Just lost all my respect for Car and Driver

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Mr. Nelsby, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. Mr. Nelsby

    Mr. Nelsby New Member

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    Whoops, quick edit. Even though there are 2010 reviews on the page, the ranking is actually for the 2009, but I still stand by my loss or respect for C&D



    ...they gave the new Prius a 1/10 for "Enthusiast appeal" which they explain as being how much a car enthusiast would be interested in "driving said car on a Sunday afternoon" or something like that...

    ... I mean really. I can understand that a luxury car centric "enthusiast" might not consider the Prius on the top of their list in terms of Sunday drive cars, but to claim that this car is something like enthusiat kryptonite shows that whoever is giving out these rankings is just being spiteful for their own silly reasons...

    I mean, who determines who is an "enthusiast" anyway? I feel like an enthusiast when it comes to my current prius and I would give myself a 9/10 in terms of my excitement when it comes to the idea of driving a 2010 next fall when I get one...

    Plah... what silliness...

    Here's the link to the page:
    2009 Toyota Prius - Car And Driver
     
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  2. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    I love cars, always have (in High School I was able to drive 55, 57 chevies, camaro's Chevelles and Nova's, vettes and even a 40 model Ford with a 327 Chevy engine, w/ 16" slicks and open headers) My dad's family car and the one I learned to drive in was a 64 Impala w/ a 327 4bbl, hurst shifter and Mickey Thompson tires with Cragar mags.


    I have found driving the TCH (and expect the Prius to be the same) as "interesting" as driving my "enthusiast" cars. On this list I've had Two 300ZX's, a Vette, an AudiTT, a 350Z, and an Infiniti FX45. They were all fun to drive but most of the time I simply was driving them nowhere near the limits. They simply looked cool. Looking cool is 90% of what people get out of these cars as very few people race on weekends or consistantly exceed the limits to any degree.

    But when I got into the TCH, every time I got in it I monitored my milage, tracked the trip information by the minute and experimented in beating my last best results on the same strech of road. It kept me engaged in the process.

    Personally, the Hybrid allows me more enthusiast "opportunities" (that is getting excited about driving) than any of my "cool" cars.
     
  3. bestmapman

    bestmapman 04, 07 ,08, 09, 10 and 16 Pri

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    It is just Prius envy.
     
  4. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    The Car and Driver magazine was performed by idiots that didn't understand the system. It sounded like they thought it was cool to run in "B" a lot of the time

    Additionally, MotorTrend, in their comparison to the Insight seemd to critize the Insight and praise the prius all through the article but at the end they rated the Insight a 1st, simply because of price. It didn't sound like in their review that the Insight was anywhere near comparable to the Prius, yet their ranking came out for the Insight???

    If that is the key variable then I don't see how any of them ever rate a BWW as 1st in a review, but they always do.
     
  5. accordingly

    accordingly Member

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    Enthusiast appeal refers to how fun the vehicle is to drive. Not how many miles it goes per gallon, not how infrequently it breaks down, and not how technologically advanced it is. And certainly not how much Prius owners like their Prius.

    They are absolutely correct, the Prius is not a car anyone who enjoys cars would recommend for autocrossing or taking on twisty roads in the mountains. It has horrible steering feel and not very much power. It rides more like a couch than a car. This is what all Toyotas, not just the Prius, are designed to drive like. They are made for people who want to go from point A to point B without caring about how many Gs they can pull in the corners or how crisp the handling feels.

    That's why Car and Driver always puts the Hondas on its best cars lists and never the Toyotas- they are simply not designed to be fun to drive physically. Enthusiast appeal does not have anything to do with how fun it is to brag about your mileage or technology, it has to do with how the car feels on the road. A car enthusiast dreams of driving a 650Hp McLaren F1 with no power steering on a track as hard and as fast as they can drive, not pressing buttons and looking at cartoon screens while floating down the road on the way to run errands. That's fun to do too, but it's not what I'd call "enthusiast driving".
     
