Archive for May, 2008

Modern Classics?

Posted in Auto Articles with tags , , , , on May 10, 2008 by consortiumoffools

Much speculation has been made on which cars will one day become high-dollar auction babies. Automobile Magazine recently proclaimed that the 1994-1996 Chevrolet Impala SS will one day be a collector car. I have to disagree. The car is really a Chevy truck with a Capiece (Capiece, as in Ca-piece of crap) body atop it. The only people driving them are a couple of gangstas. But I see the journalists’ point- the car is one of the last big displacement rear-wheel-driven Chevrolets. The car symbolizes the end of an era. The era being one of poorly built, unreliable American RWD gas hog cruisers.

1996 Chevy Impala SS

Another car, mentioned in Grassroots Motorsports Magazine, is the recent installment of the Pontiac GTO. Unlike the original version of the car in the 60’s, this one was merely borrowed from Australia. The car is a Holden. Not that the Aussies make bad cars, in fact, the Ford Falcon and the Holdens are wonderful, powerful cars, but they’re just not American. A re-badged car, with played-out Grand Prixish styling just doesn’t do it. The car may be worth money down the road, but only because so few were sold, not because the car is special.

 Pontic GTO, the old one and the new one
Everyone’s speculation has one major flaw: they want so badly for the modern American car to be what it once was- a symbol of wealth, prosperity and stability. The problem is that American cars have been terrible for the past 30 years. The classics now- 1969 Camaro SS, 1964 and a half Ford Mustang and the Dodge Hemi Dart are all from a time when reliability was not a factor. No cars lasted very long, so only muscle and styling ruled. Recent cars just don’t instill the same emotions that the classics do. It may be a nostalgia for classic steel, but it’s difficult to believe that the plastic cars of today will sit in our children’s garages and be silently adored.

In today’s day and age, important cars will rule the collector market. Important cars and BMWs. By important, I mean the Honda Insight. That little bug of a car was the first ever of its kind. It’s strangely stylized and a hybrid. And by BMWs, I mean every M3 ever. Each generation is completely reworked and completely bad ass. The E30 M3 is already a classic— try finding one under ten grand.

E30 in front

American cars just don’t have that charm anymore. Nissan Skylines and Italian works of art will only get more and more expensive and desirable. In the meantime, Chevrolet Cavaliers will be donated as scrap metal to be forever forgotten.