun cars you can take on your daily commute.
The short answer:
No. No, it won’t.
The longer answer:
Unless you have up to 40 years to wait for your investment to pay off.
The full answer:
Keep reading for all the juicy details.
Even before the terrible earthquake/tsunami disaster in Japan, Honda seemed to be losing its way. I wrote a story in May of last year about that.
More recently our estimable tgriffith told you about Consumer Reports’ slam of the new Civic (above)—for bad brakes and handling, a choppy ride and, yes, an inferior interior. CR rated the Civic 11th out of 12 small sedans, and that made big news in the car world.
Now the company is getting slammed again, this time with a recall of 1.5 million U.S. cars and another million in China and Canada for an automatic transmission problem affecting 2005-2010 Accords, Elements and CR-Vs.
The UK’s Financial Times (subscription required) noted it was one of Honda’s largest recalls ever, “equivalent in size to 70 per cent of the 3.5m vehicles that Honda sold last year.”
Why is this happening to the “once proud” leader in small cars? For years, Honda (and the Civic in particular) was the one to beat, the best-engineered, best-made, best-selling. Now it’s being seriously challenged by, of all companies, Hyundai, formerly producer of some of the world’s worst-made cars.