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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The "Toyota" thread got me thinking .....

Are modern cars really more reliable these days, with all the tech advancements etc .... than say a mk1 cortina or even a mk1 golf .... or are we going backwards in the reliability stakes ... ???

Thoughts ???
 

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My Mk4 golf is worse than my old landrover and my old volvo........plus I don't need a warning light to tell me that my wheels are slipping, my washer fluid is low and a whole load of other bollocks!

They make them more complicated, less reliable (have a fixed shelf life i.e. just out of warranty) and harder to fix at home so they make more money!
 

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Milner for PM!
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Our five-year-old Škoda has electric windows and the other day the motors broke and they were stuck open. We've never had that problem with the manually winding windows on the Midget.
 

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I run a Towbar supply and fitting business and believe me the canbus and multiplexing systems are driving (or at least trying) the independent guys out of business! We are getting around this at the moment but with the cars being so complex, what with stability programs built in etc. we are being pushed towards deadicated wiring. Now this comes at a price! EG. that towbar that used to cost for example £250 is more like 450/500 ish, and we have the warranty issue to deal with also.
Only one real looser... you guessed it... the customer/end user, Again!
And Relax.....

Ratty.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I totally agree, when I was 20 I built this MK2 that was bomb proof, never let me down, and I used to drive that hard all the time. Never serviced it, maintained it ... and it never broke down once.
Excuse the picture, (scanned from negative), it was more trendy back then than it looks now ... :D



Then the second most reliable car I built was this 190e, ....... (dont worry I had hot rods in the garage, even when I was young ... just I was into hot hatches too) ... only rods now .. :D

 

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Where to begin.Jobs ive done recently,2007 Vivaro with a nissan engine,All 4 injectors have failed over the last 6 months.Had to get a specialist in to pull them out,thats over a grand.Then the alternator packed in and what a twat that is to fit.Nissan Pathfinder EGR valve fell to bits ,easy to fit,500 quid to buy.56 mondeo diesel-dual mass failed,over 800 quid with labour and bits,then it threw its lot in with the fuel system.New pump and injectors etc at 1800 quid.Promptly blew a turbo hose shit out.It has ow broken down up country so its anyones guess as to what now.BMW x5 rear air suspension failed,converted it to coil springs,now wont behave on the abs and cant bleed the back brakes.Audi a3 2.0 fsi ,snapped the drive chain that operates the fuel pump and inlet cam.Caused by a torx headed countersunk bolt that the head falls off.Second one of these ive done in 6 months.Dont start me on VAG stuff,golf door mechanisms that lock the door so you have a nightmare to get in there then they have a bolt on door skin.
Everything you touch now is plastic and shatters,lights come on the dash despite not touching anything connected to them.Anyhing to do with emissions or immobilisers,including keys becomes hell.Scanners that you buy cost a packet,often mislead you and always need updating.
Too many lost hrs,too many lost customers who quite rightly lose faith in you.Its all fun,so yes modern cars are fucking shit.
 

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agree 100% with Bedford ca fream and Kapri. I think between you you have got it nailed.
I will not take modern cars into my workshop now unless it's a simple set of brakes or wheel bearings. Thankfully, I never intended making a living working on modern stuff. What gets me is WHY manufacturers make things so that when something simple (like a bolt head shearing) goes wrong it wrecks everything and costs a fortune to fix. If a car or especially a van manufacturer could bring something simple on to the market once again, I think they would have a runnaway winner, but of course, electronics would be need for the emissions at least. I've never been one interested in "toys" in a car, and I see no need in having the toys, or the lights routed through cam bus systems so that if your right speaker isn't playing the car goes into limp mode! Okay that one was maybe a bit extreme but you get my drift.
My daily when I can't use my yanks, a 1992 Mercedes 190E 2 litre petrol auto. I've run it for three years plus now. Had a couple of diesel versions when new in 1990 and 1993.

 

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One breakdown in 15 years of owning my 1991 Defender. The accellerator pedal clevis pin came adrift. A quick rummage around the junk in the wife's handbag came up with a paper clip to hold the clevis pin back in place. All fixed in 2 minutes - paper clip is still there 3 years on....

1985 Volvo 240 estate... been in the family since new and mine for 7 or 8 years now. Never broken down. Absolutley everything is still working OK and it gets used monthly for a 500 mile round trip as well as a daily workhorse.

I bought a brand new Discovery 3 years ago which eventually we sold back to the dealer at a huge loss as it had spent more time back in the workshop than with me and we got totally fed up with it.
 

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we run a 2006 a6 audi deisal 2 ltr 6 speed done about 170k miles in it best newish car we have ever owned,worst car was 2003 mondeo diesal when things started to go wrong with fuel system it was one thing after another no one could correctly diagnose the fault unles i replace everything costing 2k so i gave the car away biggest piece of shit from ford.
 

