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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Avoidable Contact #117: In which a student body vice president tells tales of a Japanese Jaguar

Live in reality. That's the closest thing I have to a personal motto. Sounds simple, and it is, but it's frequently miserable. Baseless optimism is how most of us get through life-that, and a habit of telling ourselves comforting lies about our capabilities, our success, how much we are loved by others, and so on.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/opinion/avoidable-contact/avoidable-contact-117-in-which-a-student-bod...
9 REPLIES 9
9lbhammer
Pit Crew

It sure seems like companies love building cars nobody wants. I had an internship at an OEM and I sat in on multiple meetings where we had data that proved customers wanted X and we continued to make our cars do Y.

Reality is a lot lamer than imagination. In imagination I have GSXR and my s10 has a ls3.
Gary_Bechtold
Technician

I have trouble being excited about most of what is coming out. Too many cars seem to me like it's a car for somebody else and not clearly for me. So when Lexus decided to finally put the 5.0 V8 in the smaller IS body I finally found a car that interests me. It only took them 7 years to do what we asked for when the new IS platform came out in 2014.

I liked the J30 but I feel like Nissan/Infiniti has tried pretty hard to shoot themselves in both feet as often as possible. How they screwed up when Toyota succeeded with Lexus and Honda with Acura I don't know. Infiniti has been half-assing it most of it's life. When they got it right with the G35/G37 then they went wrong and went all Q on everything. What's a Q? Nobody knows and the sales show it.  I feel like Nissan never fully committed to the Luxury brand thing as much as they committed to a slightly nicer Nissan.

Germanicus
Intermediate Driver

Funnily enough, Infiniti's business model today is leasing their cars out for mainstream prices. Nissan is too broke to properly refresh Infiniti's lineup, and Infiniti hasn't figured out how to remix what's left in the fridge to make something good like Dodge has, so this is what Infiniti has to make do with. It's successful enough as a survival strategy judging by the number of Q50s and QX60s I see on the road now. But "the cheapest luxury car" is a tenuous position when the Germans are racing to the bottom, and mainstream brands are making more luxurious vehicles today.
Djarum
Pit Crew

I don't know.

The new rear wheel drive Mazda 6 could be such passion project. It looks like Mazda has yet to really embrace electric.
whitef
New Driver

I think my 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia is a modern J30. It is fast, comfortable and reliable (no...really...I can hear your skeptical chuckle) but they can't hardly give them away. I'm sure this platform will go away soon to be replaced with some suicide inducing crossover.

You really can't blame the manufacturers. They make what sells. The customers are the problem.
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

To some degree, it's the dealers and the floorplan agencies; I'll cover that this week.
CJinSD
Advanced Driver

It's a nice dream to imagine an auto executive who wouldn't play the Chicom "globalist" game. Too bad the same group of guys, masquerading as four groups of guys, control 86% of the corporate boards in the world.

I went for about a three mile walk on Sunday. I saw two R32 or R33 Skylines, and they weren't together. It isn't an everyday thing, but I certainly haven't noticed a J30 in quite a while.
ShortestCircuit
Pit Crew

Well first of all I how dare you make me already laugh 4 paragraphs in, and isn't Stellantis or whatever they are called this week doing exactly what your DeLorean inspired mind is thinking of? Namely keep building 700hp rear-drive sedans in the face of this rogue wave of EVs that is coming? They said their EV is coming, but they didn't mention stopping building the V8s...
chrisawyer
Pit Crew

Jerry Hirshberg, a true original. At the press launch of the J30 -- in front of the assembled hierarchy from Nissan/Infiniti -- he described the J30 buyer as, "A complete a-hole (he used the full word), The kind of guy with a cell phone in each ear and another in his hand." Then, as if to prolong the shocked silence, he repeated his description. On another occasion, this the launch of the original Nissan Quest minivan (a.k.a. the Mercury Villager), he was showing us the many and various ways you could reconfigure the rear compartment by sliding the second row seat around when he blurted out: "Now that's a minivan even Jeffrey Dahmer could love." I couldn't scribble it down fast enough. He was a gem.

One more thing. When you write: "We lost that when the manufacturers decided to burn billions upon billions of dollars on the altar of electric vehicles and compliance cars," you words couldn't be more true or less of a surprise. Unfortunately, a backbone is something the industry has never possessed, and it will continue to grovel while it hopes that -- this time -- its dutiful compliance will finally remove it from the crosshairs of regulators.