Vehicle models return from the grave

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highdesert
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Vehicle models return from the grave

#1 Post by highdesert » Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:17 am

"What's dead may never die."

You don't need to be a Game of Thrones fan to believe that quote – at least not if you're paying attention to the auto industry. As the 2019 Detroit auto show begins this week with media previews, dead cars are coming back to life with a supernatural vengeance. The resurrection trend now includes Chevrolet, Ford, Honda, Jeep and Toyota, which are all resuscitating models that were discontinued years ago. "A lot of these nameplates are quite iconic," said Rebecca Lindland, an auto analyst at consultancy Portico Analytics. It "brings back a sense of nostalgia but with all the modern amenities." It's Toyota's turn this week. In Detroit, the automaker will reveal the long-anticipated return of the Toyota Supra, a sports car that gained a cult following among Generation X in the 1980s and 1990s. The Supra fizzled out more than 20 years ago. But retro is cool again, so the Supra is getting a second shot.

Toyota joins a crowded party:

Ford
The Ford Ranger midsize pickup truck is making a comeback this year. Discontinued less than a decade ago in the U.S., it actually never went away in certain foreign markets. Now, Ford needs a midsize offering as Americans salivate over pickups of all stripes.

Next up: The Ford Bronco SUV is heading to dealerships as a 2020 model. Ford is seeking to recapture the intensely loyal following the Bronco had before the O.J. Simpson chase basically forced the company to discontinue the nameplate in the 1990s.

Jeep
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, which owns the Jeep brand, is reviving the Jeep Gladiator pickup this year. The new Gladiator, which was originally sold in the 1960s, debuted in a show-stopping reveal at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November. Like the Ranger, it's aiming for the midsize pickup segment.

Honda
Honda plans to begin selling the Honda Passport SUV later this year. It's a remake of the Passport SUV sold in the 1990s, which was originally a rebadged Isuzu Rodeo "with some minor modifications," according to Autotrader.

Chevy
General Motors weeks ago began selling a new SUV called the Chevy Blazer, which takes inspiration from several models of old, including the Chevy TrailBlazer, which faded out about a decade ago.

There are multiple reasons for automakers to revive older vehicles. They include:

Cheaper than making it from scratch
Automakers typically retain trademarks for discontinued models. And they may not have to spend as much on marketing. "They have the benefit of being recognized model names that the automakers already own," said Joe Wiesenfelder, executive editor of Cars.com. "Lo and behold they had these already paid for. So they can whip them out and use them."

They generate buzz
Just like the entertainment industry loves franchises and sequels, the built-in fan base for past vehicles makes them buzzworthy. "It's easier sometimes to bring back an old nameplate and build on the awareness and the positive reaction," said Stephanie Brinley, auto analyst at IHS Markit.

Nostalgia sells
Quite simply, retro is in. Older drivers have fond memories of cars from days gone by. And younger consumers often view long-gone brands as authentic. Many of these vehicles "transcend generations," said Jonathan Klinger, vice president of public relations at classic-car insurer Hagerty. "It's fun to look back at different eras." But while nostalgia sells, it's not a guarantee of success. Tinkering with vehicles from the past can be risky. "When you go ahead and bring one of those nameplates back, there’s also tremendous pressure to get the products right and make sure it matches the expectations people have from their memory," Brinley said. "It certainly has to resonate."

For example, the Pontiac GTO flopped after GM revived it in 2004, about three decades after it ended its first run. The muscle car didn't have the inspiring design of its ancestor, and it was swiftly discontinued. What's ironic about the trend is that cars typically get discontinued because people lose interest the first time around. For example, GM and Ford recently announced plans to kill several long-running models, including the Chevy Impala and Ford Taurus, as many Americans have lost interest in passenger cars.This isn't the first time the Taurus has died. It was dropped in the early 2000s, only to be revived under a new regime at Ford.

