Will the future of the automotive industry be BORING ?

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Like spyware on 4 wheels

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Car tuning (especially visual tuning) is becoming less and less popular, instead of performance and the ability to develop greater speed in the mainstream of automotive priority is becoming ECOLOGY AND SAFETY (on the scale of ecopropaganda! by the way even such car as Ford Mustang in 2021 has VERSION WITH ELECTRIC ENGINE !). Even car designers seem to create car designs more and more similar to each other.

Mazda hasn't produced a sports car for years, unless we consider the MX-5 to be such. Honda has narrowed down the range of Type-R versions and gave up production of many cult models. The Toyota has gone into urban hybrids, while the Nissan has a love for SUVs and crossovers. On Mitsubishi there's no more words at all, because , Mitsubishi brand completely lost its character (the eternal war between the EVO Lancer and the STI Impreza, the first one lost with a forfeit).


Meanwhile self-driving cars will swarm roads within the next couple of decades. They'll be cheaper, safer, more efficient. Our grandchildren – heck, maybe even our children – will probably never learn to drive a car if they will live in an urban environment. While it's fun to think about in a futurism sense, there will be little excitement where the real change happens. Autonomous vehicles will, by their nature, be boring. For the most part they'll have utilitarian looks. They'll be quiet and electric, they'll be slow and conservative drivers. They'll basically be a more personal version of public transport.

P.S Do you agree with my opinion ? What is your personal opinion about future of mainstream automotive ?
 
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kikie

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Yes, cars are getting boring but not in the next decade.
Unless someone invents the most reliable, green, clean, and sustainable energy to power future cars and transportation. The current transport infrastructure is not up-to-date enough for every car to be autonomous, so far.

Look on youtube at video clips about people who tried to imagine how life would be in the 21st century. Although they had an idea, which was correct in one way or the other, they were way off generally. I don't think that the next 10 to 15 years will make transportation (too) boring though.

If the future of the automotive industry is going to be boring in the near future, then we will adapt and later generations won't even know it has become boring because what they don't know/experienced, they will not miss.
 

eran0004

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I don’t know, I think cars can be exciting even if not everyone owns one. Self-driving cars are likely to replace vehicles for commuting, but incredibly unlikely to replace sports cars.
 

Keef

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I'm actually a bit relieved that commuter cars will become more miserable and hopefully autonomy will get to a point where people can be more productive and safer. Driving to work without actually having to drive sounds amazing to me.

But for the enthusiast it might be pretty miserable. Virtually all sports cars of any size will be electrified which will make performance modification difficult. I think mods will boil down to aesthetics only at that point. Another problem is that virtually all ICE sports cars will begin to appreciate as the enthusiast market values them highly, and it won't simply be the classics. After hitting rock bottom, a run-of-the-mill FRS will begin to appreciate simply because nothing like it is made anymore and will ever be made again. This appreciation will change young enthusiasts forever, basically blocking them from ever owning an ICE car until they're middle-aged, but of course they'll have watched prices continue to rise as they get older, hoping their incomes grow to match. I mean we're already seeing this phenomenon with some off-road trucks and SUVs like Land Cruisers and FJ Cruisers which hit a rather high rock bottom years ago and have gone up ever since, and it's weird because there are actually more off-road offerings now than ever! Imagine in the future when new ICE sports cars literally don't exist anymore.
 
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Not only boring I'm 100% sure people won't be allowed to drive one on public roads anymore
 
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MatskiMonk

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Meanwhile self-driving cars will swarm roads within the next couple of decades. They'll be cheaper, safer, more efficient.

I can't see this happening within the life time of the average GTPlanet user.

As with any new innovation when it comes to cars, the sheer number on the road, and the somewhat prohibitive cost of new ones, means widespread adoption takes a lot longer than you might think based on peoples simple acceptance of it - even if every new car sold today was fully autonomous it could take at least a decade to replace all the existing cars - because most people don't buy brand new cars. And we're not even there yet with the tech, the legislation to make it all fully legal isn't approved yet,and individual acceptance and 'trust' of autonomous cars is currently low - so we're a long, long way off that scenario of all new cars being sold being autonomous anyway.
 

kikie

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If this is the thing we are going to use as transportation, I won't be disappointed if cars get boring.


aeromobil.jpg
 

CLowndes888

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It will be years before autonomous vehicles become common place. We are a long way off.
 

