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2019 Subaru Ascent; Our Worst Automotive Mistakes | Talking Cars with Consumer Reports #161

2019 Subaru Ascent; Our Worst Automotive Mistakes | Talking Cars with Consumer Reports #161

– This week we’re talking
about automotive mistakes in our personal lives. We give the goods on
the new Subaru Ascent, and we’re taking audience questions, particularly on Volkswagen GTIs next, on Talking Cars. (upbeat rock music) Hi, welcome to another
episode, I’m Mike Quincy. – I’m Mike Monticello. – And I’m Jon Linkov. – So we were talking around
the water cooler the other day, talking about cars as you might imagine. Cars that we’ve owned
in our personal lives, cars that we owned before
we started even working here at Consumer Reports. And inevitability it was the topic of, yeah I bought this old car and I sunk all this money into it, and looking back, maybe it
wasn’t such a great idea. So, we kinda came up with this topic called our favorite automotive mistakes, and we’ve all got stories,
we bet you guys do too. But Mike, why don’t you tell us about one of your favorite automotive mistakes. – So many mistakes in life. (laughter) Wait, what were we talking about? – Automotive, automotive. (laughing) – Uh Yeah. – That’s a different episode. – My big automotive mistake was this 1999 Mazda Miata that I bought which is the second gen Miata. The NB for you Mazda
Miata nerds out there. So I bought this off a buddy, and he’d already kinda set
it up for auto-crossing with some suspension work, and a roll bar. And we fix the hardtop so
that it was fully in place. And then I thought, well I
wanna make it into a track car. So I wanted more power and I found this $500
used turbo kit online, and this is a $4,000 turbo kit. – [Jon] So what could go wrong? – [Mike] Red flag. (laughing) – Put this thing on the car, and you know it dynoded at 226 horsepower at the rear wheels which is a lot of power for a Miata. – And how much did your
car weigh about, I mean? – Um, I have no idea. – I was like nothing,
I mean, 2,000 pounds? – I don’t know what it would have weighed. – Anyway, go ahead. – The point is I put it on this car so I thought okay it’s gonna
be this great track car. But I had all kinds of
overheating problems, especially on the track
when I’d be running it hard. I thought I solved one
problem by making it faster, but I caused the problem
by now it’s overheating. So then I tried different things. It had a heavy duty radiator. It had what they call
a coolant reroute kit, which is a common thing
to do for turbo Miatas. Then we put these nozzles on, so we rerouted the
spray for the windshield to be spraying on to the radiators. So I would be hitting the windshield lever while I’m going down the straightaway to try to spray water on the radiator. – [Jon] What? – I never heard of such a thing. – Then my favorite one
though, when I put a full three-inch exhaust on it
to hopefully make it run a little cooler. Then my favorite one was
we fabricated a super low air dam out of lawn edging. The point was to force the air, force as much air as possible up into the intercooler, right? Because front end lift
is a big issue in Miatas. – You get all your automotive
parts at Home Depot. – Exactly, that’s where we got them from. Then what happened was
we forgot that we’re now blocking off all the air to the brakes. Now the brakes are overheating. So my point being that I just caused, you know one more problem after the other. – A lot of blood money into it. – A ton of money into this car and never solve all the problems and I ended up selling the
car right before I moved back here to Connecticut
because it was just over the top for me in
terms of engineering. I think there was more things
we still could have done, but it was costing. – To mess it up, right? I mean you didn’t even
get to the rear end. – What else can we do wrong? We spent so much money on that car. It bothers me that I never got it right, it really does bother me. – Did you win some races? – I was just doing track days. – But you won the track days. – I didn’t win. – So Southern California
Mazda Miata stories. What have you got, Jon? – 1983 Audi turbo Quattro
Coupe kind of a rare car, they only made it for a couple years, turbocharged engine like I said. Let’s see, it started off
when we bought the car from a guy here in
