Confuscius From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 3801 posts, RR: 1 Posted (3 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 8570 times:
Let me preface this by saying that this topic was inspired by the "Leisure Suit" thread.
Vinyl roof and white sidewall tires, will they make a comeback? Don't know, but I hope the polyester leisure suit and bell-bottom pants don't!
In the '50s, the fin or wing was a popular style. The '70s and '80s, vinyl roof and the white sidewall tires were popular. Today, I can't think of any car model that have these as standard features.
Was the vinyl roof only a decorative feature or did it have a function like to protect the roof? You know, like a plastic carpet runner or plastic sofa cover to prevent wear and tear on carpet and sofa respectively.
srbmod From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 17284 posts, RR: 51 Reply 4, posted (3 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 8504 times:
Quoting Confuscius (Thread starter): Was the vinyl roof only a decorative feature or did it have a function like to protect the roof? You know, like a plastic carpet runner or plastic sofa cover to prevent wear and tear on carpet and sofa respectively.
Decorative feature designed to emulate the look of a convertible top and they were doing this even back in the 1920s to mimic the movable tops that horse drawn carriages and buggies had. The style went away during the 30s and 40s and reappeared in the 1950s. Back then, canvas was used and it wasn't until the late 50s that vinyl started being used. My dad had a 1972 Malibu with a red vinyl roof that eventually started to crack and peel away after about 15 years of being in the elements.
While it has gone out of style in the last 25-30 years, it was offered on the Lincoln Continental as a factory option until the model went of out production in 2002. I've seen aftermarket vinyl tops applied to Lincoln Town cars, Cadillacs and even Chrysler 300s. Stretch limos and hearses still make use of vinyl roofs because it is a classic look on those vehicles, but also for practical reasons, as they cover up the welds in the roofs of such vehicles.
Polot From United States of America, joined Jul 2011, 1868 posts, RR: 0 Reply 5, posted (3 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 8487 times:
Quoting Ken777 (Reply 1): The trend that is probably out permanently are the tail fins from the late 50's. Google 1959 Cadillac for a good indication. While they won't return I can see "hints " returning at some point.
Cadillac has slowly been putting hints of tailfins in their tail lights for a few years now. It is most noticeable in the CTS coupe and SRX, but you can kind of see it in the ATS.
I do not ever ever ever ever want to see a vinyl top ever again. My father thought it was a good idea to buy a Dodge Aspen. Our neighbors bought a Plymouth Volare. Green with white vinyl top. What were they thinking? I am scared for life!
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39423 posts, RR: 76 Reply 9, posted (3 months 1 week 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 8340 times:
Happy Birthday Confuscious!
12 years of craziness!
The last car to feature factory vinyl top and white wall tires was the 1996 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham.
Also the Buick Roadmaster and Buick Century sedan.
I'd like to see a return of the loose cushion, button down leather or velour seating surface. The brand new Bentley is hinting at that but not to the extent it was done in the past. The last car to offer these plush seats was the 1994 Chrysler Lebaron Landau sedan.
1974 Imperial Lebaron sedan.
This is from a 1974 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham.
Ford needs to whip out the belt again for the trunk.
This 1977-1979 Ford Thunderbird had a unique landau and separated vinyl top.
Considering that not every Mustang is a performance car, I didn't mind seeing a more dressed up, formal looking Mustang as an option. I do like the formal, K-caresque look of the 1983 Ford Mustang convertible.
For the classic ea of Mustangs, I prefer the Mercury Cougar XR-7 convertible.
Here is a better image of the Ford Mustang II Ghia.
Ford really dressed up the Ghia edition and has the potential to be a ballsy performer with the available 5.0 liter V8.
Of course a few tweaks would be required to get it to go.
Quoting seb146 (Reply 7): I do not ever ever ever ever want to see a vinyl top ever again.
Wood paneling I don't mind.
This 1974 Mercury Colony Park station wagon featured vinyl top AND wood paneling as well as concealed headlights.
This 1970 Ford Torino Squire wagon featured vinyl top, wood paneling AND muscle!
Quoting srbmod (Reply 4): Decorative feature designed to emulate the look of a convertible top and they were doing this even back in the 1920s to mimic the movable tops that horse drawn carriages and buggies had.
A carriage top is a little bit different than a vinyl top.
Here is a carriage top on the Bill Blass Edition Lincoln Mark V for the 1977-1979 model year.
Notice the ridges in the top.
Same car with vinyl top, not carriage top.
Here is a carriage top offered for the 1980 Mustang.
I found a better photo. This is how they looked from 1987-1990.
Although it was the same car from 1977-1990, there were a few minor cosmetic changes thought those years. My favorite being the final 4 years of this design.
