Beaten with the ugly stick

Posted by Paul Horrell at 12:38 pm on Wednesday January 14, 2009

Show get-inBy half-way through day one at the Detroit Show I was in a cheery mood. In the past it’s been about enormo-SUVs, vehicles I can’t relate to. But this year it was about cars and I felt at home. Then I spent a couple of days staring at them, and my mood began to curdle. Most are boring or ugly, or both.

Hyundai Genesis

On day one of the show, this beast, the Hyundai Genesis V8 saloon, was crowned North American Car of the Year. There isn’t square inch of its exterior that escapes being either insultingly tedious or assaultingly hideous. It looks a decade out of date.

Mind you if you can’t get used to the idea of a Korean Lexus knock-off being the best car launched in America last year, try the new Benz E-class. In a bizarre closing of the circle, it looks like a knock-off of a Korean Lexus knock-off. Doubtless it’s a wonderful piece of engineering, but its styling is a misbegotten mish-mash of busy, aimless creased metal.

Ford Taurus

The Ford Taurus looks like a half-arsed (fat-arsed actually) attempt to meld the unmeldable: a Mondeo with a Chrysler 300C. Blame internal Ford politics for this. The big boss wants all the global products to be recognisable as Fords, but the various regional designers still want to keep their identities. To make matters worse, Ford has turned its previously smart, confident Fusion saloon into a lashed-up Taurus mini-me.

Subaru Legacy concept

Subaru showed up with the new Legacy. Now I realise past Legacys haven’t been a byword for agenda-setting design, but this one is a rolling game of spot-the-cue.

And as for the new Prius, I absolutely despair. A ghastly train-wreck cartoon rework of the perfectly inoffensive old one. Mind you, it’s not alone: the sibling Lexus HS250h is an awful munter. Photographs fail to do justice to the HS’s miserable stunted-wheelbase proportions.

So what’s going on? Have the car designers all got drunk or gone to sleep? Are the car companies deliberately designing ugly cars so that buyers move back into higher-profit SUVs? Nah, I’m not in general a conspiracy theorist, so I’ll park that idea.

Toyota CamryMore likely, it’s simply that American buyers have no taste. Cast your eyes across the ghastly-looking Toyota Camry. Because people buy this by the hundreds of thousands per year, the rest of the carmakers seem to have concluded it represents a tenable aesthetic. One worth echoing. Aaaaargh.

So what do I like? The swoopy and elegant Volvo S60, which will go towards production without too much dilution. OK, the suicide doors will be offed, but you get the general picture.

The Audi Sportback is cool too. Adds a nice tension and clarity to Audi’s surfacing, which had been getting dangerously blowsy with the A5 and A4.

Among the more out-there concepts, I already blogged how much I like the small Lincoln and Cadillac. The Chrysler 200C is irrelevant (because they’ll be dead) but OK. The Fisker Karma S coupe-cabrio is real and is full of smart new design ideas.

Best of all, the delightful, spare little VW roadster. And this is pretty much production-ready, too. OK, it should be easy to do a sports car, but even so this is so much more elegant and sporty than the late Toyota MR2 roadster.

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  1. Obelix said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 3:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The first thought (without reading text) when I saw that Tourus was: “a nice mix of 300c and mondeo”. Nice was a keyword. I realy don’t know how it looks from behind, but this way it looks american-ish acceptable. Since the show was there, right? Their show, their market, their tastes.
    And “the delightful, spare little VW roadster” is just TT Roadster’s ugly and cheaper younger brother. For everything else, I agree with writter. :)

  2. YouWantCheeseOnThat? said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 3:12 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I think the mood over here is such that the car companies think we want sensible. Unfortunately, American car companies (and, okay, most Americans for that matter) confuse boring and beige with sensible.

    What can I say? We’re a literal people…

  3. philistine said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 3:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    So I’m an American and I really want to buy American cars…. but they’re basically all crap. I agree completely with what the writer has said. I’m glad that we’re working out new ideas but there just seems to be too much compromise on to many levels. I feel that most Japanese cars are following the same rout as the Americans and the Koreans are following the Japanese. The only stand out are the Euro automakers… I just wish parts and service were less expensive for the Euro Cars. I guess I’m stuck.

