Two for the Road is a hangout for mystery writers Tammy Kaehler and Simon Wood to chat, reminisce, gossip, speculate and argue about all things motorsport.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Glory Days

By Simon

Car makers have gone retro in recent years. When new cars have failed, they’ve turned to past glories. So we've seen the Mustang, GT, Camaro, Thunderbird (although no one liked it), Charger, Fiat 500, VW Beetle ape their designs from their respective heyday. I’ll cut the Mini some slack. It stayed in production with the same design for forty years before it received a makeover. The others didn’t.

As much as I adore seeing a Ford GT on the road and admire the looks of these 21 century interpretations of classic cars, I’m disappointed to see them. Ford shouldn’t have gone back to a design from the 60’s for the Mustang. It should have looked forward. The same applies to VW, GM, Fiat, etc.? For them to do otherwise feels too safe. Worse than that, the decision not to look forward smacks of desperation. You can almost hear the white flag flapping in the wind and someone muttering, “We were too afraid to push the envelope, so we looked in this old one instead.”

I love the Ford GT. I think they did a bang up job. The engineering that went into that car is excellent and is a worthy successor to the classic GT40, but sticking with same outward appearance puts me off. I’m glad to see the GT back, but I want to see a GT that will have people talking about in 50years and not one that will remind of a car from 50years ago. I want evolution, not nostalgia when it comes to great looking and performing cars. So give me one. Give Corvette their due. They've kept to a concept of what a Corvette should be, but they have updated that design over the year. The same applies to Porsche and the 911. If they can do it, so can the others.

Imitation is the greatest form of flattery, but copying is not. C'mon guys, look forward. Inspire us. Make a jaws drop showing us something we haven’t seen before.

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