By on March 3, 2013

Robert writes:

Have you seen a more ghastly DLO (daylight opening) fail than the new Avalon? (note the nicely highlighted black plastic sections in the photo sent by the OP- SM)

Sajeev answers:

Gather ’round the warm glow of your collective computer screens, let’s tell the tale of three Entry-Level Luxury Sedans of the year 2013 with very different DLOs. A tale with plastic triangles and fixed window panes told by me, but the ending lies at the end of the comment section.

 

Yes, the Avalon is pretty shameful. Note little chrome + black plastic triangle at the front of the doors, and how it has little “flow” with the top of the fender as it sweeps back to the A-pillar.  But the huge plastic triangle (instead of a more logical pillar design) in the rear door; that’s a big problem.

When you make a roofline/C-pillar so long and “sweepy” (technical term, don’t try this at home) that the rear door needs a large black plastic triangle to make the window roll down, you’ve failed your DLO. Why do Entry-Level Luxury Cars suck so hard at the basics of car design?

But wait, it gets worse.

 

The new Lincoln MKZ, a vehicle from a brand trying to be significantly better than any Toyota, is distinctly worse in the realm of Entry-Level Luxury DLO FAIL.  Why? Because it needs both the plastic triangles and fixed window panes to carry out “the look.”

Note the plastic triangle in the front, it’s a solid chrome bit that stands out far more than the Avalon.  The B-pillar looks shorter/fatter/thicker relative to the rest of the body, and the rear door’s black plastic triangle area is not only large, it fights the natural, voluptuous curve of the door’s rear cutline into the quarter panel.

But that’s not enough to make it much worse than the Toyota Avalon.  Behold, and click to expand:

 

There’s plenty of DLO fail, and yet there’s also a fixed window pane on the front door? If you’re gonna artificially extend the DLO to need a FAIL point, don’t have both a plastic triangle and a hunk of glass! To think of the money spent just to make this poseur-luxury stuff…when you could have…

Wait for it…

 

Indeed.  The superior DLO of the 2013 Lexus ES.  When Entry-Level Luxury is done right, you get one of the most popular, most appealing examples of the bunch.  No stupid plastic triangles, black or chrome. And because that roof line is super sleek (too sleek, but that’s another story) Lexus spent the money to have a fixed piece of glass on the rear door.  The way we’ve done car design for decades…before it was okay to mask our problems with rapid prototype’d plastic triangles.

Note to Entry-Level Lexus wannabes from all around the world: don’t cut corners in such obvious places and you might topple The King.

But still…I still yearn for a car with no triangles, no fixed window panes:

 

This is one of the most logical, most elegant DLOs in an Entry-Level Luxury car.  Logical pillars with no plastic triangles, making elegant transitions into the door’s cut lines with the body. A roof line that doesn’t think it’s a Ferrari.  And just to tell everyone else they can go suck a lemon, there’s a floating C-pillar completely encased in glass.

Replace that flying thing in the background with one of the Obama-drones and this could almost pass for a new car.  What I wouldn’t give if Ford made the 1986 Sable instead of the 2013 MKZ.

And while it shared the roof and windshield (and the inner door structure) with the similarly incredible Taurus, this is how you make an Entry-Level Luxury sedan without resorting to the cheap triangles and fixed glass common in today’s badge engineered Luxury sedans.

“Out of the ordinary but not out of range” indeed.

 

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89 Comments on “Vellum Venom Vignette: Ghastly Entry-Level Luxury Design...”


  • avatar
    RatherhaveaBuick

    “Mercury: The Shape You Want To Be In”

    I guess their slogan in 1987 still rings true for you.

  • avatar
    Flybrian

    For the record, one of my favorite ‘segments’ is VV.

    I must agree with the overall elegant simplicity of the original Sable. I also have to bring up my beloved classic Aurora because – although it utilizes two plastic triangles – i does so in such a clean, symmetrical way that its tolerable.

    Modern designs simply miss a lot.

    • 0 avatar
      KalapanaBlack

      I like that you cited the Aurora. The original, I assume. It did pretty well with the small black plastic triangles. The second generation, with its painted forward mirror mount triangle (which works well, IMO), and its hideous semi-gloss, very cheap rear black plastic one didn’t pull it off nearly as well on the whole.

