Quality of Pacifca vs Aspen?

Discussion in 'Other Models' started by John W, Nov 10, 2003.

  1. John W

    John W Guest

    My last experience with a mopar product was with a 76 Aspen. The fenders
    rusted out prematurely and it had rust from day 1. This did instill
    confidence in a uaw product. How do current products compare to my 76
    fiasco? I've been a 2+ decade advocate of Japanese nameplates, but may
    consider a domestic brand again.
    John W, Nov 10, 2003
  2. John W

    Bill 2 Guest

    You might want to look elsewhere. The Pacifica is manufactured by a German
    Bill 2, Nov 10, 2003
  3. John W

    John W Guest

    Good catch. Next on the list!
    John W, Nov 10, 2003
  4. Aspen vs Pacifica. WOW, That is a big spread. NOT THE SAME BALLPARK,
    NOT even the same WORLD.
    You state:
    <<"This did instill confidence in a uaw product.>> WHAT DOES THE UAW
    have to do with it. WE (UAW) JUST BUILD THEM. In case you do not
    know it, some of those japanese nameplates were UAW built also.
    Richard Benner Jr, Nov 10, 2003
  5. John W

    Lloyd Parker Guest

    Well, from Canada....
    Lloyd Parker, Nov 10, 2003

  6. They have changed considerably. My parents had some 70s cars, mostly
    Fords (Maverick was the worst), and the front fenders in the Maverick
    rusted out in less than 3 years. The two main problems were
    insufficiently purified recycled steel and the lack of an inner fender.
    Both problems have long been rectified.

    I currently have three vehicles: 1994 Chevy K1500, 1996 Plymouth Grand
    Voyager and 2003 Dodge Grand Caravan. The Chevy has no significant rust
    on the body. I won't say none as I haven't inspected it with a
    magnifying glass, but none that is readily apparent. The bumper is
    starting to rust on the right rear where the exhaust gases hit it, but
    that's it after 10 years of driving in PA and NY where we use lots of
    road salt in the winter.

    The 1996 is likewise nearly rust free. I didn't put mudflaps on it and
    there are a couple of small rust areas where the paint was chipped off
    the bottom leading edge of the doors from flying stones (I live on a
    dirt road and have a long gravel driveway). However, nothing that is
    significant yet. I'd have the lower half repainted, but it has 141,000
    on it and the book value is only $3000 or so. I'm planning to just
    drive it into the ground with minimal investment. I suspect it won't
    rust through for at least 3-5 years and by then I'll probably just have
    it carted off to the boneyard.

    I'm not against buying imported cars, but I think people do need to
    realize that it affects the economy and will affect THEIR job at some
    point in the future. I think we've started to see the affects during
    this last recession/recovery and future ones will likely continue the
    trend. It is hard to exist solely on a service based economy and
    certainly isn't a good place to be from a defense perspective.

    I bought a new Honda once and it was the worst car I ever owned. Dumped
    it a 90,000 miles after having the top end rebuilt and have never looked
    back. The icing on the cake for me with Honda was the extremely rude
    treatment I received from the zone office when I asked them to at least
    partially stand behind their engine after it self-destructed at 70,000
    miles. I'll never own another Honda of any type, car or lawn mower or
    anything in between.

    There is no doubt that Detroit got exceedingly lax and sloppy in the 70s
    and 80s and the Japanese paid attention to quality as the Koreans are
    doing now. Detroit learned a painful lesson, but I believe that, by and
    large, did learn it. All of the quality indicators, except Consumer
    Reports which just parrots what their readers tell them, indicate that
    the quality gap between North American and Japan is exceedingly small
    and Europe and Korea aren't far behind.

    Matthew S. Whiting, Nov 10, 2003
  7. The Pacifica isn't 'imported'. is it?

    Dori Schmetterling, Nov 10, 2003
  8. John W

    Geoff Guest

    Not according to NAFTA rules it isn't. It just makes a little hop over the
    Ambassador bridge (or more likely the railroad bridge) from Windsor, ON into
    Detroit. Built by our good Canadian friends.

    Geoff, Nov 10, 2003
  9. John W

    James Linn Guest

    Well it precedes NAFTA by many decades. The Auto Pact allowed US
    manufacturers to import vehicles into Canada without paying duty if they
    built as many in Canada as they imported.

