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Why The Next Generation Will Be In Our Hobby- Malaise Daze L.A. Show


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So, last weekend, I attended the Malaise Daze car show. This group and show focused on 1972-1995 vehicles. I of course took my early 87 build Chevy Corsica and literally stood talking to people about it from 8am to 2pm because as people said to me constantly, there used to be a lot of Corsicas and now there are none! There were dozens of cars and hundreds of people at the show which took place at the automotive driving museum. Lots of younger car owners with wagons, Taurus, etc. the main comment is that they liked that they can afford the cars and the upkeep. The Malaise Motors club exists only on facebook, as a result of it taking place at the museum there was fun to be had by viewing the many old vehicles on display from the teens and up. I also bought some really cool vintage car books for a dollar each in the gift shop (books dating back to the 20's). Autoweek was also there and wrote up this article: http://autoweek.com/article/classic-cars/malaize-daze-check-out-best-malaise-era-car-show. I will upload some more cool photos later! 

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Edited by MarkV (see edit history)
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Yes, a show like that sounds like a good idea.

I have a few cars from the velour-lined, comfort-cruising

years of the 1970's and enjoy them very much.

 

If you take your 1947 Packard to a show these days,

the average person might admire it as a piece of history;

but not so many people will exclaim, "I used to have one 

just like that!"  If you take your 1980 Chevrolet Citation,

or your 1985 Ford Country Squire wagon, you're much 

more likely to strike a familiar chord with the public.

The long-time AACA member might not appreciate them yet,

but onlookers may longingly admire a car that brings back

their family memories.

 

Ah, the world of old cars can be much broader than we realize---

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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13 hours ago, MarkV said:

So, last weekend, I attended the Malaise Daze car show. This group and show focused on 1972-1995 vehicles. I of course took my early 87 build Chevy Corsica and literally stood talking to people about it from 8am to 2pm

 

 

Hey Mark V, I just joined the Malaise Motors Facebook group recently, apparently shortly after the show.  It is very enthusiastic and probably the busiest group I am in, so I can second your observations.  And you and the Corsica seem to be a star attraction and a favorite of the show, fun to see, Todd C 

 

PS--I started selling Chevys May of 1989 and my dealer had a bunch of 1988 Corsica and Beretta "program" cars, one gray Beretta was my first demo and I was very excited to have a new (to me) car at my disposal.  In good rental car fashion most of these we had were base models in gray or light blue, 4 cylinders, automatic and air and AM/FM with no tape deck (tape decks may have been withheld from rental cars to give retail new cars a selling point).   

Edited by poci1957 (see edit history)
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To Mark V, another nugget of my Corsica experience is that we had one slow selling new Corsica that was a gray hatchback with a stick shift that no one wanted. THAT would blow their mind with malaise now, don't you think?

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Seems like a great place to showcase GM's undersized, grabby rear brakes from that period. :lol:

 

I bought a new Eurosport in '88.

It was neither "Euro" nor "Sporty" but at least it wasn't a Ford Aerostar.

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1 hour ago, GregLaR said:

but at least it wasn't a Ford Aerostar

 

Recent, forgotten history.

 

Ford had a lot tied up in the Shuttle/Aerostar comparison campaign. It was dropped and launch didn't go as planned.

 

Bernie

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On ‎5‎/‎2‎/‎2018 at 7:18 PM, MarkV said:

So, last weekend, I attended the Malaise Daze car show. This group and show focused on 1972-1995 vehicles.

 

 

 

To me, malaise era cars are from 1973 through 1981.  I felt the malaise era was finally ending when the Mustang finally broke out of the 'malaise mold' in 1982 with the mid-year GT, Chrysler with their LeBaron and Dodge 400 convertibles, and GM introducing a convertible Riviera that year as well.  1995 is far too late, and1972 still had some good looking cars without those ghastly 5-mph bumpers.  

 

Craig 

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On 5/3/2018 at 3:38 PM, GregLaR said:

I think book time to change the plugs on the Aerostar was between 3 and 4 hours. 

One of the most offensive vehicles known to man.

   

    I had a friend with a car philosophy that he would buy a new car and keep it 10 years to get his           moneys worth maximized.   His new Aerostar didn't last 10 years.

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15 hours ago, padgett said:

I tend to keep cars for decades. Have never had a Ford or a Pickup.

