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Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 12:42
I have bought two second-hand Land Rovers in the last 30 years and am therefore the best person to advise Land Rover on new vehicles.

Leicas, anyone?

(I also have a monthly column in Land Rover World about classic LRs, so obviously I know all there is to know about current models).

(Yeah, right).

Cheers,

R.

Morca007
07-26-2008, 12:51
The flaw is that you are supporting an obsolete technology, obviously you should be moving on to hybrids by now.

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 12:58
The flaw is that you are supporting an obsolete technology, obviously you should be moving on to hybrids by now.
Dear Matt,

Thanks. How could I have missed something so obvious?

Obviously I should also pull down my 200-500-year-old house (in a conservation area) and build something more eco-friendly. It'll only take another 200+ years to recover the energy cost of demolition and rebuilding. Pity the new house wouldn't last 100 years -- but hey, that's not my problem.

Cheers,

R.

Peter_Jones
07-26-2008, 13:03
I've had four in the last ten years, :D I'll give Solihull a call on Monday ;)





(Nice analogy Roger) :)

Gabriel M.A.
07-26-2008, 13:05
I have bought two second-hand Land Rovers in the last 30 years and am therefore the best person to advise Land Rover on new vehicles.

I think the flaw is that you owned two. If you don't own one, it makes you an even better person to give advise on the subject.

Leica anyone? :)

yanidel
07-26-2008, 13:48
The flaw is that you have not experienced new vehicles and their early reliability problems. Second flaw, technology improves quickly, it does not seem to be your main buying criteria given you prefer to wait and buy used. Most new buyers rank technology high up therefore you cannot provide voice of customer to Land Rover.
In the end, I think you are the guardian of tradition Roger, you make sure Land Rover does not forget who they are and what their values are.

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 13:59
Most new buyers rank technology high up therefore you cannot provide voice of customer to Land Rover.
In the end, I think you are the guardian of tradition Roger, you make sure Land Rover does not forget who they are and what their values are.
Well, that's what I hope, and it's a necessary job. But mostly, I think, the people who work for Land Rover (and the people who work for Leica) have a pretty good idea of the value of the things I praise -- and all they have to worry about is how far they can depart from them.

What I can tell them about new vehicles/cameras is however somewhat limited; unlike those who think they know it all. The 'make a cheap compact camera in China' brigade are not too clear about what a Leica is, and I'm not too clear on the luxury market, as I don't buy that many luxury products (and when I do, I expect them to last -- hence wearing my 40+-year-old Omega watch...)

And with four-wheel drives, to a very large extent it's the driver, not the vehicle. Much like cameras and photographers, really.

Cheers,

R.

ferider
07-26-2008, 14:16
The flaw is that you are supporting an obsolete technology, obviously you should be moving on to hybrids by now.

Assuming, Roger is talking about a new Land Rover or BMW with direct injection Diesel, driven on a continent where (Bio!) Diesel is readily available, using a Hybrid would be nothing more but a mis-guided fashion statement ! :D

Cheers,

Roland.

Papa Smurf
07-26-2008, 14:19
I have bought two second-hand Land Rovers in the last 30 years and am therefore the best person to advise Land Rover on new vehicles.

Leicas, anyone?

(I also have a monthly column in Land Rover World about classic LRs, so obviously I know all there is to know about current models).

(Yeah, right).

Cheers,

R.

Roger, have you ever thought about going into American Politics? Your thinking is right on if you listen to the latest round of political debates (our Presidential race). False logic is like a nasty social disease, it knows no boundaries when it comes to race, age, religion, well you get the picture.

A college Professor of some note once told me that the only reason that most people were allowed to roam freely was because it was too expensive to institutionalize everyone that could not / would not think for themselves. I personally know people that would say that your credentials imminently qualified you to give advice to Range Rover or Leica, for that matter! Where have all of the flowers gone?

Austerby
07-26-2008, 14:38
Well, for the price of two Landies you could have bought something seriously interesting - a Bristol rather! (though p'raps not the running costs...)

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 14:47
Well, for the price of two Landies you could have bought something seriously interesting - a Bristol rather! (though p'raps not the running costs...)

Funny you should say that. I always fancied a 401 or 403 (or 402 but as I recall there were only 23 of those, of which I have ridden in two) but the 400 was undriveable (I tried -- tiny rear window, sliding windows that opened the wrong way and suicide doors so I couldn't back it out of the lane). The 404 and 405 were OK but lacked the magic of the 401-2-3 and the 406 was too portly.

Many of the bits were silly-cheap. The indicators, for example, were off the Morris Minor van. On the other hand, if you dent Superleggera bodywork...

Besides, I never had the price of two LRs simultaneously.

Cheers,

R.

Austerby
07-26-2008, 14:54
I had a 411 (series 4) for a while - by far the most extraordinary car I've ever had. It was truly barge-like but with an immense self-presence that carried through and made it sublime. I adored it but it had to go. I'd still like another and this time a 403 or one of those lovely 405 convertibles would be appealing. Some day, perhaps when I sell the Leicas...