Connecticut and we realized that instead of 18 millimeter ball joints he had put 17 millimeter ball joints from the regular front
wheel drive Audi Coupe GT so that was a problem because
they could have come out any time during the drive home. Then it was expensive finding these. Basically the parts for an
Audi Turbo Quattro Coupe were unobtainable. It’s just really hard to
find this for a rare car and they’re expensive. We had to find the whole new ball joints. Then the engine hadn’t
been really run through with oil changes regularly. The engine died so we put in an engine from an Audi 5000, the
sedan, so turbo sedan. Then it was running okay and we ripped out the interior, put in
Ricaro and a non-name seat for the passenger. Sport seat for tracking. We put in a roll cage. Then the hoses started
melting during track days because it ran so hot. Ceramic fuse box, so instead
of just having normal fuses it has the ceramic fuses
so you had to replace that. It just became a nightmare
and probably the coup de grace for this car was driving
back from Summit Point which is a race track in West Virginia, driving back to Connecticut
with the car the lights were notoriously bad. The electrics of those early German cars are notoriously bad to begin
with and it just didn’t generate enough light. I mean these would have been wonderful, a flashlight would have been better. I would drive behind
tractor trailers as close as possible so the
headlights would bounce off the rear door and I’d
be able to see if there was a pothole or a deer
running out or just see my way. – And you were hypermiling,
you got great fuel miles. – I was totally hypermiling. I was hypermiling before people
talked about hypermiling. – If it was raining on top
of that the visibility. – Fortunately it wasn’t raining, fortunately it wasn’t raining. I put the car in storage, I
took the car to my mechanic and then went to put it in
storage to sell to someone. It was basically kind of like
okay I’ll put it in storage, I’ll leave the key at the box. You send me the check, then
I’ll have him release the key, total mess. The car cut out four times on the drive and I just remember screaming at the car, “just get me to the end,
just get hold of my life.” I’d be driving along making
shifts and it would go (verbal noises). And I’d shift and it
would go (verbal noises) and run back up. A ton of money the same way. It would be nice to have
and eventually the guy who bought it drove it for a while. Then he mis-shifted and blew the engine, and put a V-8 in it and sold it. I don’t even know where it is. It’s a great car. I would by a sordid one
now because I’m much more of an adult and have a savings. – That’s what I did wrong,
I should have put a V-8 in my Miata. – You can, you can put
a Mustang 5-liter in it. That was my story. Wrong time, right car,
let’s put it that way. The hardest thing was
the divorce because I had to shuffle it when the house
was sold and all of that. – She should have gotten
it in the divorce. Your problem now. – Could have sent it to Europe
with her and kind of gone back home to get repaired in Germany. – Awesome, well my
favorite automotive mistake is what I like to call
my three-cars-no-job era of my life. There was a time that I
had a 1965 Ford Mustang GT. I had a 1987 Honda Civic
SI, and I had a 1985 Mazda RX-7, again with no
steady income, freelancing. Very smart, so I owed
money on my Honda Civic. I came across this first
generation Mazda RX-7. I just, oh my God, I have to have this. I was in my 20s and I thought
now would be a good time to have my mid-life crisis,
so I get my sports car. Again this was the 1980s
so selling the Honda really wasn’t going to be
a problem because everybody was standing in line to buy the Honda. – So you didn’t sell it. – I had to sell it. – Where’s the mistake to selling? That’s fantastic. – The mistake was– – Barely working, three cars? – And two car pay, I mean
I owed money on the Honda and I took out another loan. I don’t know how between
the bank and my mother co-signing a loan they
gave me a second car loan. I just kind of yeah, I’ve got
this automotive thing going. I’m writing here and
I’m doing this project. I’m freelancing. Okay here, take another loan out. – I’m sure you had a good rate, too. – I don’t know how I pulled all this off. Again was it really smart
or really, really stupid? It was kind of stupid
