Posts from ‘Volvo’
Much was made of the fact that, as of 2019, battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) outsold cars equipped with manual transmissions. And, if you’re of the save-the-manuals movement, this was distressing news, no doubt.
It saddens us to say it, but the luxury coupe is all but dead. While BMW and Mercedes-Benz still sell a few midsize and large 2-door cars, Cadillac and Lincoln do not. Lexus does sell the impressive LC, but that car is expensive, and it’s really more of a sports car than a luxury coupe in the sense we’re discussing here.
I joined the Consumer Guide team the summer of 2002. That means that, in just a few months, I will have been writing about cars full-time for 20 years. I mention this because I have only recently begun to consider just how much the automotive landscape has changed in the past two decades.
I recall a time, oh, 38 years ago, when my folks forbade me from driving to a friend’s house because it was raining. At the time, even if I believed that rain in any way made driving more dangerous, I wasn’t prepared to admit it. Besides, real car guys were unafraid of driving in snow, at night, and through downpours. Honestly, I still enjoy driving around through fresh snow.
Let’s get one thing straight right away: The Chevrolet Monte Carlo WAS a personal-luxury car. I have received at least a dozen emails and instant messages on this issue, mostly from car guys who insist that a personal-luxury car must come from a luxury brand. Not the case. For anyone who would like to spend time learning about the origins of the term, Wikipedia has a nice entry on the topic.
By 1988, light-duty trucks—a category which includes pickups, minivans, and SUVs—accounted for roughly one third of new-vehicle sales. At the time, the popularity of trucks seemed scandalous to many in the automotive media, most whom wagged a stern figure at automakers, warning that a sudden surge in the price of gas would leave dealers with lots full of unsellable product.