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In-Dash Microwaves Instead of in-Dash Air Bags

Summary:
Most new cars will shut off the engine for you – even when you prefer it stays on. How come not one of them will heat up a cup of coffee for you? Some cars have what are styled “heated” cup holders. But all they do is impart vague warmth. Why not an in-car microwave oven? A way to really heat a cup of coffee – or nuke a burrito? We have, as the opening to The Six Million Dollar Man used to say, the technology. Or rather, the power. Many new cars already have three-prong household-style power points and some also have 48 volt electrical systems. Surely, these could be stepped up to handle the wattage load of a small microwave built into the dash? It’d be interesting to see how many would willingly check that option box, if were

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Most new cars will shut off the engine for you – even when you prefer it stays on. How come not one of them will heat up a cup of coffee for you?

Some cars have what are styled “heated” cup holders. But all they do is impart vague warmth.

Why not an in-car microwave oven? A way to really heat a cup of coffee – or nuke a burrito? We have, as the opening to The Six Million Dollar Man used to say, the technology. Or rather, the power. Many new cars already have three-prong household-style power points and some also have 48 volt electrical systems. Surely, these could be stepped up to handle the wattage load of a small microwave built into the dash?

It’d be interesting to see how many would willingly check that option box, if were offered – especially if they had the option to skip the ASS (automated stop/start) box.

It’s curious, isn’t it, how the things you just know lots of people would willingly pay extra for aren’t available – while so many things you know they’d skip if they could (like ASS) they can’t.

This has to do with the weird upending of the previous relationship between buyer and seller. The latter once catered to the former. It is now the unnatural opposite. The buyer is told what he’ll buy and the seller accepts it because he hasn’t got any meaningful alternative. Because there’s no longer any meaningful competition.

Just a Potemkin Village facade.

There are different stores, of course. And different brands. But they all largely sell the same things. Because their real customer nowadays is the government, which they all work very hard to please.

It is quite something when you study it a little. A handful of government workers – perhaps a few dozen people, maybe as many as 100 or so – decide which “features” cars bought by millions of people will come with. And which other things they won’t come with.

It is why you can’t buy a new car with T-tops. Or a new truck with seats in the bed (and no roof over your head). It is why the manual transmission is disappearing – and why the ashtray has already disappeared.

Also the gas fill behind the license plate in the rear of the car, which meant you could gas up at either side of any pump. Now you have to line up the side of the car where the door is with the pump. If that side is occupied, you wait – even if the other side is wide open.

You aren’t allowed to have the dealer disable the air bags you didn’t want – and which just might kill you. Seatbelts are, of course, required. Even if you didn’t want them and never use them (“the law” be damned).

You’re still going to pay for them.

How did this happen? Was a vote taken? A law passed empowering the government – those dozens and maybe 100 or so government workers – to sit around and decide how your next new car would be designed?

In any case, they have the power – and now you know why new cars are so alike. That tends to happen when a few dozen or maybe 100 or so people have the power to decree vehicle design parameters.

Eric Peters
Eric Peters is a freelance car/bike/political columnist. He escaped the corporate-owned media Big Boys years ago. Without the censorship of the corporate tools

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