Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Here in my car, I feel safest of all...

I was running some errands yesterday and ended up at a stoplight behind a white Nissan Pulsar NX. The car had obviously gone unwashed for at least a matter of weeks and, from the sounds of it, there was a hole in the muffler. As it turned right, I wondered to myself, "why did we ever think those things were cool?"

From there... well, from there I began to think that this would make a good blog entry...

There are many types of cars for many types of uses and for many types of people. Some of you reading this may be disturbed because I disparage a car you like. That's not a problem, just a difference of opinion.

At the bottom of the food chain, we have cars designed to get you from point "A" to point "B". Some of these are reliable but not very fast. Others are neither. Let's take a look at some of these.

  • The Chevrolet Chevette - These wonders of modern science are the closest thing America has ever come up with to a Toyota Corolla in reliability. You could drive these things forever! That is, as long as you kept an eye on the oil. Eventually, they would throw a rod and be on their way to that great scrapheap in the sky. My sister owned one that had a hole in the floorboards on the driver's side. The hole was covered by a loose piece of sheet metal, but we still called it the fredmobile (that's not Fred in the driver's seat).
  • The Yugo - Manufactured in Yugoslavia based on a design from Fiat. This car was voted worst car of the milennium at car talk (the results page is MIA). It's not a babe magnet. It's not fast. It's a box with wheels.
  • The Chevy Sprint - Powered by a 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine. 'nuff said.
  • The Renault LeCar - Just take a look at the picture... you'll get it.
  • Then, reaching into the wayback machine, there's the AMC Gremlin

I could go on but you get the idea.

Stepping up from there are cars that were practical but still fun to drive. Many are still around today.

From there, we visit the muscle cars...

And just plain classics...

And, after many many hours of linking to images around the web, that brings us to...

Cars we thought were cool but later thought, "What the hell were we thinking?"

  • I should start off this list with the Nissan Pulsar NX. I mean, it started this whole thing. (Amazingly, the picture I found is almost exactly what this thing looked like)
  • The Pontiac Fiero - General Motors' answer to the Toyota MR2. This thing had a mid-mount, inline, 4-cylinder engine and only had two seats. The stereo speakers were mounted in the headrests of each seat which means they were only about 2" speakers... really crappy.
  • The Plymouth Laser
  • The Chevy Nova. Just the new ones, though. The older ones are still cool. (notice that the only picture I could locate of a newer Nova was wrecked)
  • The Ford Probe
  • The Mitsubishi Spider
  • The Eagle Talon
  • And who could forget The Delorean? Yes, this is the car they made a time machine out of in Back To The Future.

I'm sure you may disagree with some of my choices or may have some examples of your own. If so, please feel free to add a comment. Add as many as you'd like. Let's get a healthy debate going.

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