  4. CIE said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 3:53 pm Link to comment Report comment

    oh my gosh
    the BEW 2009 MERCEDES E CLASS IS AMAZING. I JUST CANNOT BELEIVE HOW HANSOME LOOKING IT IS.
    THEY’VE EVEN MADE A SONG FOR IT

    TAKE A LOOK

    http://WWW.CONSERT-IN-E.C OM

    P.S ID LIKE TO SEE BMW’S 5 SERIES CONTEND WITH THIS. OH…LET ME GUESS…JUST LIKE THE WHEN THEY SAW THE NEW S CLASS AND C CLASS, they started crying and modified thier 3 series and 7 series to try and compete but didnt work. let hope that they dont waste their money and do the same!

  5. SUTSKI said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 4:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Indeed. Why on earth make a new prius more ugly than the lack lustre old one ??? Keep the original and provide other body shapes and size configuations to capture other market segments buyers. You could fit double the amount of batteries in something the size of a Hybrid Landcruiser or half the amount for a wee Yaris hybrid!!

    Can’t be that difficult surely!

  6. Capp# said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 4:24 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Yeah i agree, the prius is amazingly ugly, i mean it’s horrible, worst looking new car i’ve seen in a while.

    And yes, you can tell “some/most” of those cars are sold in America, they have a special, not very good look. The Taurus & The Camry at least.

    Well spoken :P

  7. Ash said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 4:30 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I remember when I saw the current Prius for the first time, and I laughed (somewhat angrily) at how tree huggers are calling it an eco car when it manages to be twice the size (if not bigger) than my hot hatch (206 GTi). And about as fuel efficient as mine too (which really depends on how far down the pedal on the right is pushed).

    When I saw the ‘new’ one at the British Motor Show I gave up completely. It’s BIGGER and UGLIER. How they managed that one is beyond me considering it’s massive and hideous to begin with.

  8. luckyman said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 4:47 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I find the Scooby OK, at least it isn’t going in odd directions anymore (and they’re skint so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt). Volvo – yes please. Likewise VW roadster at the promised price, but I doubt I’d have another two seater or 2+2.

    My opinions on Converj & Karma already known

    Merc E-Class looks like a shrunken 7-series Beemer that’s sucked on a lemon. And do those quad fog lights flip up to reveal rocket launchers?

    Camry – take any of the other cars on this blog and squint a bit and that’s the style…

    … especially the Taurus – we give the States the Mondeo (probably the best all-round car ever built), we even have Bond, James Bond driving a Mondeo. Someone in the States then thinks that making it look more like a Camry is a good idea. Just Say No.

  9. Victor Wong said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 5:19 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I wonder if VW’s roadster will be dubbed the new “Karmann Ghia”?

  10. catersam said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 5:30 pm Link to comment Report comment

    luckyman
    What I meant was a machine or something. It’d be cool if you just parked alongside and then the machine popped out your battery and placed in the charged one.

    These cars, however, are mostly useless. None of them are really ground breaking, and just look like facelifted ’98 Primeras, especially that Camry. The Hyundai looks like the front has been nicked off an S-class but made crap, and the Ford would have looked good, if it was from 2002. Maybe we’ve got used to the better looking Euro-cars of the last couple of years: Mondeo (designed by euro Ford), Laguna, various Alfas, Citroen C5/6, Audi A4, XF, etc. but these offerings are poor in comparison.

    As I said, none are ground breaking: none are particularly efficient, although they’re not part of the ‘Hybrid Conspiracy’ (more carbon produced during manufacture then in life of a regular car), they don’t bring anything new to the party.

  11. Evan (Mr. Nice) said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 6:14 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The Camry is cheap and reliable. It may be hideous, but it makes sense for the economically minded. Americans have different tastes than Europeans, not a complete lack of it. What is acceptable in some places is not in others, and that holds true all over the world. Here we tend to sacrifice good looks for affordability, as the pursuit of the almighty dollar is the number one priority.

