RoAb #102 – I Read Pictures, Not Words

October 23rd, 2011 at 8:07pm


Coming up on RoundAbout . . . Chinese quality strikes again.  No, I’m not talking lead-slathered toys or melamine-tainted toothpaste, we’re going nautical this time.  States are cracking down on dogs behind the wheel.  And “Family Guy” rips on the Mazda Miata and papa ain’t happy.  Like a popular fried chicken fast-food chain, RoAb comes seasoned with 11 herbs and spices. 

Brought to you by and Advance Auto Parts

Play RoundAbout Episode 102

Download MP3 | iTunes | Zune | RSS
Featuring: Bob Hall, Eric Trytko, Michelle Naranjo, Craig Cole and Ben Sanders

Show notes and video after the jump!

RoundAbout records LIVE on Fridays at 6:30PM ET/3:30PM PT. Visit and click Watch Live to watch our webcast and look in on all the antics.


Show Notes:

States Cracking Down On Dogs Behind The Wheel
An unrestrained 60lb dog has an impact force of 2,700lbs. That can really hurt in an accident so several states – Connecticut, California, Massachusetts, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, Rhode Island and New Hampshire now all require that a dog be tethered or kenneled in cars. Ever wonder what the force of impact of Eric Trytko’s own Lola would be if the Mustang gets in an accident? I am no physicist but I don’t think that would not be pretty.

$2.7 Million Luxury Boat from China Sinks as it Touches the Water
Giving new meaning to the term Chinese Junk….  Named “Jiugang”, this suposed luxury yacht is aUS$2.7 millionproject financed by China’s Jiugang Group and built by the Lanzhou Ministry of Transportation.  No word if these are the same people who were responsible for the crashworthyness of the Brilliance 6.

Chinese Transportation Officials as saying that the accident was a result of “improper handling from the operators who miscalculated the water level causing the rear half to sink”.  Incredible that a country that has been building boats for four thousand years has this much trouble getting a basic boat right.

What’s the Most Incongruous Factory Rear Spoiler Ever?

Footage Shows Drunk Dad Having his 9-Year-Old Daughter Drive
Do you remember the kids with the cool parents?  They let their offspring stay up all night, drink coffee and even have go carts.  Awesome!  Well, the dad in this next article has the competition licked.  A Michigan man was arrested by Detroit Police last week for letting his 9-year-old daughter drive!  Now, that sounds like a really irresponsible and reckless thing to do — a full-size van is much too large of a vehicle for a pre-teen — BUT the gentleman in question was wasted drunk and his daughter was playing DD.  Surprisingly, the girl was doing a fine job, and if it weren’t for the surveillance cameras at a Citgo gas station WHERE THEY STOPPED FOR SNACKS the pair might never have been caught.  Her father’s loud-mouth boasting about her driving skills was ALL caught on tape.  So far the man has had a court hearing and been released on a $25,000 personal recognizance bond.  The kicker in all this?  The girl was sitting on a booster seat.

Wear a ponytail? Buy a Buick Verano
Nice to see that GM marketing and PR are still on the same course meaning, not on the same page. The Buick Verano, touted as a subcompact, luxury, *higher* performance car at 4 inches shorter than the Regal but really just lipstick on a Cruze, is being marketed as having headrests engineered to accommodate a ponytail. Given that Buick’s PR is trying hard to sell their wares to the male-oriented 3-series crowd with their technology, I guess that they are going for that small, non-existant segment of ponytail-sporting d-bags who usually buy into the used 3-series market. Did I miss GM hiring Chrysler’s marketing department?

Marchi Mobile’s eleMMent RV – a mansion on wheels with a functional fireplace
While not the most oppulant RV we have ever talked about on RoundAbout it is certainly one of the most styleistaclly challenged.  The nose of the machine looks like something out of a ‘60s acid trip combined with elements of the GM Futurliner, while from the cabin back looks like a luxury yacht from the late 90’s.

Depending on the configuration of the interior it can be tasefully minimalistic, or so gaudy it makes some of the House Wives of New Jeresy’s home look ready for Architectual Digest.

Family Guy and the Mazda Miata

Vertical bed supports street sleeping
Why can’t I shower while driving?  How come there isn’t a combination microwave/TV — the “microvision”? When will it be possible to grow animals on trees?  Unfortunately, for now at least, the answers to these questions only exist in the realm of science fiction.  But every day researchers are unlocking solutions to these troubling issues.  In fact, according to, a Brooklyn-based inventor just figured out how to sleep while standing up . . . and outside no less!  My mind is blown, too.  He’s come up with a contraption that looks like a metal skeleton.  It attaches to subway air vents out on New York City sidewalks and it supports the user’s body in all the right places, although it DOES NOT look comfortable.  It comes with a pair of dark sunglasses, noise-canceling headphones and an umbrella, you know, for protection from the elements.  Best of all the whole kitten-kabootle fits in a suitcase.  Now hipsters can sleep on the streets and NOT look like a vagrant!  Could you imagine taking a nap out on a busy New York sidewalk?  NO THANKS!


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Blind Spot
Cars companies with the most brand-loyal buyers


In the Garage
Scion iQ

Auto Gadget
Bob’s review of Forza 4


Design Hall

Short takes:

Holden restores its first ever concept car, the 1969 Hurricane

eBay Find of the Day: 1994 Ford Power Stroke Concept


The infamous Bangle Butt

Nissan Teana


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