I want to buy a new car

Stereodude

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For some reason I hear the siren song calling of a 2018 Chevy Cruze TDi Hatchback to replace the 2003 Malibu I have that the ex-wife was driving. It's supposed to be available with either a 9-speed auto or a 6-speed manual. However, I've read that the 6-speed manual in the gasoline Cruze isn't so hot with criticism of the spacing of the gears. The diesel might be better suited there though.
 
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Finally a car that solidly beats a Tesla (only the P90D, but it would do the new one as well):
[video=youtube_share;eT7KKxoAvvk]https://youtu.be/eT7KKxoAvvk[/video]

Although it is a bit more expensive and they only built 8 of them (now only 7 exist), they seem to be a handful at the limit:
[video=youtube_share;18oAkxwYQh0]https://youtu.be/18oAkxwYQh0[/video]
 
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Seriously considering buying a 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT Sport for my next car.

1.6L 201hp, 7-speed dual-clutch, Tech Package

It is hard to find something with that power, adaptive cruise, and ventilated seats for under $30k.

-------

My pre-order for a Tesla Model 3 is also up, but I've almost decided on buying a max-spec and flipping it.
 

Handruin

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Isn't your A4 tuned more than the Elantra GT?

I'll be curious how that works out with flipping the Model 3. How soon will your order be delivered?
 
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The 2011 A3 is tuned way more than the Elantra; even in the more conservative current tune it does 300+ to the wheels (and doesn't detonate the manifold, which is nice). Still not emissions legal in CA, and that time is here.

Model 3 deliveries are staggered based on the spec. The one they are delivering first isn't the one I'm personally interested in (2WD, long range). I'd either want the cheapest one (second to be delivered) or the high-performance one (last to be delivered). If I ordered one of the first wave, I could have it in a couple months.
 

Howell

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What is the speculated way they will eventually get EV drivers to pay their share of road construction, maintenance, and all the other stuff gas taxes pay for? Currently that share of the TCO goes too the manufacturers I think.
 

Tannin

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^ Perhaps they can figure that out after they solve the problem of figuring out how to make petrol or oil drivers to pay their share of hospital and medical expenses for the millions of extra cancer, bronchitis and emphysema cases caused by internal combustion engines. After that they can figure out how to make petrol and oil burners pay for the trillions upon trillions it will cost to remediate their contribution to global warning. With those little things taken care of, then it will be time to look at EV drivers and road construction.
 

Tannin

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Here in sunny Australia, EVs are a complete rubbish idea at present. What is the point of driving an electric vehicle when this amounts, essentially, to powering it with coal? You might as well just burn petrol directly and save a lot of messing about.

(We are transitioning to solar and wind, but very slowly because the present government is in the pockets of the coal barons and is doing everything it can to take us back to 1950. Two more years and they will be history. Then we can start catching up with the rest of the planet. But it will be the best part of a decade before it is sensible to consider an electric car here. For many Australians (I am one), make that ten years "never" as they aren't likely to ever have the range to go into the outback, where there are, in any case, no charging stations. Well, not in my lifetime.
 

Clocker

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So true, Tannin.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/electric-cars-are-not-necessarily-clean/

The whole article is interesting read but here is a good snippit

The same argument applies worldwide. Driving an electric car in China, where coal is by far the largest power plant fuel, is a catastrophe for climate change. And if the coal plant lacks pollution controls—or fails to turn them on—it can amplify the extent of smog, acid rain, lung-damaging microscopic soot and other ills that arise from burning fossil fuels. The same is true in other major coal-burning countries, such as Australia, India and South Africa.
 

jtr1962

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The article is missing a few things by focusing only on greenhouse gas emissions. Even if we assume a dirty coal plant (which largely doesn't exist in the US any more) is the sole source of electricity, EVs move the emissions from population centers to remote areas where far fewer people are affected. They also eliminate noise pollution, which again is significant in population centers where many vehicles converge. The nice thing about EVs is once the transportation system is based on them, you're set up to use cleaner sources of power as soon as they come on line. Stick with ICEs or hybrids, and you're stuck with a dirty source of transportation power until those vehicles are replaced.

Obviously in China the dirty coal plants make things worse but the primary problem there was shifting from bikes to cars in cities. It really made no sense. Bikes are ideal for urban transportation. For decades they worked just fine. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Most of the push for cars had little to do with any practical utility gains. Rather, car ownership is seen more a a barometer of individual prosperity used to attract mates. The centrally-planned government of China could have nipped this in the bud given all the problems caused by even a tiny fraction of the population owning cars. So for China the real solution is to just double-down on public transit, reallocate road space back to bikes, and severely restrict, even curtail, car ownership/use in large cities. To some extent we should do a lesser version of all that here in the US as well. EVs are "better" than ICEs, but in general for many types of trips other modes work better. Too much of the US is designed around the private car. We need a real balance between modes.
 