  12. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 6:33 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Someone looked over my shoulder at the VW and said “Is that a TT?” (The picture in the news article link). Enough said there.

    The Genesis V8 is Honda Legend at the front, Lexus GS in the middle, and Toyota/5-Series @ the back. But I remember the original press pics got TG guessing, as it has no badge, what it is, and that the news article claimed it to be very nice for a Hyundai…

    The American Fords look ghastly, but then they always do. Even their slightly-different Focus isn’t as good looking as the Euro-stuff.

    As for the Legacy, a car which used to stand for understatement on the outside and fun on the road (“I’m like an Impreza but not so chavvy”), has too big a face, especially as it then blends into a fairly so-so body, as if they made a good teaser pic, but then thought “Oh crap, we need to design the rest of it!” Shame, as I want to love the Legacy.

    And the Prius. Oh how I hate the Prius for being a proud sham. Now it looks rediculously enlarged at the bottom and horribly stretched in the roof area. As un-sporty as it gets. And pricier for it. I’ll take the Insight over the pious Prius any day, not for being green, but for being a little left-field, not being up itself and being cheap to run (which pretty much sums up any Honda really). ANd th eLexus cousim looks like a cheap Chinese rip-off of an actual Lexus.

    Still, the Karma looks nice, apart from the whole Joker’s Face bit. The best looking car of the show?

  13. Mikeado said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 6:35 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Oh yeah. Sorry Paul, but the S60 looks mutated.

  14. Blakerson said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 7:14 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Many of us Yanks also find these cars stupidly ugly.

  15. Canada's Stig said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 8:32 pm Link to comment Report comment

    This has been a major problem in America since the 1960’s. That is why a number of the most interesting products coming from the Americam automakers today are based off of 60’s cars. The real question is why can’t we have more interesting cars, plastic body panels don’t care which shape they are in. Ford shouldn’t try and blend the Mondeo and the 300c and build a Taurus that takes its styling from a Lamborghini murcielago. I understand that there are issues with space requirements, but I ask, why do all 4 door sedans have to be carbon copy’s of eachother?

  16. delC said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 8:53 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I think he might have gotten the European Ford Fusion confused with the American one. The only one the US has ever had is just a Mazda 6 with a different nose. I’m pretty sure it’s just getting a little tweak on the nose.

  17. con said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 9:27 pm Link to comment Report comment

    the taurus looks like a focus saloon that has swallowed a chrysler 300c and downed it with a gm Hummer.

  18. luckyman said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 10:46 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Ash – hope the brief holiday at the end of last year was ok and that you’re now alrite with AUTHORITY. I really don’t think I ever will be… Have a look at the ‘Death or Glory’ blog and you’ve got a thanks and menchie on something.

    Catersam – an admission, I’m a bit sCENSOREDt at parking. A machine would probably try to put a battery in my wheels, but ok if you set it up like an auto car wash operates these days.

    Evan – likewise on the thanks and the blog but dear goodness these things are paper bag over the head/tiny cCENSOREDk (depending on gender) cars.

    Mikeado – disagree with some of your criticism but totally agree re Prius and its Lexus cousins. Tech has moved on in ten years and Toyota is trying to trim costs by ‘evo-ing’ something that’s already well outdated

    Cheers

  19. Paul Horrell said...
    Wednesday January 14, 2009 at 10:49 pm Link to comment Report comment

    delC (16) Go google it mate. The American Fusion of the past few years is based on the Mazda platform yes but looks entirelu different all over.

  20. Alex said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 12:27 am Link to comment Report comment

    That VW Roadster is just a TT with a VW badge, but it looks nice

    I like the Volvo and the Fisker, especially the S60 would bring some life back into today’s Volvo range which consists of very boring chapes.
    The Fisker looks great, but it’s going to be a failure. Nobody will buy it, because everybody buys Porsches (or a TT when on slightly tighter budget) fearing they may fall out of tune with their golfist friend when they buy something else.