because again three cars, no job. – You were young and stupid. That’s what you’re supposed to do. – Very young and even stupider. Anyway, I did wind up selling the Honda and paid all that off. I eventually got out of it
but one of the piece of advice that we talk about all the
time on Consumer Reports, when you’re looking for a
car whether it’s a new car or a used car is don’t fall in love. Because when you fall in love
you forget all rationality. – But where did the
RX-7 go and the Mustang? – The RX-7 I kept for a
number of years and drove it up until I started working
for Consumer Reports in 1993. The Ford Mustang I bought
it in I think in 1988. I kept that up until
just a couple years ago. – You kept that the longest. – Yes, kept that one the longest. That actually was a good automotive, that was not an automotive
mistake because it not only held its value, it
actually went up in value. That’s some of our automotive nightmares and we bet you’ve got a whole
lot of stories about yours. So please send us your stories
to [email protected] Which brings us to our next segment, the cars that we’re
driving here at the track. We are going to be focusing
on the Subaru Ascent. Subaru has actually been very
absent in the three-row SUV segment for years. The last effort they
put out was the Tribeca which was in 2014. Quite frankly Subaru’s
been getting eaten alive in this segment from Honda, Ford, Toyota. We’ve had some time with this car. So tell us Jon, how
does this Ascent drive? – It’s totally not the
Tribeca that left the industry in 2014 which was a much
smaller three-quarters attempt at an SUV. The Ascent is really impressive so far. Very roomy, drives well. It’s quiet, not dynamically exciting, but it’s not a category
with exciting SUVs. Toyota Highlander, Honda
Pilot, maybe Ford Explorer people would say are interesting. Chevrolet Traverse is
kind of right on par. No one’s gonna go home
invigorated by driving those cars. But all roomy, all big enough
for seven or eight passengers. The Ascent’s available in seven and eight passenger versions. It’s a first year and
you’re never sure about first year vehicles, but
so far it impresses both the feature wise and also
just ease of getting into it, space, it looks kind of
like a grown-up Forrester which it almost is, or
like a giant Forrester. – [Panelist] But Subaru
had to have something for their owners to trade into. – Absolutely, they really
did need this to compete with Honda Pilot, Toyota
Highlander, all those kinds of vehicles. There’s a couple of things
I really like about it. For one I really like
the ride is fantastic. I mean I feel like I
can drive over potholes. I don’t even have to avoid them, I just drive right over them and the thing doesn’t even care. That’s how good the ride it. It also has this new
engine, it’s a 2.4 liter turbo four cylinder with 260 horsepower. It is made into a CBT which
is not always the best. But in this case it’s
actually pretty good CBT. – The flaring. – It minimizes the flaring. The CBT’s are known for
where they rev really high and doesn’t seem to
match the acceleration. In this case it tries to mimic the shifts of a traditional
automatic, which is better. What’s really nice is this
thing actually has some power. It’s nice to drive a
Subaru, or I should say to drive a non-WX, non-SDI Subaru that has some actual power. That’s one of the things I
really like about this Ascent. – I think when I actually
drove it last night and I agree with everything
you guys are saying. But I will say that to me
the steering is really loose. It doesn’t feel connected to the road. The handling feels a little sloppy. It does not feel as
satisfying to drive as a lot, even the last Impreza that we
drove, which was redesigned I think last year, really
had just a more engaging driving experience. This seemed so detached to me. I’m kind of disappointed
from that perspective. But who knows if they’re gonna
go back and reassess that. – One of the things
people have been critical of Subaru about is where
has this vehicle been? Where has this vehicle been? I want to argue that Subaru
was such a small player a number of years ago, ’14, ’13, ’12. They’ve really increased their
market share by building out a good Impreza, by
building out really solid the Outback wagon, and the
Legacy sedan as well as going in the cross check. They filled in niches ’cause
