By on February 13, 2010

Is there a clinical definition for the compulsion to fit every possible exterior accessory to one’s car? J C Whitney Syndrome?

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46 Comments on “Curbside Classic Outtake: Maximum Exterior Accessories Edition...”

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    That isn’t even approaching the maximum.
    Check this out.

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    ummmmmmmmmmmmmm precisely what sort of thing would you tow with that? I’m also surprised that the slats and wing combo doesn’t somehow cause one or the other to go flying off at highway speeds.

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    Needs less bra, trailer hitch (unless the trailer is hooked up, unhook that thing), and front mud guards (it’s not fwd).

    Hardly the worse I’ve seen. I actually like the look of the rear window.

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    J C Whitney Syndrome?

    Enz…. why do they hate us?

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    Bras are the stupidest automotive accessory known to man.

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    Carlson Fan

    Reminds me when I had my ’79 Trans Am for sale years back. One of the few built with the 400 Pontiac motor, 4 speed Borg & Warner transmission and a factory Hurst shifter. One guy called and the first 2 questions were: Does it have louvres and a trailer hitch. WHAT???????????????

    • 0 avatar

      Now my brain has been jogged for “Your Love’s Better Than Money In the Bank” from country star John Anderson.

      “If I had a bass boat and a Z28,” I never thought you could use one with the other.

      Or maybe he was thinking of Pam Tillis, “Betty’s Got A Bass Boat. Although at least she’s got a truck.

    • 0 avatar

      I had a buddy who had the same set up–not the hitch and louvers, I mean the 400 and 4-speed. We drove it from L.A. to Missouri, man that thing could fly!

    • 0 avatar

      Hey, I ordered one of the first 1979 400ci 4speed WS6 TransAm Firebird also. Clocked on radar at 124MPH….hauling for sure in 1979.

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    Compared to some of the import “tuners” or pick up trucks I see here in East TN, that’s an absolute picture of taste and restraint. Now, if it had more stickers, fake vents, scoops, fog/driving lights, glow lights, LED windshield washer nozzles, etc., you might have something to talk about…

    • 0 avatar

      Don’t forget the Lambo Doors

    • 0 avatar

      LectroByte don’t forget the fake bullet hole stickers all over the car anywhere there is a dent. Also the fake softballs stuck on the rear windows (looks like a softball has half pentrated the glass. A year later the sticker portion is falling apart from sun damage). And the big “FOX” stickers on the rear window. Are they talking about FOX shocks or claiming they belong to an exclusive group of attractive people?

      I don’t mind the louvers. Kept the sun out of the rear hatchback area and I’d even believe it lowered interior temps a little – maybe. Kind of a love/hate kind of thing for me.

      Just glad the cars with 13″ wire wheels that stuck 6 inches beyond the fender edges have mostly died out. Hated following them on rainy days.

      I have come to appreciate mudflaps even on cars. Less road spray on the interstate behind those cars. I have the OEM flaps on both of my daily drivers and it keeps the lower halves of the doors from being covered in tar or beaten by stones. Not a fan of aftermarket flaps much. Especially when they are chromed or carrying reflectors. Like them plain and black and therefore least noticeable.

      In the end – do whatever makes you happy as long as the car is not functionally compromised. Make it what you appreciate. Around here there is a fellow driving an older minitruck with all sorts of extras added on – lights, mudflaps, chrome door edges, reflectors, etc. He keeps it very clean all the time and must replace the extras regularly b/c I have never seen much of that stuff that is very durable.

      As for that Saturn FWD trailer hitch – you’d be surprised what you can pull with a low powered car. My CR-V is rated at 1000 lbs (1500 lbs in Europe with the same equipment) and my VW Cabrio (Golf) is rated at 1500 lbs! That’s enough for a small utility trailer carrying a motorcycle or a weekend’s worth of project materials. You can drag home and engine/tranny combo from the junkyard or go camping. We pull a Brenderup 1205S with our’s, among others.

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    I believe the final touch on this madness was the 84 Corvette wheels. Bet it really handles!