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 15:01
I had a 411 (series 4) for a while - by far the most extraordinary car I've ever had. It was truly barge-like but with an immense self-presence that carried through and made it sublime. I adored it but it had to go. I'd still like another and this time a 403 or one of those lovely 405 convertibles would be appealing. Some day, perhaps when I sell the Leicas...

But a very, very fast and extremely beautiful barge, if somewhat thirsty. Why did you sell it? Apart from the fact that it didn't have a proper Bristol engine?

Cheers,

R.

Keith
07-26-2008, 15:34
The flaw in this statement is that it's an attempt to ramp up the current argument between the Leica and the non Leica fans here! :rolleyes:

As for Landrovers, I think they're rubbish ... I'm a certified motor mechanic who did a five year apprenticeship in NZ's largest British Leyland dealership and I have no fond memories of working on the hundreds that I did! :p

shimokita
07-26-2008, 15:37
Well, let's assume (with all honesty) that you have done your homework to the n-th degree and have put your money/ time/ passion into the subject area. You should have something of value to add to the body of knowledge/ future planning. The question is how you engage with the responsible organization/ team/ individuals/ public.

Making a controversial statement with a promise to provide your "pearls of wisdom" after you allow other to vent, and not doing so in a timely manner (and pearls of wisdom???) would be an example of less than honest engagement. There may be more examples.

Spot the flaw: There is nothing basicly incorrect in putting forth your (limited) opinion after two senond hand purchases. Does anyone take monthly columnists seriouisly? Does the CEO of LR listen to the opinion of the two examples above... should I listen?

Does my participation in this thread mean that I agree with your supposition? It's Sunday morning and too early for the newspaper...

clh

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 15:40
The flaw in this statement is that it's an attempt to ramp up the current argument between the Leica and the non Leica fans here! :rolleyes:


Dear Keith,

Not really. It's a suggestion that those who don't know what they're talking about (e.g. me and new Land Rovers) are not the best people to advise those who are running the company.

The opinion of someone who knows about Land Rovers' faults, from real experience, is another matter. As is the opinion of someone who actually uses camera A -- whatever camera A may be -- as compared with that of someone who has only ever used camera B.

When was your apprenticeship? I'm told they've got better from hitting rock bottom a few years ago.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-26-2008, 15:43
Spot the flaw: There is nothing basicly incorrect in putting forth your (limited) opinion after two senond hand purchases. Does anyone take monthly columnists seriouisly? Does the CEO of LR listen to the opinion of the two examples above... should I listen?


Well, yes, that was my point, really.

Cheers,

R.

shimokita
07-26-2008, 15:56
Paying attention and taking something seriously are slightly different. If a CEO and his board only listen to the loud squeeky wheel then what value are they bringing to the company. It's their job to bring business in the current economic model. Their job is also to work for the future (although this seems to not be a prioirity in the current business environment). There are different levels of mangement and any company can dissapear in two business/ product cycles.

Maybe you take the role of columnist or "vocal user" too seriously... In their respective environments they may bring value, so not to exclude anyone ;-) and from time to time they can be entertaining. But if they are "driving a company" then it says more about that company...

clh

tbarker13
07-26-2008, 16:11
It is an interesting example (as a fellow owner of leicas and, only one, Land Rover.) But I would venture to guess that there have been numerous examples throughout history of companies making silly moves because they failed to listen to customers.
I don't for a second believe I am best suited to tell Leica how to build cameras. But I do know better than Leica's CEO what I like in a camera.
And if enough people think the way I do, perhaps Leica's CEO will listen to me (us).

I speak theoretically, only, since I've been pretty happy with what Leica's been trying to do in the digital realm. Other than the fact that I'm now heading into my 7th week of waiting for the return of my M8, following a 2-4 week repair estimate. But that's another story.

photovdz
07-26-2008, 16:22
I thought the only camera that would fit in a bristol or land rover would be a Corfield Periflex or Wrayflex... (now let's talk about idiosynchracy....)

I love british engineering, almost as nice as italian engineering... do you know that in Italy Rover cars were highly praised as reliable ?

Stephan

(I was born in a mini... never asked my parents if I was conceived in a mini...)

Keith
07-26-2008, 16:24
Dear Keith,

Not really. It's a suggestion that those who don't know what they're talking about (e.g. me and new Land Rovers) are not the best people to advise those who are running the company.

The opinion of someone who knows about Land Rovers' faults, from real experience, is another matter. As is the opinion of someone who actually uses camera A -- whatever camera A may be -- as compared with that of someone who has only ever used camera B.

When was your apprenticeship? I'm told they've got better from hitting rock bottom a few years ago.

Cheers,

R.