they had a lot of holes given the way the industry has moved. Versus Volkswagen with
the Atlas where they had all those cars and they still kept, they just were late and late
and late with that Atlas. The Atlas is a really impressive vehicle in the sense of what it offers inside and the ease of getting that third row. I think it hurt Volkswagen more because of their growth needs. Subaru with their more incremental growth. It’s the right time for this vehicle and I think they realize their mistake. They had to come out with the right one, not just a space filler. – It will be interesting to see. Obviously we’re just
putting break-in miles on the vehicle right now. We haven’t tested it yet. We’re going to test it. It will be interesting
to see where it ends up versus its competitors. I will say right now I will
tell you it doesn’t drive anything like a Mazda CX-9. But I think for most people
it’s actually going to be a pretty nice vehicle. – And you’re right, it is the right time for their Subaru buyers. If they can make it reliable
I think they’re going to sell a lot of them. Good on Subaru for getting on with that. – Standard safety
features across the board. – Automatic emergency breaking, and standard all-wheel drive. – The Subaru tradition,
so that’s gonna bring us to our next segment which is questions. We love getting your questions
and we thank everyone for sending them. Again we’re gonna put
out that address again. It’s [email protected], [email protected], talkingcars. – You try to screw it up every time. – I got cars, I got
cloud, I got com, I can’t. Anyway, I don’t know
why they let me do this. – I think they put it up on the screen for those that are watching. – First up, I enjoy your
podcast, always very informative and entertaining. Much of the time the
discussion and questions center around quality, reliability,
and practicality. But just for fun, tossing out regard for traditional CR metrics, what are your dream
car/SUV that is also one you could daily drive,
keeping some of the CR focus? Excellent question and probably
if you’re a car person, something you think about all the time. So Mike, I’m gonna throw it to you. What’s your dream daily drive? – For me it would be the E90 BMW M3 which is the four-door
M3 from 2008 to 2011. This is when it had the
four-liter V8 with 414 horsepower. I’d of course get it
with a six-speed manual. This engine sounds so good. I remember coming from the
E46, I thought when they put this V8 in there I was
thinking well that’s just wrong to put a V8 in the M3, right? Because that inline six of
the previous M3 was so sweet. – And it’s what BMW is known for. – Then they put this V8
in there and I drive it and I’m like oh my gosh
this thing in amazing. That V8 sounded so good. Of course it still handled
fantastic, a great shifter. I really fell in love
with this car when I got the opportunity to drive one back from the Pebble Beach Concours,
Monterey Historics Weekend that they do every year in August. But here’s the thing. – Pebble Beach. – I went to Pebble Beach. – [Mike Q] Now you’re in Connecticut? – I got to the Concours
really early in the morning so you can see them
actually drive the cars out onto the lawn which
is the cool way to do it. Then I left before even
any of the judging. Hopped in this M3 and drove
back on some of the best roads that, California has
some really great curvy roads in the middle of nowhere. I had just amazing drive with this car. I fell in love. I’d get the four door
because it’s kind of like the practical version. – So it almost means you’re an adult now. – Almost, almost, but yeah
if I could have one right now that would be the car I
would drive every day. – It is an awesome car. We borrowed one or rented one from BMW. I remember coming down the street to work. We have a neighbor who’s
concerned about people going fast on the roads, a curvy road. I made sure to downshift,
I went down to second. Of course the thing bellows. He came down like you’re
racing down the road. I was like 20 miles an
hour, sir, 20 miles an hour. It’s just the exhaust. – I like that you said sir. – He kind of got off my case
out of his pick up truck. – So Jon I’m gonna think
that your dream daily driver also might have a good sound to it. – Audi RS-2, European
only though it was sold in a couple other overseas countries. – [Panelist] So are you moving? Is that what you’re telling us? – No, well gray market so