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    It’s missing the fake, Buick-style ventiports that seemed at one time to sprout on the flanks of vehicles like herpes…

    • 0 avatar

      Although a one of the old Oldsmobile Auroras in the area has the Pep Boy’s ventiports on it and it looks pretty good and appropriate, although it’s a V8 and only has 3 on each side. I think they can be tastefully done when it’s on a luxury car and those ventiports and maybe mudflaps are the only non-factory accessories. Oh and the luxury car in question must be at least 10 years old and in excellent condition for ventiports not to make you look like a douche-bag.

      There’s a Mazda RX-8 in the area that has so much chrome crap and fake antennas and extra stripes I should take a pic of it.

    • 0 avatar

      There should be three rules about those things:

      Rule No. 1: If it’s not a Buick, don’t do it.

      Rule No. 2: If it is a Buick and it already has factory installed ventiports, don’t do it.

      Rule No. 3: If you have a Buick that didn’t come with ventiports from the factory, go ahead. You will still look like a D-bag but at least the car IS a Buick.

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    Buy a Jeep Wrangler, then get hooked on going off-road. Along with a lift kit (from a few hundred dollars to thousands), along with it comes larger tires, new wheels, after market front bumper with winch and winch guard, then a rear bumper with tire carrier (for those larger tires), and side mounted rock sliders, along with differential guards, rear corner guards, extra skid plates, new flat flares, CB antenna, aftermarket roll cage, seat covers (when the top is off) and 4×4 related stickers. Don’t also forget upgrading axles (which is also exterior accessories in the Jeep world).

    Of course a guy must also have an understanding wife. (lol)

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    Back in the day (i.e., early 1950’s), JC Witless was selling everything from fake Buick portholes to fake Cadillac tailfins, particularly to owners of gumdrop-shaped Fords and Mercurys. Completing the makeover required illuminated mudflaps, external windshield sunshade, and long radio whips. The hardware may have changed, but the desire to gild the lily still remains. (and no, my car does not have the ugly aero kit seen on the show car in my avatar pic)

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    Amendment X

    I love those louvres. Wish they still put them on cars.

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    Basic freedom of expression gentlemen.

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    He said it’s really not my habit to intrude
    Furthermore, I hope your trailer won’t be lost or bra unglued
    But I’ll repeat myself, at the risk of being crude
    There must be fifty ways to love your louvre
    Fifty ways to love your louvre

    • 0 avatar

      +1 PeriSoft.

      Most accessories have an alleged purpose (“reduced solar heating” for the louvers) of very dubious value.

      I’ll leave the accessorizing to people like this:

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    I prefer my freedom of expression on the inside of the car. You can laugh about this exterior all you want, but leave my leopard skin seat covers, chrome bigfoot gas pedal and fuzzy dice ALONE! They give my ’95 Altima an air of distinction.

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    Uh, okay guys.

    I must confess. That was my car.

    Well, I had a Trans Am, and it was bright red. But… mine looked like this. Yeah, had the bra (not worth it, dirt and mud still get underneath). Had some weird stupid brake-light bar inside the car. Had the louvres. Had the wing. Had aftermarket car stereos I couldn’t afford. Used the “Slick-50”.

    Yes, those were my stupid days. But in my defense, the wing was factory!

    And the louvres really cut down on the summer heat from cooking me underneath that big hatch glass. The T-tops were tinted and were actually somewhat reflective. The louvre contraption actually had some functionality and was worth the trouble of installation (and the difficulty of cleaning underneath) until it was stolen; ripped right off the car in the middle of the night. But the thief didn’t get the fastening hardware, because you had to unscrew the hatch hinge bolts to get at those. Back in the late 80’s, I still didn’t trust anybody to do a good job tinting that huge hatchback window, especially since the rear-defroster wires were there, so the louvres were actually a halfway decent idea.

    The rest of it was half-assed, and I must admit my shame.

    At least I didn’t buy cheesy rims from some dodgy rent-to-own outfit!

    • 0 avatar
      John Holt

      I have to admit to having a half-bra (hood only) on my ’88 Subaru sedan. It was mainly to cover up the rust forming on the leading edge, but did little to protect and liked to flap obnoxiously at highway speeds. If I squinted just right, I thought it looked good.

      I’m older and wiser now.