 

 

I don't know how a guy could get thru life without a good pick up.

I have a pick up that is a Ford.

I remember when I bought it in 95 that it might just be the last one I need.

$31,000 was a big hit for me.

Don't drive it all that much as it only has 140K in it. And its always been garaged since new.

 I love the thing and will probably not need replacing.

 

The canopy is the best part. LOL

I put that on there when I drag the family to Seattle for Christmas every year.

Only a couple more years and it will be an antique, Or would that be classic?

Either way, the kids follow me home wanting to buy it already.

 

Being a '95 I suspect it would be a hit at this show.

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On ‎6‎/‎1‎/‎2018 at 7:32 AM, 8E45E said:

To me, malaise era cars are from 1973 through 1981.  I felt the malaise era was finally ending when the Mustang finally broke out of the 'malaise mold' in 1982 with the mid-year GT, Chrysler with their LeBaron and Dodge 400 convertibles, and GM introducing a convertible Riviera that year as well.  1995 is far too late, and1972 still had some good looking cars without those ghastly 5-mph bumpers.  

 

Craig 

 

I have always objected to the term "Malaise era" for 1970's cars. You still get actual size differences, style, tons of colors, different body styles, and most cars wore the 5 mph bumpers well enough unless it was something like a Maverick. I know I personally prefer the 5 mph bumpers on my '76 Mark IV. The skinny ones on the '72 just look too small and inadequate to me. The only negatives were emissions killing the horsepower, and the ridiculously boxy downsizing of the '77-'79 full size and '78-79 mid size GM's.

 

The real Malaise era is 1985 to 2000 when GM really killed its full size models in terms of size and style, 2 doors and station wagons started going away to be replaced by SUV's, "full size" Cadillac DeVilles were the same size as a 1970's compact and were not much different looks and size wise from a Chevy Celebrity, and your color choices were reduced to shades of gray. I remember this commercial, and my friends and I all thought it was awesome.

 

 

 

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On ‎6‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 5:26 AM, LINC400 said:

The only negatives were emissions killing the horsepower, and the ridiculously boxy downsizing of the '77-'79 full size and '78-79 mid size GM's.

 

The real Malaise era is 1985 to 2000 when GM really killed its full size models in terms of size and style, 2 doors and station wagons started going away to be replaced by SUV's, "full size" Cadillac DeVilles were the same size as a 1970's compact and were not much different looks and size wise from a Chevy Celebrity, and your color choices were reduced to shades of gray. I remember this commercial, and my friends and I all thought it was awesome.

 

 

 

The malaise era did perpetuate with GM beyond 1982, as their engineering and build quality was hopelessly mired in the 1970's.  The start of GM's downfall were the 1977 & later 'full'-size line which had even less to differentiate them between the five brands than previous, coupled with engine-swapping from lesser brands. (The famous lawsuit of an Olds engine in a Cadillac comes to mind.)  Roger Smith brought even MORE malaise upon the Corporation as the 80's dragged on for GM.

 

Cadillac's downfall started even earlier as no Cadillac built later than 1966 has ever come close to matching a 1966 Fleetwood for interior opulence, and (for the time), build quality as I stated in Post #50 here: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?28512-Pontiac-shuts-down(without-comment)/page2

 

A beautifully preserved example:

https://www.leftcoastclassics.com/1966-cadillac-fleetwood/

 

Had Cadillac kept up with its build quality as Rolls Royce, Bentley, and the three German marques did, and even Volkswagen with its Phaeton model, Cadillac could still have been a serious  competitor to this day in the 'ultra-luxury' market as they were in the 1930's.

 

Craig

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12 hours ago, 8E45E said:

The malaise era did perpetuate with GM beyond 1982, as their engineering and build quality was hopelessly mired in the 1970's.  The start of GM's downfall were the 1977 & later 'full'-size line which had even less to differentiate them between the five brands than previous, coupled with engine-swapping from lesser brands. (The famous lawsuit of an Olds engine in a Cadillac comes to mind.)  Roger Smith brought even MORE malaise upon the Corporation as the 80's dragged on for GM.