Wolfe

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Meanwhile self-driving cars will swarm roads within the next couple of decades. They'll be cheaper, safer, more efficient. Our grandchildren – heck, maybe even our children – will probably never learn to drive a car if they will live in an urban environment.
"If they live in an urban environment" is right. With mindless computers in charge, I don't think AVs will ever stray beyond the confines of urban areas -- in which they can benefit from controlled intersections everywhere, adequate road maintenance, lower operating speeds, gridlock to confine them, and so on. Much like the controlled conditions that allow for autopilot flight. Computers require controlled conditions to interact with the physical world.

They also seem most practical for urban areas, from improving traffic flow to ridesharing. If they can manage it.
 
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39,028
On top of the stuff mentioned above about how there's virtually no legislation about autonomous cars and the solutions we have now to autonomous driving is a hodgepodge of competing half steps exclusive to luxury cars that mostly seem to exist to allow idiots to take a nap while on the interstate, the (US) average age of cars on the road today is 12 years old. A quarter of them are 16 years or more old. Both of those numbers have been steadily increasing; and likely will go even higher as entry-level cars are increasingly discontinued.



I suspect "maybe our grandchildren will probably never learn to drive a car if they will live in an urban environment" because of prevalence of autonomous cars (as opposed to not needing a car at all) is really pushing believability unless you're viewing this forum at age 13.
 
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830
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View attachment 993464

Like spyware on 4 wheels

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View attachment 993446

Car tuning (especially visual tuning) is becoming less and less popular, instead of performance and the ability to develop greater speed in the mainstream of automotive priority is becoming ECOLOGY AND SAFETY (on the scale of ecopropaganda! by the way even such car as Ford Mustang in 2021 has VERSION WITH ELECTRIC ENGINE !). Even car designers seem to create car designs more and more similar to each other.

Mazda hasn't produced a sports car for years, unless we consider the MX-5 to be such. Honda has narrowed down the range of Type-R versions and gave up production of many cult models. The Toyota has gone into urban hybrids, while the Nissan has a love for SUVs and crossovers. On Mitsubishi there's no more words at all, because , Mitsubishi brand completely lost its character (the eternal war between the EVO Lancer and the STI Impreza, the first one lost with a forfeit).


Meanwhile self-driving cars will swarm roads within the next couple of decades. They'll be cheaper, safer, more efficient. Our grandchildren – heck, maybe even our children – will probably never learn to drive a car if they will live in an urban environment. While it's fun to think about in a futurism sense, there will be little excitement where the real change happens. Autonomous vehicles will, by their nature, be boring. For the most part they'll have utilitarian looks. They'll be quiet and electric, they'll be slow and conservative drivers. They'll basically be a more personal version of public transport.

P.S Do you agree with my opinion ? What is your personal opinion about future of mainstream automotive ?
Holy fearmongering.

Most modern cars focus on “ecology [sic] and safety” because their customers want them to be so. Car companies are changing their lineups as a response to growing demand in safer and more fuel efficient vehicles that can also haul groceries, a bunch of kids, etc. Sports cars (with perhaps the exception of the Mustang and cars like it) have always been a niche market.

Maybe I’m too optimistic, but I hope that electrification and autonomy become more accepted among the general public. Since way too many people are terrible drivers, more autonomous cars would go a long way in making road travel safer. Either that or mass public transportation becomes commonplace, both of which would be a win in my book.
 

Danoff

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"If they live in an urban environment" is right. With mindless computers in charge, I don't think AVs will ever stray beyond the confines of urban areas -- in which they can benefit from controlled intersections everywhere, adequate road maintenance, lower operating speeds, gridlock to confine them, and so on. Much like the controlled conditions that allow for autopilot flight. Computers require controlled conditions to interact with the physical world.

They also seem most practical for urban areas, from improving traffic flow to ridesharing. If they can manage it.

