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Good Styling



  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    Well, I gotta confess, that picture was taken right after I washed it, and the car was still wet! :blush: But, with a good washing and waxing, it does come off pretty nice.

    Here's a picture I took of it back in August 2008, at the Das Awkscht Fescht show in Macungie, PA. I was supposed to take my '76 LeMans to this show, but it refused to start, and was blocking my '79 5th Ave in the garage. And my '67 Catalina, I wouldn't have trusted on a trip that far, so I decided to chance it with the '79. It did die on me about two miles from home, when I stopped off to get some ice for the cooler, but after I got it started again, it did fine for the whole ~390 mile round trip. Well, with the exception of losing a hubcap!
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    Dark colors are just so hard to maintain. My daily driver is dark grey, and I have to put a substantial amount of labor into keeping it looking how I want it compared to my previous silver and light blue cars. It looks great when its clean, but you have to work for it. On the other hand, maybe it's not so bad...most of us can use a little more exercise :shades:

    I generally like blues and greys for car colors, and I have a little thing for some modern light blue colors that seem to have shown up in the past year or two...but I don't know if I would buy one.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 18,659
    edited May 2010
    one color I don't touch is white. Makes a car look like a refrigerator.

    That's the way I feel about Alpine White but I can see cream white or ivory on some cars. I owned a pearl white A4 sedan that looked sensational, it had one of those multi-layer/multi-hue paint jobs. In bright sunlight it looked like a very light silver but in indirect light or on a cloudy day it looked like an ivory or cream.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,330
    Yes. I have seen that and it looks great. White is difficult to pull off. It's difficult to find an Audi with something wrong in anything related to style. Beautiful cars every one of them.
    2013 Mazda 5 Grand Touring, 2010 Toyota Prius IV. 2007 Toyota Camry XLE, 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999 Mazda Miata
  • writerwriter Posts: 121
    What was the point? A very good question.

    I think we might have discussed this before? I would say that colour is in itself a debatable issue regarding styling. Some people would say that styling is the shape of the car and that colour is irrelevant. When I look at styling, I actually tend to start from that position. I look at the shape and relate it to function and then aesthetics. I cannot help looking at it functionally first. I think that all of us who read these discussions tend to weigh function heavily.

    I wrote the comment specifically to bring out the irony that years ago I wanted blue and did not want the Ferrari red, and now in this case I would have wanted the Ferrari red instead of the blue. The truth is that my taste has not really changed that much at all, and it was more a question of the specific blue in question, but it was a comment on the fact that tastes can and do change over time.

    And of course, there was a fairly open admission that colour is not really that important to me. In both cases I took the cars in colours I did not really want and lived with it.

    As for this particular dark blue, it strikes me as somber. The car is a sports coupe -- not a particularly somber style, and I am not a particularly somber person. Dull maybe, in some peoples' eyes, but not somber.

    And then there are the bird hits. They really show up on black and near-black colours. I have just taken my car to the car wash for the first time and now I am trying to hide it from the birds.
  • berriberri Posts: 7,744
    I liked darker colors when I was younger. Dark red was probably the easiest of them to keep looking good - didn't show the dirt quite as much. Now I'm lazy and prefer greys, silvers and golds. I had one white car. It actually was easier than the dark colors, but I'm not a big fan of white, except for some those optional ones people are talking about. White does have one advantage in that is seems to show design flaws. I always try to look at perspective cars in white because it seems to give me a better feel of whether I'll still like its looks down the road. I actually learned that trick from a design major I knew back in college and have found it over the years to generally be true.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,319
    >White does have one advantage in that is seems to show design flaws. I always try to look at perspective cars in white because it seems to give me a better feel of whether I'll still like its looks

    That's a very interesting statement. I think I have to agree. Cars that I have really liked, I liked even in white based on the style, period. Thanks for sharing that point.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,330
    I was going to start a new discussion about this but I'll try here.

    Do yo notice combinations on cars that either just don't work or seem like a really mixed message?

    For instance today I got caught behind a recent Odyssey with a gold package. now I am no fan of gold packages anyway but it looked particularly out of place on the Ody.

