"Well the nimrods running General Motors killed the F-body (Camero/Firebird Trans Am) for no reason at all."
Not exactly NO reason, Superfly. Sales were way, way down from the old days, due to a myriad of factors, including high insurance costs, too much competition from front-drive sport coupes like the Eclipse, sales lost to the SUV
boom and a more hard-core performance design that appealed to a smaller range of buyers than the softer-edged (non-Cobra models) Mustang.
From a 9/26/01 article: "Camaro sales were down 25% through August, and Firebird sales were down 28%, according to AutoData. Mustang sales were down 12%. The combined sales of 38,564 for Camaro and Firebird were about one-third of Mustang's sales through August."
's marketing, or lack thereof, was also to blame for low sales. Whatever the cause, the numbers were precipitously down, too low to justify continued production. While you'd think the SS
, with most of the Corvette's performance for little over half its price would hang in there with fans as a screaming bargain, too many other factors were apparently at work. The Mustang, although its sales shrank too, was far less affected because it didn't compromise on driver-friendliness as much, being higher; easier to get in and out of and having a better driving position for most people. The GM
F-body was too low for so many drivers, like sitting in a bathtub and rear-seat room was also tighter.
"The front drive Dodge Daytona and AMC Encore was a joke of competition."
Okay, maybe the Daytona didn't have the right handling dynamics, being front-drive but the top 224-HP turbo model was fast enough, over 140 mph in tests. You can't be serious about listing the Encore as a ponycar competitor! It was merely a hatchback econobox, the 3 & 5-door version of AMC's subcompact Alliance, the Americanized version of the Renault R9
sedan. Its 1.5 and 1.7 liter fours offered no real "performance" to speak of. The earlier Spirit V-8 'AMX' manual was closer to the mark, however.
"Good thing they kept those designs under lock & key for the Cobalt, LaCrosse, Aztec and Aveo!"
You may be being a bit hard on the Cobalt, although it's somewhat mundane looking. The supercharged sport model is getting some pretty good reviews in Car and Driver, Motor Trend and Road and Track. It seems overall to be a vast improvement over the hopelessly dated, cramped and otherwise lackluster Cavalier. The LaCrosse IS
somewhat peculiar in appearance but seems a cut above the all too bland Century it replaces. Nobody cares what the Aveo looks like; it's all about being dirt cheap. No contest on the Aztek, obviously they badly miscalculated on reactions from their focus groups, but the new Torrent to replace it reeks of the old 80s GM
cookie-cutter car syndrome, being lifted from the Chevy Equinox with no more distinction than the obligatory Pontiac nose tacked on. At least, the Aztek attempted to stand out, even if the execution was botched. I rather like it, myself.
"It's too bad that Mercury decided not to go forward with the Marurader Convertible."
What would've been the point of that, Ford screwed up the sedan, anyway? Lacking a V8
with great low-end torque, like the '94-'96 Impala SS
that obviously inspired it, plus too high a list price, made the mostly show but little go Marauder a surefire sales dud. It was barely faster than the cheaper 239-HP Crown Victoria LX