there’s the black market which we won’t talk about the
secret selling underground. The gray market you can import a car. You have to pay for federalization. You have to make sure
it meets U.S. standards for exhaust and bumpers. Bumpers are actually one
of the things that ruined a lot of the older European
cars, big ugly things. – They were forced to put those on there and they looked terrible. – Exactly, but if I could federalize it and the car is rare. I mean built March ’94 through July ’95. I mean one year, they
only made about 2,700. – Room for car seats? – Four-door wagon, four-door wagon. – [Mike M] That sounds pretty good. – Yes, 311 horsepower turbo five cylinder, six-speed manual, collaboration
between Audi and Porsche. So you have Porsche
breathed on the engine. In fact in the little logo it says Porsche inside the Audi sport logo, very cool. Bigger turbo, they had more
ducting to the innercooler. Maybe your Miata could have used that. – It’s funny after Jon’s
story about one of his automotive mistakes he’s
going right back to it. – This is a finished car. This is a car you don’t
need to do anything to. – You mean you don’t need
to fabricate brake ducts? That was the next thing we did. I forgot to tell you
about the brake ducting that I had someone
fabricate in that air dam that we fabricated. – M in Miata stands for mistake. (laughing) – That’s the car, it would be in blue, Negaro Blue, I believe. – My M3 was gonna be in blue. – I would do that. It would be incredibly rare. Then an RS-4 later, and maybe
that would be a little bit easier to get through Canada. But no, RS-2. – Love it, that was awesome. – Now for the most boring
part of the program. Actually my dream car, this is really odd but it’s an Acura TSX wagon. I’m with you with the wagon
body, style, kids, dogs, bikes, the whole thing. But what I love about the
TSX wagon it’s reliable, comfortable, easy to get service on it. It’s just the right size for me. The styling is clean,
it’s just kind of normal and I guess that is kind of boring. But I kind of like normal these days. – To each his own. – Anyway, moving onto the
next question we’ve got one involving what to do after
owning one of our favorite cars, the Volkswagen GTI. Hi CR, I currently drive a
two-door Mark 7 Volkswagen GTI. While I love this car, I’m
looking to step up to a more mature, classy car. I want a sedan that’s under
$60,000, fun to drive, more power, and all-wheel drive. My first choice is the Audi S3. Are there any other cars
that I should look at? Okay, throwing it to you, Mr. Audi. What advice do you have for this guy? – The S3. – [Mike Q.] So simple. – I’ve got two choices for him. It’s not a sedan, it’s a hatchback. It’s a Volkswagen Golf R. It’s a turbocharged,
high-performance version of the GTI, all-wheel drive. This one’s with a stick, navigation. Destination is 895, out the door $40,680. – I love that you built
these and printed them out. – We work for you. – In the blue as well, in
blue which is pretty cool. – That’s a nice car. – The other one I think is
a pretty good alternative. BMW 340i xDrive sedan. It’s a four door. 56,850, a little higher
but you get the manual, you get a couple things
like M-sport design, premium package, estoril blue metallic, true BMW color. Red Dakota leather interior. Two options, I think they’re both fun. I think the Golf R is nice
because you can save some money and then do the Monticello
upgrade package. (laughing) And then save money to fix it. – Save money for the
flatbed that picks it up. – Clearly I’m not an engineer. I think that’s obvious. – I think Mike probably
has a better choice. – Those are tremendous. – I do have a better choice. First of all I want to
say that the Audi S3 would be I think, he’s be
really happy with that car. It’s reasonably quick,
handles really well. There’s nothing wrong with that. But why stop at the S3? Go for the RS3. For $55,000 you can get
an RS3 with a 2.5 liter turbocharged spy cylinder
with 400 horsepower. That’s the car they want. – That’s nice. Both of these are– – Still under the $60,000. – None of these are dogs here. – I wonder if it’s hard
to get that RS3, though? Maybe paying a price premium. – They’re pretty rare. – A $60,000 budget, that’s pretty awesome. I was pretty close to
one of Jon’s choices. I came up with the BMW X3 M40i. We rented one of these
