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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The body on a car is just that, metal or plastic paneling that dictates that the car LOOKS like. Change out the panels, and the car will LOOK completely different.

I was appalled when Hyundai did this with the genesis. They made their car look like a nice luxury car (and apparently did a pretty good job...). I HATED that car when it came out (still kinda do). I kept saying that I hate the fact that Hyundai is trying to be something it's not. But that's not the topic of this thread.

What is stopping a normal car company from making something that looks like a Ferrari/any other high end car that many people lust for but can't afford?

Heck, if some car company came out with something that was as pretty as an R8/*insert your favorite high priced car here*, for an economy car price, I'd consider buying it. So what is keeping these car companies making boring cars that all look alike?

EDIT: Not necessarily for making cars that look like supercars, but just more "expensive car styling." I was just using Ferrari as an example.
 

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The body on a car is just that, metal or plastic paneling that dictates that the car LOOKS like. Change out the panels, and the car will LOOK completely different.

I was appalled when Hyundai did this with the genesis. They made their car look like a nice luxury car (and apparently did a pretty good job...). I HATED that car when it came out (still kinda do). I kept saying that I hate the fact that Hyundai is trying to be something it's not. But that's not the topic of this thread.

What is stopping a normal car company from making something that looks like a Ferrari/any other high end car that many people lust for but can't afford?

Heck, if some car company came out with something that was as pretty as an R8/*insert your favorite high priced car here*, for an economy car price, I'd consider buying it. So what is keeping these car companies making boring cars that all look alike?
Yeah, its not like Hyundai builds world-class cars nowadays or anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Yeah, its not like Hyundai builds world-class cars nowadays or anything.
Dude, I was making a point, and that's what popped into my head. I don't know if my sarcasm meter is off or what not, but it wasn't a jest at Hyundai. Get over it and stop making useless posts that add NOTHING to the thread.

It's my thread so i'm allowed to make useless posts.

Boring is cheap to design and manufacture.
I don't see how redesigning something to LOOK cooler would be that much more expensive. They have to insert new specs every time they do model refreshes anyway and especially when they change everything around. Think mk3/4/5 Jettas. They HAD to spend money for new machinery/programming to be able to make the new panels, why not just make it look like a supercar?
 

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Form follows function. You want interior space, seating for four, and a trunk? It's not going to look like a Ferrari.

Want a slow car that looks like a fast car but offers no interior space, amenities, or cargo space? Buy a 90s Mercury Capri. But good luck finding a company that will build a car that does nothing well. (At least again, lolz.)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Form follows function. You want interior space, seating for four, and a trunk? It's not going to look like a Ferrari.

Want a slow car that looks like a fast car but offers no interior space, amenities, or cargo space? Buy a 90s Mercury Capri. But good luck finding a company that will build a car that does nothing well. (At least again, lolz.)
While yes I kinda meant this, but what stops cheaper car companies from making cars that LOOK like they are a lot more expensive than they are. Not necessarily like a Ferrari. What stops *insert cheap brand here* from making something that looks like a Mercedes S class or *insert high end sedan here*? (I'm not saying that the current gen S class looks good or bad, but you get the point.)
 

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Dude, I was making a point, and that's what popped into my head. I don't know if my sarcasm meter is off or what not, but it wasn't a jest at Hyundai. Get over it and stop making useless posts that add NOTHING to the thread.

It's my thread so i'm allowed to make useless posts.
To be fair- you are the one that brought up the Hyundai Genesis, even though you didn't need to in order to ask your question. You can't just bring stuff up in the OP and then get angry when people actually comment on that.... or maybe you can. It is YOUR thread after all. :p


As far as your main question- you can't just slap supercar styling on a normal car.

Supercars have certain proportions, dimensions... trying to apply that to a normal car ends up with a rather large bloated and un-supercar-like thing.



