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Audi Haters/Japanese cars

I join with the others here in my distaste for the mental midget who 
recently bombed the group with the "Hate-Audi" messages.  However, my 
hackes rise a bit when the discussion turns to broad dismissals of 
Japanese cars as "crappy", etc.  Some fairly strong things have been 
said recently.

Those of you (not named here) who have engaged in Japanese car 
bashing are off-base, IMNSHO.  The fact is that Japanese cars are 
incredibly durable, inexpensive to drive, and have re-shaped the US 
car market (for the better, also IMNSHO) over the last 25 years.  
Let's face it - the Japanese kicked the US car makers' butts in 
EVERY facet of their game, with the *exception* of full-size pickups. 
(If you don't believe this in regard to mini-pickups, which would you 
have rather driven during the 80's, a Chevy LUV or a Toyota pickup?  
I know the answer for me...)

I am now on my 4th Datsun Z-car, a 1983 280ZXT.  If my Audi was 
anywhere nearly as dependable and trouble-free, I would proclaim Audi 
as the finest car in the world....BUT in those respects, the Z-Car 
is far superior.  It also has an engine design (the famously 
durable inline-6) which I consider to be at least the equal of the 
Audi inline-5.  The Audi is great to drive, a safe and fine 
performing car, but it is a pain in the butt to maintain!

That's not putting Audi down.  I would not put up with all the 
silliness I must endure from our 200 if I didn't love the car!  It's 
the finest SEDAN I've ever driven - as far as road behavior and in 
keeping my family safe while in transport.  But I've been without the 
Audi for two weeks due to a simple ignition switch problem...one I 
could fix on just about any other car in an hour.  We  bought an 
85 Chevy pickup, partially to have something to drive when the Audi 
is down and we need a vehicle to carry two kids...and we've needed it 
for this function at least three times in the past year!

The remark has been made in this group that Audis illustrate the 
difference in meanings between the words "durable" and "dependable".  
They are incredibly gifted in #1, but rather lacking in #2.  Casting 
all cheerleading for Deutschland aside, my 280ZX scores extremely 
high on both.  So do most Nissans, Toyotas, and I must admit the 
obvious, Hondas.

We may not choose to drive them; we may vastly prefer the feel and 
safety of the Audi; but that doesn't mean that the Japanese 
automakers make inferior cars.

Now, if you want to engage in some Yugo-bashing, I can help....

Al Powell, Ph.D.                 Voice:  409/845-2807
107 Reed McDonald Bldg.          Fax:    409/862-1202
College Station, TX 77843