from BMW a while back. This car is vastly entertaining,
an incredible exhaust note. Love the six-cylinder engine. Tons of power. You just get the driving plus
package and heated seats. You can sneak in just under $60,000. You might think 60 grand for
an X3 is a whole lot of money. But this is one of these cars
that totally stuck with me after it was gone. I absolutely adored it. I think it’s pretty awesome
that this is the kind of money that you can spend for your next car. – Nice to have those choices. – If you’re looking for a
donation, so we can fix our cars. – Now another GTI question but
with a slightly lower budget. I have an ’07 Volkswagen
GTI with a roof rack that has served me quite well,
but it’s getting expensive to maintain. I’m looking for a subcompact
or compact hatchback for under $25,000 that’s
practical, reliable, has decent storage, low maintenance costs, and can handle dirt and gravel trailheads. I’m considering a 2018 Honda Fit EX manual or a 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Premium CVT. So little bit lower budget,
Jon what have you got for this guy? – As good as the Honda Fit
is, it’s pretty reliable, good fuel economy, that
guy’s gonna be miserable in it coming from a GTI. It’s gonna be loud, it’s
gonna be uncomfortable. It may be versatile, I
don’t think it’s gonna be a trailhead car. Subaru Crosstrek, you could
go with an Impreza hatch, but I would do Subaru Crosstrek. Out the door it’s got
enough raise right height. It’s not exciting but
it doesn’t sound like he’s looking for a GTI
replacement performance-wise. He’s looking for versatility. The only problem he’ll have
is depending on the color, figuring out which Crosstrek
at the trailhead is his. (laughing) He may be having to do one of these. Right there that’s it. – Get a bright color, maybe
they’re all bright colors. – Maybe orange. – Mike, what did you suggest? – I mean the Fit is a veery practical car and with a manual it’s a
little bit fun to drive. You can fit actually a bicycle
in there pretty easily. – I see what you did there. – It’s so, I didn’t actually mean it, I’m just that smart. It is so versatile, but when
you’re talking trailheads any kind of a rough road it
sounds like he’s talking about he might be going over. In that case I’d say
go with the Crosstrek. What I didn’t understand
though was why the manual with the Fit, but the
CVT with the Crosstrek? ‘Cause you can get the
Crosstrek with the manual, but you can’t get the eyesight system. Maybe it’s to get the
eyesight safety system. But here’s what I would actually say. Forget those two, spend a little more. For $25,955 you can get a
Volkswagen Golf Offtrack. It’s just a much nicer car. – I’m wondering though if
this person is interested in getting out of the
Volkswagen maintenance costs, reliability issues? That’s one argument for the Fit actually, because it will probably cost
you less in the long run. – For the Fit, but if you
look at the reliability, predicted reliability on the
Crosstrek and the Golf Offtrack are both average. So in terms of reliability
it’s a wash between those two. – And his GTI is old. You’re in a maintenance cycle
at I think 11 years old. – That’s a fair point. Almost any car’s gonna
cost you money over time. I went a slightly different route. I was gonna say give up a
little bit of ground clearance. Look at the redesigned Toyota Corolla or maybe a leftover Corolla IM. This has a lot of versatility,
it can hold bikes, good fuel economy, good reliability. We rented the 2019 Corolla
hatchback from Toyota. Really I came away pretty
impressed by that car. I thought the steering and
driving characteristics, very good handling. So again, but not great in
terms of ground clearance. – Not your father’s Corolla so to speak. – No, definitely not. We love these questions. Honestly this is one of our favorite parts of doing this podcast. We get a ton of them. Honestly we read every single one of them. The downside is we can’t
get to all of them, but we really want you
to keep sending them. Please keep sending them
to [email protected] That’s gonna do it for this episode. We really appreciate you tuning in. As always if you want more
information on the cars or topics we talked about,
check out the show notes. Thanks so much for tuning in
and we’ll see you next week. (upbeat instrumental music)

