QOTD: What Car Would Be Better as a Crossover?
“Crossing Over with John Edward” was probably one of the looniest shows to ever see a five-year primetime run on network television.
If you’ve never seen it (and, if you haven’t, please don’t go searching for it), this was the premise: John Edward, proudly wearing a “professional psychic medium” title that’s just as illustrious as “social media expert” or “NAMBLA community outreach liaison”, would do his little psychic dog and pony show for members of the studio audience.
For example, he might tell audience member Lucy about her best-friend’s sister, Tammy, who took herself out with a lethal amount of Drano. Dead Tammy didn’t have much of a connection with studio Lucy. The semi-related deceased person would typically be someone just far enough to the edge of Lucy’s social circle for her to not to question the smaller details, while still being far enough inside said social circle for Lucy to believe the “bigger” message. John would then deliver that bigger message from Drano-drunkard Tammy – that this person has made peace with the universe, for Lucy not to worry, etc.
At least that’s what we saw on TV. In reality, Edward’s hackneyed attempts to cold read studio audience members were left on the editing suite floor and only the juiciest of bits made it to air.
The show wasn’t the first of a new wave of studio-based reality shows, but it was the first to blend the surprise of winning something – if you can call speaking to your dead dog through John Edward winning something – with a certain flavor of bullshit very popular with the mid-western housewife set – extrasensory perception.
Crossovers are very much the same. Hybridizing two things, car and SUV in this case, produces a result that is also a certain flavor of bullshit very popular with the mid-western housewife set. While you can almost, kinda, sorta get the fuel economy of a sedan/wagon/hatchback and almost, kinda, sorta get the utility of a utility, it’s mostly just a bullshit marketing exercise meant to grab the attention of a certain demographic.
But, not all crossovers are created equal. Some have been utter flops – the also-hackneyed Honda Crosstour and Toyota Venza come to mind – while others have been wildly successful. You’d have thought crossedover versions of the Accord and Camry would set the sales charts alight, but it was not meant to be. However, another very small Japanese automaker jacked up their sedan/wagon, named it after the vast, arid asshole that sits in the middle of Australia, and created a sales jackpot – the Subaru Outback.
Considering the popularity of “Crossing Over” with the same demographic of people buying these new-fangled crossovers, this all makes sense.
What if we could crossover any vehicle on sale today? Surely there’s still room for more bullshit to find its way to America’s roads by way of a slight suspension lift and body cladding. And, surely there’s at least one vehicle out there that, made into a crossover, would absolutely annihilate the Outback.
Predict the future using the past as your guide – or just clumsily cold read your way into Internet commentator stardom. What car would you crossover?
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