I guess I look at it purely from the point of view of a person who had to crawl in and around and under the damned things overhauling transfer cases, clutches, gearboxes hub seals etc. The transmissions were the weak point in my opinion ... the engines were pretty bullet proof and the only thing I constantly remember replacing on the motors was the exhaust manifolds. The dealership always kept hundreds of these in stock because if you drove a hot Landrover into deep cold water a bit quickly it would crack the exhaust manifold as often as not.

A lot of the ones we worked on were off farms (every bloody farmer had one) and they would only bring them in for a service every couple of years or so ... or if the clutch etc had gone. I spent many a happy hour as an apprentice with a hose and screwdriver chiseling mud away from the engines and transmissions, which had usually turned into an unrecognisable lump of hardened earth, so you could actually get at the numerous rusted nuts and bolts to get what you needed out. The cold chisel was my friend here! :p

I did my apprenticeship between 1967 and 1972 Roger ... and then I was as we say ... ''outa there!'' I'd had more than enough crawling around under things with crap falling in my eyes and I went off and spent the next twenty years working on motorcyles which had always been my real passion!

Al Patterson
07-26-2008, 17:01
I have bought two second-hand Land Rovers in the last 30 years and am therefore the best person to advise Land Rover on new vehicles.

Leicas, anyone?

(I also have a monthly column in Land Rover World about classic LRs, so obviously I know all there is to know about current models).

(Yeah, right).

Cheers,

R.

There is no flaw in that statement. If there were, there would be no need for Land Rover and Leica forums on the Internet. ;)

gavinlg
07-26-2008, 20:17
The flaw in this statement is that it's an attempt to ramp up the current argument between the Leica and the non Leica fans here! :rolleyes:

As for Landrovers, I think they're rubbish ... I'm a certified motor mechanic who did a five year apprenticeship in NZ's largest British Leyland dealership and I have no fond memories of working on the hundreds that I did! :p

Agreed - My friend had a late model defender "extreme" (the hardcore offroad version) which had electrical problems. We were doing some hillclimbs one day, the problem reared it's ugly head halfway up the hill, and cut power to the brakes, motor etc etc. Defender rolled back and rolled over. Just one roll onto the roof made the chassis twist like a banana and the A-pillars were snapped. Not a safe nor a reliable car.

Windscale
07-26-2008, 20:48
Roger, The only flaw in the statement is that it should never have appeared in RFF. Totally waste of space. More waste of space for those who replied to it (including yours truly)! Classic cars vs Modern cars is very different from Classic cameras vs Modern cameras. And for those who immediately think of Leicas when they hear about LRs, I can say that they have too rich, or too narrow, an imagination. It is like being asked by a Shrink "what is the first thing you can think of when I say ____ ? " I hope, as photographers, we can do one better!

BTW, I have got your RB a long time ago. Enjoyed it very much. Thanks.

Leigh Youdale
07-26-2008, 22:29
I went off and spent the next twenty years working on motorcyles which had always been my real passion!

This is getting interesting. Let's move the discussion on to Royal Enfield motorcycles (I nearly brough a Bullet back from India last year) and have Keith and Roger's appreciation of that machine! :

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 01:49
I did my apprenticeship between 1967 and 1972

Derar Keith,

Yup, that really was about rock bottom; the days of Red Robbo at British Leyland.

Point taken about transmissions: I've got to have some work done on mine (you don't fill it with oil, you just pour itthrough, and the speedo drive doesn't work). But I've done well over 100,000 km with it since I bought it in 2002, and it was 30 years old then.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 02:17
This is getting interesting. Let's move the discussion on to Royal Enfield motorcycles (I nearly brough a Bullet back from India last year) and have Keith and Roger's appreciation of that machine! :

Dear Leigh,

Funny you should say that...

http://www.mctie.com/goodmenu1.html

The site it's taken from -- www.mctie.com or www.motorcycletouringineurope.com -- is currently being updated, illustrated and made all-free (it's currently like www.rogerandfrances.com, part free, part paid). When it's up (insh'Allah by the end of August) it will be part of a larger, more general travel site.

As for the rest of the thread, my main point is that I don't expect peple to take everything I write as ineffable wisdom based on omniscience, even when it is. We all see a partial picture; some of us see more of it than others; and often, it seems, those who see the smallest part of the picture are the ones who are convinced that they know it all.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 02:23
It seems to me the people Leica should listen to are those who don't own Leicas if Leica wants to ever bring new customers into Leica ownership. Existing customers are true believers and have a bias toward wanting the company to continue on its current course.

By that logic, they should stop making cameras and move into hiking boots, which would introduce them to a completely new market.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 03:02
Straw man. We weren't talking about hiking boots. We were talking about cameras.

Straw man? Not entirely. Maybe those who buy Leicas, want Leicas, not some other form of camera.

If you prefer, why shouldn't Leica start making wooden 8x10 inch cameras?

Cheers,

R.

Solinar
07-27-2008, 03:15
It seems to me the people Leica should listen to are those who don't own Leicas if Leica wants to ever bring new customers into Leica ownership. Existing customers are true believers and have a bias toward wanting the company to continue on its current course.

