"Once the whole world has been bullied and cajoled into the purchase of pillbug trucks, auto enthusiasm as we know it now will be limited to the people willing to fix old cars, the same way that literacy was mostly limited to the clergy during certain periods of European history".
Nice article, but I would like to add: You are assuming that we (the future car guys) will even be ALLOWED to drive those “old cars” on the road legally when this time of Henry Ford’s “Make them all black” level of automotive variety returns to the modern world.
As even Ford pronounced a short while ago, “… soon, all of our vehicles will be autonomous and Ford will own every one of them” meaning to me that self driving cars, of only one or two models/designs for the efficiency of manufacture, that you probably lease the rights to use one of (not the same one every time either) when you need them, will probably be THE way private transportation will be accomplished in the future. This will first happen in decent sized cities where the 5G network and other necessary infrastructure has been installed to make hands-off driving “safer than any human can accomplish, for your own damn good, whether you like it or not” of course. As this technology improves, it will sprawl to the more rural areas as well.
It’s bad enough that even semi-new vehicles come with “safety features” that cannot be easily bypassed “for your own good”, even when one actually HAS the driving ability/skill to use the now forbidden maneuvers to possibly save their own life under extreme circumstance.
For example, the last 2 of my personal Ram 1500 4X4 pickups (2013 & now 2016; 400hp Hemi engines in both) have come with a “yaw control” which quite frankly is REMARKABLE on how well it functions. Even on glare ice and even when I do everything within my power to get the truck to slide sideways/fish tail, the yaw control will not allow that vehicle to get more than about 15-20 degree off of center before automatically straightening itself out! BRAVO to whoever designed that system for Dodge! But, I HATE YOUR FLIPPIN’ GUTS!
This “safety feature” almost caused me to TOTAL my 2013 Ram the first winter day I drove it when I first discovered its’ existence while I was trying to have my normal MI. winter-driving-fun of fishtailing my truck through the freshly fallen snow. Then, when I contacted the dealer/Dodge to ask how this feature could be disabled, they informed me that it was not possible (even the dashboard mounted Traction Control button only covers wheel spin, it is not linked to the Yaw Control). So I thought to myself, being a long-time driver of high performance vehicles, a controlled “spinning the car out” IS an option that I HAVE used before, both on the track and even in my daily driver, to prevent bad things from happening to me. I’ve even used these skills simply to get out of tight spots where a 17-point U-turn was the only other option.
Due to society degrading to the lowest common denominator which in this case means poor drivers who, like my dad did for me as part of my driver’s-ed experience, were never taught how to do donuts in wet or snow covered parking lots and recover the car to straight and true, even when the back end of the car decides to go one way while the front end says something completely different.
OK, P.C. rant off now, but my point is that even the definition of CAR itself will likely change in the future. If they even call it a “car”, it will be a boxy/ugly (but relatively spacious) low-carbon emitting “thing” which shows up at your door a few minute after your 5G enabled refrigerator hears you talking with your significant other about needing to leave the house soon to go to the government mandated gender (all 27 of them) acceptance training.
Sorry if I have offended anyone here… But, GET OVER IT! LoL…