      The thing that gets me is that the rear window doesn’t roll down any farther into the door than it would if the plastic triangle were eliminated (the rear windows on the G-Body are notorious for hilariously rolling down not even halfway). And the second generation’s rear pillar itself (the shape that apparently necessitated the plastic triangle) is one of the most gorgeous lines on the car, too… Shame, GM!

  • avatar
    Summicron

    Love the new Avalon. Seriously pondering trading-in a perfectly good Camry to get one.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    Thank you. I was thinking the other day how much more stupid some these designs will look in a few years after the triangles fall off.

  • avatar
    vettefan427

    I’m not sure if it was a problem on this first gen Sable (although it looks like it may have been), but I know that on later Sables/Tauri, the rear windows only rolled about halfway down and it always looked like that was because the shape of the rear glass prohibited anymore of it from fitting in the rear door. Plastic triangles and fixed glass, as inelegant as they may be, solve this problem.

    • 0 avatar

      I was wondering if someone would nail me with that counterpoint. Very true…although some cars still have non-complete rolldown windows combined with their DLO fails.

      Well done on your rebuttal.

      • 0 avatar

        I really don’t see anything wrong with the triangles themselves so much as how they are integrated. With SUVs, I think they look better when they are molded into the same piece as the C-pillar-trim (a la current Acura MDX). They should be relatively inconspicuous and should blend into the glass that surrounds them. But if you do away with those triangles, that does severely limit the number of DLO designs you could have.

        I do, however, agree with you on the fact that most modern car designs lack the timelessness that that first Taurus/Sable generation has. Manufacturers are very quick to jump onto the next Big Thing (like LED DRLs or grilles that stretch the entire height of the front-fascia). I am particularly disappointed in BMW and Mercedes-Benz, whose recent cars will be sore memories in ten years, rather than fond ones. Even Lamborghini and Ferrari have jumped on the bandwagon. And I am convinced, after seeing that new IS, that Lexus has had a midlife crisis and has lost its everloving mind in the process.

        Fortunately for Lincoln, they can’t even afford to keep up with the other manufacturers and their ridiculous trends, so they might just come out on top when this is all said and done…

      • 0 avatar
        yvrjonesey

        My 1991 Integra had rear windows that pitched down more at the front than the rear, so that they could open further than if they only went straight down. If Honda could figure that out in the ’90s, how come nobody can now?

      • 0 avatar
        corntrollio

        Sajeev — do you like the power opening vent windows on 80s Town Cars? How does that fit into design aesthetics?

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Great point on the rear windows, perhaps the question is who is the car “made for”, the driver or its rear passengers? I would think in the case of the Taurus/Sable, the car was intended more for the driver… or perhaps Ford didn’t even want the rear windows all the way down for child safety reasons?

    • 0 avatar
      toplessFC3Sman

      Probably the worst offender was Subaru with the rear windows in some of the legacys/outbacks that twisted as they went down, giving the appearance that the window had just fallen off its track and was sitting there jutting out of the door at an odd angle

    • 0 avatar
      jhefner

      @vettefan427: Yes, the first and second gen Taurus/Sable had basically the same doors, and the same issue with the rear window not rolling down. You beat me to the punch.

      @Sanjeev: Another great article; thank you very much. Speaking of this decade of Ford, did you know that the Ford Probe IV prototype is at Gullo Ford in Conroe, Texas? I remember when this prototype came out; Conroe, Texas is the last place I would have expected to find it. Will definitely check it out the next time I am down there; thought you would be interested as well.

      http://www.gminsidenews.com/forums/f19/1983-ford-probe-iv-concept-75145/

      • 0 avatar

        Looks like I need to make a trip to Conroe.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          How did you not notice he spelled your name wrong, and chastise?!

          • 0 avatar
            jhefner

            Sajeev; I am sorry about that.

            @CoreyDL: I will write “Sajeev” 200 times on the blackboard after class. Is that good enough? :)

            I don’t normally get on the computer on Sunday; but I read this article on my iphone and wanted to participate. I certainly did screw up his name in my haste. I also knew from his ownership of ’80s Ford cars and his writing he would love to see the Probe IV; I found out it is in Cleburne just last week; and I believe I can still see it parked in front on Google Earth; so it still appears to be there.

        • 0 avatar
          jhefner

          I would call and check first; and not let too much time get away; it appears to be on the auction block:

          http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/lot/ford-probe-iv-concept-3942131-details.aspx?pos=38&intObjectID=3942131&sid=

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t know about you, but I don’t really care if the rear windows roll flush with the top of the door.