    Not completely sure about the Audi, the front doesn’t look right. It looks a bit like the A1 (don’t know whether that was a concept or something they’re actually going build) we saw a while ago. Looks a bit boxy with conflicting lines, so needs a bit of work.

    The Prius looks even worse than the old one and that was pretty awful. I wouldn’t wanna own one. I’d rather a bit more tax and have a proper car.

    The Camry is in my view a typical Toyota. Well made, very reliable, drives alright, reasonably priced and, most of all, the looks don’t offend anyone. Which means it’s very boring, but fine if you want a comfortable armchair that takes you everywhere in peace and harmony.

  21. Quyên said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 3:08 am Link to comment Report comment

    Euro-cars are the only outstanding here. Sportback, Benz E-Class look cool. But I love Jag XFR.

  22. Downtheroadapiece said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 6:11 am Link to comment Report comment

    Interesting take on these new designs. I actually like the new Fords a great deal. But then again, being in the US I don’t see too many Mondeos so I don”t see the resemblance. And I am shocked at the liking of the new Lincolns. That grille treatment on the MKT with giant chrome TEETH is criminally ugly. Once your stomach contents are on the floor after it’s approached, you’re certain to be dry heaving once you get an eye full of the back end on that thing. Good hell, that thing is obscene.

    Other than that I concur.

  23. A confused seal said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 7:06 am Link to comment Report comment

    I agree completely to this, but when I was looking VW roadster I can’t help to notice a big styling influence from the old Audi TT (this isn’t a complaint)

  24. kevolio said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 8:01 am Link to comment Report comment

    Sneaky speed trap game http://www.speedcam.co.uk  /game.htm See how many you can spot.

  25. Qasim said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 10:32 am Link to comment Report comment

    Okay finally someone agrees that the Camry looks like ****.

  26. EuropeanCarFan said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 10:55 am Link to comment Report comment

    Some horrors – mostly the Pius (though most buyers don’t care what it looks like, they buy it for that smug “look at me I’m saving the world” look when a small diesel hatchback would be better for the middle east’s oil reserves).

    The VW has done an Exeo on the TT, and the Merc is another example of boring German design that will do well because TG and the rest of the media tell the sheeple “German == Best!!!!!!1one”.

    However, I’m going to stick my neck out here, and say that some of these don’t look half bad.

    The Hyundai has Merc and Lexus influences, yes, but for a car that costs as little as a Hyundai, with their seemingly infinite warranty, to look like an exec car is regarded as a bad thing? (Similar to why TG liked the Coupe, Ferrari looks with Korean import price).

    The Ford looks like an updated previous generation Mondeo, which, in my opinion, was a tidier design than the bulbous huge overhang new one.

    It makes a change from most vehicles shown for the UK market – pseudo-SUVs (eg. Moronos and Qashcows) and egg shaped people carriers (C-MAX! S-MAX! MAX-PAYNE! Picasso! Salvador Dali!).

  27. jaguar james said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 2:13 pm Link to comment Report comment

    pipe smokers do they want these cars

  28. Alex said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 6:10 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The front of the Ford doesn’t look all the bad. It looks like a Mondeo with a bit more muscles. The side looks like a 300C indeed, especially the high door line suggest some 300C pedigree.
    But what I don’t understand is why they are making that car in the first place. Why not sell the Mondeo in North America. It’s a brilliant car, so why wast time trying to upgrade the terrible 300C into a car that wants to be a Mondeo, but just isn’t.
    The Mondeo looks good, drives very nice, is quite cheap for the amount of car you’re getting and is very reliable.
    I’m sure the Americans will like. If you shout long and hard enough that it is brilliant people will start believing it (which is in this case the truth). They did it with E.T. and we all believed that.

  29. fcassia said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 8:46 pm Link to comment Report comment

    It’s good to see the US of A catching up with the rest of the World+Dog wrt normal-sized cars. :)

    Thanks for the report Paul.

    And one question: if one has interesting info /pictures which might be of the TopGear blogs, whom does one contact?

    FC

  30. fcassia said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 8:48 pm Link to comment Report comment

    “which might be of interest for the TopGear blog” I meant.

