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Is this the next Edsel?

  1. Aug 16, 2016 #1

    jtbell

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    Staff: Mentor

    While watching the Olympics on TV last night, I saw a commercial for the new Dodge Ram pickup trucks, and thought, "do they look weird, or what?" Somehow the grill reminds me of a pig's snout.

    ram.jpg
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 16, 2016 #2
    Exactly! I immediately saw a pig's snout, before I read your comment :)
    They remind me of this guy

    Bebop_Teenage_Mutant_Ninja_Turtles_Warthog_TMNT.jpg
     
  4. Aug 16, 2016 #3

    fresh_42

    Staff: Mentor

    When it comes to American pickups, I always have to think how little has changed.

    coach-64609_640.jpg

    Only the ecological balance turned worse. Much worse.
    (Are the Americans still complaining about gas prices?)
     
  5. Aug 16, 2016 #4

    1oldman2

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    Gold Member

    Yes, but only until the upcoming elections, then we will have something significant to complain about. in the meantime we lament our relatively cheap gas and continue to push the boundaries of "bizarre automotive design". (the image you posted must be some newfangled "concept vehicle" as I don't see a drivers seat, although this could be a new prototype of a "self driving" car) :wink:
     
  6. Aug 16, 2016 #5
    I think it's uncharacteristically honest of Dodge to make them look like pigs. Guys buy those huge trucks then drive them to and from work, all alone, and never use them to haul anything.
     
  7. Aug 18, 2016 #6

    Fervent Freyja

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    They do look like pigs!

    Where I'm from, the majority of them probably do make good use from them. A huge tree limb fell on my house last year. My Husband tied his dodge to the limb, somehow, and made me hit the gas to pull it off. He uses it haul his toys, things to do with his hobbies, and many other things, but rarely for his job.
     
  8. Aug 20, 2016 #7
    All my old binder, 1972 International Harvester, has ever been used for is hauling. Now if I had a snazzy new truck I would probably drive it everywhere.

    30mliky.jpg
     
  9. Aug 20, 2016 #8

    http://www.autonews.com/article/20150216/OEM03/302169977/ram-not-hot-over-scorching-grille-reviews [Broken]

    Apparently I don't understand marketing. IMHO These trucks are only going to have one end of the spectrum.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  10. Aug 20, 2016 #9

    Mark44

    Staff: Mentor

    You're forgetting that when horses were the main source of motive power, there were massive quantities of horse manure everywhere, potential breeding grounds for typhoid fever and other virulent diseases.
     
  11. Aug 21, 2016 #10

    fresh_42

    Staff: Mentor

    Yes, but horses are bad at burning calories so their remains could (and at least here have been) used as burning material. Personally I assume that the lack of sanitation has been by far the more significant reason for these diseases. The normality to wash our hands several times a day isn't that old, not to talk about clean water.

    I once asked my brother in law why Americans love powerful cars, considering the fact that they aren't allowed to drive fast. His answer was, that they at least want to have a big acceleration at the traffic lights. Of course it was said cum grano salis. And whether horse indicated typhoid fever or fossil fuel indicated atmospheric particulate matter has the higher death toll isn't clear either. I tend towards the latter.

    Americans love their pick-ups (at least as far as the Americans I know have been telling me) and in 0.9 of all cases there is no real transportation reason anymore. It's a kind of mystery and my personal opinion is, that it's because of those coaches in earlier times. I mean, they settled the entire continent with those vehicles.
     
  12. Aug 21, 2016 #11

    Mark44

    Staff: Mentor

    At the turn of the 20th century, before the advent of cars and trucks, there were millions of horses used to transport goods short distances. If any horse manure was used for fuel, it would have been a microscopically tiny fraction. With all the horse manure lying around, some of it seeped into the ground water, polluting wells and rivers and creeks. If the water you use to wash your hands isn't clean, being fastidious isn't much help. The excrement that remained on the ground attracted flies, which are known hosts for many kinds of bacteria and microbes.
    Of course you're free to think whatever you want, but here's a link to a report that sheds some light on things.
    http://www.publichealthreports.org/issueopen.cfm?articleID=2438
    Some of the diseases that rampant in these communities include typhoid, typhus, diphtheria and whooping cough, cholera, and fevers and influenzas, at least some of which were a direct result of all the manure and dead animals lying around.

