Taking the originally suggested example of the Saxo vtr, all I can say is have you seen one after a crash, makes a Auntie Bessies Tin Foil tray look strong.
I am sure that if cars were to be as basic as they were back then prices would not be to dissimilar.
I doubt if extra safety kit has too much to do with it. Any cost incurred there has probably been offset with new efficiencies in the manufacturing process and all those other things that drive costs down over time.
Ever rising prices probably have more to do with a company's obligation to provide the best return for its shareholder and the tredmill of forever chasing growth.
EDIT: O.K. What's gone wrong with the edit feature? Why am I in a new post?
You know, I do believe that is a 'pec'...
Hi Lesia 44,
Dont disagree with you, I was just trying to say I would rather be in modern car etc.
Its not just all the extra safety kit though, its all the creature comforts etc etc. Todays base+ models cars would equal or even exceed the spec of A ford ghia whatever from twenty years ago. It makes you almost wonder do we really need half the things we have on a car today, we dont have them fitted to our house ( minus £5 to first person that mentions not needing ABS on a house).
I often toy with the idea of a classic just for fun, I keep seeing 308GTSs that look very tempting. But, while I can live without the creature comforts, you're right, they do looks as if they'd get torn to shreds in a coming together with a modern car, especially with all the giant SUVs on the road that just weren't about when the classics were first on the road.
Short answer: No, new cars are not so expensive, especially if compared with other mass produced products. It is true that the added manufacturing complexity has been counter balanced by improved manufacturing efficiency but the car makers now must rely on many suppliers for a very high percentage of the final value of the car. Initially this has been done to save costs but now the truth is that car makers are not able anymore to perform a lot of activities in the same efficient way the suppliers can.
What I find too expensive is the price of the extras. It is driven by the value that the market and the consumer gives to them rather than their actual cost. The added logistical and structural costs to allow diversifications in the manufactured model have decreased but the cost of the extra for the customer has not decresed accordingly.
Also a thing to bear in mind is that Today's Polo is the size of yesterday's Golf, now with a model sitting below the Polo, it is as if all they have done is musical badges. Saw an advert in an Italian paper yesterday for a Polo for 10,000 euros, and either a Hyandai or a Kia for 7995 euros. We in the Uk pay over the odds unless we are able to buy by the hundreds or thousands.
The most new car you can get today for under £10k would probably be the Proton Satria Neo 1.6 Sport Auto. Notice how I used the word 'most', not 'best'.
I still want my Saxo VTR.
So, the question would be.......why, in this austerity ridden times ,aren't car makers making more basic transport?, instead of putting all the safety tech in it we really don't need,why not a GL type car ?(L,GL,GLS, GHIA),or is that down to Pub bragging?
I find myself agreeing with you, Peter. A basic car would make a lot of sense, especially at the moment, but mainstream manufacturers seem obsessed with becoming upmarket. That's why I can't wait until Dacias hit the shores. Whether they'll be a success or not is another matter. If not, then maybe the current lack of simple cars will become understandable. One thing is certain though - I would much rather buy a mechanically simple car on the secondhand market when the it's no longer under warranty than a complex new car in the same circumstances. I can't imagine what a stressed little turbocharged engine with a dual clutch gearbox will be like in ten years' time. I wouldn't want to be the one paying for maintenance either!
Cars eventually will be like white goods (washine machines, tumble dryers, micro waves) they will have life span of 5yrs,and then be recycled,a good thing maybe?, but then cars would have to be cheaper, but, as a country that likes extras on our cars,whether we use them or not,cars i feel for the time being are going to get dearer, dearer to fix,dearer to trade on etc.Not many cars are fixed in the terms of getting a spanner out, there plugged in, diagnosed,the part replaced,should be cheaper, shouldn't it?
I'm not so sure that they have, at the mainstream end of things, and may even represent better value than, say, twenty years ago. What I do believe has happened though is that the cost of buying other "big ticket" items has got very much less expensive (better and more feature packed) in absolute terms, relative to earnings, and compared to cars, which is why cars may appear to be more expensive.
If I knew what I was getting into, I wouldn't have done it...and I would have been wrong.