I was not exactly charmed by the current-generation Malibu when I reviewed it last summer. Its Kamm-tailed predecessor had enough virtue to face the Japanese-brand midsizers squarely on their own turf and come away with at least a respectable, stylish showing, but the current car is a retrograde step in everything from its regrettably truckish styling to its lowered-expectations driving dynamics.
Turns out that I’m not the only person, or corporation, if that’s not the same thing in 2015 anyway, who feels that way. If you’re renting at certain airports, you’ll have the chance to enjoy the Malibu at the same kind of deep discount it currently requires in order to slip the surly bonds of drab GM dealerships. I asked a rental-industry insider why that might be so.
It’s a terrible stereotype on the Internet that Toyota drivers in general, and Corolla drivers in particular, are the least demanding, least discerning, and least conscious drivers in America. Yet Toyota keeps blatantly demonstrating their corporate buy-in to that particular preconception. As seen here.
This latest Sponsored Tweet from the world’s most successful automaker gives you a pretty good idea of how Corolla buyers view the world. OMFG IT HAS NAV. JUST LIKE THE 1999 C-CLASS, AND MY TRACFONE. Whatever. Welcome to the next level. We have nav.
This was the sight that greeted me when I left work this afternoon: one of the least popular cars on the American market and the Camry-on-stilts that drives the most successful brand to debut in America since the Vietnam War. The Mazda2 is often used by automotive journalists as an example of The Car That Real People Don’t Buy despite the fact that it possesses the cardinal virtues of small size, light weight, and a responsive chassis.
The Lexus RX, on the other hand, is the most cynical effort in additional manufacturer profit since the Cadillac Cimmarron and is the upscale vehicle most often purchased by the people who don’t know a God-damned thing about cars.
I’m not sure why a generation or two ago municipalities replaced the old Walk / Don’t Walk crossing signals with lights using pictograms instead. Perhaps someone thought they were more easily understood, or perhaps it was part of general trend towards using international symbols, like the little fuel pump by your gas gauge instead of the word “Fuel”. Either way, Walk / Don’t Walk was considered obsolete. Now, it seems as though the pictograms just weren’t that easily understood, as we apparently have to explain to people that a red hand means “don’t walk” and that a white pictogram of a person walking means “walk”. Read More >