  6. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    That's Bull#$%@

    What makes C&D (or you) the people who get to defing "enthusiast"
    en·thu·si·ast : a person filled with enthusiasm: as a: one who is ardently attached to a cause, object, or pursuit <a sports car enthusiast> b: one who tends to become ardently absorbed in an interest
    I found my TCH "FUN" to drive (who is to also say it has nothing to do with cornering or acceleration?) I look forward to the Prius in the same respect.

    Why is the definition (in your words) limited to simply cars that have a certain feel on the road. Talk about snobbery.

    I quit writing on a blog in Edmunds because some kid driving an Accord insisted that my FX45 simply could not be an enthusiast car. I guess just because it could tow my 215hp jetski or my JD tractor kept him from recognizing how it handled (and especially how it sounded).
     
  7. robbyr2

    robbyr2 New Member

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    If the cost of having your enthusiast experience is not a factor, you might be right. The way I look at it, though, I would prefer driving a car that doesn't drive me to the poorhouse. My driving this past year is about 10% over what it was the prior year. The cost (vs my Chevy Blazer) of gas is down by 70%. But of course C & D writers most likely aren't paying for the gas for their tests.

    As for driving in the mountains- my Prius does a heck of a lot better than my Blazer on corners on our Rocky Mtn roads. And, while it can't go some of the places I've driven my Blazer (some I wouldn't do again!), I can afford to drive further!
     
  8. accordingly

    accordingly Member

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    ...the fact that Car and Driver publishes the magazine? They maks a magazine for a certain type of car enthusiast, not people who have any form of enthusiasm over their vehicles at all.

    Offroad magazine is for a different sort of car enthusiast, just as hot rod, import tuner, mustang monthly and lowrider magazine cater to their type of car enthusiast. If you can't understand why none of these car enthusiast magazines would give the Prius high marks even though many people (including me) are enthusiastic about the Prius then I can't help you.

    I have a friend who is a professional football player, yet sometimes he acts very unprofessionally...
     
  9. shawnb2

    shawnb2 Active Member

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    You guys are reading in to all of this way too much. They are huge Honda fanboys over there and are probably paid more by Honda than Toyota for advertising and whatever else. The Insight is a far cry from being in the same league as the new Prius. It's all well and fine it handles better, but it does so with a much more harsh ride. It's noisy inside, it's smaller, less expensive yes, but really as Honda markets the car as the Hybrid for everyone. It's meant to appeal to a broader range of people. Others that own Prii are more concerned with a comfortable ride, better fuel economy, more interior comfort and space, a more solid feel, not a tin can with little to no sound deadening material. Just call Prius owners more refined and don't mind spending a little more to be so. Car and Driver lost my respect when they did the format change of the magazine. They cheapened it up. May have the same people there, but alot has changed for them in a short amount of time. I certainly won't be renewing when that time comes. It's a shame, they were always the first magazine I'd look at first to find someting out about a car.
     
  10. ceric

    ceric New Member

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    I don't get it. Why did you have "respect" for a car magazine?
    I read all of them frequently, and I never had "respect" for them.
    I read them to see photos and specs.
    I take their "opinions" with lots of salt since I have my own.
     
  11. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    Well the article that rated the Prius a 1 was doing so for a 2009 model. My argument isn't about the "1" its simply that C&D cannot be the final authority that defines what an enthuiast is. Their definition is much more narrow than the true meaning. And they can't define what "fun" is either, assuming a car really has to be fun to be an enthusiast car
     
  12. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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  13. accordingly

    accordingly Member

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    Car and Driver never claimed to be the ultimate authority on english language semantics, you're attacking a straw man.

    If you're not the type of car enthusiast that C&D caters to, you don't need to get upset and cry foul when their opinion differs from yours. Nobody should be surprised at the end of the year when C&D rates the BMW 3 series the best overall car for the 43rd year in a row, even if you or Four Wheeler magazine disagree.
     
  14. drees

    drees Senior Member

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    LOL, that's right! How many other cars are you excited to get stuck in traffic in because it lets you practice increasing your fuel economy!