As this thread suggests the divergence between the original cameras that established the brand and what will thrive in a 21st Century market may be two different kettles of fish.

Leitz Wetzlar back in the day didn't fret too much about other camera owners. They did seem to have an ear geared to their own customer base and eventually killed the M3 approach in favor of the M2 through the M6 cameras.

The current Leica Camera AG may do just as you propose, listen to those who don't own Leicas and wind up selling gussied up Panasonic cameras.

kevin m
07-27-2008, 03:35
Maybe those who buy Leicas, want Leicas, not some other form of camera.

True statement. It remains true even if only one person buys a Leica.

Leica, having heeded the above advice, has gone from being a respected but marginal player in the film camera business to being a slightly less respected and even more marginal player in the digital camera business.

If that's the direction they wish to continue, then they should continue to heed the above advice.

kevin m
07-27-2008, 03:46
...those who see the smallest part of the picture are the ones who are convinced that they know it all.

It's always THEM, isn't it? A vague, unsubstantiated, THEM! Those b*st*rd children of lazy-thinking must cover the globe by now. :D

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 03:47
Dear Kevin,

Well, having met Dr. Kaufmann for the first time earlier this month, I have more faith in his vision for the company than I do in yours. Also, of course, the fact that he is a multi-millionaire who all but owns the company outright tends to give his views a certain weight.

Cheers,

R.

Solinar
07-27-2008, 03:50
By the way as the owner of two aircooled VW's - I may have to stop passing judgement on their current water cooled offerings that seem to be plagued by electrical short comings. My favorite is the lack of a key lock for the rear hatch, which is now controlled by a remote solenoid release that usually fails prematurely.

The trouble with British Leyland was that there too many competing brands within a single organization and incompetent management to deal with a seven headed hydra.

The MG Midget by the late 1970's had become a pig of car, but the worst was the Austin Allegro. To be fair Derrick Robinson did not design this hideous car or any of its components. The trade union leadership may have had a Trotskyist leadership, but like the North American UAW - they built cars designed by non-union university graduates.

A short snippet on who killed BL - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4S5uTBVK6U

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 03:50
It's always THEM, isn't it? A vague, unsubstantiated, THEM! Those b*st*rd children of lazy-thinking must cover the globe by now. :D

Dear Kevin,

Endeavour to control yourself, dear boy. Presumably you know what you meant; I'm not sure.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:01
Now the trouble with British Leyland was that there too many competing brands within a single organization.

The MG Midget by the late 1970's had become a pig of car, but the worst was the Austin Allegro. To be fair Derrick Robinson did not design this hideous car or any of its components.

The trade union leadership may have had a Trotskyist leadership, but like the North American UAW - they built cars designed by non-union university graduates.


(Split into paras for ease of reply)

For the first assertion, no argument. The '60s/70s mid-engined Rover sports-car, properly made (was it BS6? I forget) would have slaughtered anything else in the BL stable (and anywhere else as well) but competed too much with other vehicles in the line-up, so it was never made. From Google I see that the BS6 name has been revived by the Chinese.

Likewise the second ADO 15?). Ah, the quartic steering wheel! The irreparable box sections in the bodywork!

For the third, isn't 'designed' a rather generous term?

Cheers,

R.

kevin m
07-27-2008, 04:01
Presumably you know what you meant; I'm not sure.

Sure you do. Inventing a fictional "them" on which to cast aspersions is lazy at best. At worst, it's something else.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:02
The current Leica Camera AG may do just as you propose, listen to those who don't own Leicas and wind up selling gussied up Panasonic cameras.

From talking to them in early July, I strongly doubt it. Thank God!

Cheers,

R.

Solinar
07-27-2008, 04:05
(Split into paras for ease of reply)

For the third, isn't 'designed' a rather generous term?



True, the different components were more of a cobbled affair.

Also, I found it difficult to choose between the Allegro and the Morris Marina.

kevin m
07-27-2008, 04:06
...stop expecting it to be what it is not, and enjoy it.

I think it's wonderful the camera exists at all. For my own pleasure, I'd own one in a heartbeat. It's only as a reliable work tool that the camera falls short, and it would be nice if Leica could address those issues.

If that's blasphemy, well, then I'm sorry I stumbled into your church. :D

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:09
Sure you do. Inventing a fictional "them" on which to cast aspersions is lazy at best. At worst, it's something else.

Dear Kevin,

Do not judge everyone by your own standards of laziness or worse. Your post was vague and poorly phrased. But if you want a more precise analysis of 'them':

There are those who know a lot.

There are those who know a little.

There are those in between.

From decades of observation, it is those who know little or nothing who are the most convinced that they understand everything.

Does that clarify it enough for you?

Or to take another slant, there is a well-observed phenomenon in intelligence testing. At around IQ 120 (obviously the figure varies according to the test used), people are bright enough to know that they are brighter than other people, but not bright enough to realize that there are plenty around who are brighter than they.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:13
True, the different components were more of a cobbled affair.

