Friday, April 9, 2010

I want an American car damn it! (wait no I don't)

I already know my next car is going to be a Honda S2000 or a Subaru STi. I've wanted an S2000 since they first came out and I've test driven one every time I have looked for a car. It's a car made for driving with the wind through your hair and the sun in your eyes.
Even though the S2000 is being discontinued (terrible decision), I think it's one of the best cars ever. It's simple, fast, rear-wheel drive, pretty affordable, hugs corners and looks great while doing it. 
If there was an American car available that was half that of the S2000 and affordable I would buy it, but unfortunately there isn't.
The fact is that most of the country is landlocked, flat and boring. People drive to work everyday, stuck in traffic, idling inefficient oversize SUVs with the backseats empty and who can blame them? What else is there? Families want big cars, one can understand that. But what about the younger generations?
The problem is that the executives at Ford, Chevy and Chrysler (which technically isn't American anymore) are so out-of-touch with young Americans. I completely understand building cars for baby boomers and ages 40+ but what can people 22-39 buy? IMPORTS.
Our generation is confusing. Whatever we are doing, we like to have fun, look good, and show-off while somehow coming off as humble. We want something desirable and there are very few desirable American cars.
All my friends drive Asian cars. Why? Because they offer everything we need, simplicity, good (enough) looks, and they're fun. Everyone I work with drives Asian cars (except for my boss's BMW 6-series). Why? Because they're practical, affordable, and classy (enough). 
You can buy 2-Hyundai Genesis Coupes for the price of a Cadillac STS. You can buy a Subaru STi for about the same price as a Chevy Camaro.
That's another thing, even the coolest American cars are made for Old folks. The Camaro, Mustang, and Challenger are all nostalgic cars for baby boomers. I have yet to see a young person driving a Dodge Challenger. Why? Because it doesn't mean anything to us. Yeah, okay, it looks badass but it sent American car design back 40 years. What owners of late 1960s muscle cars would have thought they'd be driving cars that look identical to ones they're driving now, 40 years later? They probably thought they'd be driving flying cars by 2010. Man were they wrong.
Chevy and Ford have it in their thick skulls that young Americans want little shit boxes with usb capabilities that have some sporty lines. No we don't!
We don't want glorified junk. We want functional cars.
While the Italians make the best sports cars, the Germans make the best hatchbacks, the Japanese make the best economy cars and off-roaders, we, the Americans, make the best pick-ups to lug shit around slowly and inefficiently.

Damn it! How many times do we have to tell Ford that we want the Focus RS! People are going to start buying them elsewhere and importing them themselves.

Bring this to America and I'll shut up, for a little while anyway. Even Mexico gets the Focus RS, why is that?

~M/o  "Stay up to Speed"

Monday, April 5, 2010

2010 NYIAS: Wheels & Accessories

Wheel & accessory trends were a little more subtle at this year's auto show (aside from the overly obvious split 5-spoke trend). Obvious trends are black wheels or polished aluminum with black details. Honda was one of the only companies (other than Scion) to show after market anything. 

Someone's got to capitalize on all these young people with money, and that's exactly what Honda is doing. Their Mugen teaser wall was exactly that, just a teaser to remind you that Mugen is still here.

They should have thrown together a tricked out Mugen Accord or Acura in the mix to really grab some attention.

On the backside of the Mugen wall, Honda had a small display of accessories from their Honda Factory Performance (HFP) division. 

They had some simple and sporty wheels with bright aluminum and gunmetal finishes along with exhaust, suspension, and brake-kits that come engineered to fit your Honda.

But I guess Mugen didn't get the memo to throw some split 5-spoke wheels up there, the rest of the companies sure did. 

BMW, Porsche, Audi, Subaru, Honda, Fiat, Mini, Cadillac, Buick, Infiniti, and Lexus all had their own rendition of split-5's.

Only a hand full of companies didn't have a set of split 5-spokes on one of their models.

5-spokes are here to stay.

~M/o  "Stay up to Speed"