Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
cletus8269

10 worst automotive fads...

19 posts in this topic

http://editorial.autos.msn.com/listarticle...umentid=1069499

There is a subtle but important difference between fashion and a fad. Fashion is the inevitable evolution and refreshment of taste and style in everything from clothing to automobiles, which keeps those things from getting tiresome and stale. Fashion drives innovation for the sake of innovation, and it is generally considered a good thing. On the other hand, fads such as fuzzy dice are as ephemeral and unpredictable as fashion, but in the end are just plain silly.

With the benefit of hindsight, it’s generally pretty easy to recognize a fad, but for each of the designs, technologies or accessories below, there was a window in time and an enthusiastic audience that aligned perfectly to turn a dumb, pointless concept into an embarrassing reality. Sam Livingston, of Car Design Research, has seen plenty of fads come and go and even feels a bit nostalgic for some of them. “Remember, the ambitions behind most of these things were quite noble, I’m sure,” he says. “All of these things probably seemed like a good idea at the time.”

Any list of the worst of anything is guaranteed to elicit some defensive feedback. So let's pre-empt that right now by saying that if you owned any of the automobiles or accessories on this list, we’re not judging you as a person — we’re judging your car. And whether you knew it or not at the time, people were probably judging your car for all the years you owned it. So a little poke to the soft spot you may have had in your heart for that vehicle might sting a bit, but somebody had to tell you — eventually.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmm... vinyl tops a fad huh? true they look terrible on some but others just dont look quite right without em. case in point the red one down there.

i think at the end of the list this comment is the best spot on

sonto100 #6

Tuesday, July 07, 2009 12:50:34 PM

The person that wrote this article is just a frustrated English major who couldn't get any other job. He's not a car guy and shouldn't be taken seriously.

i cant believe they didnt call out the 2 fast 2 furious crowd with the wings and crappy ground effects that are all different colors. at least they called out the spinners, now if they would start pulling the size of rims back down from a yard across.

i knew the "evil" suv's would be brought up though.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

> I don't see anything 'wrong' with vinyl tops- when they first appeared (mid '50s) they were NOT intended to invoke an image of a convertible. It's just a different treatment for different tastes.

> If we're going to mention fake hood scoops, which usually cannot be discerned as to whether they're functional or not from topside.... spoilers are ALL non-functional unless tacked onto a 150+ MPH car, and even then....

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was expecting to see oversized spoilers and 'truck nutz' to make it on here, but the list is pretty good. My aunt had a Chrysler that 'talked' and whenever people had to pile into it, she always made a point of leaving a door ajar just to show off the feature to everyone. :P

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another cheezy fad from the late '80s that still is seen a bit today are the tinted headlight and taillight covers. Often the same folks that like the huge windshield logos.

Another one that wasn't mentioned are ground affects and other body kits. Most non-factory ones look so cheesy.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not mentioning those stick-on portholes made this article lose all credibility.

As far as vinyl tops go, they look ok depending on the car. Cars with a more stately design as opposed to more sporting. I don't mind the on on our Grand Marquis, but I saw a photo today of a 300M with one and threw up a little in my mouth.

imag0139r.jpg

Cars that aren't pretty to begin with, like last gen Monte Carlos just add insult to injury.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
> If we're going to mention fake hood scoops, which usually cannot be discerned as to whether they're functional or not from topside.... spoilers are ALL non-functional unless tacked onto a 150+ MPH car, and even then....

worse is when they're on FWD cars.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

oh.. and the portholes on the LaX Super and Lucerne actually are functional but they're for heat dissipation rather than air intake.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
worse is when they're on FWD cars.

One of the worst misapplications of a hood scoop I've seen is a '69 Mustang Mach 1 scoop (complete w/ 351 badges) on a gold Chrysler 300M.. Also had a '69-70 Mustang style rear spoiler.

WTF??????

Such application of parts to a car shows a complete obliviousness to brand correctness and history...if you are going to put vintage style parts on a modern Chrysler, at least use something Mopar.

Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wing on a Formula Continental, or a rally car, or an all out race car...SWEET!

Wing on a Honda civic that can't run over a speed bump without rubbing the 18" wheels and loosing parts of the body kit...retarded.

I'm with Camino...author of the article=Asshat.

Chris

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the article isnt even worth commenting. I like digital dashes and buick does have functional ports. and roadmasters look wierd with out the wood.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vinyl roof is fine on any RWD V8 American car D-Body Fleetwood Brougham (1996) and older. I like certain elements of the digital dash but more along the lines of the ones that were in the 1990s Caddy Devilles/Fleetwoods and Buicks.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

*sigh* there you guys go again complaining about wings on FWD cars.

First of all, yes, pretty much all factory wings are useless cosmetic items. That said, the statement of wings being dumb on FWD cars is overlooking an important thing. As has already been mentioned, the wing won't be functional until the car is moving quite quickly (not 150, but at least 50+, and much more functional the faster the car goes). The statement that a wing is pointless on a FWD car usually is said with the thought that since the rear wheels aren't being driven, that they don't need downforce to keep them from breaking free. But wait, no RWD car should be breaking the tires free (aside from very small moments at shifts for higher powered cars) at such speeds that the wing is functional. So, what's the point of a wing on a RWD car? Same as it is on a FWD car - keep the rear of the car planted for HANDLING.

A wing can be just as functional on a FWD car as it can on a RWD one.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>>"A wing can be just as functional on a FWD car as it can on a RWD one."<<

Agreed, & good point.

I would think for a deck spoiler to have a measurable, discernable effect on handling, the car would have to be going much closer to 100 than 50, but that's just a hunch.

I know (ummm... unrelated?) that Chrysler submitted a tech paper on their fins in the late '50s, saying they tested them as positive for improving subseptibility to crosswinds, but I believe they left out the tidbit that you had to be going 90 or more to feel it. Again as a hunch, I would think downforce = handling increase would have to be at least at that level, but would love to read anything technical/testing on the matter.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
>>"A wing can be just as functional on a FWD car as it can on a RWD one."<<

Agreed, & good point.

I would think for a deck spoiler to have a measurable, discernable effect on handling, the car would have to be going much closer to 100 than 50, but that's just a hunch.

I know (ummm... unrelated?) that Chrysler submitted a tech paper on their fins in the late '50s, saying they tested them as positive for improving subseptibility to crosswinds, but I believe they left out the tidbit that you had to be going 90 or more to feel it. Again as a hunch, I would think downforce = handling increase would have to be at least at that level, but would love to read anything technical/testing on the matter.

Well, I dunno how helpful this is balthy, but here's a snippet from the Viper ACR review from Autoblog:

But enough about paint schemes; the ACR is about one thing and one thing only: functionality. More specifically, putting down all that power from the 8.4-liter V10 to the pavement. To do this, the SRT team focused on aerodynamics, the result of which can be seen at both ends of the car. Up front is a carbon fiber splitter and dive planes that have been specially designed to increase downforce and reduce drag. An extension for the front splitter can also be added for increased aerodynamics at the racetrack. At the rear is an adjustable wing also made of carbon fiber that was specially formed using Computational Fluid Dynamics. So just how much downforce does the ACR produce? Try 1,000 pounds at 150 mph. That's ten times what the standard Viper coupe produces.

viperacrfd_05.jpg

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hopefully we havent forgotten the most famous wind tunnel generated mopars...

superbird.jpg

Edited by cletus8269
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0