    FC

  31. J. Stevens said...
    Thursday January 15, 2009 at 9:21 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I don’t want to be rude about US tastes but I can’t see why you’re surprised that so many of the cars aimed squarely at the average Joe are munters. The best looking yank tanks of the past few years have just been retro throwbacks to when the US made distinctive, stylised cars (challenger, charger, mustang anyone? Even the Chrysler PT, if you like that sort of thing). Style wise we’re not much better in Europe, everything is suitably tutonic or pretending to be, it’s just lucky that the german look is usually more pleasing on the eye.

  32. English Cad said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 12:04 am Link to comment Report comment

    It seems as if the manufactures are all copying each other with their ‘new’ cars, being just bland Merc knock offs. It’s just a case of playing safe, try to survive… Mind you that said Porsche have been doing it for the last 40 years and it hasn’t harmed them, YET!

  33. Ich bin ein berliner said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 12:41 am Link to comment Report comment

    Mercedes continue to roll out the tedious and hideous I see. I guess in this day the “luxury” or “prestige” market has to pander to the famously classy tastes of the gold loving bling bling UAE and friends, and the hello-kitty asian market. I accept that this class (A6, 5-Series, E-Class, Volvo Snore) are bland to capture the bland middle management market, but surely the company that created the gullwing SL could hire designers who aren’t visually impared and are influenced by something visually appeasing, not by Egyptian carpets and Panzer tanks.
    This is but one of a string of cars which Mercedes have released that are therapy for insomniacs. The C-Class may be a good car, but I would weep if I had to walk towards it each day after work, knowing I could’ve had an Alfa 149. (Yes, I wouldn’t even mind spending a few hours in it on the roadside waiting for a tow truck). The CLC is just… it’s a Hyundai with a star on the bonnet. Really, buy three Hyundais, knock yourself out. Use one as a daily driver, and two as dodgem cars, you’ll save yourself the embarrasment of being a brand snob. The S-Class is again a fantastic car, but it doesn’t even hit its target audience. It’s boring, not regal and aggressive. It needs to be versatile enough to pull in front of the White House and Hamas Headquarters. It looks like a droopy movie extra rather than the star.
    I don’t think anyone is genuinely looking forward to the future roll out of the Mercedes range. If you are, please call your nearest hospital as you may be sufferring from a very boring disease.

  34. BMW said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 12:54 am Link to comment Report comment

    Z4 looks sick

  35. Af. said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 1:40 am Link to comment Report comment

    This is one thing i never understand.
    Why can’t car makers design good looking cheap cars? Why are they all hideous box shaped? Like it surely shouldn’t take much for car manufacturers to design a cool car. If they want i’ll send them a couple of sketches for free!
    They can design a ugly car but why not a beautiful car?
    Look at the Alfa Brera or even a Citroen C4 or the new VW Passat. They’re all pretty cheap and look great!
    Or on an even cheaper scale what about the new Fiat 500 or the Ford Fiesta. Cheap cars that are not ugly boxes.

    Its not hard. So why? Why???! can’t the car companies make their new cheap cars something nice and pretty instead of making those mass produced ugly boxes. And why do people buy those?
    Why are all the good looks only reserved to the top end cars?

  36. Hamzah said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 1:42 am Link to comment Report comment

    I hate the korean, I wanted the new mazda 3 to win car of the year.

  37. Hamzah said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 1:43 am Link to comment Report comment

    Oh and what do you gues think looks better, the Z4 or the Karma?

  38. Teh Shadow said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 2:20 am Link to comment Report comment

    I totally agree with just about everything Paul has written here, with the exception of the new VW. I think it looks a bit like a cross between an MX-5 and Honda’s S2000.
    Sexy either way.
    Yank tanks have always been a bit Garish, I think you need to send the boffins with pens over here to Oz so they can learn something about car design.