Stereodude

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Obviously in China the dirty coal plants make things worse but the primary problem there was shifting from bikes to cars in cities. It really made no sense. Bikes are ideal for urban transportation. For decades they worked just fine. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Most of the push for cars had little to do with any practical utility gains. Rather, car ownership is seen more a a barometer of individual prosperity used to attract mates. The centrally-planned government of China could have nipped this in the bud given all the problems caused by even a tiny fraction of the population owning cars. So for China the real solution is to just double-down on public transit, reallocate road space back to bikes, and severely restrict, even curtail, car ownership/use in large cities. To some extent we should do a lesser version of all that here in the US as well. EVs are "better" than ICEs, but in general for many types of trips other modes work better. Too much of the US is designed around the private car. We need a real balance between modes.
Have you visited a large city in China in the past decade?
 

Stereodude

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I haven't but my understanding is they're extremely polluted due to both industry and motor vehicles.

Just Google "Chinese cities pollution" and you get images which remind me of NYC in the 1960s.
I've been to Shanghai several times in the past 2 years. First, it's absolutely huge and second, it's very expensive to live there. There's no way public transportation and bikes can get everyone to and from their jobs to where they live.
 

jtr1962

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I've been to Shanghai several times in the past 2 years. First, it's absolutely huge and second, it's very expensive to live there. There's no way public transportation and bikes can get everyone to and from their jobs to where they live.
Looking at Google Earth, the built-up part of Shanghai looks to be roughly the size of NYC, perhaps a little bigger. Yes, it's big, but it's of a size where most transportation needs can be handled by something other than private autos.

They're having massive build-outs of public transit which I can only wish we would would emulate. China has built over 10,000 miles and HSR and hundreds of miles of subways. The pace of subway building in particular is incredible:

https://qz.com/1010911/a-beautiful-...d-speed-of-development-of-chinas-rail-system/

They're not building these things as decorations the way NYS built an unneeded Tappan Zee Bridge replacement while the subways are falling apart. People are actually using these things to get around.

With the massive investment in public trasnit, I can assure you that the vast majority certainly aren't getting around by private car. For starters, in any large city there isn't the space to move more than a tiny fraction of the population by car. NYC has that problem, Shanghai has it even worse. Second, what percent of the population even owns cars? Cars are not any kind of answer to big city transportation problems, either in China or in the US. In fact:

http://www.shanghaidaily.com/busine...na-is-getting-harder-and-harder/shdaily.shtml

http://www.wri.org/blog/2015/04/4-l...ow-how-china’s-cities-can-curb-car-congestion

The point is that it's pretty obvious the growth in car ownership is benefiting only a wealthy few but causing huge problems for everyone else (just like in the United States). Remember finally, unlike in the US, the government can tell you where you can live. Some people might want to live in sprawl as they become wealthier but the government could easily tell them they can't. That alone could curb car ownership.

Oh, and China even has a good solution to getting around by bike in congested cities:

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/07/china-has-just-built-the-world-s-longest-elevated-cycle-path/

We could use about 200 or 300 miles of these in NYC, particularly in the more congested parts where bike travel is slow and unpleasant.
 

jtr1962

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BTW, rather than continuing to discuss around the margins, the root of the problem is the impending health crisis:

http://www.businessinsider.com/china-is-facing-a-time-bomb-of-health-crises-2014-8

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...faces-looming-health-crisis-warn-experts.html

https://qz.com/756585/diabetes-is-chinas-next-public-health-crises/

Under their system, the government is obligated to pay for citizen's health care. That's fine so long as the citizenry is generally healthy. With the high levels of pollution, this obligation to care for the sick will turn into ticking time bomb. In the end they have to radically reduce pollution by any means necessary, or face the consequences.
 