    The Prius is probably the best car in the world to get stuck in a traffic jam in - and an "enthusiast"'s car are typically the worst!
     
  15. MaggieMay

    MaggieMay Active Member

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    I'm sure there must be - but is there a hybrid car enthusiast magazine?? Not an 'everything green/how to live green/etc.' magazine but a CAR magazine devoted to hybrid vehicle? If so (or if not) I know a lot of editorial contributors right here!!
     
  16. willster

    willster New Member

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    :D

    Very funny.
     
  17. Carls

    Carls Junior Member

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    I had the same opinion of Car & Driver's Prius review. It appeared that they used a high school kid (or a writer with the same mentality). 250 points were available as follow with larger weighted items: Gotta have it-25, fun to drive-25, ride-10, handling-10, brake feel-5, steering feel-5, transmission-5, engine NVH-10, fuel economy-5, flexiblity -5, 1/4 Mi Acceleration-20, , as tested price-20, rebates-5, exterior styling-10, interior styling-10, fit and finish-10, features-10, rear seat space-5, rear seat comfort-5, ergonomics-10, driver comfort-10. the Prius bombed on gotta have it 15/25, fun to drive 9/25,rebates 0/5, handlinjg-4/10. I personally am buying a 2010 Prius based on Mileage, Room, comfort, resale. I believe the publication used criteria best on a Pontiac Grand Prix etc. Magazines don't hire the best and brightest- they write to appeal to emotion which of course sells on the news stand. This is reason they aren't selling their own car.
     
  18. AirKuhl

    AirKuhl New Member

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    I thought it was fairly well written and accurate, if a bit over the top.

    They define "enthusiast" the way they have always defined it in their decades of existence as one of the most respected and non-biased car magazines in the US, a car who's overall driving dynamics are interesting and engaging for the driver. The Prius is many wonderful things but it's NOT that. It "drives" like an SUV or maybe a minivan.

    C&D made major headlines in the late 70's by publishing what is considered the first ever brutally negative review of a car. Up until then, car mags basically cut and paste the press kits they received and called them reviews. C&D was publicly called out by Chrysler who demanded a retraction, and pulled all their advertising. C&D held firm and as a result fundamentally changed automotive journalism the better.

    Their audience is driving enthusiasts and all their reviews are openly biased that way by design. I would no more expect a glowing review of a Prius in there than I would expect an unbiased and useful comparison of different types of bacon in Vegan Magazine, or a open minded and respectful review of the latest Glock .45ACP handgun in Mother Jones.

    I enjoy my Prius and find it a fun intellectual exercise to maximize my mpg. But for that fun Sunday drive on twisty roads through the mountains, it's not the key I reach for.
     
  19. Mr. Nelsby

    Mr. Nelsby New Member

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    Good comments, but as to whether or not it is a fair rating, I just feel that a 1/10 is hyperbole.

    As many people pointed out, an enjoyable ride can be for a lot of reasons. I love that my Prius is quiet. I love that it gets good MPG. When I drive to NYC and back from Boston on ONE tank of gas and then still have gas left over, I ENJOY THE FEELING!

    The fact that they feel that the car is the equivalent of what one of the posters said "drives like a couch" clearly shows that they just don't WANT to like a car that is like it.

    Keep in mind, I've driven porches, I've driven audis, I've driven Mercedes, I've driven Volvo, etc. I even rode in a Delorian once (though not at 88 miles per hour). I understand that comfort, power, extras all have their feelings, but at the end of the day, I find enjoyment from rinding in many very different types of cars. Minis are fun, old-school beatles are nostalgic, Smart Cars are just a trip... to say that a prius ranks 1/10 is just clear negativity...

    ... all that said, I think one of the posters nailed it, I don't know why I cared enough to post about what they think, they are clearly people of limited taste...
     
  20. bfd

    bfd Plug-In Perpetuator

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    If there's a "typical" C&D reader, that person probably isn't in the market for a Prius anyway.
     
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