Betting against computers is usually a bad move. You're way over estimating how difficult this problem is. It's difficult, but it's not as difficult as you're pretending.
 

Wolfe

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@Danoff -- Computers do best what they do best. I may only be an amateur programmer, but I know what makes them tick.
 

Danoff

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@Danoff -- Computers do best what they do best. I may only be an amateur programmer, but I know what makes them tick.

Computers have been around in a big way (I'm not talking vacuum tubes) for about 40 years now. In the year 2000, the Pentium 4 managed 2.2 ghz. To be frank, you don't know what you're talking about. Computers are in their infancy, and they're changing exponentially.


Edit:

Training time required goes down. Computing power dedicated to training goes up. By June we'll have about twice as much computing power dedicated to training AI as we do today. By October, twice what we had in June. We're developing dedicated chips designed specifically for machine learning.
 
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Wolfe

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@Danoff -- I know how machine learning works. Computers don't "learn". They follow instructions, and machine learning is just iterating instructions and selecting designated favorable outcomes, then looping back with instructions based on those that produced the favorable outcomes. It's mindless. It's not awareness. It's not intelligence. The human brain is unimaginably complex in comparison, and I don't think throwing more cycles-per-second at the problem is going to bridge the gap.

I 100% firmly believe the singularity is a myth. It will never come to pass. Computers are very susceptible to mistakes and really have no clue what they're doing. There is no "clue" to have. Screwing up is one of the things computers do best. It is an intrinsic quality.
 

Danoff

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@Danoff -- I know how machine learning works. Computers don't "learn". They follow instructions, and machine learning is just iterating instructions and selecting designated favorable outcomes, then looping back with instructions based on those that produced the favorable outcomes. It's mindless. It's not awareness. It's not intelligence. The human brain is unimaginably complex in comparison, and I don't think throwing more cycles-per-second at the problem is going to bridge the gap.

How does this in any way argue against anything I said? (also, the brain is not unimaginably complex)

I 100% firmly believe the singularity is a myth. It will never come to pass. Computers are very susceptible to mistakes and really have no clue what they're doing. There is no "clue" to have. Screwing up is one of the things computers do best. It is an intrinsic quality.

A singularity is not required to learn how to drive. Computers don't make mistakes, but sometimes they don't do what the programmer intended.
 

GranTurNismo

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The short answer is no. Cars will not be boring as long as car enthusiasts and buyers of interesting cars continue to exist. Even as the ICE is becoming extinct and fully autonomous cars are eventually the norm, I don't see the concept of the traditional sports car going anywhere.
 

Wolfe

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A singularity is not required to learn how to drive.
How does this in any way argue against anything I said? :rolleyes:

You have high expectations from computers. I have a love/hate relationship with computers. Honestly, you're up against a mountain of experiences over a lifetime.

I will believe an AV can navigate any and every road by my home, year-round, in all weather, without incident, when I see it (not from inside the car). I was under the impression that such a feat is currently not even in the scope of AV development (and that's fair). Ergo, AVs are more realistic for urban use. Which was the gist of what I said in the first place.

And yes, last time I checked, the human brain is still mysterious to us. We're nowhere near decoding it yet. Forgive me for a little rhetorical hyperbole with "unimaginably".
 

Danoff

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I 100% firmly believe the singularity is a myth. It will never come to pass.

me
A singularity is not required to learn how to drive.

How does this in any way argue against anything I said? :rolleyes:

Presumably you were just mentioning that apropos of nothing, not having anything to do with the conversation about self driving cars? If so, how was I supposed to know that?

You have high expectations from computers.

I'm just acknowledging the relationship between computing capability and time.

I have a love/hate relationship with computers.

I don't think so. I think you have a love/hate relationship with programming. Perhaps more specifically, programmers. I think you have a love/hate relationship with people.

Honestly, you're up against a mountain of experiences over a lifetime.

I shouldn't be. Your lifetime of experiences should easily show you how non-linear the development of computing technology is. Think back 10, 20, 30, even 40 years and consider what computers absolutely could not do then, and what they can do now. Your lifetime of experience should be the thing that leads you to the conclusion that computers are working their way into every facet of human development, very rapidly.