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Deviant
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I wont buy somthing I cant fix I run an old 96 discovery everything that can go wrong with it I can fix myself with no need for a pooter my buisines partner keeps mentioning more tidy looking things that we could buy to tow the caravans but there all plastic boxes that when you buy one your at the ransom of the main dealers

Someone needs to build a mass market car thats designed to last for life that can be mended by anyone we could easily do it but its not a financially sound thing to do the manufaturers want you to chuck it away after a few years and buy another

modern cars are considered scrap by the motor trade after 5 or 6 years thats just insane
 

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my mate breaks German cars and it always seems such a shame that he's breaking cars with zero rust anywhere (most of the time) and most of the panels just get weighed in with the car as nobody needs them. When I was youngee we ONLY scrapped cars because of RUST, not because the air suspension failed or the Transit diesel pump which just costs so much to repair that they end up scrapped. Mind you the fucking Transits rot faster than they break too!
 

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As my daughter can't mend cars (woud maybe break a nail) and my son needs a reliable car to get to his work on a 60 mile round trip daily, they took the plunge and did what the manufacturers want and that's to take new Audis on the drip, and change them at thre years when the warranty runs out, and just keep paying forever. Overall, it seems the cheapest way to motoring nowadays as long as you can afford the drip of course. I think we're almost at the stage where "old school" mechanical cars will be past their usable age, so the only way is new, as buying a 3 year old car now is most likely to end up in tears. (and bankruptcy)
 

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New cars are not manufactured to break, as when they do break its not the manufacturers who make the money form repair bills its the dealers, most of whom are franchised.

Are new cars more reliable than old? Drive a cortina, sierra and mondeo everyday, servicing as you should and see which one drops first. Cars now don't seem to last as long before they break as oppose to rot but at the same time cars are covering more miles than they used to. The more miles you cover, the more wear and tear the vehicel suffers, the more wear and tear the greater the chances of a failure. And the reason for short life expectancy is high repair bills once the warranty period has ended, these high bills are 99% as a result of a lack of understanding as to how and why things work and incorrect diagnosis being carried out as a result. The majority of electrical failures on modern vehicles is down to wiring or connector issue. Some can be cured by simply unplugging and re connecting a component, but there are too many garages out there who will read a DTC and replace the related component before carrying out wiring and electrical checks. And when that fails to work the customer still foots the bill (this applies to both main dealers and Jed in a Shed). I am a technical support engineer for one of the big motor companies and we offer support to the independant garages as well as the main dealers. Some of the conversations we have are scary and the time and money some places waste for the customer is shocking, that is the problem with modern cars, not the cars themselves.
 

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worst car was 2003 mondeo diesal when things started to go wrong with fuel system it was one thing after another no one could correctly diagnose the fault unles i replace everything costing 2k so i gave the car away biggest piece of shit from ford.
I had a 2002 Mondeo TDCi (new) that had fuel management problems from new, sometimes it just wouldn't fire and the glow plug light used to flash indicating a fault. Over the 4 year lease it went back to Ford so many times and they could never trace the fault (so they said).

I think part of the problem is that all of the electronic systems in cars now just aren't robust enough to withstand the environment and conditions a car has to go through.
 

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New cars are not manufactured to break, as when they do break its not the manufacturers who make the money form repair bills its the dealers, most of whom are franchised.

Are new cars more reliable than old? Drive a cortina, sierra and mondeo everyday, servicing as you should and see which one drops first. Cars now don't seem to last as long before they break as oppose to rot but at the same time cars are covering more miles than they used to. The more miles you cover, the more wear and tear the vehicel suffers, the more wear and tear the greater the chances of a failure. And the reason for short life expectancy is high repair bills once the warranty period has ended, these high bills are 99% as a result of a lack of understanding as to how and why things work and incorrect diagnosis being carried out as a result. The majority of electrical failures on modern vehicles is down to wiring or connector issue. Some can be cured by simply unplugging and re connecting a component, but there are too many garages out there who will read a DTC and replace the related component before carrying out wiring and electrical checks. And when that fails to work the customer still foots the bill (this applies to both main dealers and Jed in a Shed). I am a technical support engineer for one of the big motor companies and we offer support to the independant garages as well as the main dealers. Some of the conversations we have are scary and the time and money some places waste for the customer is shocking, that is the problem with modern cars, not the cars themselves.
Interesting. I guess part of the problem is down to training and understanding modern cars and taking a different approach to diagnosing a problem? I think that the mechanical parts of modern cars are superior to those of old (ball joints etc) but some of the electronic systems by their nature are fragile pieces of kit that if not looked after or are subjected to conditions not considered during their design, they will give problems.

There is also now a different attitude by the car owner. Thirty or more years ago it was common for the owner to do their own servicing, greasing ball joints, de-coking the head etc, failure to do so would have been an MoT fail probably before the car was five years old (assuming it hadn't rotted away beforehand). I can't remember the last time I saw someone changing the oil & filter on their driveway on a Sunday morning (although actually reacing a modern oil filter now is far from easy....). People now just expect to turn the key and go.
 

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Attitues have changed as owning a car is no longer a luxury, it is now a required tool for everyday life.

Also, folks forget there are several thousand more cars on the road than there were 20-25 years ago, so it stands to reason that you will hear more of cars breaking down. But if you were to work out a percentage of cars on the road to cars broken down for today and again for 25 years ago, you will probably find today shows a smaller figure.
 
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