So if absence truly makes the heart grow fonder, perhaps the grave is only a temporary destination.
https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/ca ... 546120002/
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#2 Post by Hiker » Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:36 am

I wish I hadn't looked at that Jeep Gladiator
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#3 Post by TrueTexan » Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:53 am

But they all hope to have the same results as the best revival of all, the Ford Mustang.
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#4 Post by eelj » Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:26 pm

Rather then discontinue the Impala chevrolet should just revive the 1966 Impala SS with a 427 L88 engine. You were gauranteed to get far with your date at a drive in theater with one of those.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#5 Post by YankeeTarheel » Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:31 pm

Hiker wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:36 am
I wish I hadn't looked at that Jeep Gladiator
Ugh. Sorry. Not.for.Me.

I surprised Chevy's bringing back the Blazer since it already has the Equinox, Traverse, and Suburban covering all 3 sizes of SUV.
And I'm surprised Ford's bringing back the Bronco when the Explorer and Expedition remain popular.

Pontiac's 1967 GTO was their pinnacle of that line. I believe the Chevelle SS and the Olds 442 were all built on the same body type.
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#6 Post by KlownKannon » Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:55 pm

I can has Ford Pinto?
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#7 Post by Bisbee » Mon Jan 14, 2019 3:34 pm

Comrade!
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#8 Post by Bang » Tue Jan 15, 2019 10:28 pm

Glad to see the Ranger is coming back. If it's actually a small truck like the old ones, and not the upper mid-sized "small truck" so many companies are selling, I might end up with one. The first car I ever drove was a 1987 Ford Ranger, it was a tough little soldier.
Hiker wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:36 am
I wish I hadn't looked at that Jeep Gladiator
What an ugly bugger.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#9 Post by khlavkalash » Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:47 pm


Hiker wrote:I wish I hadn't looked at that Jeep Gladiator
Why, did your gaze cause it to break down?
Bang wrote:Glad to see the Ranger is coming back. If it's actually a small truck like the old ones, and not the upper mid-sized "small truck" so many companies are selling, I might end up with one. The first car I ever drove was a 1987 Ford Ranger, it was a tough little soldier.
Hiker wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2019 10:36 am
I wish I hadn't looked at that Jeep Gladiator
What an ugly bugger.
The Ranger is midsize like the Tacoma or Colorado, so bigger than the old one. The small truck segment is gone thanks to CAFE. Small trucks have more stringent fuel standards.
https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/ ... on-wagons/

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#10 Post by Eris » Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:49 pm

I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#11 Post by khlavkalash » Wed Jan 16, 2019 12:42 am

Eris wrote:I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
ISIS is probably recruiting :)

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#12 Post by 7N6Wolf » Fri Jan 18, 2019 12:29 am

The article does make me mildly nostalgic, given that I used to own a two door GMC Jimmy (a Blazer with a different emblem and name). That being said, I am not planning on buying any of these rereleases, as the Toyota Corolla I have owned for a little over a decade continues to be supremely reliable (it is starting to rust, but that’s inevitable in Minnesota). Not to mention that I need to pay off student loans (even though the degree is virtually worthless) and personal debts.


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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#13 Post by YankeeTarheel » Fri Jan 18, 2019 8:49 am

Eris wrote:
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:49 pm
I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
They still make them and sell them! You can buy one in Nassau, or even other Bahamian islands, But, AFAIK, only with right-hand drive.. :hmmm: (works great for the Bahamas, where you drive on the left--but 2/3 to 3/4 of the vehicles still have left-hand drive! :laugh: )

https://www.automallbahamas.com/car/hillux/
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#14 Post by Eris » Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:45 am

YankeeTarheel wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 8:49 am
Eris wrote:
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:49 pm
I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
They still make them and sell them! You can buy one in Nassau, or even other Bahamian islands, But, AFAIK, only with right-hand drive.. :hmmm: (works great for the Bahamas, where you drive on the left--but 2/3 to 3/4 of the vehicles still have left-hand drive! :laugh: )

https://www.automallbahamas.com/car/hillux/
Oh I know they are available outside the US. I just don't have the time, money, or inclination to try and get one imported.
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#15 Post by featureless » Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:41 am

Eris wrote:
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:49 pm
I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
While I'd love a Hilux, I'll just keep using my little single cab 1990 Nissan Hardbody 4x4 when I need a truck. It's got hand crank windows (bonus points that the passenger crank keeps falling off). Remember those?

