Author Topic: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now  (Read 3069 times)

Offline Autos_Editor

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The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« on: February 25, 2013, 06:26:03 am »


Can you spot the children? Through the ever widening A-pillars in newer vehicles, even author Simon Hill has trouble seeing clearly.

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Offline airbalancer

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2013, 06:37:07 am »
 ::)
Where do they find these writers ???

I do not know about you, if I have trouble seeing something I will move my head so I can see


Offline tpl

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2013, 07:01:43 am »
yes.   My head moves just fine to see past the pillars.    But the manufacturers COULD build all of the side airbag into the roof above the door and COULD use super high strength steel for the pillars.

I sometimes wonder if a sustained "lobbying" ( aka bribery) on the US Congress could not remove some of the sillier output from the NTHSA and the EPA...couldn't be much more expensive that the money the music and film industry spend and they get what they want.
There is science, logic, reason; there is thought verified by experience.  And then there is California. - Edward Abbey (1927-89)

Offline Snowman

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2013, 07:11:12 am »
Annoying more than anything but like AB said, move your head. I will gladly adjust to have the airbag vs. none.

Offline Versa1.1

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2013, 07:14:50 am »
I agree with the writer, personally in my Juke the pillars and huge mirrors took some getting use to.  A certain amount of head movement has always been there, but now it's more and is somewhat annoying in some cars.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2013, 11:29:20 am by Juke1 »

Offline safristi

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2013, 07:21:35 am »
Head movement....................Wot's the PROBLEMO dudes
Time is to stop everything happening at once

Offline Danno001

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2013, 08:21:42 am »
Nanny state reply to a safer vehicle for folks driving off the edge of the road and over correcting. Improved shoulders, rumble strips - side and centerline have been installed the past few years on Hwy 69 between Sudbury and Parry Sound. Wondering how much they have improved rollovers or sleepy driver crashes. Air bags and stronger pillars mean you only have so much design room. I will take the stronger roof and air bags which means moving your head more tradeoff.

Offline Brigitte

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2013, 08:34:18 am »
It was definitely an adjustment for me, moving from the Jetta to the Santa Fe.  That pillar easily blocks my view of a pedestrian/cyclist/oncoming car.

Offline Solstice2006

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2013, 08:46:53 am »
I agree with the writer, personally in my Juke the pillars and huge mirrors took some getting use to.  A certain amount of head movement as always been there, but now it's more and is somewhat annoying in some cars.

I agree with the author as well.  I do check blind spots frequently, move my head, make sure the seat and mirrors are in the correct position, as the cars are shared between my wife and me.  I have had to lock the brakes up a couple of times, when making a right turn, in a right turn lane only, coming up to a yield sign, and crosswalk. I am focusing on the cars that are in the lane that I am trying to merge into.  With a no walk sign, I take a quick glance to check for pedestrians.  Ready to merge, and 1 second later two teenagers cross  from my far right side, where the thich A pillar at the passenger side is, to get to the highschool on the opposite side of the street! Now of course, the driver is always wrong, but they shouldn't have been crossing at that moment, or stand so close to a vehicle, right in front of my bumper.  Luckily no one was hit. 

But it is an adjustment.  Some cars execute it better than others.  Top of my head, Honda's do pretty well. 

Offline mixmanmash

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2013, 09:06:03 am »
I agree with the writer, personally in my Juke the pillars and huge mirrors took some getting use to.  A certain amount of head movement as always been there, but now it's more and is somewhat annoying in some cars.

I too agree with the writer.  My wife's Nissan Rogue is pretty bad for it.  Definitely a huge adjustment going from my Protege to it.  It means I have to be more cautious and am forced to move my head and neck around a lot more until I am sure I have seen a clear path.  This just compounds the blind spots as the rear shoulder check is pretty useless because of the rising belt line toward the back.  With the tiny rear window, it's really difficult to reverse safely.  How can car manufacturers get away with designing it with poor visibility, and then not offer blind spot monitoring or cameras as standard affair?

Maybe they should put cameras and a screen on the A-pillars...

Offline carcrazed

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2013, 09:08:45 am »
I like the side mirrors being mounted on the door panel like some Honda cars like this to open up the viewing angle a little more.



But I still want that extra head-protection in case of a bad frontal crash, though. 

Offline dasiuyan

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2013, 10:01:07 am »
for getting a new car, test drive is important; as well as "test-see". From my memory thou, good outward visibility car is never 'sexy' from outside.

Offline Arthur Dent

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2013, 10:04:48 am »
My '70 Mercedes is like sitting in a fish bowel compared to the 2 or Caravan with all that glass and thin pillars.

Offline Fobroader

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2013, 10:25:51 am »
Ive never really noticed this problem with the A pillar getting in my way....you know with me having a neck and the ability to move my head. What I find really annoying is small mirrors and horrid rear visibility. I remember driving a trailblazer a few years ago and hating the fact that it had really tiny mirrors, with an FJ I was in I found the rear visibility horrible. Im a big fan of trucks with towing mirrors, having driven a few, best visibility ever.

Keep the change you filthy animal.