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    Louvers! Love ’em! (not)

    As for the affliction, I believe it is called (hope this isn’t, um, uncouth): Lou Garish Disease.

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    A bit garish, but not nearly as bad as some of the stuff I’ve seen around here. I always wondered what the logic was of buying a $3000 dollar car and mounting $5000 dollars worth of hardware to it. Not uncommon to see a beat up Cavalier with a body kit, neon light ground package, wheels that are too wide for the fenders, rear wing and other tasteless stuff cruising down 8 mile.

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    I know this is off topic… But why don’t they make T-Tops and Targa tops anymore? I used to LOVE those.

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    I know I’m almost totally off topic…

    Those rims scream to me… totally out of place. I belueve the car is about a 84 – 85 Camaro.. a base version and the rims look stolen from a 86 – 87 Vette.

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    T-Tops and Targa tops aren’t made anymore, I believe, because both cause as much chassis flex as making a car a convertible, without the benefit of being a convertible. Plus I believe the T-Tops leaked wind, water or both.

    There are *some* “Targa” roofs still today: Lotus Elise comes to mind; the only recently defunct Acura NSX-T… also, IMO, the Muircielago “convertible” is more a of targa.

    • 0 avatar

      Porsche 911s come to mind as well as Deloreans.. for Targa’s and T tops.

    • 0 avatar

      Well, yeah, but those are ’80s… we’re trying to see if / why not they’re not made anymore today.

      Today’s 911 Targa, I find, is a smart interpretation of a “Targa”, being really one big-a$$ sunroof over a glass rear. Keeps the chassis rigidity while giving lots of the desired sun.

    • 0 avatar


      Vette’s and T/A’s of the period had them also.. but I am straining my brain to put together current any t-tops or targa’s.

      M-B has a slew of convertible’s, along with VW (in all of its brands and forms) Lexus, Infiniti and BMW, each with a variety of hard and or soft tops.

      Ford puts out the Focus for Europe as a Cabrio, as well as the US Stang has that glass roof. I also believe Citroen and or Peugeot have convertibles but no t’s or targa’s

      But I cant remember any car of any company current that has a T-top.

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    This car is very tastefully done except for the bra. Me don’t be liking dem bras. The bumper hitch can be very practical. I had one on my ’78 Datsun 280Z 2+2. Worked quite well if I do say so myself. The rear glass cover is one of the better looking ones. It fits the car perfectly and introduces a Euro-Exotic car mystique to a very nice looking Camaro.

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    In New Jersey, Camaros tow jet skis.

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    This car really doesn’t look all that terrible. The bra is the worst part of it.

    Does anyone remember those goofy flourescent colored windshield wiper arms/blades back around 1989-1990? I used to see them on old Citations, Escorts and K cars back in the day. After one summer they’d be faded nearly white. God I hated those things!

    BTW, I don’t think the Camaro in the photos is wearing Corvette rims. They look like Corvette rims, but I’m quite certain they’re aftermarket. Notice the black center caps. I’ve seen these rims on other cars as well, though not for quite a while.

  • avatar

    This past weekend in Buffalo, I saw a fairly recent DeVille with both an aftermarket vinyl roof AND an aftermarket rear wing. It was kind of like seeing Frank Sinatra wearing a tux and running shoes.

    Later, browsing through Wal-Mart’s auto junk section, I spotted fake port-holes where the black part (the hole) was done up to look like carbon fibre.

    Carbon fibre holes! Can you get any sportier than that?

  • avatar

    In the PA / NJ / DE / MD area..
    I’m constantly seeing the GMT900 frame adorned with the Tahoe / Yukon / Avalanche/ Suburban / Escalade vehicles.. and they all have, the ventiports, the chromed shade that are attached on the top of windows, the Mercury chrome light trim all over the lights, running boards, handles front and rear and I keep thinking someone is making money dipping this stuff into the chemical reaction that makes chrome.

    A few weeks ago I need to take my wife’s car to get an oil change at Pep Boys.. and I spent a coupla minutes waiting for it.. and I encountered.. an entire AISLE with this.. chrome shit. They had piles of the handles for any GM truck.

    Isn’t there some old saying..
    If it doesn’t make ya go fast.. CHROME IT?

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