Also, I found it difficult to choose between the Allegro and the Morris Marina.

...or Morris Urinal as it was widely known in the UK. Well, BL was certainly taking the piss...

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:17
Leica could halt all this discussion by enthusiasts by simply stating that they have no interest in being a "player" in the camera market, that they intend to produce high priced boutique cameras that look like an M3 forever.

I've said before that I believe there is a core customer base for Leica that is completely insensitive to cost and will pay anything for Leica's offering. If total sales of 20,000 units or less of any new camera they make continues to be acceptable to the company, then I have no doubt they can achieve that, even if the M9 costs $10,000.

What do you mean by 'player'?

Do you mean 'competitor with Canon and Nokia'?

If they can stay in business by making cameras that look (and to some extent, handle) like an M3, what's anyone's problem with this?

Cheers,

R.

Pherdinand
07-27-2008, 04:35
Depends on what exactly that advice would be, Roger.
In some cases you dont even need to own the product, a LR or a Leica or whatever, in order to know what YOU would like to have in that.
If it is technically possible or if it is financially feasible to implement your "advice", that's a different story. But we would all like a full frame M-something, right? and i am sure Leica would be happy to build it for us if it would be so easy and cheap.
Expressing your oppinion is not wrong no matter how much you are "at home".
Expecting that they will seriously consider it, is wrong.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:41
By "player" I mean able to compete in the digital market place into the future. Every "advantage" a digital M camera has will be overcome by technology in a few years.

Meanwhile, we are stuck in the present. I envy you your crystal ball.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:43
Depends on what exactly that advice would be, Roger.
In some cases you dont even need to own the product, a LR or a Leica or whatever, in order to know what YOU would like to have in that.
If it is technically possible or if it is financially feasible to implement your "advice", that's a different story. But we would all like a full frame M-something, right? and i am sure Leica would be happy to build it for us if it would be so easy and cheap.
Expressing your oppinion is not wrong no matter how much you are "at home".
Expecting that they will seriously consider it, is wrong.
Dear Pherdinand,

Can't argue with a word of that.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 04:46
We may be stuck in the present, but Leica is stuck in the past. Meanwhile, Nikon and Canon have people who are paid to gaze into crystal balls.

Ah; the same thinking that brought us the Edsel.

Or to change manufacturers, I've no doubt that General Motors employs more crystal-ball-gazers than Morgan, and Honda certainly employes more of them than Hesketh. Personally, I'd prefer a Morgan or a Hesketh. But I suspect they're not 'players' in your world picture.

Cheers,

R.

Keith
07-27-2008, 05:10
To get back to the British Leyland mistique for a minute ... I got to work on all of their products during my apprenticeship and the car that I remember and love the most is the Triumph TR2 ... that car as a sportscar is what the IIIg or maybe the M3 is to the rangefinder genre ... if you believe in the Leica legend that is! :p

Keith
07-27-2008, 05:48
My only - short lived, thankfully - experience with a Triumph was a TR7 I ended up with in a trade. This had to be the worst built car in history and a constant repair nightmare. I think it was the car that killed BL.


Then of course you had the Triumph Stag which was a V8 made by sticky taping two Saab 4cyl engines together I'm told! :p

tbarker13
07-27-2008, 06:30
Kaufmann, at Arles, July 2008: "I am the current CEO of Leica, and hopefully for many years to come."



August Busch IV said something very similar (though more emphatically) in the months before Anheuser Busch was bought by InBev.:)

I have to confess to not having studied Leica's financial/ownership structure. Exactly how much of Leica does Kaufmann own?

Roger Hicks
07-27-2008, 08:10
To get back to the British Leyland mistique for a minute ... I got to work on all of their products during my apprenticeship and the car that I remember and love the most is the Triumph TR2 ... that car as a sportscar is what the IIIg or maybe the M3 is to the rangefinder genre ... if you believe in the Leica legend that is! :p

Dear Keith,

In the 70s I had both TR2 and TR3 -- the TR2 was prettier -- and in the 80s, a TR4. The TR2 was the one I liked best, even with the original 85 bhp engine. the problem with my TR3 was that the doors sometimes flew open on bumpy curves...

Cheers,

R.

photovdz
07-27-2008, 09:23
on the collection market Belgian build TR (2 and 3) (Noncevaux, Imperia factory) and Minis (Seneffe) are considered as better build and less rust prone...
What is true with beer (Inbev is basically a Belgian company... ) and cars ... could be true with cameras... They need a leica factory in Belgium... I should contact the prime minister about that (oups there is none for the moment)... ;-)

Solinar
07-27-2008, 10:17
Dear Keith,

In the 70s I had both TR2 and TR3 -- the TR2 was prettier --
Cheers,

R.

I'm dating myself, but the 58 Bug-eyed Sprite was my favorite because it was my first BMC. Spartan with no real door panels, an A series motor with dual SU's that could bring a smile to my face ever morning, no radio and a dual fused electrical circuit - it seemed fast without having to travel fast.