      I seldom roll all 4 windows down on my cars, usually just the front two, unless I really want the wind-in-the-hair effect, I’ll roll all 4 down on my Explorer, open the sunroof, and then open the rear glass, it has more turbulence in the cockpit that way than my friends ’71 Chevelle convertible.

  • avatar
    Nostrathomas

    As atrocious as those DLO bits look on closer inspection, I happened upon an Avalon yesterday and dare I say it was quite striking from the rear. It had a nice elegant presence about it, that you definitely didn’t get with the last generation. The seniors who buy these might as well start wearing a top hat.

  • avatar
    b787

    Reading vellum venom spoiled me completely. Before, I have never noticed black plastic triangles, but now that’s one of the first things I spot when I see a car. While I still don’t think they are that bad, I have to admit I was surprised how much better Lexus ES looks compared to Avalon (when looked from the side).

  • avatar
    Amendment X

    I’m not sure what the big deal is. I think the worst DLO fail that a manufacturer can make is to make the beltline too high and reduce visibility as in the Camaro. If Avalon extended the door engulf the entire window area, then the door would be too long and it would reduce ingress/egress.

    The Sable photo was definitely a breath of fresh air though, not sure why we can’t go back to an all-glass rear.

    • 0 avatar
      AFX

      “I think the worst DLO fail that a manufacturer can make is to make the beltline too high and reduce visibility as in the Camaro.”

      I think the Dodge Magnum started that trend.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      Pretty much. The only people who are bothered by such things are those who write articles about it. For the other 99.9%+ of the population, if it looks good to them (and it does), then it looks good.

      I think you are exactly correct about the epic fail of the loss of visibility. I would LOVE if a metric was reported so that we can compare different cars’ visibility, e.g., How far away is the nearest point on the ground that is visible (sides, front, & rear)? For cars with no view of the ground in back, what is the tallest object that can never be seen? Also, what is the tallest object that can be completely hidden by the front end? The evolution of visibility could be tracked. We would finally have some hard numbers to back up safety concerns about shrinking windows.

      • 0 avatar
        hf_auto

        @redav:
        Unfortunately FMVSS only regulates mirrors, but SAE has a visibility metric. It’s only a metric though, not a target.

        Their metric actually captures what you describe. The version I use has a field of 1-meter tall cylinders divided into 3 bands- red on top, yellow in the middle, green on the bottom. The cylinders are spaced about 1-meter apart if I remember correctly. You then project surfaces from the driver eye points along the DLOs and slice through the visibility cylinders. You end up witha field of cylinders that are completely sliced-off further out, then a gradient through green, yellow, and red slices as you get closer to the vehicle. The standard also defines zones around the car, so you can calculate coverage percentages in each zone.

        In my experience, raked windshields for aerodynamics, roof crush requirements (resulting in thicker pillars), and thicker side mirror housings that visually “touch” the a-pillars have been the worst culprits.

        • 0 avatar
          redav

          While SAE may have that metric – it is not reported much less understood. If there was a line item in cars’ standard spec sheets for visibility, then more people would make decisions based on it, which would lead car makers to improve it to capture those sales.

  • avatar
    Marko

    Wow, now that I look at the MKZ from the side, it really looks like it should have a hatch like the Audi A7…

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Do auto designers even have a choice to create a “floating c-pillar encased in glass” as opposed to too high beltlines with narrow slit windows and DLO fail? I was under the impression NHSTA/DOT regulations were at the wheel of ruining, err creatively changing US car design.

  • avatar
    jz78817

    so how many sales does this cost them?

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    Other than the obviously misaligned front door, I don’t find anything offensive with the Avalon.

    The front little window in the door in the Lincoln is something that is kind of making a comeback. It reminds me how lots of old cars had a (very useful) vent window precisely there. I guess the author hasn’t seen the current Touareg either, or the Mercedes E-class coupe which has it in the back.

    • 0 avatar
      Summicron

      “a (very useful) vent window”

      Yes! Thank you. In the days when AC was a luxury, opening those vents way past 90 degrees so they acted like ram intakes could sure cool you off, particularly with the rear windows down.

    • 0 avatar
      AFX

      “The front little window in the door in the Lincoln is something that is kind of making a comeback.”

