This is going to be about things that are not cars but it kinda relates to cars in a roundabout way. I typically don't buy video game consoles but I still own nintendo handhelds. They are always of high quality, always have a very large library of games, and most of them are incredibly well designed. If you like games and don't want a PC, forget the WiiU/PS4/XB1 debate, you need a 3DS......Which is what I *would* be saying if not for the fact that it is region locked depending on where you bought it.
In the past, the "region lock" was the cartridge itself being a different shape or size so it just wouldn't work in a system outside of the home area. The picture below is what I'm talking about - same game, but two different styles of connector. Each will only work in the home console. So your console is "locked" to only play games available in your "region". Makes sense? Good.
But the original DS that came out back in the mid 2000s was NOT region locked. This was huge as it let any dedicated fan import whatever game they wanted from wherever they wanted. A lot of rally/racing games are only available in Europe, for example, but an American DS can still play them as there is no such thing as an "American" or "European" game or DS. Yes, localization of a game might not happen so you have plenty of games that only have japanese text and voices, but you can play it on any DS. I personally imported all the games in a music/rhythm game series called "Daigasso! Band Bros." Why? It is a fully functional, feature rich music editing program.....on a DS cartridge......and in the second one you can share and download other people's songs from around the world via the internet. I've always wanted to get into editing and making my own music, but the barrier for entry is pretty steep if you want to do it legally. However, for less than 50$ I could get this game shipped to my door from japan and be up and making music within a few minutes. It might be a MIDI editor only, but I've probably spent more time derping around in those editors and playing the songs via the game mode than I have any other game I own.
You can now imagine my frustrations to try and import the newest title only to find out that my 3DS is region locked so to play that game, I would have to not only import the game, but a japanese 3DS as well at a cost of over 200$ for the pair, with shipping. This is how you end up with piracy as a "flash cart" that can be loaded up with the ROM info of any cartridge is about 60-80$ and will let you play ANY game on ANY DS. And you know what? If I can find a valid ROM dump of the newest game, I'm doing it. Legality be damned, I have proven that I would pay the extra to import it from another country if you let me. So as we get more global, you.....remove that feature? And obviously it's not very strict if a flash cart is able to get around that.
Good work, nintendo. The automakers are making cars that cost them millions to design and develop and they find ways to get around "region locking" of their cars via different emission and safety laws. Meanwhile, you deliberately spend extra time and effort to do a software based region lock after a very successful console did NOT have it for reasons that escape me. Your only "reason" for this is to prevent piracy and by doing so.....you guaranteed it from me, a former customer of international games.
Rant over, have some region locked forbidden fruit for your trouble.