 

Cadillac's downfall started even earlier as no Cadillac built later than 1966 has ever come close to matching a 1966 Fleetwood for interior opulence, and (for the time), build quality

 

Had Cadillac kept up with its build quality as Rolls Royce, Bentley, and the three German marques did, and even Volkswagen with its Phaeton model, Cadillac could still have been a serious  competitor to this day in the 'ultra-luxury' market as they were in the 1930's.

 

Craig

 

 

It was Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles.

 

The 1966 Fleetwood interior is just a personal preference. To be honest, I was expecting to see something more impressive for the 1966 Fleetwood interior. Lincolns and Imperials had much the same wood and leather in the 1960's and changed to plastic in the 1970's and 1980's. A 1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman has a far more visually impressive interior even if the wood is plastic. And since the Fleetwood made up less than 7% of Cadillac's sales even in 1966, apparently not many Cadillac buyers were impressed enough to pay extra for it.

 

Cadillac's downfall was not the loss of the 1966 Fleetwood interior, but the grandpa image it obtained in the 1980's and '90's. Cadillac engines used to be used in hot rods and performance cars in the '50's and '60's. But the dinky '80's and '90's FWD offerings eventually failed to even impress grandpas.

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My two sons, 19 and 21, are involved with an internet based club known as Old School. It does have a website. Attached are a few pics. In general the club caters for whatever the members can afford.

 

The Toyota Crown wagon I have owned since 1991 so the boys have grown up with it. It is currently having a new engine built, changing from sohc 2 valves/cylinder to dohc 4 valves/cylinder.  The Crown coupe I bought in 2000 but the boys have resurrected, and repowered it (from 2.8 litre 5M-E to 3.0 litre 7M-GE). The 1929 Plymouth is also ours and was out on an occasion when my son would normally have been driving the Crown coupe.

 

In recent times two local people with large collections of cars and parts have passed away and the opportunity has arisen for the boys to acquire cars and spares at a very reasonable price.  The crashed circa 1973 Toyota Crown MS75 coupe has yielded a lot of shiny parts for someone else's restoration along with a manual gearbox and associated parts for my son.

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10 hours ago, LINC400 said:

 

 

It was Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles.

 

Lincolns and Imperials had much the same wood and leather in the 1960's and changed to plastic in the 1970's and 1980's. A 1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman has a far more visually impressive interior even if the wood is plastic. And since the Fleetwood made up less than 7% of Cadillac's sales even in 1966, apparently not many Cadillac buyers were impressed enough to pay extra for it.

 

And Oldsmobile engines in Cadillacs.

 

That '70's Talisman interior sums up just how miserable the decade was, where it was all smoke and mirrors, compromising the real product with imitation wood, and vinyl to look like the real deal.  Of course, Lincoln and Imperial were also at fault in downgrading materials as well.  

 

In GM's corporate portfolio, the other four divisions are supposed to be the volume leaders, and Cadillac the division which maintains exclusivity. 

 

Craig

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9 hours ago, nzcarnerd said:

My two sons, 19 and 21, are involved with an internet based club known as Old School. It does have a website. Attached are a few pics. In general the club caters for whatever the members can afford.

 

Thankfully, Australia and New Zealand were spared of the 70's malaise North America experienced.

 

If I was in the market for a mid-to-late 70's American-looking car, 'down undda' is where I'll go look for one.  The (once) Big Three had some nice offerings there in those years which were spared of the downright ugly 5-mph bumpers and still had great performance over the anti-emission-choked engines here in North America.  At a car show about a year ago, I came across someone hoping I would "drool" over his nicely presented 1978 Mustang II King Cobra.  I told him, while it was nice and clean, Cobras from those years never did a thing for me, (nor did any other Pinto-based Mustang II), and if I want a Cobra from that year, I'll go to Australia and bring back a Falcon XC Cobra.  In 'retaliation', he told me to add an extra '0' to the asking price, and I came back with the adage that you'll 'get what you pay for', and in the case of an XC Cobra, you'll get it back if you decide to sell.

 

Craig

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19 hours ago, 8E45E said:

And Oldsmobile engines in Cadillacs.

 

That '70's Talisman interior sums up just how miserable the decade was, where it was all smoke and mirrors, compromising the real product with imitation wood, and vinyl to look like the real deal.  Of course, Lincoln and Imperial were also at fault in downgrading materials as well.  

 

In GM's corporate portfolio, the other four divisions are supposed to be the volume leaders, and Cadillac the division which maintains exclusivity. 