      GM had that back in their aero period of the early 90′s, with glass that covered the A-pillar. The Dustbuster vans had the biggest ones of all. The early 90′s Delta 88, Park Avenue, and LeSabre had them. The Suzuki SX4 and the Honda Fit have them too.

      “It reminds me how lots of old cars had a (very useful) vent window precisely there.”

      Vent windows were awesome. I remember if you locked your keys in the car you could stick a coathanger wire into the vent window gasket, pop open the vent window, then open the door.

  • avatar
    bd2

    Eh – even with that “Predator” grill front-end, the ES is still pretty bland to look at.

    The Optima SX looks more like a high-end sedan than the ES.

  • avatar
    alexndr333

    Sajeev,
    I don’t disagree with your analysis and wish more cars had larger rear doors – a la the ES – as opposed to bits of glass, plastic and chrome. However, I do wonder if the styling flaws you point out don’t reflect an affordable way to provide more robust roof support (two C-pillars per side instead of one) to meet crash test requirements.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      There are probably mulitple benefits to the way these cars are designed/made (structural, cost, etc.), with the disadvantage that it doesn’t look quite as clean.

      IMO, of all the trade-offs that could be made, this is a pretty reasonable one.

  • avatar
    genuineleather

    Sajeev, my grandmother would be most pleased with your positive analysis of her new ES, if she had any idea what a DLO was. Now she can mock her Avalon/MKZ driving contemporaries in the Talbots checkout line.

  • avatar
    david42

    I LOVE those greenhouse on the Sable. GM tried the same thing (and didn’t quite pull it off) with the W-body Cutlass Supreme.

  • avatar
    willbodine

    Say hey, Sajeev, what do you really think??
    The Avalon and the MKS look pretty similar, at least in profile. The ES by comparison comes off as somewhat dated.
    Nice to see another good looking Toyota. Before this Avalon, about the only attractive car on offer there was the Venza.
    In general, Japanese designers have long been flumoxed by the C pillar. Many weird triangle trims and warped Hofmeister kinks over the last 2 decades.

  • avatar
    toplessFC3Sman

    No mention of the Hyundai Azera? It has the same failings as the Avalon, but at least to my eye seems to hide them better

  • avatar
    KitaIkki

    Another “DLO” issue that bugs me is black-painted glass area. Many modern vehicles have huge area of “glass” painted black. It’s the worst of both worlds: Weight of the glass, without the visibility.

    The Detroit 3 are pretty bad here. Just check out the new Ford Explorer’s massive D-pillar, completely covered in black “glass” (both on the side, and in the frame of the rear hatch). Ford Flex is bad too in the same area. Even the “lightweight” Scion FR-S/ Subaru BRZ are guilty. Look at the thick glass covered B-pillar that renders the rear quarter window all but useless. Same can be said of Camaro’s rear quarter window … and the brand-new C7 Corvette’s.

    The best in the industry are VW-Audi and Subaru. Golf’s glass covered rear hatch frame is thinner than the most black borders of other automaker’s fixed rear glass. The new Impreza/Crosstrek and Forester from Subaru have excellent all around visibility as well.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    I think the winning opening goes to the back hatch of the BMW 5 series GT.
    At least, I hope nothing else surpasses that.

  • avatar
    Joss

    Surely the Avalon is niche for the inheritance or lottery winner who does not wish for attention nor appear ostentatious? Even the lack of bespoke lessens purchase involvement. A Methodist’s delight…

  • avatar
    MadHungarian

    Sometimes I get the DLO obsession, and sometimes I don’t. This is one of the times I don’t.

    I see a bigger problem, which is that the Avalon, MKZ and ES all have basically the same shape in profile — as do 90% of the cars being manufactured these days. I’m going to start calling it “Generic Car Shape.” The use of Generic Car Shape is why there is a model of Jaguar that is hard to tell apart from a Hyundai Sonata. It is also why it is hard to distinguish a Fusion from a Focus from a Fiesta without a tape measure, because they have become just three different sizes of Generic Car Shape With Generic Ford Styling Details.

    I suppose there may be some algorithm that has been refined and refined to the point that it spits out Generic Car Shape as the solution to any car design question, but is it really the only answer? Even as recently as the 90′s, when aerodynamics and crash protection were part of the design process, cars were still allowed to be a variety of shapes. Is it literally illegal to build a sedan in a different shape (as in it won’t pass some new standard), or can we have some freedom of choice here?