My later MGB GT and MGB roadster never came close to the experience I had with the minimalist Sprite.

I never did get a Triumph. Although the TR6 always caught me eye.

sepiareverb
07-27-2008, 12:10
Morgan. A great example Roger. Still making things the old fashioned way and unafraid of making that a selling point. You get more sensible all the time.

Gabriel M.A.
07-27-2008, 13:17
I'm dating myself

A little self-love is what we all need :D

Gabriel M.A.
07-27-2008, 13:19
In the 70s I had both TR2 and TR3 -- the TR2 was prettier -- and in the 80s, a TR4. The TR2 was the one I liked best, even with the original 85 bhp engine. the problem with my TR3 was that the doors sometimes flew open on bumpy curves...

And you say there was a flaw in your first statement. That is enough qualification on the Internets, mon ami!

I once had a leaky pen. I am now qualified to say that all pencils are better than pens. ;)

Keith
07-27-2008, 15:39
I'm dating myself, but the 58 Bug-eyed Sprite was my favorite because it was my first BMC. Spartan with no real door panels, an A series motor with dual SU's that could bring a smile to my face ever morning, no radio and a dual fused electrical circuit - it seemed fast without having to travel fast.

My later MGB GT and MGB roadster never came close to the experience I had with the minimalist Sprite.

I never did get a Triumph. Although the TR6 always caught me eye.


The TR2 to me was the ultimate bare bones sports car. You nearly lay in the things, there was a little short gearstick, the pedals were hard to reach, the clutch was heavy and you felt like your backside was inches off the ground and any speed felt fast.

The beautiful wet sleeve engine amazingly, was also common to the Massey Fergusson tractor and also powered all the Vanguards till they bought out the 1600cc six cylinder which eventually was upgraded to two litre and became the engine for the Triumph 2000 and went on in it's final guise to power the TR6 and the Triumph 2.5 PI at two and a half litres with Lucas (not good) fuel injection.

The TR6 was an absolute rocket and I remember my first drive in one like it was yesterday ... I was out road testing one, which as an apprentice was not approved and had the thing all crossed up smoking the tyres around a corner when the workshop foreman came around the corner in the opposite direction on his way back to work from lunch. I was banned for driving for a month after that incident! :p

Leigh Youdale
07-28-2008, 05:23
Dear Leigh,

Funny you should say that...

R.

Yes, I knew you were a fan. Actually the Bullet is distributed here in Australia with Oz compliance plates etc and the importer also shows a range of spare parts on their website. I've just sold my glider and my wife doesn't want a yacht. Maybe an RE Bullet would pass the test? (Doubt it).
It costs AUD $7000-8000 here which is miniscule compared to the price of the big brands but is still about three times the price ex India!

Roger Hicks
07-28-2008, 14:36
Morgan. A great example Roger. Still making things the old fashioned way and unafraid of making that a selling point. You get more sensible all the time.

Bristol too. Google 'Bristol Fighter'.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks
07-28-2008, 14:59
It costs AUD $7000-8000 here which is miniscule compared to the price of the big brands but is still about three times the price ex India!
But I think that the export spec/quality control is also 2x Indian levels/value so it's only a 50% premium...

The main reason I don't have one is that I can ride my BMW like a Bullet (80-90 km/h, 110 km/h max) but I couldn't ride a Bullet like my BMW (130-150 km/h, 200+ km/h max).

Cheers,

R.

Tom A
07-28-2008, 15:00
For some reason the Brits can get away with things like the Bristol, the Morgan, the Lotus 7 in its various disquises and lets not forget the TVR. Maybe we should appoint some British designers to work for Leica?
Roger, there is a nice blue Bristol 406 driving around here in Vancouver. Original owner too! I have always wanted to have the real thing from that Dinky Toy twin finned Le mans car (I think it was a 400 model). I had the model, but as i used it as a target for my 22 cal. pistol in my youth, it kind of disintegrated!
I could agree with the Bristol being the original MP, but the M2 is a cross between the Ford f100 1955 and the TR3 with considerable input from a Series III Land Rover! The M3 would then be the Austin Healey 100 and the M4 the Healey 3000 (Roll Up Windows - whats the world coming too!).
I think the Tr2/3 was one of the great sports drivers, elbow hanging out, torque and noise that made it a joy to drive. My last one was a yellow TR3B with an overdrive that occasionally decided to shift on its own!
The Bug Eye Sprite was fun, I had two of them at the same time (total investment $125 in 1968). Not that fast initially, but with some tinkering it could move. There was a group in Denmark in the late 60's/early 70's who would throw out the A engine and put the Mazda RX3 engine (triple rotor Wankel) in them and race them. Scary fast!! Somewhat akin to double up the batteries in the M4P winder and get 5-6 frames/sec (and severly shorted shutter life - but Leica had a nice 3 year warranty and no questions asked).

photovdz
07-28-2008, 15:23
left hand drive TR2 and 3 for exprot market where once produced here (Belgium), they are reputedly more reliable and less rust prone than the english ones... same for the Seneffe build minis (not that they didn't rust, but they rusted slower...)... so may be you a belgian designer could work on the leica too... to keep an eye on the british one (so he doesn't change the leica into a periflex...)