Stereodude

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jtr, I know I always love reading your delusional fantasies about Statist central planners who control where people live and what they can own whenever other people post about buying cars.
 

jtr1962

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This all started with my evaluation of an article on EVs. I'd really love to know exactly where I'm "wrong" here because maybe I like to breathe clean air. Yeah, people love to buy cars. People love to do lots of other things too which are incompatible with the long-term health of the planet. We can have a little pain now to get things back on track, or major pain later if we keep ignoring things. But people like you just want to do what they want to do. China is a great incubator for a super swine flu or avian flu BTW. Nature is great at rebalancing things.
 

jtr1962

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SD, since you were in both China and Europe what were your general impressions of the ease of travel if one doesn't own a car? I'm really curious. Europe seems to have a much more mature cycling and public transit network but China is building up really fast (and perhaps overbuilding). Not planning to move any time soon, but as you know living in a place where I don't need to drive is of paramount importance to me. Never had a car or license, but in truth I've been physically unable to drive even if I wanted to since my late 20s. My mom has been unable to drive for the last 7 or 8 years. As the population ages the ability to live car-free is going to become ever more important.
 

jtr1962

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For many Australians (I am one), make that ten years "never" as they aren't likely to ever have the range to go into the outback, where there are, in any case, no charging stations. Well, not in my lifetime.
Why not make EVs with solar panels integrated into the body? No sure how much they'll increase range while in motion but you'll basically be charging the battery anytime the sun is out. They'll also keep you from getting stranded in the outback for lack of recharging stations.

Two more years and they will be history. Then we can start catching up with the rest of the planet.

Over seven before that even has a chance of happening in the US (yes, Trump will likely be reelected by huge margins). Ironically, Trump is to the left of his own party and even much of the Democratic party on economic issues. Unfortunately, he's straight GOP on energy and environmental policies, which is basically rape the planet for a quick buck.
 

Handruin

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Why not make EVs with solar panels integrated into the body? No sure how much they'll increase range while in motion but you'll basically be charging the battery anytime the sun is out. They'll also keep you from getting stranded in the outback for lack of recharging stations.


[/COLOR]Over seven before that even has a chance of happening in the US (yes, Trump will likely be reelected by huge margins). Ironically, Trump is to the left of his own party and even much of the Democratic party on economic issues. Unfortunately, he's straight GOP on energy and environmental policies, which is basically rape the planet for a quick buck.
Single regular solar panel (based on home roof panels)
0.265kWh

Tesla Model S battery capacity and time to charge using this single panel.
60 kWh = ~226+ hours to charge
85 kWh = ~320+ hours to charge

Tesla Model S: 380 Wh/mile
1.43 hours to charge for a mile in a Tesla on a car assuming 100% efficiency of the panel to charge the battery (unlikely).

Weight 40-45 Lbs for the panel.
It doesn't seem like it would be worth the cost to add the panel. I may have my math wrong so let me know if I'm off on this.
 

jtr1962

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Single regular solar panel (based on home roof panels)
0.265kWh

Tesla Model S battery capacity and time to charge using this single panel.
60 kWh = ~226+ hours to charge
85 kWh = ~320+ hours to charge

Tesla Model S: 380 Wh/mile
1.43 hours to charge for a mile in a Tesla on a car assuming 100% efficiency of the panel to charge the battery (unlikely).

Weight 40-45 Lbs for the panel.
It doesn't seem like it would be worth the cost to add the panel. I may have my math wrong so let me know if I'm off on this.
I'm thinking along the lines of integrating panels into the roof and hood. That might give you about 1 square meter even being very conservative. At 25% efficiency the numbers actually come out pretty close to yours. Weight penalty should be less since the structure of the car is supporting the silicon.

I'm figuring in one day of charging in the outback you might get the equivalent of 3 to 4 hours of direct overhead sun, so perhaps ~1 to 1.5 kWh per day. If I recall a lot of Tannin's trips involve the drive to wherever, then the car is mostly parked for a day or two or three. Tesla might be able to use something better, so perhaps add 50% to my numbers. If there's room for 2 square meters of panels, then we could be up to 5 kWh per day or more. Worth it or not? It all depends. I think of it as more an insurance policy which might (eventually) get you to someplace with power should you run down your battery completely. Also, 380 Wh/mile assumes a regular driving cycle. You can actually do way better if you just wanted to nurse along to the grid. EVs can get under 100Wh/mile at very low speeds, like 10 or 15 mph.

There's also the possibility of carrying enough panels to just spread on the ground and charge while you're parked, sort of like Matt Damon did in the Martian. That could get you a serious amount of range, albeit with a weight penalty in the hundreds of pounds. My understanding is gas isn't that easy to come by in parts of the outback, either, so it's really pick your poison. Carry extra gas which once it's gone, it's gone, or solar panels which let you replenish your "fuel" anywhere the sun is, albeit rather slowly.

I liken this situation to perhaps living in Alaska. I would probably have a combo of solar and wind for power given that fuel deliveries for a generator are at best sporadic in the middle of nowhere. We'll always have wind and sun. In fact, I'm thinking of the same combo here in Queens. It's pretty windy most of the year. We have mostly cloudless skies about 200 days. Between wind and solar I figure there's a good chance I'll be generating enough for my needs.
 

