We tried this before, about thirty Vents ago, and the response was — well, not exactly overwhelming, but no one threatened us with both tar and feathers, so why not give it another shot? This was the intro to Vent #643:

Over a thousand people a day post questions to the Cars & Transportation section of Yahoo! Answers, and since this is more traffic than I can reasonably expect to garner on my own, I figure the least I can do is preempt some of that traffic by answering typical questions right here. Fortunately for me, the questions are mostly the same: only the make and model vary.

And they generally go something like this:

How many miles is too many for a [fill in make/model]?
Given the actual thought behind this question, which is "Is this car going to die on me?" or some slight variation thereof, the answer is likely "One and a half." Every used car on the face of the earth is going to need repairs at some point. So is every new car, but at least they have warranties of a sort.

Can I put the transmission from an '89 Bulgemobile in a '99?
It might fit in the trunk, if you turn it just so. As for actually using the damn thing, well, maybe, if 1) the two model years happened to use the same transmission and 2) you could get the rudimentary electronic do-funnies in the old slushbox to talk to that newfangled OBDII stuff in the car and 3) if it's not in any worse shape than the '99 tranny you're wanting to throw away, which someone will probably want for an '04 Bulgey if he doesn't know any better. Which he doesn't.

I bought a new car yesterday. Will they take it back today?
It's possible, I suppose. How much do you enjoy the idea of paying three thousand dollars for eighteen hours' use of a Chevrolet Aveo? Because it's not new anymore, you know.

Can I convert my four-wheel-drive truck to two-wheel-drive?
The real question here, I suspect, is "How come it costs so much to fix a transfer case?" Whatever it costs, it's got to be cheaper than replacing all those other parts.

Can I convert my two-wheel-drive truck to four-wheel-drive?
Okay, now you're just being silly.

I really want a Nissan Skyline because it's so awesome and I wanna learn how to drift. How can I get one?
Skylines generally fall into two categories: legal (see, for instance, the Infiniti G35/G37) and illegal (pretty much all the others). For the G (or the current Nissan GT-R), it's simple: you write a large check. For the illegal ones, it's slightly less simple: you find someone who's willing to make all the changes to bring the car into compliance with Federal standards, and then you write a large check. (You may be able to find one which has already been Federalized, in which case you need only write a large check.) What all these have in common, of course, is the necessity of writing a large check. If you're not in a position to do so, and since you're not an experienced drifter anyway, well, there's this guy with a '99 Bulgemobile that needs some transmission work....

The Vent

  18 April 2010

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