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Old 05-05-2008, 12:41 PM   #1
RaceCarRiot
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Question Are there any cars sold in the US now that are under 3000lbs?

Excluding the S2000, Aveo-like death traps, or low production cars like the Elise?

I'm talking about normal, average, economy to mid sized non-niche cars. I read Jalopnik's 40th anniversary Rx8 test article last week, and they were repeatedly astonished you could buy a relatively affordable/practical (relatively speaking for a sports coupe) production car that weighed a hair over 3K.

I find it absolutely mind boggling that we have industry, government, and the populace fretting over gas prices when we've already had cars based on 'antiquated' late 80's/early 90's technology that routinely get 50+ mpg in the REAL world, and even our small cars continue to balloon in weight.

Yes, I know light weight construction combined with today's more stringent safety/retard protection standards would be more costly, but why hasn't *anyone* decided to seriously pursue this as a means of providing better fuel efficiency? Eventually economy of scale would bring this down like it has with numerous other whiz-bang technologies.

It's well established that the promises made by manufacturers regarding new more efficient tech like hybrids is suspect at best, why not use proven methods for efficiency?
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:43 PM   #2
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they need to support the every growing fat assses of America
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:43 PM   #3
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Off the top of my head...
Saturn Astra
Mazda RX8

After some research...
Mazda 3
Miata
VW Beetle
Ford Focus

--kC
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:44 PM   #4
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want.

people want the heated seats, sat nav, a bazillion gizmos, a quiet ride, etc.
Plus all the safety regs.
Thats what i think anyway. How much does the prius weigh?
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:44 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by KC View Post
Off the top of my head...
Saturn Astra
Mazda RX8

--kC
The second I see "Red Line" on the end of the name of that car, I will be at the local Saturn dealer. Do want.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:46 PM   #6
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I'm sure this will set off a firestorm, but I'll take a safe car that happens to be heavier any day over a lightweight, fuel efficient car that will kill me in a wreck. I'm all for better fuel economy, but a few hundred pounds and a few miles per gallon lower gas mileage is worth it for safety.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:49 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Integra96 View Post
I'm sure this will set off a firestorm, but I'll take a safe car that happens to be heavier any day over a lightweight, fuel efficient car that will kill me in a wreck. I'm all for better fuel economy, but a few hundred pounds and a few miles per gallon lower gas mileage is worth it for safety.
And there's the problem right there folks. Safety adds weight.

Cake <<<<<<>>>>>> Eating
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:52 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Integra96 View Post
I'm sure this will set off a firestorm, but I'll take a safe car that happens to be heavier any day over a lightweight, fuel efficient car that will kill me in a wreck. I'm all for better fuel economy, but a few hundred pounds and a few miles per gallon lower gas mileage is worth it for safety.
I find your namesake in relation to this post to be quite disturbing.

3rd Generation Integras were damn safe (I know, i walked away from a goddamn mangled one with just a seatbelt bruise) and I'm pretty sure they all weighed around or under 2700 pounds.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:53 PM   #9
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And that's why weight reduction is going to fail as a means to increase fuel economy. Sure, you could probably take 800 lbs. from a Hummer without anyone noticing, but try that on a Corolla without seriously hampering its ability to hold up in a collision.

There are so many other possible ways to increase mileage.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:55 PM   #10
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why excluding the s2000?
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r0bman View Post
I find your namesake in relation to this post to be quite disturbing.

3rd Generation Integras were damn safe (I know, i walked away from a goddamn mangled one with just a seatbelt bruise) and I'm pretty sure they all weighed around or under 2700 pounds.

personal experience != safer cars. i am pretty sure crash test ratings, and IIHS ratings > personal experience.

also aren't cars just bigger which makes them heavier?
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:55 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Integra96 View Post
I'm sure this will set off a firestorm, but I'll take a safe car that happens to be heavier any day over a lightweight, fuel efficient car that will kill me in a wreck. I'm all for better fuel economy, but a few hundred pounds and a few miles per gallon lower gas mileage is worth it for safety.
It would be if they were actually safer. Weight does not automatically equate to safety, though. The new Hummer H3 weighs in at a porky 4700 lbs, yet has the worst crash-test rating of any mid-size SUV sold in the country. The main reason that cars are getting heavier is all the luxury features that everyone demands, not because they're much safer in crashes. They're also just getting bigger all-around. Popular demand is for land yachts, so now a Civic is as big as an Accord used to be, an Accord is huge, and the Fit is the new Civic. Look at how much bigger the Altima and Maxima have gotten as well. And the SUVs and Pickups are just getting ridiculously huge.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:57 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r0bman View Post
I find your namesake in relation to this post to be quite disturbing.

3rd Generation Integras were damn safe (I know, i walked away from a goddamn mangled one with just a seatbelt bruise) and I'm pretty sure they all weighed around or under 2700 pounds.
Safety standards have changed. They were somewhat safe at the time, but they didn't have as strong a structure as more modern cars, nor did they have seatbelt pretensioners, active head restraints, side/curtain airbags, stability control, EBD, pedestrian safety measures, etc.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Integra96 View Post
And that's why weight reduction is going to fail as a means to increase fuel economy. Sure, you could probably take 800 lbs. from a Hummer without anyone noticing, but try that on a Corolla without seriously hampering its ability to hold up in a collision.

There are so many other possible ways to increase mileage.
Crumple zones, pedestrian safety, airbags front-back-side-rear, 'cages', have saved exactly how many lives vs 10 or even 15-20 years ago?

Has anyone actually compiled any data as to the number of lives they have saved? 'Safety' is also a great reason why costs on cars have risen over the years. It's thrown at everyone as a mandate in that it has totally diluted most spirit from the "car".