  39. jeffzekas said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 5:57 am Link to comment Report comment

    It is not that Americans don’t have good taste in automobiles… rather, American car makers (and importers) have a penchant for ugliness. The largest market for Ferrari, Maserati and Lamborghini is California; I spent my early adult days driving the streets of Los Angeles, while marveling at Lotus Elans cruising the beach, Fiat Abarths roaring down the canyons, and Alfa Romeo Spiders doing makeshift slaloms through Beverly Hills (not to forget the morning when I saw a Mercedes 300SL gullwing racing a Shelby Cobra on Sunset Boulevard!).

  40. Fakuryu said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 6:32 am Link to comment Report comment

    Simple, American car designers design their cars using the ugly stick (Chip Foose is an exception). Look what they did with the Focus… they uglified it! It looked like an inbred Focus or an out-of-focus uhm… Focus.

    The Taurus us just rubbish, wished that they just imported the Mondeo instead.

    The new Camry looks good, except for that grill.

    The VW roadster looks like it will be a good competitor versus the Japanese roadsters.

    The Legacy design seems to be going in the right direction, expect an even uglier (but with character) Impreza STI in the future. Subaru is like that, and that is one of the reasons why we like them.

    Finally, it seems like the Koreans already caught up and will soon leave behind the Americans in car design and car engineering.

  41. SUTSKI said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 8:43 am Link to comment Report comment

    Hey Alex:

    “The Fisker looks great, but it’s going to be a failure. Nobody will buy it, because everybody buys Porsches (or a TT when on slightly tighter budget) fearing they may fall out of tune with their golfist friend when they buy something else.”

    Myself and 1300 others have already signed for up a karma and my porschist friends (although at my club it is more about Bentleys and Jags) will be green to the gills when I sneak up silently in the Karma…I can’t wait!!…so please don’t assume everyone shares your narrow-minded views my friend !!

  42. rather i die said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 9:41 am Link to comment Report comment

    but i think camry more interting than the others. it very simple, fun, and it will relaxing your bone hopefully

  43. Af. said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 12:22 pm Link to comment Report comment

    i still can’t get over that fisker’s front grill… its very weird looking!

  44. Hiro11 said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 2:18 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Oh come off it. The new Taurus really isn’t that bad and it’s a collosal improvement over the previous two versions. Secondly, the Genesis is, if anything, completely innocuous. It’s certainly not aggressively ugly. The Genesis also offers Lexus-level build quality, extreme comfort, a ridiculous warrenty and 300+ HP for $35K, that’s why it won NACOTY. Thirdly, the Camry is basic A-to-B transportation that can seat an entire family, gets good gas mileage and never, ever breaks down. Also, when you trade a Camry in you get most of your money back. People who buy Camry’s are not stupid, they’re just (whisper this to Top Gear…) practical. Lastly, I can’t see how you can blame any of this on a mass taste failing. America is, after all, the biggest market for any European luxury brand you care to mention.

  45. svrallo svrallone said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 3:02 pm Link to comment Report comment

    what i can’t understand is why there’s such a big difference between euro cars and us’s (and aussie’s one too). Ford, well is ford, and gm own opel and vauxhal, plus all the recent car brand buying and selling. American car factory own a lot of project, and structures, why they never tried to make a more homogeneous market? ok, perfect identically market is impossible and they can’t sell us-market cars in europe because nobody want to drive a 10ton plastic train, but they would have tried to making project more similar. Sell mini-hatch in europe, big v8 in u.s., but all the model that stand between mini and muscle can be the same in the two market. Maybe the average u.s. man won’t drive something with the size of a ka, but there’s no reason he can’t drive a focus or a mondeo. Really I don’t get it

  46. Ariel Cinii said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 3:55 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I agree. The Current Camry is horrible but the livery cabs in New York are turning to them as the Lincoln Town Cars are phased out. They look better in black.

    The upcoming For Taurus looks like a fat Chrysler Sebring. When do they import the Fiesta, again?

    And the Hyundai Genesis is just ignorable. It’s not as good as its competition but it’s garnering all this praise from the US press. Good thing I don’t need a new car this year.