  • avatar
    Boff

    Sajeev is just bitter because of the Lincoln TV ad that shows a Town Car as the exemplar of the old and dead Lincoln.

  • avatar
    doug-g

    Is DLO the new term for “greenhouse”? At any rate, I don’t like any current DLO as the beltlines are way too high. I’ve heard this was due to the hoods having to be raised to meet the pedestrian crash standards. I’ve also heard it’s to protect car drivers and passengers from higher trucks and SUV’s. Really, I can’t think of a current vehicle that I’m attracted to from a styling perspective. So, if I won the Powerball, my vehicles would be a Chevy-based RoadTrek, a 1967 Imperial and a stripped Toyota Tacoma pickup. Everything would be for fun or chores – none to look at.

  • avatar
    MrWhopee

    I think as far as that little plastic parts thing are concerned, those cars mentioned are pretty good, IMHO. The front edge of the DLO only extend an inch or so ahead of the doors. There are cars where the forward edge of the greenhouse extend far beyond the front end of the front doors that it necessitates HUGE plastic parts, even little windows (presumably the plastic triangle would be far too big and awkward). And that little windows are useless, and might have been plastic as far as the driver is concerned, BTW. They’re so small and blocked by their pillars that no one can see through them anyway. Honda FIT comes into mind. And many, many other cars.

  • avatar
    AFX

    I remember back in the old days when cars had a chrome rain gutter channel that started at the trailing edge of the A-pillar and ran the whole way up over the doors and down the C-pillar behind the rear door. You could drive along on a rainy day and crack a front window open to get some air in the car and keep the windshield from fogging up. Then they went full aero with smooth A-pillars and flush door glass. At that point if you cracked open the front window on a newer car in the rain you’d get water rolling in from the A-pillar, and it’d get all over the door panel and your leg and arm. Apparently the auto manufacturers wanted you to drive with the windows closed and the AC on instead.

    Then I went out and bought a 2002 Prizm/Corolla. For some reason Toyota thought they could redirect the water off the edges of the windshield up and over the roof by putting a black plastic vertical channel along the sides of the windshield. It works fairly well too, until you’re driving along at interstate speeds and start to wonder WTF is that wind noise coming off the A-pillar ?!. The little channels actually create loads of wind noise from the A-pillars and the sides of the windshield, and the only way to quiet it is to fill the channels with caulking.

  • avatar
    AMC_CJ

    I think my 78′ Chevy malibu 4-door sedan nails this design perfectly. However, the rear-windows don’t roll down, but the small vent windows behind them are electrically operated (vent windows, what ever happened to those?)

    In fact, I think the 78-79 Malibu, especially in the department of DLO’s and general visibility, are some of the cleanest designed cars ever made.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    So does this mean the ’89 Ford Probe is near to DLO nirvana. Relatively thin a-pillar, wing mirrors flow from the doors with only the smallest area of black plastic at the top, both b and c pillars completely hidden behind wrap around glass, the whole greenhouse looking almost seamless when the front windows are closed.

    The 90 Probe got a different design wing mirror and a larger piece of plastic.

  • avatar
    supremebrougham

    Well I want to chime in and suggest a VV about how all of today’s cars have such tiny trunk openings. Sometimes I like to actually set things in my trunk, and do not want to have to slide them in through a tiny slot!

  • avatar
    KindaFondaHonda

    As the owner of a 2010 Infiniti M35, I guess I too am suffering from “DLO Fail”. I guess I ought to sell it and find me a 1986 Mercury Sable to heal me. Yep, those Sables… with the huge 2-inch gaps between bumpers and lights, ugly side cladding, dim-bulb “light bar” grille, and the ugliest dash design Ford did in a long time.

    Uh, I think I’ll pass.

    This DLO Fail thing being cooked up is much a-do about not much. Yeah, there are some egregious examples in the auto universe, but the 2 at the top of this article are hardly any big deal. This is all fake outrage.

    And the obsession with Ford design/engineering “perfection” is getting stale.

    Lastly, the very worst DLO Fail in history has to be the Chevy VOLT.

    That stooooopid black crap around ALL the windows (to make those window slits, I guess, seem oh so much bigger looking to me sitting in traffic next to it) are the worst idea I’ve ever seen.

    Hey GM (and TTAC), THAT’S DLO Fail!

    • 0 avatar
      KindaFondaHonda

      Ironic. While sitting at a light today, a new(er) Dodge Stratus pulled next to me. The back door had a H U G E piece of black plastic stuck on. I can’t even imagine what that must look like from the inside.