Offline canuckystan

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2013, 11:08:53 am »
I also agree with the author.  The rising beltlines are for style, not safety.  Compare the previous generation Explorer with the new one.  Night and day difference in visibility.  That previous Explorer is the last of its kind with a very low beltline - visibility is fantastic.  The new Accord is supposed to have a lower beltline and thin B pillars, have to check it out.  My Saab also has excellent visibility - on the only cars I've ever owned that took a holistic view of safety, every little thing in that car (visibility, ergonomics, passive and active safety, etc) is geared towards safety and makes for a very comfortable and stress-free drive.  I wish more auto makers would take a broader view of safety, but I guess style sells ultimately.

Offline Northernridge

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2013, 11:56:56 am »
I don't think outward visibility in general is very important to manufacturers anymore. Function now follows form which is too bad because the form of choice has become the jelly bean. Maybe the specific issue with thick A pillars is role over protection...but I think that severely raked windscreens and the fact that the windscreens are so far away from the driver and therefore so are the A pillars...has a lot to do with it.
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Offline JohnM

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2013, 12:08:08 pm »
I rented a car about a decade ago that had very large A pillars and just about hit a woman pedestrian at a stoplight.  I was making a right and didn't see her.  Speed - just rolling but I came within 2 feet of her and she got upset.  Justified.

Big obstructions do make a difference especially if you are not used to the car and the angle of the A pillar is different.  One intersection near me has a curve on one side and the A pillar on the Prius perfectly obscures this road. 

Movement is required but if you can't see it, you don't always know know to move.

Cheers,
John M.

Offline NoTo

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2013, 01:05:06 pm »
First things first - the author was driving a Mazda 2 (the green paint and dashboard gave it away).  Simon, thank you so much for this rant-review, I am trying to lobby for this kind of change myself.

- Now for the rant -

This has to be expanded - it's not just about A-pillars...but especially in Kia/Hyundai models, the C and D pillars are huge too.  Outward rear-visibility is TERRIBLE and reliance on backup cameras is not a solution (because then people don't actually look behind before backing up).  Thank you, Toyota Volvo, and Honda (and any others), for your Cross-traffic Alerts.

The Fiat 500 needs to be banned.  That thick B pillar positioned right beside the driver makes it impossible to check your blind spot...the number of times I've had to honk and swerve on the 401 from Windsor to Toronto because of those effing Fiat's is beyond coincidence.  God I hate that car.

I don't think outward visibility in general is very important to manufacturers anymore.

how wrong you are, I'm glad to report - one of the Subaru Forester's strongest selling features is actually its huge greenhouse, low belt line, and ability to see a 1 metre high child anywhere around the car.  Phenomenal concern for pedestrian safety - and Subaru has also started lowering side-mirrors to the doors and adding in real front 3/4 windows (unlike Kia's minuscule excuse).

Until our cars drive themselves, the driver needs to be able to see the road and his/her surroundings.  That includes maintaining good wiper blades, using washer fluid, clearing snow off the ENTIRE car (not just using the wipers) when covered, and as a nice option, a water-repellent applied to side windows.

For those of you that disagree with the author, why do you hate your children?  (sorry, but need to quote the Simpson's cry for "won't someone please think of the children" had to be included).  Then again, if you hate your neighbour's children...

Offline PJAvenger

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #18 on: February 25, 2013, 01:43:47 pm »
My '70 Mercedes is like sitting in a fish bowel

Now that's something I didn't need to hear

Offline Northernridge

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Re: The Monday Rant: I Can't See Clearly Now
« Reply #19 on: February 25, 2013, 02:18:34 pm »
First things first - the author was driving a Mazda 2 (the green paint and dashboard gave it away).  Simon, thank you so much for this rant-review, I am trying to lobby for this kind of change myself.

- Now for the rant -

This has to be expanded - it's not just about A-pillars...but especially in Kia/Hyundai models, the C and D pillars are huge too.  Outward rear-visibility is TERRIBLE and reliance on backup cameras is not a solution (because then people don't actually look behind before backing up).  Thank you, Toyota Volvo, and Honda (and any others), for your Cross-traffic Alerts.

The Fiat 500 needs to be banned.  That thick B pillar positioned right beside the driver makes it impossible to check your blind spot...the number of times I've had to honk and swerve on the 401 from Windsor to Toronto because of those effing Fiat's is beyond coincidence.  God I hate that car.

I don't think outward visibility in general is very important to manufacturers anymore.

how wrong you are, I'm glad to report - one of the Subaru Forester's strongest selling features is actually its huge greenhouse, low belt line, and ability to see a 1 metre high child anywhere around the car.  Phenomenal concern for pedestrian safety - and Subaru has also started lowering side-mirrors to the doors and adding in real front 3/4 windows (unlike Kia's minuscule excuse).

Until our cars drive themselves, the driver needs to be able to see the road and his/her surroundings.  That includes maintaining good wiper blades, using washer fluid, clearing snow off the ENTIRE car (not just using the wipers) when covered, and as a nice option, a water-repellent applied to side windows.

For those of you that disagree with the author, why do you hate your children?  (sorry, but need to quote the Simpson's cry for "won't someone please think of the children" had to be included).  Then again, if you hate your neighbour's children...

This belongs over on the children hating thread.