And reducing weight to gain vehicle efficiency and mileage is pure physics. Lowering weight means better gas mileage because the engine has to work less to do anything.

--kC
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:58 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Chuck H View Post
It would be if they were actually safer. Weight does not automatically equate to safety, though. The new Hummer H3 weighs in at a porky 4700 lbs, yet has the worst crash-test rating of any mid-size SUV sold in the country. The main reason that cars are getting heavier is all the luxury features that everyone demands, not because they're much safer in crashes. They're also just getting bigger all-around. Popular demand is for land yachts, so now a Civic is as big as an Accord used to be, an Accord is huge, and the Fit is the new Civic. Look at how much bigger the Altima and Maxima have gotten as well. And the SUVs and Pickups are just getting ridiculously huge.
I didn't say that. Read my post again. We all know that increasing weight is not only due to increasing safety equipment.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:59 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by owace View Post
personal experience != safer cars. i am pretty sure crash test ratings, and IIHS ratings > personal experience.

also aren't cars just bigger which makes them heavier?
Well, I know that I'm pretty sure it had decent IIHS scores... I'm looking into it now. My parents were all about safety when I bought my first car (which they contributed a bit to) and we went with the Integra over a lot of other things because it was safer.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:59 PM   #17
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The Smart weighs in at ~1800 lbs.

And as for the "heavier=safer" argument, it doesn't hold. Look up safety ratings for heavy vehicles and often you'll find that they suck. All the mass that you are carrying around needs to dissipate energy somewhere, and that may be into you. Look at the Subaru "Rings of safety" idea, not to mention Volvo's work (although Volvo does tend to make some porkers) in safety design with crumple zones, engines that go under the car, airbags, etc, etc

Not to mention lack of agility, increased braking distances, top-heaviness and so on.
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:00 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Integra96 View Post
Safety standards have changed. They were somewhat safe at the time, but they didn't have as strong a structure as more modern cars, nor did they have seatbelt pretensioners, active head restraints, side/curtain airbags, stability control, EBD, pedestrian safety measures, etc.
Oh, look. You know an ASSLOAD more about the subject we're discussing than I do. This is where I bow out, humbly asking for forgiveness.

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Old 05-05-2008, 01:01 PM   #19
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Crumple zones, pedestrian safety, airbags front-back-side-rear, 'cages', have saved exactly how many lives vs 10 or even 15-20 years ago?

Has anyone actually compiled any data as to the number of lives they have saved? 'Safety' is also a great reason why costs on cars have risen over the years. It's thrown at everyone as a mandate in that it has totally diluted most spirit from the "car".

And reducing weight to gain vehicle efficiency and mileage is pure physics. Lowering weight means better gas mileage because the engine has to work less to do anything.

--kC
How about a 30% reduction in death rate in 11 years?

http://money.cnn.com/2007/04/18/auto...ates/index.htm
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:02 PM   #20
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The current-gen Prius is just under 3,000lbs.
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:24 PM   #21
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How about a 30% reduction in death rate in 11 years?

http://money.cnn.com/2007/04/18/auto...ates/index.htm
Perfect. Now, how many of those that lived are living perfectly normal lives and how many are disabled, disfigured, or otherwise living in pain every day?

Quote:
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- New statistics released Thursday by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety show that, overall, driving has gotten much safer in the last 11 years.

During the years 2002 to 2005, there were 79 driver deaths per million registered 2001-2004 model year vehicles, according to the Institute. By contrast, during the years 1990 to 1994, there were 110 deaths per million 1989 to 1993 model year vehicles on the road then. That represents a 30 percent reduction in the overall death rate.
79 deaths per million. Read that again... of 1,000,000 there were 79 deaths, down from 110 deaths per million 10 years prior for a selective period of 4 years. (What about 1991-1995 or 1992-1996? Where are those numbers?)

Of the estimated 247,421,120 registered vehicles (Cars, Trucks, Busses) in the US, that's around 19,500-20,000 deaths over 4 years or around 5,000/year.

Still with me?
In 1994, there were an esitmated 195,469,000 registered vehicles, and 110 deaths per million over a period of 4 years. That works out to be around a total of 21,500 deaths.

In the span of 10 years, all the safety improvements, increased costs and weights, all the federal mandates, etc that have cost the industry billions of dollars have saved *** drumroll please *** 2000 lives from 2002-2005 (500/year).

500 lives a year out of 301,139,947 people that currently live in the US.

Don't take this the wrong way... saving lives is a good thing. But no studies have shown the *quality* of life these people have since their accident. Some, I'm sure, continue and function fine after the accident. However, how many of them currently are disabled to the point of no longer being a service to society? Or in a diminished effect?

See what I'm saying? All these billions of dollars in 'safety' have gone on to save, relatively speaking, very few lives. When the population of the US is 301,139,947 and 500 of them are 'saved' to a certain extent every year due to modern safety, that's less than .00001% of the population.

Yet, here we are now, with cars that are heavier, require bigger and more powerful engines, and in return, require and consume more gas, all in the name of saving less than .00001% of the population, or in others words, a very, very, select few.

While I may come off harsher than I am.... these are the numbers.

--kC
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:25 PM   #22
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miata
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:27 PM   #23
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gti? i know the mkiv is, not sure about the mkv
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:28 PM   #24
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The second I see "Red Line" on the end of the name of that car, I will be at the local Saturn dealer. Do want.
You are the only person ever who has said they specifically want an Astra.
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:29 PM   #25
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I have seen quite a few who wanted a Redline Turbo Astra.
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