 

Craig

 

While Oldsmobile engines were used in Cadillacs, I can find no reference for lawsuits on that. The lawsuits were for Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles.

 

Your preference for a 1966 Fleetwood is a personal opinion. I have never heard anyone else refer to it as the best Cadillac interior.

 

5 mph bumpers are also a personal opinion. 1976 Cadillacs are the most popular collectible Cadillacs of the 1970's, and they all have them.

 

Car companies are in business to make money. Most companies that chose exclusivity over volume are out of business. Even Mercedes sells taxis and police cars in Europe. Rolls Royce has had to be bailed out multiple times.

 

I am not surprised the owner of a Mustang II Cobra felt the need to "retaliate". Sounds like he was very proud of his car, and was not thrilled with being told how Australian Cobras are better than his Pinto based Mustang

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6 hours ago, LINC400 said:

 

While Oldsmobile engines were used in Cadillacs, I can find no reference for lawsuits on that. The lawsuits were for Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles.

 

Your preference for a 1966 Fleetwood is a personal opinion. I have never heard anyone else refer to it as the best Cadillac interior.

 

5 mph bumpers are also a personal opinion. 1976 Cadillacs are the most popular collectible Cadillacs of the 1970's, and they all have them.

 

Car companies are in business to make money. Most companies that chose exclusivity over volume are out of business. Even Mercedes sells taxis and police cars in Europe. Rolls Royce has had to be bailed out multiple times.

 

I am not surprised the owner of a Mustang II Cobra felt the need to "retaliate". Sounds like he was very proud of his car, and was not thrilled with being told how Australian Cobras are better than his Pinto based Mustang

While I do like the 'cabin ambience' of the '66 Fleetwood interior, other postwar Cadillacs had nice interiors, including the 1957-8 Eldorado Brougham, and the 2005 XLR.

 

You can keep those ugly 5-mph bumpers and all the ill-fitting flexible painted urethane filler pieces between the bumper and the body that never fit right in the first place.  One advantage you have, is prices for malaise era Cadillacs are in the toilet, and will probably remain so for some time.  Here's one for well under $10K.  https://classiccars.com/listings/view/1087898/1976-cadillac-fleetwood-for-sale-in-alsip-illinois-60803

 

Mercedes Benz has always made money, and they've kept their prestige up with the S-class cars and the even more exclusive Maybach.  Honda, Toyota, and Nissan must have thought there was money to be made in higher quality, higher priced cars with lower volume or they wouldn't have entered the market with the Acura, Lexus, and Infiniti.  Cadillac and Lincoln were both caught off-guard with that assault on their home turf market and are still paying for it.  And now Hyundai has made Genesis a marque in its own right, also hoping to capitalize on the fat profit margins the cars in this market have.

 

In the case of the Mustang II King Cobra owner, he DID admit the Australian Falcon XC Cobra was better than his Pinto-based Mustang II, but retaliated by saying that he didn't have $100K AUD to buy one.   It wasn't a case of him not being thrilled about my preference of the Australian Cobra over the U.S. Cobra, but he was even more thrilled that I was aware of the Falcon XC Cobra.

 

Craig 

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5 hours ago, LINC400 said:

 

While Oldsmobile engines were used in Cadillacs, I can find no reference for lawsuits on that. The lawsuits were for Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles.

 

 

*

*

Tell me more about the lawsuit! Was it a mistake when they put on Olds engine in my 86 Chevy wagon??

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That first lawsuit started in 1977:  https://www.nytimes.com/1977/03/15/archives/article-4-no-title-engine-swaps-innocent-to-gm-but-sinful-to.html

 

https://www.nytimes.com/1981/06/28/us/jury-orders-gm-to-pay-10000-in-switch-of-engines.html

 

Starting with the 1978 model year, GM started making the disclaimers in all their advertising, stating the various divisions do 'engine swaps', and will continue to do so.  To me, it was rather invalid as Canadian Pontiacs used Chevrolet engines since the 1930's!!