  47. Alex said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 4:45 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Hey SUTSKI:

    Ho ho, hang on a minute, I never said I didn’t like it. I think it looks absolutely brilliant and I’d be more than happy to have one, I really do.
    But I just don’t think they’ll sell enough to survive. People are too tightfisted to get rid of their Porsches and buy something else. They live in a world where Porsches are cool and special, but in fact the only thing a Porsche does is make you look like an arse. Although most of them don’t really a Porsche to look like one.

    That makes them narrow-minded, not me.

  48. Mondyman said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 7:36 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The UK Ford range are truly outstanding designs and excellent products, why not save money by making them truly global. (No I don’t work for Ford UK!!!)

  49. Tom Servo said...
    Friday January 16, 2009 at 10:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Has anyone had a look at the interior of the Hyundai Genesis? Oh dear.

    So what does it say about Honda’s perception of the hybrid marketplace that they basically are churning out a Pruis-knockoff with their new Insight?

  50. that's what she said...
    Saturday January 17, 2009 at 2:45 am Link to comment Report comment

    I agree about the Camry, but that’s what you’ve got to understand about Americans is that unless it’s an icon, mediocrity is more than acceptable. Having said that, the Sport version of the Camry is really rather excellent, for under 30 grand US, you get an interior with some character, reasonable steering ability, and some idiocy/character. There is a strut tower bar in the back, which prevents the rear seats from being able to fold. Features like this let you know that Toyota are actually trying to make this car somewhat amusing, although as has been said, the exterior aesthetics leave much to be desired.

  51. Ted said...
    Saturday January 17, 2009 at 6:18 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I found this forum by searching for why all economical cars have to be so ugly. I see there seem to be a lot of folks who agree with me. Why does it seem that to bend sheetmetal into a fashionable and pleasing design it costs so much more than to bend it into ugly shapes as we see on the highway today.

    Why does a less expensive car always seem to equal ugly ? Makes no sense to me at all.

  52. luckyman said...
    Saturday January 17, 2009 at 9:47 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Ted – Fiat 500, Mini, Audi A2, small BMW diesels, Lotus Elise…

  53. catersam said...
    Sunday January 18, 2009 at 12:03 pm Link to comment Report comment

    luckyman – I have to disagree. The BMW 1-series is dreadful, both in diesel and petrol guises. The Audi A2 is just to tall. And what is with that weird plastic wing thing on the back? Thank goodness they stopped building them.
    The Fiat 500, Mini, etc are good, though.

  54. luckyman said...
    Sunday January 18, 2009 at 2:14 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Catersam – point. The A2 was also a wee bit on the expensive side thanks to all aluminium construction, so I suppose that’s part of why I like it with my sensible trousers on

    I think the 1 series coupe (only the coupe) looks decent if a bit odd in a dark colour. The thing with these designs is how they’ll look in future. I remember thinking the Fiat Coupe was a bit of a minger when it first came out, but compared to modern metal it’s aged really well. Same might happen with flame-surfaced Beemers??

    Something else that’s been talked about is retro styling – Mini and 500 are both retro so that just leaves the Elise as a modern and economical looker?

    Cheers

  55. real scientist said...
    Sunday January 18, 2009 at 5:15 pm Link to comment Report comment

    so many people writting so long texts expecting others willing to read all of it?

  56. Maxillius said...
    Sunday January 18, 2009 at 5:55 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Look at the previous generations of Taurus, THEN look at the new one (You’ll have to Google it if you’re not North American). *NOW* do you understand? *THAT* is a positively stunning thing coming from American Ford

  57. J. Stevens said...
    Sunday January 18, 2009 at 10:16 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Ford US really could do worse than building some of its European models for the home market. They’re better looking (well, positively handsome looking to my british tastes), more refined, have better interiors and return much better fuel economies than their US cousins. That said, many Americans might wonder why Fords got so weird all of a sudden, style is a subjective issue after all.

  58. marcus said...
    Friday January 23, 2009 at 4:50 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Can you really expect pretty cars from either of these nations. America think muscle cars are the best thing since cheese burgers. Japan are making so many gadgets look good that they can’t make a car look good and it is easy ro make a car look good.

  59. +_+ said...
    Friday January 23, 2009 at 5:31 pm Link to comment Report comment

    If my parents owned one of these Id get bullied. Id much rather walk to school. Wich is 5 miles away.