Stereodude

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SD, since you were in both China and Europe what were your general impressions of the ease of travel if one doesn't own a car? I'm really curious. Europe seems to have a much more mature cycling and public transit network but China is building up really fast (and perhaps overbuilding). Not planning to move any time soon, but as you know living in a place where I don't need to drive is of paramount importance to me.
So, basically my impression of Europe based on my time in Belgium and Germany is that unless you want to live like people did before they had cars you need to have a car. I'm thinking back to the days of horse and buggy in the US like the late 1800's. You lived within a relatively close geographical distance of a town that had a stop on some train line. The biggest difference now being that you're not a farmer and you need to have a job that's either commutable to by walking or a bike. Or, commutable to by walking or a bike after you've commuted to the train station and taken the train somewhere. So yeah the old towns (which is most of them) in Europe are not well laid out for cars. The roads are narrow, one way, not a lot of parking, etc.

The big differences from the US are that generally the towns in the US are more car friendly in terms of layout and the US generally doesn't have much of a train option. For example, AFAIK, I can't hop on a passenger train and go to Toledo or Lansing (or pretty much anywhere else). Europe has train options. However, the trains in Europe are often not an efficient mode of transport IMO. In Belgium even if the train takes a fairly direct route you're looking at probably twice as long to get to your destination vs. driving. The only benefit is you don't have to try to park a car in the destination city. The German train system is better having some higher speed options, but that depends on the route. Not every ICE route is flat and straight so those trains are not fast. We Americans generally lack the patience for public transportation. It's only heavily used where it saves time or substantial cost. Otherwise, it's mostly just the poor & elderly who either can't afford a car or are no longer able to drive a car.

Ultimately, you can live without a car nearly anywhere whether it's Europe, Asia, or the US, but you're going to put geographic limits on yourself. In the US outside of a few major cities those restrictions will be more severe than Europe or the big cities in Asia. But, if you want to conduct nearly your entire life inside of circle of some radius, maybe 6-10 miles, from your house it's doable. Find a city with a temperate year round climate, find a job there, identify where you will shop, etc. and then find a place that is commutable by walking or bike to those places and you're all set. If you don't want to live like that, either get a car or wait for the Star Trek transporter to be invented so you can just beam yourself around.
 

jtr1962

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Thanks, SD. Very informative. Sort of how I thought it was. Basically, if you live in small towns you're pretty much limited locally to how far you can walk or bike. More train options than the US, which is great, but the trains aren't necessarily always faster than driving. In larger cities you obviously have a lot more options than smaller ones.

Like I said, not planning to move anytime soon but I'd like to be aware of my options both here and overseas. I'll definitely be retired if/when I move, so work/commuting isn't a concern. It's mainly being able to comfortably reach the things I'll be doing most of the time. For what it's worth right now I can literally walk to all of my errands, and this is eastern Queens which by NYC standards isn't particularly walkable or transit-friendly. So it sounds to me like I'd probably do OK in lots of places in Europe.
 

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One plus with not having a car is that you can afford an extra vacation to another country every year or so. (There are usually bus or train lines to the airports). So... you might actually see more of the world that way.

Another cool thing, if you're living close to work a bike is actually faster than a car. I live 10 minutes, maybe 12 in the winter, from my work by bike and it takes about the same time to drive the car + removing ice from the windows before leaving + finding a parking space when I arrive at work + I don't need to pay for a gym card. ;) That's one advantage of living in a small town.
 

jtr1962

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One plus with not having a car is that you can afford an extra vacation to another country every year or so. (There are usually bus or train lines to the airports). So... you might actually see more of the world that way.
Yep, saving money has always been one of my motivations for not having a car. I see family members who always seem to be hit with big repair bills just as they're starting to get ahead on their finances.

Another cool thing, if you're living close to work a bike is actually faster than a car. I live 10 minutes, maybe 12 in the winter, from my work by bike and it takes about the same time to drive the car + removing ice from the windows before leaving + finding a parking space when I arrive at work + I don't need to pay for a gym card. ;) That's one advantage of living in a small town.
I've found for many trips in the city, the bike is as fast or faster than a car. One regular trip I used to make was to a shopping center 7 miles away. Car took 20 to 25 minutes, depending upon traffic. Bike seemed to average about 23 minutes, but I made it a few times in 21 minutes (I was obviously hauling a$$ to make the trip that fast).

