19 February 2011

our "fliver"


Earlier this week as the snow started to melt and the packed snow in the driveway became a thick sheet of ice, my wife had returned from the store and parked in her normal spot in the driveway. The next morning-not seeing the car-I asked my wife "where did you park?" She said "behind the Mazda". But I didn't see our Ford Freestyle behind the Mazda. In fact, I went so far as to step out on the back porch and still didn't see the Freestyle.

My hopes were up that the car had been stolen.

Then, looking out another window we saw the Freestyle. It had slid back down the shallow slope of the driveway, on the ice, more than twenty feet and was resting at a bit of an angle near the curve of the driveway. So I introduced this tale as my Facebook status update which began a string of comments that ended with me saying "I loath our Freestyle".

When we purchased the car a few years ago it was only two years old at that time and had pretty low mileage. Shortly after we bought it a number of small things started going wrong with it. We'd take it back to the dealer service center and they acted like "no big deal". Fixed it, or thought they fixed it, and then went about their merry way. Issues like headlights frequently burning out, door latches not working properly, the air conditioning not working, a clicking in the fan, etc., etc. Once my wife walked into the dealer service center and threw her keys at the attendant and said "this time I'm not leaving until the issue is truly fixed". I mean, I don't blame her-not a good thing to be driving along at 55 mph and a car door all of a sudden pop open on you with kids in the car. Then bigger things started going wrong with the car....electronics, sway bars, etc., etc. And that's when the dealership told us "tough luck" your warranty expired. Messages to the dealership about the quality of the vehicle and their claim as #1 in customer satisfaction in Indiana met with mute response.

We were not a "Ford family" so to speak. My first Ford was my Mustang, the second was my F150. Both vehicles I was pleased with. And I don't know that I would completely rule out buying a Ford today....but I'd have serious reservations and I know I wouldn't go back to the dealer/service center again.

We were playing Scrabble last night, which led me to retrieving a dictionary off my desk....I stumbled upon the word "fliver". Never heard of it. Here is the definition from a 1957 Webster's Dictionary:

fliver (fliv'er), n. a name which came into common use for a low-priced automobile; the finer quality of the present day product will probably cause the word fliver to become obsolete.

I think that Webster was nearly correct in his prediction, however, I have now reintroduced fliver to the world and it has become the word for which I refer to our Freestyle...our very own fliver. Huh, I just ran spell-check and it highlighted fliver.

8 comments:

karinator53 said...

I thought I had seen it as Flivver in old ads, but spell check doesn't like flivver either

vanilla said...

as the previous commenter said, the word is "flivver" in my dictionary. My spell check clears "flivver" but highlights "fliver."

vanilla said...

Oh, yeah. And I like "car stories." Thanks for sharing yours.

jimgrey said...

Reminds me of an old song.

Fascinating rhythm, you've got me on the go
Fascinating rhythm, I'm all aquiver
What a mess you're making, the neighbors want to know
Why I'm always shaking, just like a flivver!

My flivver was a 1996 Mercury station wagon. Stupid thing cost me $2,500 in repairs within about 6 months. Sad thing was, I liked driving the car -- it had plenty of power.

hoosier reborn said...

All this fliver talk...made me go back and recheck my sources because I thought maybe I had spelled it incorrectly-nope "fliver" it is, with one v-at least in 1957!

Anonymous said...

Just remember FORD stands for "Fix Or Repair Daily."

Anonymous said...

All the FORD jokes aside ( they dont apply anymore anyway) Keep in mind you are driving a car that was built by the only American Car Company to not take a bailout! Any Tea Party Member who purchases a product of GM or Chrysler is a hypocrit!

hoosier reborn said...

Excellent point...and that crossed my mind as I was typing away. Like I said, I had two other (actually 3 other) Fords prior to the Freestyle and never had problems. My issue is probably more with the dealership's service center turning a blind eye that anything else.