    I remember thinking this same kind of thing when they started making fire engine red Volvos. Same thing when I see a plain white Mustang GT.

    for add ons that look really strange I walked by a Sonata with port holes on Saturday.
    2013 Mazda 5 Grand Touring, 2010 Toyota Prius IV. 2007 Toyota Camry XLE, 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999 Mazda Miata
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    I loathe gold packages. Honda/Acura and Toyota/Lexus were prime offenders for this. It seems every early Lexus ES had gold trim, a friend of mine's mother had a late 90s Civic back in the day that was dark blue with gold trim - not cool, and the old couple who parked next to me in my previous residence had a ~2003 super loaded Camry that cost about 30K new that also had gold trim. Tacky.

    White does show off bad lines. Think of a white bangle BMW, especially a 7er. Every weird curve shouts to be looked at. White has also been trendy with the "look at me" set - lots of recent white M and AMG cars, Cayennes, Range Rovers, etc .
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    the other day at a traffic light behind five cars that were all various shades of silver (as is mine). I am totally sick of silver - not only is every second car silver, but then we have all the lighter shades of lighter and darker gray with creative names.

    What ever happened to cars with colors?

    I have sworn that I will never buy another silver car. Nothing neutral in fact - white, black, gray - but especially not silver.

    Problem is you get so few choices these days, and the limited choices that ARE available for any given model always seem to have to include silver (often two or three shades) and black, leaving precious little room in the lineup for real colors. :-(

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    but then we have all the lighter shades of lighter and darker gray with creative names.

    Hey, I resemble that remark! :P

    The wife's '08 VUE is "Techno" Grey, while my '06 ION is "Storm" Grey. The daughter's new MINI is "Brilliant" Silver.

    Sigh. :sick:

    I'm with you in that my next car will be anything but a neutral color .. unless the wife says otherwise.

    A few weeks ago, my wife noticed a Lexus RX that was a unique color - Truffle Mica (aka metallic brown). I think that color - or colors similar to that - will become more popular going forward, kinda like green was back in the 90's.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    Just saw a whale of a new car, first one of the new model I have seen in person, and this is one that folks have been commenting positively on with regard to the looks.

    The new Sonata.


    It is so absurdly elongated, it honestly looks like a car that has been partially smooshed, like an 18-foot cowpie that has been stepped on by some giant foot in the sky. From other angles it looks like a large fish whose name I have forgotten (not the whale of my subject line though).

    How could people like the looks of this thing in person? I think it looks decent in the pictures, but forget the close-up, in-person view. Sorta looks like they started out to style the new Taurus (an OK-looking if a bit anonymous new model IMO), but then went wrong somewhere along the way...

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    I wouldn't mind a new dark green car, but alas it is pretty hard to find one unless you want a Mini in British racing green (a possibility for my next car).

    The lack of color choices has gotten so bad I am half tempted to let the color palette be the determining factor on my next car purchase - the Fit has some interesting choices, the Fiesta looks like it will, the VW Beetle does, and then...??

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • writerwriter Posts: 121
    edited May 2010
    "... a friend of mine's mother had a late 90s Civic back in the day that was dark blue with gold trim - not cool, ..."

    Ouch! After I wrote the first comment, I was looking at my car and I was thinking it might not be so bad if I did some detailing work. Maybe a few small highlights in gold. :-)

    I like gold accents on a very dark blue, or most greens, or on a black. The gold on black was the JPS Lotus. Royal blue and gold were my team colours one year for hockey. I liked that particular combination. Maybe that was what made me think of it. Gold is a good general compliment for greens.

    Actually, I do not think my car would look that good with gold accents because the interior is a light grey. A very dark grey colour interior, or a follow-through of navy blue for the interior would be better with the gold trim. Then again, if I had the interior follow through with the navy blue and added gold accents on the outside, I would have to add gold accents on the inside to maintain the look.