In Manhattan bike is almost always faster than anything else. There have actually been lots of bike versus car versus subway races ran by the local newspapers. Bike almost always wins. Back in 1981 I did a brief stint as a bike messenger. I still remember a run I did from 125th Street to West 4th Street in 15 minutes flat. That handily beat the express train (and that's assuming you had no waiting time). The bike let me thread deftly through traffic, keep in motion, and stay with the light sequence which was timed for about 25 mph. I didn't see one red light the entire 6.1 miles. Hard to do that in a car at any time except late nights.

I bike commuted to one of my jobs. For the other one the travel time by bike was marginally faster than the subway but I didn't feel like riding 8.5 miles at 7 in the morning. Not a morning person.
 

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The government here just decided to give a 25% subsidy on electric bikes by the way. The purpose is to stimulate bike commuting on longer distances. And if you have an electric cargo bike you can replace quite a few car journeys to the supermarket/daycare etc. with the bike without having to work up a sweat.

And just to talk a bit about cars, we also get an increased subsidy on electric cars, 60000 SEK vs 50000 SEK now. My plan is to drive my current car (and bike of course) until it's time for the scrap heap and then get an electric car in maybe 5 years time.
 

jtr1962

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Saw this article and thought of you jtr:

https://nyti.ms/2xaSJX8
Actually, I already know all about the great Dutch cycling network. I particularly love their growing system of bicycle superhighways: http://www.aviewfromthecyclepath.com/search/label/superhighways

They realized if you want to get people riding bikes you have to make it safe, stress-free, and efficient (they seldom use traffic signals on bike paths except to give bikes priority over cars at intersections). They often have bike paths go above or below major intersections to avoid conflicts and delays. I also love how almost nobody wears a helmet. That makes cycling as natural as walking. I don't wear a helmet, either.
 

jtr1962

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The government here just decided to give a 25% subsidy on electric bikes by the way. The purpose is to stimulate bike commuting on longer distances. And if you have an electric cargo bike you can replace quite a few car journeys to the supermarket/daycare etc. with the bike without having to work up a sweat.

And just to talk a bit about cars, we also get an increased subsidy on electric cars, 60000 SEK vs 50000 SEK now. My plan is to drive my current car (and bike of course) until it's time for the scrap heap and then get an electric car in maybe 5 years time.
E-bikes can actually fill quite a few trips which are too long for a bike but rather inefficient to do by car. A susbidy makes sense.

In 5 years time you'll certainly have an even greater selection of electric cars than now. It seems they're finally starting to catch on. The real turning point will be when we mass produce enough so the subsidies are no longer needed. Most sources I've read say electric cars would cost less than gas cars if made in similar quantities. Seeing the recent gas shortages in Florida I can't help but think how many might have avoided being stranded if electrics were more popular. You can "refuel" anywhere the grid is. Sure, power can go out but if it does the pumps at the gas stations aren't working, either.

Don't know if you would consider solar panels when you get an electric. To me that seems like a natural combination. You avoid any issues of charging with "dirty" electricity, plus your fuel is essentially free once the panels are paid for.
 

Lena

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Actually, I already know all about the great Dutch cycling network. I particularly love their growing system of bicycle superhighways: http://www.aviewfromthecyclepath.com/search/label/superhighways

They realized if you want to get people riding bikes you have to make it safe, stress-free, and efficient (they seldom use traffic signals on bike paths except to give bikes priority over cars at intersections). They often have bike paths go above or below major intersections to avoid conflicts and delays. I also love how almost nobody wears a helmet. That makes cycling as natural as walking. I don't wear a helmet, either.
I visited Amsterdam once and i loved exactly what you just described! Maybe it's just me but i get the sense that in the Netherlands the air seems to be much more clearer. I swear i felt like my lungs were going through rehab...but then again i was a smoker for 5 years and i quit 2 years ago. The air there gave me new lungs! and i will forever be grateful. The more that i talk about it. The more that i feel like i should go back, i.e visit one more time.
 

MickL

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I visited Amsterdam once and i loved exactly what you just described! Maybe it's just me but i get the sense that in the Netherlands the air seems to be much more clearer. I swear i felt like my lungs were going through rehab...but then again i was a smoker for 5 years and i quit 2 years ago. The air there gave me new lungs! and i will forever be grateful. The more that i talk about it. The more that i feel like i should go back, i.e visit one more time.
Do agree with you, I enjoyed Amsterdam cycling too and felt safe, also the air is better, absolutely agree. I would love to live in a place like that!
 

LunarMist

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I have no idea, maybe better alloys and coatings and more plastic?
I had >20year old vehicle from late 60s with minimal rust in SoCial.
Perhaps it's different in Detroit, Chicago, NYC, etc.
 
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