I will believe an AV can navigate any and every road by my home, year-round, in all weather, without incident, when I see it (not from inside the car). I was under the impression that such a feat is currently not even in the scope of AV development (and that's fair). Ergo, AVs are more realistic for urban use. Which was the gist of what I said in the first place.

It would be trivial to do with today's technology. A sophisticated approach would be to create an ultra precise navigation environment (perhaps using double or triple differenced GPS signals), in which a sufficiently outfitted vehicle (such as one with snow tires or tank treads) could navigate any weather conditions would be able to do so completely blind (I mean with no cameras) using the GPS signal alone.

A less sophisticated approach would be to spend many hours training vehicles driving around your home in all kinds of weather conditions to build up the machine learning needed to get around without a driver.

I think what you meant was to do it with one arm behind your back - meaning that you want a self driving car to show up with no prior knowledge of the area and do it in real time by imaging alone. And while that might not be necessary, there's no reason to think that computers would be incapable of accomplishing the task at some point. Certainly it's not in the near term for self-driving capability, and my guess would be that such a problem would be one of the last things that self driving algorithms would manage. However, that'll be where it's headed.

At first, automation might limit itself to urban areas with well defined roads and signage. It'll stop and wait for a driver (perhaps a remote driver) when it reaches conditions that it considers to be too challenging. But it can learn from that driver, and with enough experience, an environment that used to be too challenging has had many examples of a driver navigating through it, and then the driver is no longer needed to intervene.

That kind of behavior might be exactly what tackles some of the dirt and gravel roads that get used in rural areas. You may even end up showing an algorithm how to do it yourself.

I should point out here that computers have some inherent advantages in these kinds of conditions. Computers can manage some pretty complex math based on imagery that human brains cannot. A couple of distant trees can triangulate where a road usually is (but is buried by snow), and for a human this might be guesswork. A computer can figure it out quite precisely.

It might be challenging now, but it's easy to see why a computer can end up being actually far better at the job than you at some point.

And yes, last time I checked, the human brain is still mysterious to us. We're nowhere near decoding it yet. Forgive me for a little rhetorical hyperbole with "unimaginably".

The human brain is a bag of meat and chemicals. It is a biological computer, honed by trial and error in much the same way as machine learning works for computers. Our brains have not worked out every last nugget of understanding about our brains, but our brains are quite imaginative, even imaginative enough to imagine the complexity of our brains. Remember, the more complicated our brains, the more complicated a brain we can imagine.

I think it's a little odd that you pick driving (presumably on dirt and snow) as being something that is unreachable for computers. There is nothing about that problem that seems insurmountable. It's definitely not the most difficult thing we do with our brains, and computers have shown quite a lot of promise in the area of driving specifically. There are other problems, like writing a movie or novel, or creating a joke, or creating an emotionally moving painting, that seem far more insurmountable for computers. Yet I can't tell you I'm supremely confident that any of it is out of reach - not because I have high standards for computing, but because I recognize the limitations of the human meat brain, and because the history of computers suggests that relatively short timespans bring about wild changes in capability.
 
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AudiMan2011

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In terms of normal cars, yes the future will be boring with more commuting confined to big urban centers where EV chargers are more abundant.

In terms of performance cars, it'll be interesting to see how full EV hot hatches and sports cars can make electric technology exciting. Even the upcoming crop of 2000hp electric hypercars are looking to push EV performance tech to the limit.
 

McLaren

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Car tuning (especially visual tuning) is becoming less and less popular, instead of performance and the ability to develop greater speed in the mainstream of automotive priority is becoming ECOLOGY AND SAFETY
I'm not sure on this. The OEM world seems to be continuously pushing the bar for performance & taking full advantage of the industry's move to more eco-friendly to boost performance to new levels. You look at Tesla, the Koenigsegg Gemera, or the new Artura, all cars that still place performance as a priority whilst meeting future eco requirements.