    Going back to blue colours, there are quite a few that I really like:

    1. Mark Donohue/Pensky/Sunoco blue from the Can Am/Trans Am days.

    2. Subaru WRC blue.

    Actually, almost all metallic blues -- except the one that I got.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    unless you want a Mini in British racing green

    As you know, my daughter bought a MINI last month. She's been getting all sorts of swag in the mail from them.

    Apparently, one of the stories is that BRG was originally known as Irish green, but then they changed the name for some reason or another.

    MINI also offers a color (colour?) called Hot Chocolate, which my wife really likes. She'd like the convertible that I get in a few years to be a MINI Cooper S in that Hot Chocolate color.

    We'll see. I wouldn't mind a Monaco Blue 3-series convertible.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 18,659
    IIRC that's a dark brown, a color which was popular on German cars during the 1960s. I've always wanted a brown 280SL or 911. It seems to be enjoying a comeback as I have seen metallic dark browns on a variety of cars lately, It seems to be popular on Toyota Venzas and it looks particularly good on them.

    Colors are constantly being recycled, yellow for example hasn't been around since the 60s but is now common. I'm waiting for the return of a 1950's style Turquoise.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    edited May 2010
    Local MB dealer had a brown W212 E550 on the lot, and I have seen a brown XC60 and I think a brown new style catfish FX, so brown is indeed slowly coming back.

    I like this shade of blue, but I might be biased :shades:

    imageSee more Car Pictures at

    This color doesn't work for most cars made after the mid 60s or so. MB now has a color called "quartz blue" which is as close to a modern day equivalent Io have seen. I think it might be special order, I've only seen one or two cars wearing it. an E63 in that color would be very unusual, I wouldn't turn it down.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    edited May 2010
    I don't mind the blue/gold on a WRX because of the rally connection, but I wouldn't want it on another car - especially the gold wheels. I think chrome looks better against dark colors than gold.

    IIRC gold trim was really first mass marketed on mid 50s Caddys and I think as an option on the 57 Chevy...but didn't take off until the Japanese embraced it in the early 90s.

    I like blue too, although a dark blue can be as much of a pain in the butt to maintain as black. My first car, a 66 Ford, was midnight blue. My fintail is also blue and my old W126 was a lovely "diamond blue".
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    edited May 2010
    I think the Sonata is OK from the side, but the front end is a lot less than attractive, and the rear has a weird "stretched" look, which makes the car look ungainly fron quarter angles, especially the front. Funny thing is I have seen quite a few people compare it to the MB CLS. Maybe in some bizarro parallel universe.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    I don't care for the gold trim on my Outback but I don't hate it enough to peel the pinstripes off. The worst are the badges, but they don't stand out too bad against the red color on mine.

    Bright medium dark blues are popular here with the Boise State crowd (which is about 80% of everyone). Fortunately you rarely see any orange trim on the cars other than game day flags. :shades:
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    Funny thing is I have seen quite a few people compare it to the MB CLS. Maybe in some bizarro parallel universe.

    I guess I can see some similarity, in the way that both cars seem almost exaggerated in their rakishness. Yet, the Benz pulls it off SOOOO much better!

    I remember years ago, on more than one occasion I've seen people compare the beautiful 2nd-gen Mazda 929 to the suppository-on-wheels 1991 Caprice. I've even heard people compare the 2nd-gen Intrepid to the '91 Caprice! Yeah, all three are a bit extreme in the way they're rounded off, but the 929 and even the Intrepid were a class act compared to that Caprice!
  • xrunner2xrunner2 Posts: 3,062
    At that time, I particularly did not want a Ferrari red because I had anecdotal (but in my opinion reliable) evidence that cops targeted "sporty cars" in this colour. Yes, it was a "sporty car."