    How do you think public health compared back then, before cars and trucks were prevalent, with the particulate matter present nowadays?

    Can you provide evidence of this number? It's true that some Americans have large pickups and don't really use them for their intended purposes (of hauling stuff), but there are also lots of Americans who actually haul materials in their trucks, including farmers, building contractors, and many others.
    We call them wagons or covered wagons. People ride inside coaches. In any case, I doubt very much that any person buys a pickup because they are somehow reminded of the covered wagons used by the early pioneers.
     
  13. Aug 21, 2016 #12

    fresh_42

    Staff: Mentor

    No. This is only what has been said in personal discussions. Of course the pick-ups are used to haul stuff. But in how many of these cases a normal car wouldn't do the same? I'm not saying they are useless, but to pretend they were only used by farmers, constructors or similar professionals is simply wrong.

    I admit that animal husbandry in such a density as described in your reference causes problems. The more if people don't eliminate the cadavers. Maybe I underestimated the death toll at the times.

    Of course not. I've only said, that it reminds me on wagons. (Sorry, I had to look it up and didn't find the correct term.) And I think there might be more to it, in the sense of mentality, than could be justified by pure needs. One figure I've found was about 60,000 new trucks a month. I find this a lot.
     
  14. Aug 21, 2016 #13

    Mark44

    Staff: Mentor

    I didn't say or imply that pickups were used only by farmers, etc. I quoted above what I actually said.
    For someone who lives in a city, as I think you probably do, a pickup isn't useful very often. I live in the Northwest of U.S. Outside the large urban centers like Seattle and Portland, there are lots of farmers and loggers who have pickups, and for whom they are useful vehicles. Other folks use pickups with camper shells attached for recreational purposes. Still others who aren't farmers or in construction do home-improvement projects at home, and for which having a pickup is very useful.

    For the record, I don't have a pickup, but I do have a small SUV with 4-wheel drive. We get enough snow where I live that without 4WD you can't get around. I have recently used it to haul lumber from a local home-improvement store, including 16-foot 2" x 12" boards, and 10-foot 2" x 4" boards, plus a lot of other 8-foot boards. My vehicle has a roof rack that I can tie this stuff onto. Bringing the lumber home would be pretty impractical if all I had was a car to haul it with. Try fitting some 4' x 8' sheets of plywood into the trunk of your car.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2016
  15. Aug 21, 2016 #14

    Averagesupernova

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    For what it's worth, those pickups are not Dodges. The 1/2 ton pickups no longer say Dodge on them. Nitpicky I am for sure, but I could not resist. :smile:
     
  16. Aug 24, 2016 #15

    D H

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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    I have two cars (one of which is dead) and a truck. The two cars holds two people each, plus perhaps a few groceries. A big grocery trip? Need the truck. A trip to the hardware store or to the gardening store? Need the truck, no doubt. A trip to the dump to get rid of decades of accumulated junk? Absolutely need the truck. A road trip outside of town, perhaps camping? There's no thinking. Need the truck. There's no way a tent, a couple of sleeping bags, a couple of backpacks, and supplies would fit in either car. Besides, hour upon hour of bouncing in a performance car on Texas's poorly maintained roadways would kill me.

    While my truck is not at all sexy and does not have anything close to a sexy name (I name my vehicles, and her name is "Jane"), she is sturdy, strong, comfortable, and reliable. Compare with "Jessika", my hot car (a non-stock C5 Z06; "She's not bad; she's just built that way") or "Monica", my wife's dead MG. Both of those cars are initial caps Fun, and the one that isn't dead is all-caps FUN. All-caps FUN requires a vehicle that does 0-60 in less than 4 seconds and pulls close to 1g in a turn. But the only useful things I can do with her are to drive to work and pick up a few groceries and a bouquet of flowers for my wife on the return trip home.
     
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