    The auto industry is pretty big in Ontario. In addition to the big three we
    have Honda(Civics), Toyota (Corollas and soon Lexus ) and CAMI which is the
    GM Suzuki partnership which builds Metros and Trackers etc.

    Its not where its built, its not whether or not its unionized, its a lot fo
    other factors which determine quality. The GM Oshawa plant builds some of
    the best of the big three vehicles(Regals/Impalas) with the same union and
    not far from the Bramalea plant which built my crappy Intrepid. They both
    buy parts from some of the same parts manufacturers. The design and what
    parts they choose make the difference.

    James Linn
    James Linn, Nov 10, 2003
  10. John W

    Steve Guest

    Why would anyone judge American cars, let alone Chrysler, by a 76 Aspen?
    Well-known over the years as one of the most poorly quality-controlled
    cars ever built (although with excellent basic engineering- find one
    that was put together right and it'll run forever).
    Steve, Nov 10, 2003
  11. John W

    Neil Guest

    From what I've read, I'd say quality and reliability of all makes is
    up since 1976, but the Japanese are still the leaders. While the US
    makes have generally improved, the Japanese have stayed ahead by also
    continuing to improve and they set the standard.

    If you want to look at reliability of US vs. Japanese makes, as well
    as any other makes, look at the April issue of Consumer Reports at
    local library. Or get an online subscription at:


    In terms of reliability, the Pacifica is too new to say anything
    about, IMHO. But I think you'll find it has many more features and
    capabilities than your Aspen, yet I bet it will also be more reliable
    and trustworthy.

    Try Google.com for more Pacifica comments from web and newsgroups.
    Neil, Nov 10, 2003
  12. Not to my knowledge. I wasn't saying this in respect to the Pacifica,
    but in respect to the OP's comment about buying Japanese cars. The
    comment was "I've been a 2+ decade advocate of Japanese nameplates, but
    may consider a domestic brand again."

    Matthew S. Whiting, Nov 11, 2003
  13. Hardly the gold standard with respect to auto data...

    Matthew S. Whiting, Nov 11, 2003
  14. No car from 1976 can be compared quality wise to anything built in 2003.

    How'd the 8 track play in that Aspen, anyway. Or did you just have an FM
    converter for the AM radio? What was your CB handle?
    Kevin Wolford, Nov 11, 2003
  15. John W

    John W Guest

    Yes, you do build them. The problem is the UAW wages, benefits and pension
    contributions are not commensurate with the fair market value of your
    services. In a global economy, this excess cost has to be absorbed to
    compete with low cost producers from Asia. This is why the auto makers have
    eschewed the UAW in favor of Mexican labor in recent years
    John W, Nov 11, 2003
  16. John W

    John W Guest

    I had a 102 inch whip antenna mounted to the bumper. My CB Handle was
    "Honda Is Quality"
    John W, Nov 11, 2003
  17. John W

    Lloyd Parker Guest

    Like democracy though, "better than anything else."
    Lloyd Parker, Nov 11, 2003
  18. Back then, I bet you spent a lot of time explaining you meant cars instead
    of motorcycles. I bet that "H" insignia on your mood ring drew the ladies
    at the Disco, too!

    I bet you were ahead of the curve, and had a Commodore 64 or a TRS-80 at
    home back then too. Maybe an Apple II? Wasn't Pong exciting!? PacMan was
    still a few years off.

    It's a good thing things have changed a bit since then. I bet it would have
    been hard to find a place to mount that 102" whip on an early Civic without
    having to drill into the body. Cell phone antennas are much more convenient
    today. Why, even if you haven't moved up to a handheld, you probably have a
    through the glass adhesive antenna. Unheard of at Radio Shack in 1976!
    Kevin Wolford, Nov 11, 2003
  19. John W

    Geoff Guest

    That's an excellent question, Steve, and frankly I said 'troll!' to myself
    the moment I read the first post.

    Geoff, Nov 11, 2003
  20. John W

    Lloyd Parker Guest

    That's not what it asks. It asks if you had any major problems during the
    past 12 months. The survey includes cars up to 6 years old.

    I find it hard to believe you subscribe to CR.

    So are all surveys. The people J D Power contact decide for themselves if
    they will respond -- in other words, they self-select.

    No, you again have misread the charts. As I said, I don't believe you
    subscribe to CR. You do not know what the survey asks, and you do not know
    what the charts mean.
    Lloyd Parker, Nov 11, 2003
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