Aug
09
1971 Plymouth Satellite

1971 Plymouth Satellite

There’s an all-new Honda Accord coming for 2018. Among the numerous changes to the Accord lineup for ’18 is the elimination of the available V6 engine, and the addition of two available turbocharged engines.

The biggest change—at least to anyone to enjoys spotting trends and paradigm shifts—is the absence of a coupe model. Yep, for the first time in the Honda Accord’s 42-year history in America, the car will not be offered in 2-door form.

The 2018 changes come as sort of a bummer for enthusiasts, as the Accord had been available as a nifty V6-powered coupe– complete with a 6-speed manual, if you ordered it that way.

But there’s a bigger story here. With the Accord coupe gone, that means that the sum total of Honda Accord, Chevrolet Malibu, Ford Fusion, Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, Mazda 6, Nissan Altima, Subaru Legacy, Toyota Camry, and Volkswagen Passat coupes available for 2018 will be none.

 

Sure, most of these cars were never available as coupes, but some were. Most of us probably remember the Altima Coupe and the Camry-based Solara coupe and convertible.

What’s interesting here is how the sedan came to dominate the midsize-car segment. I don’t know when Americans became so pragmatic that they needed rear doors on all their cars, but it was sometime during the Eighties.

If we look back to the early Seventies, we see that the sedan was the odd man out. Check out the cars below. In each case, the available 4-door body styles make up less than half of the total sales of each model–much less, in most cases.

Why is that? I don’t really know. Why does a lot of our drinking water now come in bottles, and why do we now pay monthly fees to watch TV? Times change, and that change took the coupe with it.

Even in the above TV ad, in which AMC is touting the practicality of the midsize Matador, the vehicle shown is a coupe.

If you’ve ever spent time with one or more of these fairly rare sedans, tell us about it. We’d love to hear your story.

The 10 Fastest Cars of 1971*

 

1971 AMC Matador

1971 AMC Matador

1971 AMC Matador

Sedan Base Price: $2770

Total Sales: N/A

Sedan Sales: N/A

Sedan Percent of Sales: N/A

 

1971 Buick Skylark

1971 Buick Skylark

1971 Buick Skylark

Sedan Base Price: $2897

Total Sales: 174,905 (including Sportwagon)

Sedan Sales: 44,851

Sedan Percent of Sales: 26

 

1971 Chevrolet Chevelle

1971 Chevrolet Chevelle

1971 Chevrolet Chevelle

Sedan Base Price: $2677

Total Sales: 335,566 (including Sportwagon)

Sedan Sales: 78,064

Sedan Percent of Sales: 23

 

1971 Dodge Coronet

1971 Dodge Coronet

1971 Dodge Coronet

Sedan Base Price: $2777

Total Sales: 77,728 (214,153 including Charger)

Sedan Sales: 54,311

Sedan Percent of Sales: 70 (25 inclusive of Charger)

Note: The Coronet was not offered in any 2-door body styles for 1971. The Charger was the Dodge brand’s midsize coupe. Coronet sedan’s share of combined Coronet and Charger sales is 25 percent as noted above.

 

1971 Ford Torino

1971 Ford Torino

1971 Ford Torino

Sedan Base Price: $2672

Total Sales: 376,461

Sedan Sales: 82,281

Sedan Percent of Sales: 22

The 10 Slowest Cars of 1971*

 

1971 Mercury Montego

1971 Mercury Montego

1971 Mercury Montego

Sedan Base Price: $2888

Total Sales: 54,010

Sedan Sales: 21,998

Sedan Percent of Sales: 41

 

1971 Oldsmobile Cutlass

1971 Oldsmobile Cutlass

1971 Oldsmobile Cutlass

Sedan Base Price: $2885 (F-85)

Total Sales: 260,566 (includes F-85, 4-4-2, and Vista Cruiser)

Sedan Sales: 47,399

Sedan Percent of Sales: 18

 

1971 Plymouth Satellite

1971 Plymouth Satellite

1971 Plymouth Satellite

Sedan Base Price: $2734

Total Sales: 147,027

Sedan Sales: 44,852

Sedan Percent of Sales: 31

 

1971 Pontiac LeMans

1971 Pontiac LeMans

1971 Pontiac LeMans

Sedan Base Price: $2795

Total Sales: 165,618

Sedan Sales: 25,952

Sedan Percent of Sales: 16

Model-Year Madness! 10 Classic Ads From 1971

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