Car Wall: New for 2015

Since we’ve quasi-relaunched The Lowdown Blog today, I thought that we should do something a little bit different and little bit special for the official launch of the redesign. That’s why today features the first update of the Car Wall in a blog post in over five years. Yeah, this has been coming for a while.

If you’ve been following us since 2007, you know that the Car Wall is sort of what kicked off our Man Lab. The Car Wall is all about those cars that will get you attention from women. The cooler a car is, the more attention that you should get. For example, Kias and Hyundais aren’t cool because they out you as cheap which is not a good first impression.

So for today’s car wall, we have five cars to rate as the new model year gets underway.

2014-cadillac-ctsCadillac CTS

I’m going to ease myself back into doing the Car Wall with the easiest judgment in the history of the Car Wall. It doesn’t really matter which Cadillac I choose to put up for the wall because the verdict would be the same regardless of the specific model.

So the sacrificial lamb for Cadillac is the CTS. I”m sure that it’s competent at what it does. For a car that starts at over $43,000 CAD, it damn well better be amazing at what it does. However, the car wall isn’t just about what the car journalist types think of it. The car what is about what women would think of you in that car.

So the Cadillac CTS has two major strikes against it. First, it’s a Cadillac. While it’s spent over a decade trying to change its perception from being a brand of giant, underpowered boats for old men, anyone born before 1990 will still think of it as their grandfather’s car. Secondly, it’s a GM product. No one wants to get into a car from a company that’s had millions of cars recalled in the last few months. It’s okay for a car to be exciting to drive but excitement shouldn’t come from worrying if your car is going to work as it should. No one wants to be a driver or passenger in a broken car.
Verdict: Seriously Uncool

ferrari-laferrariFerrari LaFerrari

Chances are that you’re never going to see a Ferrari The Ferrari on the road or in the wild since Ferrari is only going to make 499 of them and they’ll cost $1.7 million. This is why this one gets chalked up as being uncool.

Usually, Ferraris are cool cars. The old 599 is on the Wall as cool. There’s a difference between a sensible Ferrari and an outlandish Ferrari in the grand scheme of impressing women. If the LaFerrari is in the garage most of the time or only good for track days, you’re not going to be impressing anyone. If you can be spotted driving down the road in a car, it’s going to get you noticed. The LaFerrari might be road-legal but I doubt it’s a road car. If it’s not a road car, it just can’t be cool.
Verdict: Seriously Uncool

2015-ford-fusionFord Fusion

Let’s start this one with a quick story. I’m not exactly in the market for a new car yet but I keep getting letters from Ford saying that I’ll get all sorts of incentives to trade in my car for a new one. My research has led me to just one car: The Ford Fusion. The reason I’m not getting it is only because all my special incentives get me is $1,000 off and 5.99% APR financing on a $30,000 car. Not the best salesmanship, Ford.

Anyway, long-time listeners/readers know that we’re fans of both Ford and Aston Martin. Since the financial crisis, Ford has upped the quality of their vehicles so that they’re among the best in the world across the whole lineup. A car doesn’t have to be great to be cool but it certainly doesn’t hurt. What really helps is that the Fusion looks like an Aston Martin family sedan. Astons are the most gorgeous cars in the world and a chance to get an AM lookalike that’s affordable and practical is something that makes you look like a genius and a catch.
Verdict: Sub-Zero

2015-nissan-leafNissan Leaf

For a post that’s supposed to be about getting noticed by women, we’re certainly talking a lot about practicality. I thought I’d mention that before I get inundated with comments about being a terrible person. The only car I’ve mentioned the looks of is the Fusion. I won’t even mention the looks of the Leaf because that’s irrelevant today.

The problem with fully-electric vehicles right now is the range, or lack thereof. The EPA estimates a range of about 75 miles. That’s enough for a bit of city driving but I would be concerned about a whole day’s use of it. Suppose you do your daily commute to work and back, pick up your date and driver to dinner. How bad does it look on you to ask your waiter if they have a 100-foot extension cord to run to your car so you can driver your date back to her place?
Verdict: Uncool

2015-volkswagen-beetleVolkswagen Beetle

If I wasn’t courting controversy before, I certainly am now. The 1997 revival of the Beetle, called the New Beetle, was popular right off the relaunch but quickly became a joke in car circles because of its odd bubbly looking exterior. It took Volkswagen 12 years to give up on that car and launch a next-generation of Beetle.

The new Beetle drops the “New” from its name and the goofy bubble styling of the New Beetle. The redesign is supposed to look more “aggressive” but it looks more like a car that people would drive. Better still, it doesn’t seem like the instantly mockable ride that the New Beetle was.

What most might be questioning me about is the fact that this car is still a Beetle. That name has seen a lot of its value erode as Volkswagen let the New Beetle age beyond its best before date and become a running gag as a result. This Beetle goes a way to correct that. I like how it looks now. That’s enough for me to call is cool. If only retro was still as cool now as it was in 1999 when the New Beetle was launched.
Verdict: Cool


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