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The Super-Sensored Car Brings Mixed Long-term Consequences
1/27/2019

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Figure 2
The price of new cars has been rising faster than inflation and electronics in general; much of it is due to added features and functions, some discretionary and some mandated. (Image source: Statistica)

The price of new cars has been rising faster than inflation and electronics in general; much of it is due to added features and functions, some discretionary and some mandated. (Image source: Statistica)

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D Feucht
D Feucht
2/2/2019 12:21:43 AM
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Self-Defeating Auto Trend
Is it any wonder that automotive companies are driving themselves out of business by continuing to add more "bells and whistles" to cars instead of learning from the VW Beetle of the '60s?

In the developing world, we have more options. I drive an India-built Mahindra Pikup truck that costs half that of a Toyota Hilux, has a 4-cylinder diesel engine designed by Bosch, and has minimal electronics - not even an engine control computer. This is especially advantageous here in the tropics, where heat and humidity eventually penetrate seals and cause electronics failures.

"Keep it simple" is an engineering maxim that needs to return to the automotive industry. Instead, the maxim that "if it can be done, it will be done" prevails. Who benefits? In the long-term, neither buyer nor seller.

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