The more formal Oldsmobile Ninety Eight Regency Brougham that lasted until 1984.
Quoting Braniff747SP (Reply 6): Have you seen the new line of GM trucks? The amount of chrome on the thing is incredible.
That's fake chrome, not real chrome.
I look forward to the day that the 'hybrid' hype is outdated.
Aesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 5704 posts, RR: 9 Reply 13, posted (3 months 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 8241 times:
If you can get a stiffer car with less weight then a T-top isn't a bad idea I would think, although my favorite light is right car doesn't employ one when the roof is removed, apparently the chassis is stiff enough :
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
KiwiRob From New Zealand, joined Jun 2005, 6028 posts, RR: 3 Reply 14, posted (3 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 8220 times:
Quoting Aesma (Reply 13): If you can get a stiffer car with less weight then a T-top isn't a bad idea I would think, although my favorite light is right car doesn't employ one when the roof is removed, apparently the chassis is stiff enough :
But you have to buy the targa top version, you can't remove the roof from the standard Exige, I've always wondered why you couldn't especially with the Mk 1 version which was just a panel. I would love one, it's a bad arse car
moose135 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 2141 posts, RR: 11 Reply 20, posted (3 months 1 week 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 8053 times:
Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 18): I think the idea of the louvers must have been to deflect some of the sunlight beating down on that large horizontal surface created by the shape of the window in the days before tinting.
Exactly - on a hatchback, you had a large, sloped, rear window and the louvers helped keep the car cooler.
I've never liked partially-covered wheels. I really wouldn't want to see that returning. I know that some cars have it probably as an efficiency thing (eh Honda Insight) - but purely for styling, it's nasty.
Fortune favours the brave
25 zckls04: They appear from behind some sliding panels in the grill. It's pretty awesome- similar to this I believe: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shbQoke7JWI
26 af773atmsp: At the dealership I work at we had a 2003(?) Pontiac Vibe with hand cranked windows. I sure was shocked to see that!
27 RedTailDTW: My 2005 Dodge Neon in high school had crank windows in the back. My coworker also has a 2012 Jeep Patriot with crank windows throughout. They are sti
28 Superfly: That makes more sense. Well, not the ugliest thing but I don't like them either. They looked OK on those Datsun 280Z cars of the 70s & 80s. Great
29 SmittyOne: Those things absolutely could not be killed (aside from rust). Superfly must know this one...one old school feature I remember (on Pontiac I think?)
30 PHLBOS: Forgive me but I'm not 100% sure whether both of you read the entire line of my previous post on the subject of hand-crank windows (reposted below, k
31 SmittyOne: An eminently sensible name for them, to be sure. I remember calling those the 'cigarette window'. Which brings up another old school feature...how ma
32 rfields5421: Have you seen a new Nissian Juke? Those front headlight enclosures look like the company is trying to bring back the Plymouth tail fins - on the front
33 JoePatroni707: One thing I cannot stand is the 1/2 digital, 1/2 analog dash on the current Honda Civics.... Is UGLY! Did Honda not get the memo that the digital dash
34 PHLBOS: Actually, many cars had digital dashes well into the mid-90s. Not sure about the upcoming 2014 Corvette but its immediate predecessor model had a dig
35 srbmod: If you want the cigarette lighter and ashtray, you have to buy the "smoker's group" option if they offer it (Which seems to be offered on trucks and
36 PHLBOS: I'm well aware of such options on newer vehicles; but it used to be standard equipment for all vehicles... even stripped-down subcompacts w/out radio
37 IH8BY: I've had a fair few cars over the last few years, none of which has come with a lighter or an ashtray. I was therefore quite surprised when I found o
38 RedTailDTW: I had read your prior comment but I was giving af773atmsp an example of newer cars that still come with crank-windows in certain packages. Thanks for
39 JoePatroni707: What ever happened to the groovy 8 track players of the 70's that could endlessly play disco music. I remember my friends parents had one in their Pac
40 PHLBOS: See my earlier post (reposted below): Sometime in the early 80s, the 8-track got bumped from the options list in favor of cassette players (which sta
41 ER757: Ahhh - memories. My Dad's '69 Pontiac had a vinyl roof - he used to use Bravo floor wax to shine it up. Had the skinny-stripe whitewall tires too. I r
42 Ken777: The issue with full electric is their limited range and re-charging when traveling on our Interstate system. I can get on a freeway about a mile from
43 PHLBOS: Note the color-keyed wheels (matching the vinyl roof & trunk-mounted seatbelts). Definitely an item no longer offered. How about color-keyed whee
44 af773atmsp: I'll mention something that has gotten quite popular with the automakers; manual mode with an automatic transmission (also called manu-matic, manual m