The Truth About Cars » DLO FAIL http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Sat, 22 Nov 2014 14:00:59 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » DLO FAIL http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com Vellum Venom Vignette: 2015 Camry Regression Analysis (Part II) http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/10/vellum-venom-vignette-2015-camry-regression-analysis-part-ii/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/10/vellum-venom-vignette-2015-camry-regression-analysis-part-ii/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 13:19:37 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=929970   I was wrong about the 2015 Camry: it’s a handsome family sedan. But not for us, for the Russians.    This.  This is how you mildly refresh an existing model. Yes, Toyota made a uniquely ugly 2015 Camry for us Yankees.  They styled to the lowest common denominator (i.e. every frickin’ cliche in a modern designer’s toolkit) while the “Global” 2015 […]

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I was wrong about the 2015 Camry: it’s a handsome family sedan. But not for us, for the Russians.   

2015-Toyota-Camry-4

This. 

This is how you mildly refresh an existing model.

Yes, Toyota made a uniquely ugly 2015 Camry for us Yankees.  They styled to the lowest common denominator (i.e. every frickin’ cliche in a modern designer’s toolkit) while the “Global” 2015 Camry has an upmarket presense.  It apes the price point where Less is More, the place where Audi survives and thrives.

Sure, the Global 2015 Camry is no Audi. But it’s an object of desire relative to our imminent future of seeing the US-spec model on every highway, clogging our pores with mindless amounts of DLO FAIL for no good reason. Even the fascias are quite fetching, forgoing our Camry’s fake-Audi-Lexus schnoz.

Peep this video:

Click here to view the embedded video.

Now compare to what we get:

Click here to view the embedded video.

Is the grass greener on the other side? Off to you, Best and Brightest.

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Vellum Venom Vignette: Cadillac’s SEAT In Ibiza http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/08/vellum-venom-vignette-seat-ibiza/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/08/vellum-venom-vignette-seat-ibiza/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 13:35:29 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=893250 One interesting thing about living on-campus at CCS was the precious little available to purchase within walking distance. Such is the life of a car-less design student in Metro Detroit. That’s until a friend took me to a Meijer Hypermarket in the ‘burbs: a new world of “stuff” entered my cloistered world. Cheap but nice […]

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One interesting thing about living on-campus at CCS was the precious little available to purchase within walking distance. Such is the life of a car-less design student in Metro Detroit. That’s until a friend took me to a Meijer Hypermarket in the ‘burbs: a new world of “stuff” entered my cloistered world. Cheap but nice stuff, with an intrinsic value far higher than its retail price.

Which leads to our subject: a current-gen SEAT Ibiza (visiting from down Mexico way) I met on a business trip to Austin. Fear of getting shot by the owner in mind, I only made time to analyze this VAG derivative at the all-important A-pillar.

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Yes, the Ibiza is a beautiful little car: logical enough lines with a genuine sheet of glass on the A-pillar to continue the greenhouse’s sleeker-than-my-size look without resorting to junky plastic filler panels.

And it’s cheap: base price (including current incentives) is £9995, just under 17 grand. The Mexican version starts at 201,900 pesos, a little over 15 grand.

(photo courtesy: http://www.jimfalk.com)

Contrast with the Cadillac XTS’ standard DLO FAIL at a juicy $44,600 asking price: the world at large gets “cheap but nice” stuff while we’re still cramming bean-counted, badge engineered platforms down our collective throats. Granted the badge engineering’s less obvious than the days of Robert Farago’s Deathwatch screeds, but the fail remains.

And when you can’t avoid it, distract everyone. To wit:

(Cadillac website screenshot)

It takes big, Cadillac-grade, money to make it right: so many of our mid-size, full-size and luxury sedans embrace DLO FAIL, lacking a platform with the requisite space between the front axle and the dashboard (dash-to-axle ratio) to actually look appealing. And instead of masking up the cheapness with pride (sheet of glass) we get that little black plastic triangle.

Because in no way is a Cadillac as good as a SEAT Ibiza.

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To be fair, such fail is available in cheaper European cars. Plus we get the affordable Focus Fiesta in its fail free glory…which isn’t the point.

The point: if the world makes many DLO FAIL free vehicles for under $20,000, there’s no excuse for expensive vehicles not to follow suit. Either with more glass (cheap) or a better dash-to-axle ratio (expensive). All of them, no matter the country of origin.

Thanks for reading, I hope you have a lovely weekend.

 

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Vellum Venom Vignette: 2015 Camry Regression Analysis http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/04/vellum-venom-vignette-2015-camry-regression-analysis/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/04/vellum-venom-vignette-2015-camry-regression-analysis/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:39:31 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=800242 As expected, TTAC’s Best and Brightest called it: the 2015 Camry has Chernobyl-grade DLO FAIL. Or maybe that’s heavily tinted glass? I consider myself lucky I’m not attending the NYIAS, this would make my head go explodey all over the show floor. No transportation designer, wannabe like me or otherwise, wants to see that gigantizoid […]

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As expected, TTAC’s Best and Brightest called it: the 2015 Camry has Chernobyl-grade DLO FAIL.

Or maybe that’s heavily tinted glass?

I consider myself lucky I’m not attending the NYIAS, this would make my head go explodey all over the show floor.

No transportation designer, wannabe like me or otherwise, wants to see that gigantizoid of a hunk of black plastic go into production.  The years of thankless hard work, the brutal cost of design school on your wallet/social life, etc shouldn’t turn into this.

There was nothing, absolutely nothing wrong with the 2014 Camry’s greenhouse: it was sleek-ish and a completely DLO FAIL free zone before the redesign.  It was a beautiful thing. And now it’s gone.

Thanks for reading, I hope you (can still) have a lovely week.

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Vellum Venom Vignette: Ghastly Entry-Level Luxury Design http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/03/vellum-venom-vignette-ghastly-entry-level-luxury-design/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/03/vellum-venom-vignette-ghastly-entry-level-luxury-design/#comments Sun, 03 Mar 2013 18:21:12 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=479767 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 […]

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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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