Papa Smurf
07-28-2008, 15:26
You have pulled off a masterful coup. Those in the know are dumbfounded. Those in the dark are convinced that they are in the know. And those that don't care are busy scratching themselves wondering what this has been all about. Because of that, I stand by my question, have you ever thought about going into American Politics? If you speak straight and tell the truth the media will assassinate you or, worse, totally ignore you. Look at Ron Paul's campaign. Let Leica's heritage be what it is. It has stayed true to its principles longer than all of its competitors. The consumer is a fickle mistress and trying to please her has brought down Minolta. Topcon, well the list is too long for this forum. Let us rejoice in the fact that we will have Leica (and Contax) cameras or their copies to enjoy for a long time to come.

However, the comment about those with 120ish I.Q's don't know that there are people smarter than themselves is incorrect. We are aware of those more intelligent than us; we are just not capable of getting those people to acknowledge that we sometimes have something worthwhile to say and deserve to be at least polled from time to time to see if we have something to say that might be beneficial to the overall good of the Enterprise.

As for as who is going to sell Leica to whom is pure conjecture. Look at the CAD industry if you want to see some new and strange bedfellows. Me, I plan to keep shooting film in my "vintage" camera until it, I or film isn't available anymore. Besides, I love this website. It brings together so many similar, but differing points of view!;)

sepiareverb
07-28-2008, 16:02
Bristol too. Google 'Bristol Fighter'.

Cheers,

R.

Wow. If that could possibly make it up my driveway I'd start saving. More my style than the Morgan!!

willie_901
07-28-2008, 18:33
Both Leica and Landrover are on their deathbeds. it doesn't matter who advises them, what the advice may be or if they take the advice.

Even after these corporations are gone, people will continue to enjoy Landrovers and Leicas for what they are and what they can do.

Roger Hicks
07-29-2008, 01:38
Let Leica's heritage be what it is. It has stayed true to its principles longer than all of its competitors. The consumer is a fickle mistress and trying to please her has brought down Minolta. Topcon, well the list is too long for this forum. Let us rejoice in the fact that we will have Leica (and Contax) cameras or their copies to enjoy for a long time to come.

However, the comment about those with 120ish I.Q's don't know that there are people smarter than themselves is incorrect. . .

For the former, sure. Bring on the Edsel!

For the latter, of course it was a wild generalization. Intelligence and wisdom are readily separable, and the wise person, of any intelligence, recognizes that there are people who are cleverer and less clever than themselves.

There are plenty of stupid people who are unable to understand that there is anyone cleverer than they are, and many of the most intelligent people I have ever met are astonishingly modest (which is when I start suspecting they're cleverer than I am). But as I say, at around 120 it is alleged to be easiest to deceive yourself into thinking that you're REALLY clever.

When it comes to voting (and indeed, to most of life), wisdom is often a lot more useful than intelligence. Intelligence tends to come into its own only when earning a living, and not always then.

And it doesn't take much wisdom to decide NOT to go into politics!

Cheers,

R.

SR1
07-29-2008, 04:48
Roger,

Fortunately (or unfortunately) depending on your view point, you clearly believe that if you buy quality it will last. Great for you. bad for Leica, Landrover etc.

I share the sentiment, however it does not bode well in a society which promotes consumerism.

Why buy one camera at 3000 when you can buy 1 a year at 300 and have the "excitement" of getting a new camera each year.

If you're selling old technology, you need to offer excellent service (I have been very pleased with Leicas customer service over the past coulple of months and for me that is a big plus) or have a good marketing department.

You mentioned you have a 40 year old Omega. I bought a Rolex in the mid 90's which is hopelessly inaccurate compared to a 5 quartz watch. Rolex seemed unconcerned when I complained it lost about 10 seconds a day, stating it was within tolerance.

Yet Rolex have some of the longest waiting lists of any watch manufacturer.

They market their products as status symbols and I suspect that Leica will have to do the same if they want to increase their market share.

Regards

SR

johne
07-29-2008, 05:10
Roger,

The flaw is obvious. You assume there IS a flaw!
johne

tomasis
07-29-2008, 05:38
interesting thread. I like cars too. I would prefer Nissan Figaro against Nissan micra. Old VW beetles, minivans are very cute too.

http://www.248am.com/images/figaro_01.jpg

But if I want a car which offers much value for perfomance, I'd be interested for Lotus 7 or any replica like Caterham :) You run faster with 150bhp than anything like new Bmw M5 :) Also you get a lot of adrenalin when the chassis is quite rigid :)

I buy used products of Leica and even if they are very expensive, I think those offer much value and bring the very important point that you get many years to handle the very same tool and improve the skills drastically, also get peace in the mind without falling back to all type of consumerism and you kinda of get lost of "things which can make your life better" which is not always true. Well we have some choices.

