The late s were a strange time for me both disco and the rock band Toto formed in the era—come to think of it, it was a strange time for everyone.
I was graduating from high school, an awkward time for a lot of kids. I was begging colleges to let me in and trying to work enough to save for my first real car instead of borrowing my parents'.
However, kids were aware of cool cars, but only from afar. Some are new, some are used. Anyway, the car was launched in and lasted just four years. I was struck dumb the first time I saw one. I was 16 years old and we were in Huntington Beach, California, visiting relatives. My cousins and I were walking to the beach and the Aston was parked curbside in a little shopping area.
It stopped us cold. We stood there looking for a while, noses pressed against the glass.Gmod Hide and Seek - BIG Head Edition! (Garry's Mod Funny Moments)
The owner came out and rather than yell at us punks for getting finger prints on his car he opened the doors and the hood and let us crawl all over the thing. Read More on the Vantage. What made it even more mysterious was until the 7 BMW mostly built semi-sporty small cars, so the 7 was quite a departure.
A once grand s luxury name slapped on a mediocre sedan in and even worse, on a K-car platform five years after that. Read More on the Chrysler Le Baron. He says it was a weird and funky thing to pilot, more like a spaceship than a wagon. He never owned one for fear all the hydraulic lines would stop working, but says he appreciates them to this day.
The legend was born in amid the sea of Pintos and Vegas and other awful contraptions. No coincidence, those are traits it still has today. Read More on the Honda Accord. Though it had a great run from tothe crossover boom came too late for International Harvester.
Read More on the Scout. He later got a chance to drive a Walkinshaw XJS at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, but some moron ahead of him in line dumped oil all over the track and they shut everything down for the day. Read More on the XJS. If I knew in what I know now I would have bought 10 of these cool wagons and stored them in a barn until, well, right about now. Read More on the Jeep Wagoneer. Back in the day Vaughn thought the crazed Countach was amazing.Home Discussions Workshop Market Broadcasts.
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The s is a decade that lots of people look back to with a sense of nostalgia, and it's easy to see why, especially in the case of those who weren't actually around or old enough to have experienced it first-hand.
However, for fans of American automobiles, the s was a troubled era, especially in comparison to the years preceding it. The muscle cars of the s captured a zeitgeist that is still celebrated today, and while that trend roared into the very earliest years of the '70s, the party didn't last long.
Oil shortages and new insurance and pollution regulations quickly shifted the focus of American auto manufacturers away from performance and toward economy, and the growing pains were obvious as they battled to compete against imports that had the jump on them. In the spirit of fun although some of these certainly weren't fun for the people who originally bought themlet's look back at some of the worst American cars of the s. We might as well start the list with one of the decade's worst automotive blunders, the Ford Pinto.
Following but failing the same strategy that was used to name the Mustang, this abomination was named after a horse, but more closely resembled the bean.
The subcompact car wasn't exciting to drive unless a person had the misfortune of getting hit from behind, in which case the barely protected fuel tank might burst into flame. Pintos also had doors prone to jamming shut in wrecks, so that just added to the horrific potential of driving one. All in all, it was a crappy way to deal with the problems inherent in Ford's crappy car, and people still haven't forgotten.
Built from tothe Maverick was named for a wayward range animal and used a stylized longhorn head as part of its nameplate. The vehicle was a replacement for Ford's previous compact offering, the Falcon, and while it wasn't as good-looking as a lot of the muscle cars that were still available in the early years of its run, the Maverick wasn't an altogether hideous car. There was even a "Grabber" model, which was essentially a special trim option that jazzed things up with hood scoops and a rear spoiler, but a "muscle car" the Maverick was not.
Mercury also made a clone of the Maverick called the Comet, but neither car is looked back upon as good or much to be excited about. Ford did offer a choice of hilariously named paint colors for the Maverick, such as "Thanks Vermillion," "Anti-Establish Mint" and "Freudian Gilt" yes, reallybut that was probably the most inspiring thing about those cars.
AMC was responsible for a lot of terrible '70s cars, and while a few have become icons of a sort since then, it's mostly as a cautionary tale or for comic relief. The designers of the Gremlin, built from tochose to name their car after mischievous gnomes who enjoy sabotaging mechanical equipment, which is probably not the best way to brand a vehicle you intend to sell.
Supposedly the car was originally quickly sketched by design chief Richard Teague on an air sickness bag, and was slated to be sort of an AMC Javelin with its tail end lopped off.
Instead, it became a subcompact design based on AMC's Hornet, another fairly uninspired '70s car, and was first introduced to the waiting? Despite these bad omens, Gremlins weren't awful cars mechanically, and there's a cult-like following in some auto-collecting circles.
They make this list mostly because, like puka shell necklaces and pet rocks, they're just so firmly associated with the ugly and goofy side of '70s style that Gremlins are a love-or-hate thing to most people. We've all seen Pacers in the Wayne's World movies, and that's probably as good an introduction as any. Available from tothe Pacer was designed and promoted as "The First Wide Small Car," owing to the fact that its odd-looking bubble passenger compartment was as large as that of full-size cars of the time, allowing people more space than other compact cars did.
