THE CAR COACH REPORTS:
August 12, 2016
I have a question and hopefully we can discuss some answers. How do we make people love cars and become part of car culture?
I don’t want to hear Millennials this or Millennials that, because I’m just not sure that’s productive or correct. But I think it’s a valuable discussion. Why? Because—I hate admitting this—we are getting older.
This article: http://www.autonews.com/article/20160809/BLOG06/308099997/harleys-v-rod-offers-glimpse-of-what-chevy-faces-with-midengine is what really got me thinking about this.
Modern car and motorcycle companies are trying to attract younger buyers. And if you go to classic car websites and forums, you see the same discussions amongst collectors.
So what is the answer? The AutoNews article suggested making the new Corvette smaller and lighter, and also having a friendlier price point. In the days of crippling college loan debt, that isn’t a bad idea. In fact, that’s just a plain good idea. And the design and features might really help. But is design or lack of design the driving factor?
I’m not so convinced. The average age of a video gamer is 31 years old, with most gamers being over 36. So that right there should say something. Other hobbies have taken over. For—I daresay—a lot of us, video games weren’t a hobby because they weren’t really a thing. Cars and cruising were, though.
That’s where a lot of our memories come from. There is this to think about too. We didn’t worry about fuel economy and practicality in our cars. We looked at performance and cool factor. The Toyota Camry as reliable as it is, and a perennial best seller doesn’t exactly scream cruising and car culture. It barely says anything at all. In the quest for the lifeless EV or hybrid are we losing the attractant? We had Challengers and Chargers and Camaros and Mustangs and ‘Cudas and on and on. Now we have what, Leafs and Smart Cars?
And because we have all those great cars are we a little elitist? Do we value the racing culture that appreciates CRXs, 240s and other cars in a way that is accepting of people that enjoy and appreciate them?
I don’t have any answers really but as we rush headlong into the autonomous drive future, I wonder how we maintain the love of the car and the road.
I believe that we can take our kids to cars shows, cruise nights and automotive events and let them see what we all fell in love with and they will at least appreciate a cool car.
But what do you think?
So here is this little nugget: http://jalopnik.com/ford-is-hanging-little-instruction-tags-on-manual-shift-1785110846
Apparently so few people know how to drive a manual transmission properly that Ford has taken to attaching instructions to the shifter in its Fiestas.
Part of me laughs and part of me wants to hang my head in shame.
This image from memecenter.com says it all:
Love Your Car! See you next week!