Roger Hicks
07-29-2008, 05:46
. . . They market their products as status symbols and I suspect that Leica will have to do the same if they want to increase their market share.


Dear SR,

You have, of course, guaranteed howls of agony and rage from those who do not think as clearly as you do.

And a further consequence of your analysis is that Leica, whose customers expect their cameras to last decades, can never be as big as a company that sells to people who expect to change their cameras once a year. It is a very unsophisticated analysis (not unknown in RFF) which says that smaller = inferior, or that all companies must 'grow or die'.

The other thing about the watch is that I prefer simplicity, reliability and durability to accuracy. My old Omega is in dire need of a clean, but it's accurate enough for a wrist-watch. I'm not navigating by it, and of course there was a good reason why, in old war movies, they used to synchronize their watches at the beginning of a carefully-timed operation: almost ANY decent wrist-watch is adequate for a day or two, where rendez-vous are subject to +/- 5 minute delays and explosions to +/- 30 seconds.

Cheers,

R.

sepiareverb
07-29-2008, 06:11
... It is a very unsophisticated analysis (not unknown in RFF) which says that smaller = inferior, or that all companies must 'grow or die'. ..Cheers,

R.

I've never understood this idea- that continued growth is the only way to measure success. My garden remains the same size each year, and easily produces the food we wish it to. If it was bigger I'd have to tend it more, and then figure out what to do with the extra food. Bigger is certainly not always better, yet as whole economies are built upon this premise we are somewhat stuck with that as the 'norm'. Look what that whole idea has done to the American waistline.

SR1
07-29-2008, 08:28
Roger,

"The other thing about the watch is that I prefer simplicity, reliability and durability to accuracy"

12 years on I agree. My complaint to Rolex was based on my applying the standards of one product to another (quartz vs mechanical) in reality 10 seconds a day is pretty good for a mechanical watch.

I bought an M6 becuase I wanted someting reliable which could be used even if the battery fails. It is reasuruing to have a backup camera that I know will work if all else fails (like me forgetting to take a spare battery for my digital cameras which I've done on more than one occasion).

Forgive me if the following quote is attributable to someone else, however the discussion on IBM reminded me. In my ignorance I will attribute it to a former colleague of mine who quoted it all the time when seeing new computers arrive at the office.

"Henry Ford didn't invent the affordable motor car. He invented planned obsolesence"

Regards

SR

Drambuie
09-23-2008, 14:11
I have bought two second-hand Land Rovers in the last 30 years and am therefore the best person to advise Land Rover on new vehicles.


Corollary - I am new to photography and have just bought the latest Nikonon DX-9009Pro. Therefore I am perfectly qualified to pass judgement on everything photographic that existed beforehand: and am fully justified in claiming that it is all obsolete junk ..... I will shortly start my new job in a camera shop and thus be able to help many new customers to achieve such enlightenment. ;-)

"An expert is someone who knows more and more about less and less, until they know everything about nothing" [Jack Daniels]

Alan

PS I just bought my 5th Barnack (IIIb) - friends & colleagues now know that I'm a nutcase! My Landrover is living proof that Solihull was (and ever will be) stuck in a timewarp.

amateriat
09-23-2008, 19:13
There's bulletproof, and there's bulletproof...

Day before yesterday, I'd ridden my Alex Moulton 14-speed into Manhattan from Brooklyn, and passed a yellow Defender 90 (what's the official name LR uses for that color?), and I thought: just what defines "bulletproof" these days?

My Moulton has skinny 17" tires, compensated for by front and rear suspension...unheard-of in bicycles when I bought it a tad over 22 years ago, and already passé now, but the bike has seen nasty bits of road road, the cobblestones of lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, and other indignities, but remained intact, and kept me in relative comfort all this time. Yes, it was crazy-expensive, and even moreso now, but worth every dollar. Of course, since it doesn't require filling-up at the pump (yeah, I, being the engine, have to eat, but that's mostly a given, yes?), but the bike hasn't given me a peep of trouble in all this time, save for the usual tube/tire replacement. All the other bits have been straight-up solid. A LR likely comes somewhat close as a motorized analog (Keith's experienced anecdotes aside), but still coming up a bit short by comparison.

Not exactly gloating here (okay, just a bit), but wondering all the same. And, we all have flaws.


- Barrett

Ken Smith
09-23-2008, 20:07
Obviously mr. Hicks is more qualified to offer the folks at Land Rover advice than their current design team. The latest models seemed to be visually designed to appeal to east coast/west coast over paid rap star-gang member-thug about town. The Land Rover lost appeal to me when they did away with the Discovery and Defender. As for the hybrid appeal - my carbon footprint is signed "Vibram" aka waffle stomper.

Ken
Canon 7/Yashica GSN/Yashica 5000