Last post on Feb 25, 2012 at 2:42 PM
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#8 of 13 Re: Fantacizing About Departed Brands (Mr_Shiftright)[fintail] [hpmctorque]
Feb 18, 2012 (3:33 pm)
It's also interesting that the American highlines - Caddy and Packard especially - were exported in significant numbers before and just after the war. The big Germans weren't really known as luxury makes before that. Sadly, everyone got lazy or just couldn't afford to keep going.
For the small cars, image is everything - they have to appear relevant and "with it" even if they aren't - the Japanese firms used that as much as they did with mechanical reliability, IMO.
#9 of 13 Re: Fantacizing About Departed Brands (Mr_Shiftright)[fintail] [hpmctorque] [fintail]
Feb 19, 2012 (11:01 am)
Studebaker had good success in exporting right up until they shut down. CKD (completely knocked down) units were sent to other countries for assembly by local companies. There is always a large contingent of Australian and New Zealand buffs at the club's national meets, as Studes were used as police cars into the '60's there.
I guess it's all a function of your age. Of all the independents, Studebaker lasted longer than most (with the exception of AMC). Near the end, they were still producing trucks of all sizes, gas or diesel, and their three lines of cars looked nothing alike even if they were alike underneath. Packard, I could enjoy a '56 Four Hundred, but even though I was born in '58 and our town had a dealer that sold Packards those last few years, I had no idea what a '55 or '56 Packard even was until many years later--into the mid-'70's. I did know what a '48-50 was though, much earlier. Hudsons--cool for being different than the rest, good race history, but not much variety in the later years (I guess there was the Jet, which to me looked like a shrunken '52 Ford). Willys--I like Jeep station wagons of the late '50's and early '60's. Kaiser-Frazer? Not much interest here.
AMC? Other than a late '60's Ambassador hardtop, first-gen AMX, or '74 Matador coupe, I just thought most looked so darn cheap on the inside. I do think the '63 Ramblers were pretty good-looking. The Pacer was innovative in its own way and I can clearly remember the first new one I saw, prior to introduction day. I was shocked!
I do miss the independents for the reduced domestic choices we have because of their departure.
#10 of 13 Pierce-Arrow, Cord, Auburn
Feb 22, 2012 (1:50 pm)
How would you envision the once revered American marques Pierce-Arrow, Cord and Auburn today, if they had survived? I could see Cord as the American Audi, with trend setting exterior and interior styling, and FWD/AWD. However, now that we've got Packard and Hudson back in business on this discussion, as the American MB (or Lexus) and BMW, respectively, I find it difficult to position Pierce-Arrow and Auburn. Any thoughts?
#11 of 13 Re: Pierce-Arrow, Cord, Auburn [hpmctorque]
Feb 24, 2012 (5:47 pm)
I don't know about Auburn or Pierce-Arrow, but I'd picture a Duesenberg as some kind of exotic now.
#12 of 13 Re: Pierce-Arrow, Cord, Auburn [lemko]
Feb 24, 2012 (8:58 pm)
I thought about Deusenberg, but I don't think it had a direct counterpart. It was a step above Packard and Cadillac, and not really similar to Rolls Royce or Isotta Fraschini. Bottom line is I don't know how to characterize it because it seemed to be in a class unto itself. Come to think of it, the Isotta Fraschini was probably the Deusy's closest counterpart.
#13 of 13 Re: Pierce-Arrow, Cord, Auburn [hpmctorque]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Feb 25, 2012 (2:42 pm)
The Duesenberg would be equivalent today to the Bugatti Veyron or the McLaren F1. It was a supercar in every respect, so you're right, it's way above a Cadillac or Packard or even the fancy coach-built Rolls Royce cars. Maybe a pre-Rolls Blower Bentley would keep up with one, but the Blower Bentleys were crude pieces of work next to a Duesenberg.