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Announcing The Only Guides You Need To Read Before You Buy A Car

Illustration for article titled Announcing The Only Guides You Need To Read Before You Buy A Car

It’s been brought to our attention that many of you buy or recommend cars based on things that we say. To make it easier for you, the reader, we’re putting all of our vehicle guides in one place. Expect no-BS advice for you, your cousin, and your cousin’s cousin’s mama.

The prevailing myth is that Jalopnik’s readers only buy Craigslist Miatas, old Volvo wagons and This Extremely Questionable Mercedes SL63 AMG You Can Own For The Price Of A Nissan Versa. Not so! Independent research indicates plenty of our readers buy new cars, even normal cars, sometimes, and many more of those readers give buying advice to people they know. We’re going to make it easier for you to give that advice.

There’s a whole universe of “make/model” or “product” pages out there full of a lot of boring information presented with stilted, uninspiring prose. That they exist and are so frequently terrible is easy to explain: Because they’re specifically targeted at car buyers, these pages make a ton of good old fashioned display ad revenue and the expectations from the consumer are apparently super low. Ever go to a car magazine website and notice how much of the front page is consumed by various “tools” designed to funnel you into one of these pages? That’s why.


We’ve resisted making these pages, although not because we’re anti-money. We just don’t want to make a product that sucks and we’ve committed ourselves to not start producing them until we came up with a format we liked. After talking it over the last few months we’ve created two kinds of guides that are the most honest, interesting, and hopefully useful on the Internet.

You’ll be able to find them on our Buyer’s Guide subblog and on the front page.

The Two Types Of Guides

Illustration for article titled Announcing The Only Guides You Need To Read Before You Buy A Car

Ultimate Buyer’s Guide

The Ultimate Buyer’s Guide, like the name implies, is the fully loaded look at a new car we have enough experience with to give full advice about. If we haven’t driven it, abused it, and put it through its paces we’re not going to blow smoke up your ass about its features. Here’s one for the Dodge Challenger.


Each Ultimate Buyer’s Guide includes a breakdown of the vehicle, new changes, powertrains, fuel economy, basic facts, and trim-level. In addition, we’ll do what few in our space seem willing to do, which is make a recommendation for the one that we’d actually buy.

We’ll also keep the posts open to comments so users, prospective buyers, and owners can ask questions and share data. As the vehicles are adapted or updated we, too, will update the guides.


Buyer’s Guide

For vehicles we don’t have enough recent experience with we’ll create a Buyer’s Guide that provides all the important information as well as an open forum for commenters. We can, and will, give these the Ultimate treatment when we’ve got a significant amount of seat time with the vehicle. Here’s one for the Toyota Tundra.


The Schedule

Starting today, we’ll roll out vehicles according to their classes. We’ve attempted to begin with the vehicles that are popular among our readers and the general population. The plan is to publish all of the guides in a class (full-size truck, for instance) at once and then share one-to-two of these posts over to the front page a day in the general flow of stories.


We’re doing this so you can see what we’re working on without overwhelming the front page. We’ve got more than 100 of these to do so you’ll see a lot more coming soon.

How You Can Help

We’re going to keep these posts open to readers so we’d love to hear what your questions, concerns, and experiences are. The incredible David Tracy will be running the guides, but all Jalopnik writers who have insight into the vehicles will be around to provide feedback.


If you see any mistakes please email us or leave a comment.

Most importantly, we know that your friends and family often come to you for advice. Our hope is that you’ll be able to point them to our guides to provide backup to your informed opinions.


Photo Credit: DW Burnett/PUPPYKNUCKLES

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Shifting Lanes

This is a good idea. I’ll be reading these and comparing them directly to C&D articles. Let the battle: BEGIN.