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85 thoughts on “2019 Subaru Ascent; Our Worst Automotive Mistakes | Talking Cars with Consumer Reports #161

  1. I love the topic. You should have every host spend a minute telling their own stories. I have a feeling Shenhar has some pretty good ones. Oh, and by the way…first.

  2. Poor Mike Monticello. Agree with Mike on the RS3 recommendation. BMWs are great options… 340i and X3 M40i

  3. For that last question, definitely wait for the new Corolla Hatchback. Manual, TSS-2.0, hatchback, (should be) reliable, and more fun than Crosstrek. Base model should be quite affordable, too.

  4. @20:50 With my friend's experience I would definitely say no to VW Golf R. Reason been it has the weakest clutch we ever see in a car. My friend never tracked the car and only drove in regular roads in Colorado and just over an year the clutch needs to be replaced and the dealer denied that its a manufacture fault and quoted him $3500 for parts + labor.

  5. Hi, thanks for the podcasts,
    What would your choice be between a brand new elantra (SEL or value) vs 1-2 year old corolla or civic?

  6. I just purchased a Ascent and perhaps I got lucky but it handles great on top of having a very smooth ride. I have a new Impreza also and it is a little more engaging to drive but its a small hatch without 8.7 inches of GC. I think Subaru was aiming at a super comfy 3 row suv that has a a very smooth and well damped ride. I think CR looses that train of thought. I would prefer this setup over a harsher riding and the less spacious CX-9

  7. These mistakes can be avoided but you have to know what you are doing before you start modifying your car. My coworker has a modified Subaru BRZ where he added a turbo but also added the heavy duty radiator, reinforced the six speed manual transmission, and basically made all the changes recommended before trying to take it to the track. It does not overheat and runs great. This can be done, but unfortunately, it sounds like they took some short cuts (unknowingly) that caused issues. I buy my cars and work on them to save money (not as frequently now) but don't really modify them. Nice episode and entertaining. What is going on comparing the Ascent to the driving of a Impreza? Two thumbs down, compare to the rest in its class like the others do.

  8. One thing for the guy looking for a 60k dollar car, consider the fully loaded Honda Accord, you can get a manual with the 2.0 engine, and there a tune that puts it above the civic type r in horsepower.

  9. Great episode. I've owned VWs (VR6 Passat), Audi (A4 Turbo) and even a Skoda (Fabia vRS – look that one up). But I just don't trust VW any more. Should we? And I don't think the R Golf is value for money. I'll just leave this here for a tease

  10. Could you guys compare each companies' adaptive cruise control when paired with the manual transmission. I currently drive a Saturn Astra w/5-speed with a lot of highway driving, and my next car needs ACC and a manual. I wanted to see who does it best because I know that the Honda Accord's ACC doesn't disengage when the clutch is depressed but other systems do. I was looking at the GTI, ATS, Accord, Mustang, and Mazda3. Thanks!

  11. My worst auto-buying mistake was when I bought a used 1979 Datsun (Nissan) 310 hatchback with 30,000 miles on it. I checked Consumer Reports before buying the car, and it’s repair-prone areas were the clutch and brakes. Since I was a gentle driver I thought those areas would be not a problem. Well, I was correct in my thinking, the car never had a problem with it’s clutch or brakes. BUT!!! On the first day that I used the car, the outside door lock fell out onto the pavement as I was removing the key. Then over the next 9 months I had a FEW other problems: The exhaust recirculating valve made the car backfire like a British sports car whenever I lifted my foot off the throttle. The alternator shorted out, burning out every light in the car. The electrical portion of the ignition switch had to be replaced. The air conditioning hose ruptured under the hood and a geyser of vapor came out of the front at least 30 feet high! The radiator thermostat was stuck fully open, so I had no heat. When I had the thermostat replaced, the car overheated blowing the head gasket, releasing a block-long head of steam as I drove it to the dealer. During the summer, the car pinged incessantly, even when it was running on premium gas. The rear windows refused to stay open when opened. So, after about 3,500 dollars of repairs (a lot of money in 1985) I traded the wretched object in for a new Toyota.

  12. The reason for the CVT in the Crosstrek is because, it now comes with the traction aid (X Mode Button)from the Forester XT and the Outback.

  13. Mike Quincy gave the only two coherent responses in the whole broadcast- Acura TSX wagon and Corolla hatch. Well done Mike.

  14. For that last question, I was thinking HR-V the entire time. The person could definitely get a good price on a '17 manual considering it's getting refreshed for 2018.

  15. when Mike got to the "we rerouted the windshield sprayers" I knew his story would not be upstaged.

  16. Happy this panel are gear heads and like driving. Appreciate a viewpoint from a knowledgeable and enthusiast of cars. Happy they still exist here at CR

  17. Hey John, my gown kids will tell you that you're correct in that the new Corolla hatch is not your father's Corolla. You see, I own a 1985 Corolla GT-S in pristine condition and with the plethora of upgraded TRD go-fast bits, it's a real hoot to drive. It turned 33 this past January and still bears the original engine (289K mies), paint (still shiny) and complete interior. It helps that it's been in the family since new. Honestly, I don't foresee a future without it. Yes the 2019 Corolla is NOT your father's Corolla, and boy am I glad!

  18. Fellas it more like a giant Outback! It would be nice to see the Ascent with a 3.0 Turbo or a 3.0 engine…love to see that 2.4 turbo engine in an Outback Touring. Subaru is so slow to get these things to the American market.

  19. Mr Monticello, their making fun at your engineering, but you nailed it. The RS3 is the car to get.

  20. Recommending Subaru . Subaru has rebuilt my engine twice and now at 85000 the CVT transmission is having problems. Thank you .

