design-by-wire

Discussion in '2006 Scion Fuse' started by Land Quail, Apr 18, 2006.

  1. Oh, hell. They'll probably make this damn thing too, though it'll come to the public in the "revised" form of another eight-foot long SUV with abbreviated camry underpinnings and unworkable plastic Sort-A-Shift buttons wired into a four speed auto. And why is it again that anybody could ever need drive-by-wire steering? Here's how I imagine that technological nugget arrived in this car:

    Asian-American California Hipster Scion Intern: I've figured out how to completely eliminate the steering column, leaving room for more... er... Playstations and things!

    Middle-Aged Toyota Design Has-Been: Great work, Choo. You've saved us from keeping a bundle of money that, without your cleverness, could have been put to use improving our real cars. Pity about the steering feel though...

    AACHSI: Steering feel?

    MATDHB: Yes, it was used long ago in Toyotas... The elders say that you could discern the level of grip at the front wheels by... feeling it through the wheel.

    AACHSI: No! It is only legend! The unwelcome dividend of a past that should stay dead! But no longer. I will use the room freed up by the steering column's absense to compose a dizzying and unservicable network of pulleys and sensors and motors--Perhaps a small diesel-electric engine to power it all--and using state-of-the-art software enfuse the circuitry that powers my steer-by-wire system with all the steering feel of a properly set up rack-and-pinion without all the shortcomings of my original plan!

    MATDHB: Yes, Choo. You do that. You might wind up putting the car overweight in the process and saving the powertrain team the trouble of wrenching another miserable, wheezy, half-ton, gutless Camry V-6 under the bulbous hood. Then all that space left by a 4-cylinder with a respactable power to weight ratio would give you room to put three or four of your little TV's under the hood somewhere.

    (MATDHB takes a long pull from his hip flask, mutters something that sounds like "like to put a tv up your dweeb ass" and stares wistfully out the window as he contemplates setting fire to the building.)

    The End.

    Here's a plan that would put Scion right on top: Build a car that looks like niether a refridgerator, panfish, or overweight housecat (X's B, A, and C, respectively), keep it light, and then put a decent engine in it.

    And that's going to mean a big re-tooling of things. For starters, what does that miserable little four-banger of Scion's make these days? 110 Horsepower? Maybe 120? It's an insult. And what's worse, the dealership threatens to turbocharge the shitty little lump for a few grand and bring the total to a "fast and furious" 160 or so, ensuring heart-stopping drag races with all the Chevy Lumina's in town thereby making you every fourth-grader's boy-racer hero as you wheeze past the playground with your too-little-too-late "performance exhaust" squirting an annoying fart-noise in the name of an extra 1/4 horsepower.

    And when't the last time anybody got a small sports-coupe under 2,100 lb? (Put your hand back down Lotus) Hell, why not take things in the other direction with Scion and forget about this boy-racer nonsense. They should build a mammoth car and call it the Scion Shitstorm SUBURBICUBE-TRANCEPARTY and fill it lights and H-D Tv's and DJ-style turntables. You'll have room to dance too, as you will be driving around in a postmodern-Salman Rusdie party world on wheels made complete when the 30'x25' fully automatic, push button, fold-out "warehouse" sprouts from the roof. There's going to have to be some way to store plenty of water on board, because not all of Scion's demographically predicted buyers will be there "just for the love of the music" and you don't want your awesome new Scion Shitstorm SUBURBICUBE-TRANCEPARTY to become a rolling hearse for technocolored ravers do you? Goodness no. Too much to explain for a new-age urban streetsmart neo-hippie.

    Stupid #$%#ing car company.

     

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