And so you have to make a special car for this supercar styling. Supercars are usually very low and small, which means it won't be a very practical car, and since it is now a special car, it won't be super cheap either. If it doesn't have at least some performance to back up the looks, it will also become a joke imo.

The 2nd gen MR2 is probably a good example of this since the 135 hp base model was $25k:

 

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Discussion Starter #8
And so you have to make a special car for this supercar styling. Supercars are usually very low and small, which means it won't be a very practical car, and since it is now a special car, it won't be super cheap either. If it doesn't have at least some performance to back up the looks, it will also become a joke imo.
I think I should have been more explicit in my OP. I simply meant what stops cheaper car companies from using expensive car styling? Not necessarily a supercar.
 

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I think I should have been more explicit in my OP. I simply meant what stops cheaper car companies from using expensive car styling? Not necessarily a supercar.
What would you call expensive car styling?
Big wheels?
Chrome?

I do think that premium car styling details/themes do trickle down to more mainstream cars.
But to just copy an expensive car design seems like a double edged sword- you make your car look like a more expensive car, but then you loose your own brand's identity in the process.
I'm surprised the 1st gen LS400's design is so well regarded since it felt like just a blatant Mercedes copy at the time to me.
 

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So what you are saying is why don't they style more like this



than this?



I feel using Ferrari in your original post may have confused some, since its hard to make a Camry look like an F430. I think you are right though with the Genesis. Hyundai styled it more like a higher-end luxury car (e.g. Mercedes) then what you think a Hyundai would look like.
 

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I think I see what you're asking, and I think there are a variety of reasons.

1) If you're looking for "super car" looks you're looking at swoopy lines, low-slung bodies, mid-engine drivetrains, wheels to fill the wheel-wells. That stuff simply "is" more expensive.

2) Anything that looked like a "super car" would be very impractical, and all impractical stuff leads to less sales. The profit margins on super cars are tremendous, and they can afford to sell as few cars as they do. You would need to sell tons of normal but "cool" looking cars to break even.

3) If you're going with a crazy sports car looking vehicle, chances are you'll be able to share the chassis less and less with other models.

4) If I recall correctly, many super car companies are granted 'exemptions" from certain crash tests and various federal regulations. Why and how, I don't know. Its damn hard to make sexy cars safe - that stuff (carbon fibre, etc.) is expensive to start with. You could produce a cheap, good looking death trap though.

5) Market. I bet 95% of the reasoning comes down to the market. Despite TCL's enthusiasm for anything resembling a $20,000 GT40...the market is very very small for sport based coupes. They're not bread and butter models. Add all of the above reasoning to a model line that won't make much money = no point.
 

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Yeah, the Ferrari bit threw me off, I totally understand what you're asking now, OP. And really, it isn't an easy question to answer, and I don't think I can.

But what immediately sprung to mind when you said "cheap cars trying to look like nice cars" was DAEWOO! I tried to find a Leganza with the gold trim pieces, but I failed. Lexus used to use a lot of gold trim in the nineties too and I thought it was dope. I was such a tool.

To get all philomosophical about it, I think it's a matter of authenticity/honesty in design. An affordable car trying to look super expensive isn't going to pull it off. The wheels will look out of place. And once you look at the interior, forget about it.

But why, like you said, can't a basic Suzuki sedan just borrow styling from an upper crust box sedan like a Mercedes and look good doing it? I don't know why it can't, but if you look at a good number of the cars China is putting out, you'll see that it isn't because people haven't tried.


Leganza....
 

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Discussion Starter #14
But why, like you said, can't a basic Suzuki sedan just borrow styling from an upper crust box sedan like a Mercedes and look good doing it?

Exactly what I was trying to ask. Why can't a cheap car LOOK like an expensive car.

And yes, the Roles Royce vs. the chrysler, exactly. Exactly what I was saying. Unless you were saying that it was already done.
 

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Exactly what I was trying to ask. Why can't a cheap car LOOK like an expensive car.