      Why Chrysler didn’t engineer a thin, black window track piece instead of that goofy filler panel is beyond my pay grade (laziness, maybe?). Personally, I couldn’t live with that.

      That’s my second place offender after the VOLT.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    KindaFondaHonda, I wholeheartedly agree with the Volt backened window surrounds. W. T. F.

    While I don’t find DLO fail as nearly tragic as Sajeev, it is very interesting looking at design through his trained eye. I’m car shopping now, and sometimes it’s the littlest detail that works against a nominee. Chrysler, take you radio antennae off the front fender and upgrade your switchgear immediately. It still feels Mitsubishi-cheap.

    I could go on and on, really….

  • avatar
    Jerome10

    Gotta add my 2 cents…

    I can agree style-wise, however these triangles at the C pillar mean the door doesn’t end up long and “pointy” at the end. Much easier in tighter parking spaces.

    Can’t recall which car I was in in past 6 mos. Maybe the new 5series? And it was quite a pain to slide in and out in a narrow pparking space.

    And honestly, I would never really see or care about those. Certainly would not be a deciding factor in whether to purchase or not.

  • avatar
    Good ole dayz

    For those of us old enough to remember the 1970′s, it appears that we’re in “Malaise Era II.”

    We had protracted national economic and cultural decline then, with seemingly no end in sight, as we do now under B. Hussein Obama. Fashion and car styling of the era were to become generally regarded as being at a nadir (at least compared to the decades’ bookending it).

    So too will the styling of today’s Malaise II vehicles — high beltlines / gun-slit windows (both unattractive and unsafe); largemouth bass grilles; baroque styling of too-busy swage lines, Bangle-butts and faux coupe appearance (may God have mercy on adults relegated to the back seats — waterboarding by other means).

    And “green” / increasing CAFE standards becoming the new “emissions standards” which will begin to reverse the power and longevity of vehicles (does anyone believe that increasingly complex and sensor-driven “eco-boost” and start-stop gasoline engines, and urea injected / DPF diesels will not become repair and maintenance nightmares once they are a couple of years past the warranty period)?

    Methinks it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    Good ole dayz – Just remember the economic cliff jump and Bangle-butt both happened under King George. No wonder we revolted.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    avalon http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shmfZkOQ66c

  • avatar
    300zx_guy

    I usually agree with Sajeev (aka Sanjeev), this time I have to go 50-50. First, where I agree: the triangles at the front door – they are so small, especially on the MKZ, that they don’t need to be there at all. By adding the triangles, they call attention to the fact that they couldn’t come up with an elegant design solution to get the exact look they wanted. Just round off the front edge of the door a little and it looks fine, plenty examples of that exist, Audi CUVs are one that jumps to mind. Worst front DLO-fail: the current Honda Civic.

    Where I disagree: I think the rear black triangles are not so offensive in these examples. I both the Avalon and MKZ, they are done in gloss black, similar to the b-pillars (I can’t understand why so many cars use flat or textured plastic, that always looks horrible to me). If the blacked out b-pillars are ok as part of the DLO, its hard to argue that it is unacceptable for a small corner of the window. The alternative is to do a larger fixed piece of glass, which still adds a cutline to the greenhouse. As already discussed, the long, oddly shaped door of the ES may look pleasing, but creates some functional issues, so there’s a tradeoff. Still, I do understand why, to a designer or anyone who appreciates good design, it is frustrating not to have a more elegant solution to these styling issues.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      The worst offender I’ve seen on the rear door flat black nonsense is the Dodge Avenger. Horrible!

      • 0 avatar
        300zx_guy

        >> The worst offender I’ve seen on the rear door flat black nonsense is the Dodge Avenger. Horrible!

        true, true. Cheap black plastic, plus horizontal striations, I can’t say I understand what they were going for there… It’s almost as if someone said, “the plastic filler in the window frame is so big that it looks awkward, can you dress it up a bit?”. Also see Chrysler 200: “No one thinks the black triangle on is believable as a window. For the refresh, let’s put a badge on it, that will help.”

  • avatar
    swilliams41

    I hate it when the door line has that up sweep at the rear like the new Lexus ES. IMO the Avalon and the MKZ both have a nice profile because they do not suffer with this design element. It just looks awkward to me. Barf.


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