The aftermarket world for car tuning doesn't seem to be dying in terms of popularity, either. Never seen so many new cars entering the fray of 1,000-3,500Hp monsters, many being these already expensive Huracans, 911 Turbos, & McLaren Super Series models . I suspect many shops are already looking at the new Artura (since it's the future of the Sports Series) & waiting to modify it.
 
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Wolfe

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Presumably you were just mentioning that apropos of nothing, not having anything to do with the conversation about self driving cars? If so, how was I supposed to know that?
I don't make non sequiturs. Each post in the conversation follows the last. I said what I said, and as far as I can tell, each is a rational response on-topic to the post I am replying to. However, I don't blame you for seeing it otherwise, because this happens too often.* It's on me, somehow. 🤬 me.

Nevertheless, I am in no mood or state of health at present to escort you through the convo, or to continue. We disagree.

I think you have a love/hate relationship with people.
LOL, there is no 🤬 love in that relationship. That bridge burned decades ago. I've never made any particular effort to hide that fact in all my years here. I just try to be better.

* - Only in the non-videogame subforums, for whatever reason. I seem to come through crystal clear up there. I don't know what I was thinking. I wish we could hide subforums/sections, maybe in the upcoming version of GTP. There's nothing for me down here anymore.
 

kikie

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First of all, as I said before, the current transport infrastructure is not up-to-date enough for autonomous vehicles. Plus it will always be possible to take manual control of the car if you want to/if needed.

As long as the current monetary system exists car manufacturers will develop interesting, fast, beautiful cars. There is too much money involved. I don't think that ecology and safety is going to an issue. Right now safety is already one of the most important things car manufacturers have to consider and still, cars aren't boring at all. Ecology is not going to be a problem either. Whatever energy source is used to propel a car, it is not directly related to how cars are going to be; boring or interesting.
At this moment, electric cars seem to become more and more interesting and this will continue to be so.

Also, motorsports is still very much alive and influence the development of cars to make cars interesting.

Bottom line, cars will stay interesting for the coming 10 to 20 years. There will be boring cars and interesting cars and even unreachable supercars in the future.
 

Danoff

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I think that the car industry has lost sight of "fun" a little bit. "Fast" is too often a substitute for fun. Like others have mentioned here, I think older cars hit a sweet spot in terms of "fun" and we're leaving that behind. Maybe we can find it again, I'm not sure.

It's not entirely the car industry's fault. Consumers do a poor job of understanding themselves a lot of times. I see it on this forum quite a bit, as car enthusiasts line up to try to crunch the numbers on laptimes, horsepower, quarter mile times, etc. trying to boil the understanding of what makes a car truly engaging or "fun" down to a fact sheet that can be lined up against some other car. But that doesn't do the problem justice, and it pays lip service to the great cars that have been created.

"Fun" of course is not quite the same thing as "not boring". A car that's actively trying to kill you is not boring, but also not fun. I think fewer and fewer cars going forward will hit that try-not-to-die vibe. And for me personally, I don't think I'll miss that.

But for really approachable cars that can put a big grin on your face and be engaging... I think that's going away too. So I guess my answer is that future cars do look boring compared to the past. More supercars won't necessarily change that. Faster cars won't necessarily change that. It definitely seems that the industry standard is moving toward quiet, comfortable, safe and efficient. Most of what I look for in a "not boring" car is basically the opposite of that. It's (partly) why I like older cars.
 
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I think that the car industry has lost sight of "fun" a little bit. "Fast" is too often a substitute for fun. Like others have mentioned here, I think older cars hit a sweet spot in terms of "fun" and we're leaving that behind. Maybe we can find it again, I'm not sure.

It's not entirely the car industry's fault. Consumers do a poor job of understanding themselves a lot of times. I see it on this forum quite a bit, as car enthusiasts line up to try to crunch the numbers on laptimes, horsepower, quarter mile times, etc. trying to boil the understanding of what makes a car truly engaging or "fun" down to a fact sheet that can be lined up against some other car. But that doesn't do the problem justice, and it pays lip service to the great cars that have been created.

"Fun" of course is not quite the same thing as "not boring". A car that's actively trying to kill you is not boring, but also not fun. I think fewer and fewer cars going forward will hit that try-not-to-die vibe. And for me personally, I don't think I'll miss that.