And yes, the Roles Royce vs. the chrysler, exactly. Exactly what I was saying. Unless you were saying that it was already done.
Wasn't saying that it was already done. It was the only thing that came to mind though to sort of decipher what you were trying to say. Since both are styles similarly ("boxy" in a way) why can't one look more like the other, since it doesn't seem like it would need to change too much. It would still keep most if not all practicality. I felt a sedan comparison was a lot easier than how I first read your post.
 

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One other thing to mention...quality automotive designers are few and far between. They get paid big bucks by companies to do the stuff they do. It is very likely some companies haven't found "that guy" or can't afford to buy 'that guy" wen they're designing.
 

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I think I see what you're asking, and I think there are a variety of reasons.

1) If you're looking for "super car" looks you're looking at swoopy lines, low-slung bodies, mid-engine drivetrains, wheels to fill the wheel-wells. That stuff simply "is" more expensive.

2) Anything that looked like a "super car" would be very impractical, and all impractical stuff leads to less sales. The profit margins on super cars are tremendous, and they can afford to sell as few cars as they do. You would need to sell tons of normal but "cool" looking cars to break even.

3) If you're going with a crazy sports car looking vehicle, chances are you'll be able to share the chassis less and less with other models.

4) If I recall correctly, many super car companies are granted 'exemptions" from certain crash tests and various federal regulations. Why and how, I don't know. Its damn hard to make sexy cars safe - that stuff (carbon fibre, etc.) is expensive to start with. You could produce a cheap, good looking death trap though.

5) Market. I bet 95% of the reasoning comes down to the market. Despite TCL's enthusiasm for anything resembling a $20,000 GT40...the market is very very small for sport based coupes. They're not bread and butter models. Add all of the above reasoning to a model line that won't make much money = no point.
That ^^^.

Even look at that RR and 300. The much more detailed and fine grill on RR, extra body lines on door and quarter panels, the lines on the roof, the separate headlight assemblies, etc. are simple more manufacturing time and probably more complex equipment needed to make those body parts.

And when it comes to sports cars, the expansive cars will have safety features that are more complex and require more testing than a manufacturer would be willing to spend on for a cheap car. There are more limitations for crush zones, air bags, and so on in a smaller vehicle - something that would, again, require expansive testing, more design hours, higher quality parts.

That's my take on it.
 

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One other thing to mention...quality automotive designers are few and far between. They get paid big bucks by companies to do the stuff they do. It is very likely some companies haven't found "that guy" or can't afford to buy 'that guy" wen they're designing.
THIS is a very good point. Affordable car equals affordable production costs equals not hiring the expensive design houses.

Though to contradict that, the Daewoo Leganza I posted was actually designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro, who's responsible for quite a few classic designs, a little thing called the M1 amongst them :p

And to be fair, the Leganza wasn't a bad looking car. It was just kind of jarring to know that it was a bad car, despite its styling pretensions.
 

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The body on a car is just that, metal or plastic paneling that dictates that the car LOOKS like. Change out the panels, and the car will LOOK completely different.

I was appalled when Hyundai did this with the genesis. They made their car look like a nice luxury car (and apparently did a pretty good job...). I HATED that car when it came out (still kinda do). I kept saying that I hate the fact that Hyundai is trying to be something it's not. But that's not the topic of this thread.

What is stopping a normal car company from making something that looks like a Ferrari/any other high end car that many people lust for but can't afford?

Heck, if some car company came out with something that was as pretty as an R8/*insert your favorite high priced car here*, for an economy car price, I'd consider buying it. So what is keeping these car companies making boring cars that all look alike?

EDIT: Not necessarily for making cars that look like supercars, but just more "expensive car styling." I was just using Ferrari as an example.
Yep I have always wondered the same thing :)

Like why couldn't have the MX-5/Solstice looked like these...if they did I would walk to the dealer now and put down my money down




 
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