QOTD: Terribly Aged Europeans of the Nineties?

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis
qotd terribly aged europeans of the nineties

Lately, we’ve featured a succession of posts relating to automotive style in the Nineties here at Question of the Day. We started out discussing the best of the best from America, Europe, and Asia. Then, last week, we moved on to the Worst Ever awards from America. Many of you said I was nuts for disliking the refreshed Lincoln Mark VIII. While I still don’t like the VIII post-’96, I’ll agree the Buick Skylark for 1992 would’ve been a better selection. There, happy?

Let’s see if I can get my European selection to be a bit more agreeable to all you connoisseurs of things Nineties.

You know the rules by now, but let’s have a look anyway:

  1. All selections must be model years 1990 to 1999.
  2. Picks must be from a European manufacturer, even if sourced from an import.
  3. Any body style is eligible except for trucks.

Your author’s selection today took some time and consideration. Undoubtedly, some of you will disagree vehemently, but here goes:

It’s the Audi TT. New for the 1999 model year, the TT was a relative revelation in style. Compared with the staid predecessors of the TT, the coupe and cabriolet versions of the Audi 90, the TT was a breath of fresh air. It was modern and current, and had the element of concept in production about it which not many manufacturers can execute successfully.

They sold lots of them, and the first generation carried all the way through 2006. And the success of the original TT is the reason it looks dated today. Because it was a unique offering with that concept flair, it was very current-looking for all of 1999 and perhaps through 2001. Then it started looking dated. Today, it’s a round caricature of a car, which puts one immediately in mind of the also annoying New Beetle from the late Nineties. And that would’ve been a good selection too, but I’ve already typed up a TT rant.

Off to you, commentariat.

[Images: BMW, Audi]

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2 of 73 comments
  • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on May 29, 2019

    Fiat Multipla

  • Conundrum Conundrum on May 29, 2019

    Can't think of any other stinkers beyond a lot of Euro mini junk that never made it to our shores. The AM Virage is the winner. Thankfully I had completely forgotten it, but upon being reminded by Mr Williams took and look, and see now that I have unconscious amnesia syndrome when overwhelmed by beauty's opposite. Thank the good lord. Second place to the garden shed Jaguar Type S, Ford's idea of a Jaguar. This hulking monstrosity I first espied in the flesh head on as it approached down a side street. As it drew closer and closer, my mind refused to accept the inevitability of its sheer ugliness until it could no longer be denied. Sir William Lyons would have had a litter of kittens had he been alive - the thing was the complete antithesis of his esthetic, a cartoon by incompetent sketchers. My choice of bad was the Audi TT. Couldn't see a single virtue in it from day one. It looked like an overgrown dung beetle to me, a joke competing with the J30 from non-Europe for outright "they just don't get it" silliness. A stinker, Bauhaus inspired or not. As for things like the nondescript E34 BMW and Roller, they weren't ugly, just anonymously mousey. The Roller was 30 years past its sell-by date anyway. The Volvo S80 looked like a billowing cloud of roly poly Michelin man, but not ugly as such. It's all in the eye of the beholder anyway as to whether certain proportions hit the sweet spot or its opposite. Liked this QOTD.

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