  21. I had 1977 Dodge Aspen RT. Would not start intermittently. A lot of US cars in the late 70s weren't all that great. The 1972 Demon with the 340 that I traded in was so much better.

  22. These people asking questions are retarded. If you have a gti you're not gonna be happy in either of those gutless shitboxes. Good cars cost more to own. I second the alltrack or a used allroad with a warranty. A used 4runner or some other suv would be a good choice.

    To the guy considering an S3 you could get a much nicer car for 60k. There's nothing professional about a 3-series or a golf-based audi. 20k could get you a used S6 with the V10. You could get m5s, lots of different amg options, lots of different Porsche options. With money left over for repairs.

  23. Enjoyed all of it. Glad you added how much you like the questions even though you can't address all of them.

  24. Happy to hear from people who like “driving” cars. NO Autonomous driving and all that crap from people who want to continue playing with their iPads from bed on to the road …..

  25. Hi consumer reports, I am looking to buy ford fusion because of AWD. But it is going to be discontinued. Would you suggest to buy it or should I look for something else? Thanks

  26. Just in case anyone's interested; the engine in the ascent is a FA24 DIT, similar to the engine used in the 2015-2018 wrx FA20DIT engines. The bore in the FA24 is increased to 94 mm, which increases the displacement to 2,387 cc. It makes 260hp, and 277ft lbs of torque. it makes 4 hp less than the FA20 DIT in the wrx models, which is barely noticeable. The ascent weighs 4603lbs compared to the 3267lb wrx. this gives it a power to weight ratio of 0.056, meaning for every pound of car, there is an available 0.056hp. the FA20DIT WRX however, has a power to weight ratio of 0.0808. BY COMPARISON, the Ascent has a higher power to weight ratio than a Crosstrek, but a lower power to weight ratio than a WRX. so when thinking about the engine capibility, its comfortably between a crosstrek and a wrx

  27. 3 row SUV with a 4 cylinder? Nope. Wouldn't even consider a vehicle this big with anything below a v6. Terrible decision.

  28. Mics are pointed the wrong direction. The front of the microphone is the flat surface pointed toward the panels chest in this video not the top that is pointed towards their mouth.

  29. VW dual clucht are the least reliable gearboxes of them all.So, I recommend staying away from the Golf Offtrack. Go for the Crosstrek.

  30. The title reads "2019 Subaru Ascent; Our Worst Automotive Mistakes".
    My interpretation – Consumer Reports regrets buying the Subaru Ascent.

  31. Any man who gets excited about a Subaru Ascent or similar vehicle should have his testosterone levels checked.

  32. About that 3rd question regarding which vehicle to buy under 25k owning a '07 GTi, I was literally screaming, just go and buy the all new 2019 Corolla Hatch. You won't regret anything except a little of ground clearance issues or if u are any taller than 6, 2". Thanks goodness one of the guys finally said that. 😊

  33. While you geek out about cars, allow me to geek out about audio and let your audio production team know that the microphones you are using are SIDE ADDRESS mics, not end address mics. That means you are essentially pointing the mics down at your chests, not at your mouths. While it sounds OK, it would sound a lot better with the mics setup correctly. OK, back to Talking Cars!

  34. Worst cars i owned,, #1 1998 Toyota 4 Runner, #2 2003 Honda Civic, #3 All other Toyotas i owned,,#4 1978 Chrysler Cordoba( no surprise there) #5 2005 Nissan mini van..1984 Cadillac Sedan DeVille ( again no surprise ) ,, 1989 Ford Escort.. Best cars, 1989 Geo Metro LSI and 2000 Chevy Metro both went well over 250,000 miles with no breakdowns. 1984 and 1988 Chevy Caprice Classic..1986 Ford Crown Victoria… 1996 Nissan Frontier…2015 Mitsubishi Mirage (used it for Uber 200,000 miles) so impressed on how that car up with the abuses of driving for Uber i bought a 2018 Mirage.


  36. Not sure why they are not putting the CX-9 in their comparison talks. It is always omitted and one of the best in this class.

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