QOTD: Which Classic(s) to Resurrect?

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
qotd which classic s to resurrect

Despite the presence of the well-regarded, all-new Ram 1500 on the market, penny-pinching truck buyers still have the opportunity to save cash while remaining true to their preferred brand. The 1500 Classic, a “new old” pickup, keeps the previous-generation model alive as a lower-priced alternative. It’s looking like this won’t simply be a single model year experiment, either.

Not that Fiat Chrysler is the sole player of this game. For 2019, the previous-gen Chevrolet Silverado soldiers on alongside its fresh-faced successor. Ask for an “LD” model. And anyone remember the Volkswagen City Golf and City Jetta? Keeping decently popular old relics around beyond their best-before date can earn an automaker extra spending money.

But what if these so-called classics were actual classics?

Instead of thinking automakers for this example, think gunmakers for a moment. Sorry for the terrifying imagery, but it’s valid. Smith & Wesson offers a line of handguns under the banner “Classic.” Vintage models, only brand new and ready to buy — not a reproduction sold by another company. Colt did something similar recently, offering a buyers a new 1903 Pocket Hammerless — a slick .32 autoloader whose production run ended in 1945. In this case, Colt licensed the gun’s manufacture to another company.

You get the idea. A long-out-of-production model returns to the lineup, ready to please both traditionalists and individualists.

What if an automaker did it? Imagine you’ve woken up in a world where it’s suddenly feasible for an OEM to legally offer, say, a few classic models at something approaching a normal price. This wouldn’t be a direct reproduction, as that low-volume vehicle law isn’t all that fleshed out, and major automakers wouldn’t apply anyway. Let’s just say that, on this particular morning, regulations were loosened and your favorite automaker felt generous.

There’d be available radial tires, power front disc brakes and steering, maybe anti-lock, and seatbelts, all to sweeten the proposition. Perhaps even a beefed-up frame and reinforced body for increased crash performance. Engines and tranny? In the interest of authenticity, those would remain stock. The one automotive brand of your choice would offer three (no more, let’s not get greedy) models dating from anywhere in its history.

Outwardly, these things would be dead ringers — and they could be yours.

So, which brand will it be, and which three vehicles will get new life? The only asterisk here is that the automaker which originally built the vehicle must still exist. No Duesenbergs or Packards, sorry.

[Image: Ford]

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  • VWGTI VWGTI on Mar 13, 2019

    2 1964 Lincoln Continentals: 1 hardtop 1 convertible

  • WildcatMatt WildcatMatt on Mar 15, 2019

    Hmm. Three models from one brand from a company that must still exist as an automobile concern. Pity about the "still exists" constraint, without it the answer is clearly Studebaker (Avanti, Hawk, Champ). I like the Volvo angle though. My list: 240, 850, 1800.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic Drove a rental Cherokee for several days at the beginning of this year. Since the inventory of rental cars is still low, this was a 2020 model with 48k miles and V6. Ran fine, no gremlins, graphics display was easy to work, plenty of power, & very comfortable. Someone must of disarmed the lane assistance feature for the steering wheel never shook (YES!!!!!!!!). However, this woman's voice kept nagging me about the speed limit (what's new!?!?!?!).I was impressed enough to consider this a prime candidate to replace my 11 yr old Ford Escape. Might get a good deal with the close out of the model. Time will tell. 🚗🚗🚗
  • Bullnuke One wonders if this poor woman entered the US through Roxham Road...
  • Johnds Years ago I pulled over a vehicle from either Manitoba or Ontario in North Dakota for speeding. The license plates and drivers license did not come up on my dispatchers computer. The only option was to call their government. Being that it was 2 am, that wasn’t possible so they were given a warning.
  • BEPLA My own theory/question on the Mark VI:Had Lincoln used the longer sedan wheelbase on the coupe - by leaning the windshield back and pushing the dashboard & steering wheel rearward a bit - not built a sedan - and engineered the car for frameless side windows (those framed windows are clunky, look cheap, and add too many vertical lines in comparison to the previous Marks) - Would the VI have remained an attractive, aspirational object of desire?
  • VoGhost Another ICEbox? Pass. Where are you going to fill your oil addiction when all the gas stations disappear for lack of demand? I want a pickup that I can actually use for a few decades.