QOTD: Making Considerable Model Improvements?

Some new vehicles remain mired in the muck of mediocrity, never to emerge in an improved form before their inevitable replacement. Others are able to reinvent themselves and become better vehicles than they were previously. They rise like a phoenix, changing from caterpillar to butterfly (or some other trite verbiage).

Today we talk about those vehicle models which raised the bar over their predecessor.

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QOTD: Worst Upscale Car Design of the 2010s?

We continue our exploration of vehicular design from the 2010s today. Thus far, we’ve covered the best and worst examples of more affordable car design, following it up last week with the best design among upscale vehicles.

Now it’s time to consider the worst of the upscale.

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QOTD: The Best Upscale Car Design of the 2010s?

We’ve had two prior posts discussing the highs and lows of automotive design from the decade most recently closed. Both those times we kept our choices in the affordable category, where starting prices were under $100,000 when new. Today we double that limit, and consider upscale designs.

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QOTD: Worst Standard Car Design of the 2010s?

On Wednesday last week we looked back on the recently ended decade, seeking the best design found on the sort of cars people can actually afford. Today, we’ll flip the question and go in search of the design failures.

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QOTD: Best Standard Car Design of the 2010s?

As we’ve entered a new decade, I thought it might be time to take a look back at the 2010s and see if, among the largely nondescript egg-shaped crossovers, there were some design gems. The sort of cars that’ll be looked back upon fondly down the road.

Got one in mind?

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Vellum Venom: 1992 Cadillac Brougham
Cadillac suffered no dearth of cultural relevance back in ’92, but mercifully today’s tone deaf marketing digs make way for a move back to Detroit. And while my heavily East Asian/European design influences at CCS were no harbinger of global platforms, inauthentic proportioning and ridiculous alphanumeric names, I [s]secretly[/s] wish Kanye’s CCS mic-drop coulda done me a solid and went there instead. No matter. The “ Without the Escalade, I don’t know where we would be” situation is proof that brand-relevant design must remain in modernization/globalization’s righteous quest.
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Piston Slap: A Primer of Automotive Anthropomorphism?
Mister Steve writes:Sajeev:There seems to be a trend, at least among the younger crop of auto writers, to anthropomorphize an automobile based on its looks. It seems like you can barely get through a review of a new car without mention of automotive anthropomorphism: “angry eyes” or “ugly mouth” to describe styling. Definitely not how I recall descriptions from the likes of David E. Davis, Jr. or Chubby Chedder.My theory for this is that they’re the generation that grew up during the Cars movie franchise. Seeing as I’m one of the “olds” who grew up when this wasn’t a thing, I could be wrong.
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Vellum Venom: Trabant 601
On a frigid Detroit winter morning in 1998, I foolishly argued with a CCS professor over the need for conventional sedans or hatchbacks for our India design projects. Almost a decade later, the Tata Nano’s hatchback design was the justification I needed for believing designers place far too much weight in their creativity. Even if the Nano isn’t a smashing success, it proved the point.No such worries exist with the Trabant 601: the socioeconomic backdrop ensured the success of Dr. Werner Lang’s creation.
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Vellum Venom: What is DLO FAIL?

Having previously discussed Day Light Opening (DLO), let’s define DLO FAIL.

And perhaps learn why DLOs sometimes fail?

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Vellum Venom: Daylight Opening (DLO), Defined

With reader feedback always on my mind, perhaps an overview of commonly used terms in the car design trade is needed. Let’s define the Daylight Opening (DLO) and dig into one of the more confusing terms in a car designer’s handbook.

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Vellum Venom: Dash-to-Axle, Defined

With reader feedback always on my mind, perhaps an overview of commonly used terms in the car design trade is needed.

Let’s discuss the dash-to-axle: a notion that’s (probably) been a car design staple since Edsel Ford’s vision for an European-inspired flagship — one which added 7 inches to the hood of a mere luxury car.

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This Is the New Audi A7… 's Silhouette

At 1 p.m. ET on Thursday, October 19, 2017, the second-generation Audi A7 will be unveiled. Based on the silhouette Audi has already revealed, and based on Audi’s historic design habits, the second-generation A7 will appear remarkably similar to the first-generation Audi A7.

At some point in November, Audi USA will sell its 50,000th A7, making the hatchbacked A6 a low-volume car even by the standards of America’s third-ranked German luxury brand. Yet as a style and status symbol, the A7 remains a model of great importance to the overall Audi lineup.

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Hey, If Audi Wants the New 2018 A8 to Look Like a Discontinued Dodge Dart, I'm Okay With That

My Dodge Dart awareness is not what it should be. I’m not fully up to speed on the Dodge Darts of yore. Despite my parents’ ownership of a Dart, the 1960-1976 period was not an era in which I was a sentient being.

As for the newer Alfa Romeo Giulietta-based Darts, I’m not fully on board with America’s rejection of the car. By the end of its second full year, nearly 200,000 Dodge Darts had been sold. Sales increased yet again in 2015. But without factory support, real demand was rather limited. Only 43,402 Darts were sold in the United States in 2016, the year Dart production came to a premature end.

Man, I loved that car. Oh, I don’t mean the way it drove, and certainly not the way it shifted. I’m not talking about interior packaging or its engine lineup or its interior quality. Whatever. Pfft. Who cares. I just genuinely liked the way it looked: the proudly Dodge front end, those completely wheel-filled arches, and especially that distinctive rear end.

I’m therefore pleased to see Audi resurrecting that look for the fourth-generation 2018 Audi A8, the brand’s flagship sedan.

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Ford Retiree J Mays Says German Cars Don't Look German, Reserves Particular Criticism For One Automaker

“I think the British do a pretty good job — they seem to produce cars that look British,” Ford Motor Company’s retired design chief J Mays says.

Given that Minis essentially look the same as they’ve always looked, Mays makes a good case.

But Mays tells Automotive News he’s “a big stickler for cultural relevance.” And while the man whose influence can still be seen across much of the Ford lineup — he retired three years ago — credits the Brits for bringing culture to car design, he gives no such credit to the Germans.

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Vellum Venom: 1988 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series

Tell me something: how can one fault Lee Iacocca for suggesting this vehicle — this blend of architecture, curves and beveled jewelry — generated over a billion dollars annually for Ford?

And how could you resist? There wasn’t a Lexus yet!

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  • EBFlex What a colossal waste of money. But this installed administration has yet to spend one cent on something that is actually useful and actually leads to some progress. But apparently this is just what we need….a bunch of extremely overpriced but short ranged busses. It’s amazing that all our problems are solved that they have time to waste money on these little pet projects.
  • Hector How much for steering column?
  • John S. Beautiful car, fun series installment, Corey.
  • FreedMike Any link to the grant applications that were denied?
  • FreedMike I'm amazed it took this long for them to do a Challenger convertible.