  60. California Jeeper said...
    Wednesday January 28, 2009 at 9:39 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I was really hoping the new Taurus would be more like the Mondeo. When I saw them all over New Zealand I kept thinking, “why can’t they make these for the U.S.?” They could rebadge the V-8 Mondeo as the Taurus SHO and I would be very happy. But no, they had to go and muck about with the front end. Damn.

  61. PhillDoc said...
    Thursday October 29, 2009 at 4:12 am Link to comment Report comment

    Interesting article you got here. It would be great to read a bit more concerning that theme.

  62. Cell blocker said...
    Thursday November 5, 2009 at 8:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Cool post you got here. I’d like to read a bit more concerning that theme.

  63. Kirov said...
    Wednesday June 30, 2010 at 11:26 am Link to comment Report comment

    Странно, искал совсем не это, но именно эта информация показалась мне наиболее актуальной.
    Давно Ваш сайт ведёте?

  64. Marizhkamasha said...
    Wednesday September 22, 2010 at 6:20 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Где-то год назад я встречалась с однокурснико . Любили друг друга. И здесь я прохожу по конкурсу и уезжаю на год учиться в штаты. Перед отъездом мы решили, что в случае в случае если кто-то из нас разлюбит, незамедлител но же напишет об тэом, для того не было ложных ожиданий.
    Через 3 месяца я получила от него письмо, он пишет: у меня появилась девушка Валя, прости. Держу слово – сообщаю тебе об этом.
    Так мы расстались. Через год я вернулась в Питер, учились далее сообща, здоровались.В се.
    Уменя началась своя жизнь. И вот через полгода он звонит мне нпочью (а не выделись мы месяца 4), опьяневшим голосом говорит: прости, с Валей я был просто так, я взял в толк что ты мне нужна.
    Я вот думаю, в случае в случае если я ему нужна, тогда отчего он незамедлител но как я приехала не сказал, я только через полгода в последствии моего возвращения, в последствии такого как мы целых полгода учились сообща и просто здоровались?

  65. Blearogog said...
    Wednesday January 5, 2011 at 6:42 pm Link to comment Report comment

    “Аэрофлот” решил выделить 20 миллионов баксов на компенсации пассажирам, застрявшим в аэропортах Москвы в заключительн е дни декабря. Вред каждого из собственных клиентов перевозчик оценил в размере стоимости билета в один конец.
    Подробнее на гугле здесь http://www.google.com/url  ?sa=t&source=web&cd=201& ved=0CBUQFjAAOMgB&url=htt p%3A%2F%2F2NT.ru%2F&cd=0C BUQFjAAOMgB

    Действительн сайт «хлебосольны » куда не посмотри. Ведь здесь можно скачать программы, свежесть которых измеряется, пускай не минутами и часами, но неделями. Только успела программа, сойти с «конвейера», как пополняет коллекцию сайта, который обновляется не только регулярно, но и с завидной скоростью.
    Следует отметить, что v7em.com – это не просто коллекция софта, который собирался без «руля и вертел. Это серьезный ресурс – ваш навигатор в разнообразно мире программ. Здесь не только можно скачать программы, но и получить, прямо на главной странице, а также на страницах внутри сайта, бесценную информацию о том, какую программу из той или иной области следует скачать в первую очередь. Посетители сайта в основном – это далеко не «доки» в плане профессионал ного знания софта, и вряд ли кого-нибудь ими станут. Поэтому дельные советы они принимают с удовольствие , от тех, кто знает софт.

  66. failmoney said...
    Friday March 4, 2011 at 2:23 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Интересные тут записи…

  67. шпунтовые работы said...
    Friday April 22, 2011 at 10:12 am Link to comment Report comment

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  68. vitamir said...
    Friday June 3, 2011 at 9:29 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Интересное статьи!

  69. johnbor56 said...
    Friday May 11, 2012 at 11:47 am Link to comment Report comment

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    Thursday July 26, 2012 at 12:24 pm Link to comment Report comment

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