In Reply to: But the REAL disaster is the Ford! (more) posted by Lorenz on March 02, 1999 at 18:29:13:
Lorenz you asked for it. Here it is. First you called the Contour an American car, It's not really. In the rest of the world it's the Mondeo. It was designed and developed by Ford in Europe (You may have forgotten that Ford is a British car company in the UK (if there any old guys out there, you might remember the Ford Lotus Cortina as one of British Ford's better results) Ford is a German car on the Continent. Whle I agree that the Contour we drive when we rent from Hertz is less than exciting, none of us apparently have driven a Contour SVT (Ford Special Vehicle Team). Every review I've read on this car has said very positive things (except about its backseat) including calling it a "poor man's BMW." Having been born and raised in Detroit (though almost all of the cars I've owned are non-US in origin - it gets harder and harder to say what is American and what is not), I do not believe that Detroit has poor engineers. Detroit has poor management (though certainly not in terms of dollars). Superior engineers cannot engineer what their bosses don't want to build and sell. I've owned other German cars (in the seventies and eighties) before my new 323i but was less than impressed by their build quality abd reliability. I had the opportunity to drive an M3 for two days on the track in Lime Rock, CT (Skip Barber's high performance driving school) back in 1987 and was totally underimpressed by the M3s I drove back then. Lastly, I really don't care what C/D had to say. I drove the Audi and I drove the 323i and I bought the 323i. It's nice to see that others agree with your good taste but if they don't, so what?
: Someone posted the order in which C/D ranked the cars in this thread (Ali B, I think).
: I'll have to say that my biggest surprise was not at the fact that the A4 1.8T beat the 323i, but rather that the Jetta VR6 was DFL, and that an American car (Ford Contour LMNOP, or something like that) actually finished third!
: Let me explain: both the Audi A4 and the BMW 3 series are great cars, engineered by Germans, built in Germany, capable of Autobahn driving, yadda yadda yadda. There seems to be an almost religious battle going on between people who prefer one over the other. Really, the fact that people seem to be split right down the middle over which one is better is evidence that they're both pretty damn good cars, right?
: Obviously, most people on this message board (myself included) will agree with me when I say I prefer the BMW over the Audi. That's why I ordered a 328i, not an A4 2.8. Having said that, I drove an A4 2.8, and have to say that I really liked it.
: Now, the Ford, on the other hand, is absolutely, unequivocally, indisputably a POS! I don't think a single person on this board (or the A4 board, for that matter) would even dream of comparing a Hertz rental car with plastic crap glued all over the body (I'm referring to the Contour, BTW) to one of these fine German machines!
: How could anyone in their right mind prefer a Ford anything over a car with a VR6 engine, an engine that was actually built by above-mediocre engineers? In my mind, the mediocre (and below) engineers work in Detroit. You remember the guys in college who were happy when they passed a class, rather than striving for A's and better. The guys with the solid 2.1 GPA -- they're the ones that go to Detroit.
: Again, only my 2 cents' worth. Flame away if you disagree.