When a car's biggest selling point is how wide it is, that's pretty strange.
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Besides its non-traditional fishbowl design, the Pacer featured quite a few forward-thinking safety and handling features for a car of its time, but it was a heavier vehicle than most of its direct competition, and got "okay" but not great gas mileage — something that might have been important to buyers willing to take a chance on a weird-looking compact car in the mid-'70s.
Now, of course, the problem is that driving one will subject a person to constant and terrible Wayne's World references. Introduced in and running into the early '80s, the Ford Fairmont and its clone, the Mercury Zephyr, make this list mostly because they're just so uninspired-looking and plain. If a car could be called "dowdy," these would definitely qualify. It's as if the designers, beaten down and depressed after years of a downturn from the glory period of American cars, just turned in the plans for these boxy, boring and plain ugly machines, probably thinking they'd hit rock bottom.
If the auto designs of the s had been exciting and a little dangerous, the car equivalents of being a rock star, the Ford Fairmont was the vehicular embodiment of working at the county clerk's office.
Sure, it was a car and would get people around, but its uninspired styling made these look like something low-level Soviet officials might drive.You didn't have to be alive in the s to know how crazy they were. Serious news from Watergate and the war in Vietnam heavily impacted, well, everything, but ultimately didn't put a damper on style. Some of the cars below would be in the Automotive Hall of Fame if it actually inducted automobiles but it doesn't, weird right?
Either way, they're the s-est cars of the s. It cost slightly more than a Lamborghini Miura, but what you got was a body that was hand-built in Turin, Italy, more than 15 coats of paint, gold-plated trim to go with shag carpeting, and your name engraved on a plate on the dash. It was a hit among the celebrity crowd -- postwar Elvis, Willie Nelson, Lucille Ball, George Foreman, and a host of others all bought one. True beauty is timeless, but most things that seem shockingly futuristic for their day tend to age badly.
Quick: what's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the Ford Pinto? People dying in fires, right?
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The real problem -- aside from the deaths and injuries, of course -- was how Ford dealt with it. Rather than simply recalling the cars, it studied the likely costs of every lawsuit expected.
If that sounds familiar, that's because Edward Norton's job description in Fight Club was a very clear reference to what became known as the Pinto Memo. Vinyl roofs technically had a very long life, spanning most of the 20th century and even into the 21st, but in the s they reached critical mass.
Today it seems obvious that certain cars shouldn't have design elements requiring regular Armor All use, but not even Mustangs or European sedans were spared in the vinyl-addicted '70s. The Stratos might be a rolling piece of Italian automotive art, but it's also very literally all business. The pitch was a hit -- duh -- and the resulting Ferrari Dino-engined supercar went on to claim a World Rally Championship three-peat, then drove right back into the dust from whence it came.
It had all of 61hp, but because it weighed down around 2,lb, the handling was more than enough to make up for the lack of grunt. Basically, it was Fiat doing cheap cars right -- when new init cost just a smidge more than a well-equipped Mustang II.
The basic idea was to make an ultra-safe vehicle that was also capable of seriously high performance, but given the actual quality, it's seems more likely that Bricklin himself was seriously high. In theory, a fiberglass-bodied car with self-lifting gull wing doors and, depending on the year, either a Ford or an AMC V8 is great.
In reality, the fiberglass cracked, the engines frequently overheated, and the car was even more of a disaster than the similarly optimistic DeLorean. It's all too easy to make fun of the hilariously unstable Robinand frankly no one aside from Robin owners get tired of watching a car flip over with little more than a brisk tug on the steering wheel.
For the past few decades, the Mustang II has been little more than an asterisk in the history books. Mustang enthusiasts point to the fact that it shared a chassis with the also unloved Pinto, and the fact that you couldn't get one with a V8 for the first year of its production was reason enough to wipe their collective memory by year two, the V8 was back.The modern designs and acceleration abilities were getting more and more amazing every year.
After all, the 50s gave birth to the Corvette. It was announced that air conditioners would be available as optional equipment on three cars. Power steering had its use extended to five cars. Share your love for Cars in the s. The wrap-around window was a nice look though. Many striking design changes were made to the models. And for the first time in history, the US imported more cars than they exported.
The automobile industry in the United States established in a new all-time production record for the second successive year. Total production was 7, vehicles. A mild form of this control, requiring a one-third down payment with the balance to be paid within 21 months three months longer than the wartime version was restored in September. Just how strong the demand was in each of these cases had yet to be established.
Not convertible in the true sense of the word, these cars embodied the racy lines of a convertible while retaining a fixed steel top. This body style was extended to include four-door sedans in models. About half of the models offered hardtop styling. In other respects the designing differed only slightly from that ofsince most manufacturers had provided new designing for their models.
The majority of the changes were cosmetic. There was a spectacular increase in the number of automatic transmissions offered and sold during It was estimated that well over 1. Many factors hindered production in the motor industry duringthe longest stoppage being caused by the nation-wide steel strike in June and July. The job of stepping up defense production while maintaining a profitable level of civilian output was continued in Shortage of materials was the greatest production problem of the industry.Home Discussions Workshop Market Broadcasts.
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