 

Craig

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On ‎6‎/‎6‎/‎2018 at 7:17 AM, 8E45E said:

You can keep those ugly 5-mph bumpers and all the ill-fitting flexible painted urethane filler pieces between the bumper and the body that never fit right in the first place.  One advantage you have, is prices for malaise era Cadillacs are in the toilet, and will probably remain so for some time.  Here's one for well under $10K.  https://classiccars.com/listings/view/1087898/1976-cadillac-fleetwood-for-sale-in-alsip-illinois-60803

 

Mercedes Benz has always made money, and they've kept their prestige up with the S-class cars and the even more exclusive Maybach.  Honda, Toyota, and Nissan must have thought there was money to be made in higher quality, higher priced cars with lower volume or they wouldn't have entered the market with the Acura, Lexus, and Infiniti.  Cadillac and Lincoln were both caught off-guard with that assault on their home turf market and are still paying for it.  And now Hyundai has made Genesis a marque in its own right, also hoping to capitalize on the fat profit margins the cars in this market have.

 

 

As I said, the 5ph bumpers are a personal preference. I always thought the late '60's - early '70's cars with a body color painted metal panel below the bumper looked ridiculous. Why should the body of the car extend below the bumper and rocker panels? It was even better after a few years when those panels were loose and precariously hanging or swinging.

 

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Japanese manufacturers capitalized on the ridiculous mindset of the general public that all American cars are no good, and all foreign cars are wonderful. Plus the American carmakers refused to update the larger luxury cars with features that could be found in midsize foreign sedans. However, they really don't offer anything more exclusive than the domestics. Even the Maybach looks like a 2 tone S Class at first glance despite costing 2-3 times as much. And I don't think they are doing too well.

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Long time ACORNs may remember Ray Bishop. At one point I think he had 35 Corvairs on his farm. That was his specialty from around 1970. He was a good friend from the time I was 14 and he gave me a '56 Golden Hawk when I was in High School.

 

He passed away in the early 1990's. Shortly before he died I was sitting with him at a local cruise night. He was driving a 1972 Thunderbird he had just purchased. He told me "You know, I really like that T-Bird. Specializing in just Corvairs for all those years caused me to miss out on a lot of nice cars." I was listening.

 

Later I became more deeply involved in computers and had a friend who was one of those "hate Microsoft" people. He denied their existence and refused to look at any of their products. I still met with him on various other projects until he became too extreme. I did come to the realization that his rejection of the things he didn't like boiled down to real arrogance. I guess that is what I often see in these people with their exclusive tastes in what should be a "correct" car. The exclusive part is usually excluding someone with a car they don't care for.

 

" You can talk, you can talk, you can bicker,
You can talk. You can bicker, bicker, bicker, you can talk
You can talk. You can talk, talk, talk, talk, bicker, bicker, bicker.
You can talk all you wanna, but your body language is gonna give you away."

 

I was listening that day, too.

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21 hours ago, LINC400 said:

 

As I said, the 5ph bumpers are a personal preference. I always thought the late '60's - early '70's cars with a body color painted metal panel below the bumper looked ridiculous. Why should the body of the car extend below the bumper and rocker panels? It was even better after a few years when those panels were loose and precariously hanging or swinging.  

 

Japanese manufacturers capitalized on the ridiculous mindset of the general public that all American cars are no good, and all foreign cars are wonderful. Plus the American carmakers refused to update the larger luxury cars with features that could be found in midsize foreign sedans. However, they really don't offer anything more exclusive than the domestics. Even the Maybach looks like a 2 tone S Class at first glance despite costing 2-3 times as much. And I don't think they are doing too well.

Really?  I think a 1968 Chevrolet Impala Custom 2 door hardtop is one of the nicest, most well-integrated designs because of that well fitted bumper with the body-color valence below it.  Admittedly that '72 LTD in the photo was 'busy' ungainly for the time, and still is.  The 1971 rear is far cleaner in appearance.

 

First, in the 1960's, WE had the ridiculous mindset that anything 'Made in Japan' as all "junk", but it was also radios, TV's, children's toys, etc.  It was a hard-earned reputation they won after proving their products were dependable and reliable, and of course they capitalized on it.  They HAD to with the voluntary import restrictions on cars which naturally put a cap on how much they could earn. So they got inventive and developed a more refined and expensive product, first with the Cressida and the Maxima, which ended up being successful, and continued onward and upmarket with their standalone brands in the 1990's.  You are one hundred percent correct in your statement,  "Plus the American carmakers refused to update the larger luxury cars with features that could be found in midsize foreign sedans."  They thought they were invincible, and that is what contributed to their downfall and loss of market share.   