But for really approachable cars that can put a big grin on your face and be engaging... I think that's going away too. So I guess my answer is that future cars do look boring compared to the past. More supercars won't necessarily change that. Faster cars won't necessarily change that. It definitely seems that the industry standard is moving toward quiet, comfortable, safe and efficient. Most of what I look for in a "not boring" car is basically the opposite of that. It's (partly) why I like older cars.

"Fun" is, I think, a marketing nightmare. You can't objectively prove that your car is more fun than the other guy's. I have no idea if a Shelby GT500 is a more fun car than a Dodge Challenger Hellcat, or which one I would prefer. But the engineering teams can be given a pretty objective mission: faster (0-60, 1/4 mile, top speed) and more grip (skidpad Gs) and the even more dubious ones like "pounds of downforce at X speed". Buyers want to feel like they made the best choice, that they got the best car and its easier for them to look at the spec sheets and make that determination with facts and figures. This has been going on for a long time. I remember the first Need for Speed game (1994!) had road test data for all the cars and I remember that it summarized "handling" entirely with a single figure: lateral g's. For probably 10 years after that, I held in my head that handling was an objective figure determined entirely by how much grip a particular car has. It wasn't until I really started to understand things like suspension geometry, comfort/control tradeoffs, chassis balance and all the rest did I realize that something I had understand so simply was actually far more complex. So that's me actively exploring my own understanding of things - I couldn't expect an average consumer to do that. So consumers look at spec sheets and road test data and pick whichever one delivers, objectively, the best on the criteria they think they care about. I'm pretty sure this is also the reason we've never received a hardtop MX5 because the only way to market "fun" (really, the only thing that you can market the MX5 with) is by making it a convertible.

The other part of that is that even when you get a potential customer in the showroom, "fun" is not so easy to convey. You put somebody who has never driven a sports car properly in an MX5 and they might not get the point. Fun to them might be how it feels when you gun it on an onramp. It might not even occur to them that an MX5 is most fun in a downhill sequence of corners. A BMW X6M has a far more easily conveyed flavor of fun - it's a monster and that point cannot be lost on anyone, even if that flavor is kind of like just a lot of MSG and nothing else. MSG sells food, HP sells cars.
 

Danoff

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"Fun" is, I think, a marketing nightmare. You can't objectively prove that your car is more fun than the other guy's. I have no idea if a Shelby GT500 is a more fun car than a Dodge Challenger Hellcat, or which one I would prefer. But the engineering teams can be given a pretty objective mission: faster (0-60, 1/4 mile, top speed) and more grip (skidpad Gs) and the even more dubious ones like "pounds of downforce at X speed". Buyers want to feel like they made the best choice, that they got the best car and its easier for them to look at the spec sheets and make that determination with facts and figures. This has been going on for a long time. I remember the first Need for Speed game (1994!) had road test data for all the cars and I remember that it summarized "handling" entirely with a single figure: lateral g's. For probably 10 years after that, I held in my head that handling was an objective figure determined entirely by how much grip a particular car has. It wasn't until I really started to understand things like suspension geometry, comfort/control tradeoffs, chassis balance and all the rest did I realize that something I had understand so simply was actually far more complex. So that's me actively exploring my own understanding of things - I couldn't expect an average consumer to do that. So consumers look at spec sheets and road test data and pick whichever one delivers, objectively, the best on the criteria they think they care about. I'm pretty sure this is also the reason we've never received a hardtop MX5 because the only way to market "fun" (really, the only thing that you can market the MX5 with) is by making it a convertible.

The other part of that is that even when you get a potential customer in the showroom, "fun" is not so easy to convey. You put somebody who has never driven a sports car properly in an MX5 and they might not get the point. Fun to them might be how it feels when you gun it on an onramp. It might not even occur to them that an MX5 is most fun in a downhill sequence of corners. A BMW X6M has a far more easily conveyed flavor of fun - it's a monster and that point cannot be lost on anyone, even if that flavor is kind of like just a lot of MSG and nothing else. MSG sells food, HP sells cars.

...it makes the future boring. ;)