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#16 Post by 7N6Wolf » Fri Jan 18, 2019 12:02 pm

featureless wrote:
Eris wrote:
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:49 pm
I just want a real Toyota HiLux again.
While I'd love a Hilux, I'll just keep using my little single cab 1990 Nissan Hardbody 4x4 when I need a truck. It's got hand crank windows (bonus points that the passenger crank keeps falling off). Remember those?
My 2008 Corolla CE has those hand crank windows, and it also lacks power locks (even my 1986 Ford Bronco II had power windows and locks). Admittedly, I actually prefer such “primitive” windows and locks, as there is less to to go wrong with them (no broken wires, bad motors, etc.). Years down the road, I will have to get a newer vehicle, and some of that simplicity will be lost (I can’t say I am thrilled with the idea of those various sensors for “lane assistance” and such).


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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#17 Post by YankeeTarheel » Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:53 pm

I'd love to have and drive one of these (or the GTO version), again!

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#18 Post by Bucolic » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:08 pm

If you’re gonna go they route then I would offer that I’d love one of these

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Oh, wait. Porsche is bringing back the Speedster:

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#19 Post by featureless » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:13 pm

Bucolic wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:08 pm
If you’re gonna go they route then I would offer that I’d love one of these

Image
That might be the most beautiful car ever built. I'd be happy to rock an old Karmann Ghia with a little more junk (HP) in its trunk.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#20 Post by Bucolic » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:19 pm

I agree with both your assessment of the beauty of the speedster and the coolness of the Ghia. Hard to find Ghias without terminal rot.
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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#21 Post by featureless » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:29 pm

Bucolic wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:19 pm
I agree with both your assessment of the beauty of the speedster and the coolness of the Ghia. Hard to find Ghias without terminal rot.
I used to play "spaceship" in the Ghia junker we had in the yard as a kid.

I'm working myself up to letting go of my 1978 Westfalia. I'm just not a great mechanic and I abhor having to wedge myself up its ass every time I work on it. So mostly it just sits in the garage taking up space and making me depressed that I don't have the skill/time it needs to make it what I'd like it to be. We've had a lot of fun weekend camps in it though....

One really nice thing about my Leaf:open the hood, say "huh, no engine" and close it. Washer fluid is about all the maintenance there is. Boring as hell though.

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Vehicle models return from the grave

#22 Post by Bucolic » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:51 pm

We loved our 73 pop top VW camper. Drove it all over southern AZ and CA and parts of Sonora. It never let us down although there were a lot of close calls. Driving through Gila Bend in an air cooled van in the 120 degree mid summer heat tested one’s faith in German engineering.

Neither of our Porsche’s have any user serviceable parts. Hell, the Boxster S is almost 20 years old and I’ve never even seen the engine.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#23 Post by featureless » Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:56 pm

It's getting really hard to find quality VW parts for the air cooled era. Oh well.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#24 Post by wooglin » Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:16 pm

When my Element dies, I will be very displeased. Its my second one, and I doubt there will be any more around.

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Re: Vehicle models return from the grave

#25 Post by YankeeTarheel » Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:34 pm

featureless wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:13 pm
Bucolic wrote:
Fri Jan 18, 2019 2:08 pm
If you’re gonna go they route then I would offer that I’d love one of these

Image
That might be the most beautiful car ever built. I'd be happy to rock an old Karmann Ghia with a little more junk (HP) in its trunk.
Funny how tastes are. I always thought the KG was just about the ugliest car I had ever seen until the Cube came along.
On Mel Brooks' comedy, "Get Smart!" Max Smart drove a KG, but before that he drove one of these, a much cooler car:

Image

Carrol Shelby took the Sunbeam Alpine and reconfigured it to take a small block Ford V-8 engine--either the 260 or 289, and rebadged it as the Tiger!
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