    That is a a "true fact". I had a number of cars colored white, cream, blue, black then a red Firebird. I had a number of cops stpp me in that red Firebird for sometimes mickey mouse stuff. Most stops ever in my life were in that red car. Never had a red car since, and never had the hassle of cops since. Have not changed my driving style since that red Firebird. There must be some kind of cop intensity toward red sport/sporty cars just like bulls charging a red flag/cloth.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    I wonder if the red thing would apply to all vehicles, or just sporty ones? My '85 Silverado is two-toned, but mostly red, with a white roof and white lower body. You'd think something big and red would stick out like a sore thumb, but I've never had the cops mess with me when I'm driving it.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    I remember I disliked those Caprices when that body was new...I called them "the whale", and the Buick and Caddy derivatives were even more offensive to my eyes. Weird overcompensation for being late to the aero game.

    The 929 and Intrepid are much more restrained designs.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 9,655
    I think when the 'elitists' at the car magazines started ganging up on the styling of the '91 Caprice, most people soon followed suit. I still think the "Classic", with its 'lace' aluminum wheels, Goodyear Eagle's with pinstripe whitewalls, and plushy leather interior, has stood the test of time. It's really not significantly different than the Crown Victoria which followed a year later, and I've read that some cops actually preferred living with the Chevys better than the Fords--same with some taxi operators. At age 35 I actually bought a new '93, with the rear wheel openings 'radiused' out. Up close it was an amateurish job they did, but it did make the car look less 'heavy' in the rear.

    It was a good car for the 93K miles we put on it. It had the F41 Sport Suspension and a full-size spare--last car I ever had with it. When we traded it in '99, nobody even wanted it. I was constantly getting postcards from companies wanting to buy Caprices for export, so I called one of them and they sent a guy out to my house who bought it on the spot for more $$ than I was offered in trade-in, and drove it away.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 41,927
    I dunno if it is just blind hate...the car had some odd proportions and was just too rounded. I will say when it was refreshed for 94-95 or so (I am sure someone here can correct me) and got the little kink in the rear quarter window, it somehow made the design a little more balanced, maybe it made the car look smaller. Maybe it's just because it reminds me of the Impala, which is easily the variant of that platform I would choose first.

    I wonder where your car probably had an entire second life somewhere. I know a lot of period GM products were sold in the Middle East, maybe due to their usually good AC.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    Those Caprices looked a LOT better in 1993-94, with the full rear wheel openings and the wider rear track. And better still in 1995-96, when they got the cleaner taillights and the little kick-up in the beltline at the rear quarter window.

    On Thanksgiving Day, I drove out to a nearby used car lot to check out a 1991 Caprice they had on the lot, before going over to my Granddad's to do the family dog and pony show. I was in a sort of limbo period at this time, as my Intrepid had gotten totaled just a week before, and I was looking for a replacement. The dealership was closed, but the Caprice was unlocked, so I was able to sit in it. I wasn't overly wow'ed by the car, but if I could've gotten it for around $1500-2000, I would've considered it. They were asking $3995, and I think it had around 75,000 miles on it, but it didn't look all that well taken care of.

    I'm glad I waited it out a bit, and ended up with my $7500 56K mile 2000 Park Ave Ultra. But, I do find myself oddly drawn to the 1992-96 Roadmaster sedan. They're ugly and badly proportioned, yet still I find myself drawn to them.
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,330
    Sadly, I can understand you being drawn to them. Heck, when I see one of the wagons I start thinking, "if I could find a nice, low mile one."...

    Of course the danegr of actually doing it is much higher in your case. ;)
    2013 Mazda 5 Grand Touring, 2010 Toyota Prius IV. 2007 Toyota Camry XLE, 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999 Mazda Miata
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAPosts: 15,294
    I have a co-worker who is still driving the reddish-orange metallic 1991 Chevrolet Caprice LTZ he bought new. When the Caprice was discontinued after 1996, the Pennsylvania State Police had many of its current Caprices refurbished rather than replaced by Crown Victorias. I got to see a PA State Police cruiser up close and it was a pretty impressive machine. Everything was beefed-up. It had a huge alternator, two batteries, thicker hoses, and a radiator core that was twice as thick as the one in a civilian Caprice.
  • lemkolemko Philadelphia, PAPosts: 15,294
    I don't care what people think of the styling, I'd buy a 1994-96 Buick Roadmaster in a New York second of the car was in decent shape and the price was right.
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