 

Craig

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I remember those first Honda Civic's. Everyone thought they were best suited for clowns.

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You rarely see a clown with a Honda anymore, too mainstream. They are out stalking odd stuff you don't see everyday.

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1 hour ago, 8E45E said:

Really?  I think a 1968 Chevrolet Impala Custom 2 door hardtop is one of the nicest, most well-integrated designs because of that well fitted bumper with the body-color valence below it.  Admittedly that '72 LTD in the photo was 'busy' ungainly for the time, and still is.  The 1971 rear is far cleaner in appearance.

 

First, in the 1960's, WE had the ridiculous mindset that anything 'Made in Japan' as all "junk", but it was also radios, TV's, children's toys, etc.  It was a hard-earned reputation they won after proving their products were dependable and reliable, and of course they capitalized on it.  They HAD to with the voluntary import restrictions on cars which naturally put a cap on how much they could earn. So they got inventive and developed a more refined and expensive product, first with the Cressida and the Maxima, which ended up being successful, and continued onward and upmarket with their standalone brands in the 1990's.  You are one hundred percent correct in your statement,  "Plus the American carmakers refused to update the larger luxury cars with features that could be found in midsize foreign sedans."  They thought they were invincible, and that is what contributed to their downfall and loss of market share.   

 

Craig

 

Nope, I think the 1967 Impala rear end is way better than the 1968-70 with the taillights in the bumper and valance thing below.

 

The Japanese stuff was pretty bad in the 1950's and 1960's. It wasn't until they came over here and toured American factories and tried to make their cars more American-like that they caught on. While instead the domestics made some halfway attempts to make their products seem more foreign inspired which did not work. (Eurosport editions come to mind)

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On 5/3/2018 at 8:44 AM, John_S_in_Penna said:

If you take your 1947 Packard to a show these days,

the average person might admire it as a piece of history;

but not so many people will exclaim, "I used to have one 

just like that!"  If you take your 1980 Chevrolet Citation,

or your 1985 Ford Country Squire wagon, you're much 

more likely to strike a familiar chord with the public.

The long-time AACA member might not appreciate them yet,

but onlookers may longingly admire a car that brings back

their family memories.

 

Ah, the world of old cars can be much broader than we realize---

 

If I only had a $1 for every time I have heard "I used to have one like that" when I have one of my 1980s VWs on the field at an AACA Meet. ?

Last weekend I heard it even more than normal when my 1980 VW Rabbit was at the AGNM at Greensburg. The VW assembly plant that built the Rabbit back then was located just a few miles down the road near New Stanton, PA. Many people living in that area owned VWs and worked in the plant back then. In fact, I met two people who worked in the VW Plant back then at the AGNM. One is Mark D., an AACA member and another gentleman who lives in the area and worked at the plant.

 

BTW, some of the photos in this thread with a number 1980s and 90s Volkswagens in them are interesting. Some here might be surprised/shocked just how large the VW enthusiast water cooled community is. One of their annual events here in the USA has at least as many cars on that show field as Fall Hershey does and usually quite a bit more. If only AACA could recruit some of these enthusiasts who own 70s, 80s and 90s watercooled Volkswagens. Sadly the vast majority of these VWs have been modified so they would not meet AACA guidelines. As these owners age and become interested in stock versions of these VWs, maybe they could be recruited. Who knows.

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19 hours ago, LINC400 said:

 While instead the domestics made some halfway attempts to make their products seem more foreign inspired which did not work. (Eurosport editions come to mind)

Perfect examples of 1980's GM malaise cars that totally fit the bill of this thread!!  

 

They were The General's way of extending the 1974-81 "All show & no 'go'" up into the 1990's.  On  most of them, it was only a few years before the cheap plastic cladding and emblems started to fall off, and the stickers and paint started peel on those cars, just like the makeup on a three dollar prostitute by the end of the night.   (Neither covered by warranty.) 

 

Craig

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16 hours ago, 8E45E said:

Perfect examples of 1980's GM malaise cars that totally fit the bill of this thread

 

Yes, I totally agree with the 1980's cars being called Malaise Era, it is the 1970's with their wide array of body styles, sizes, colors, interiors, etc. that will never be seen again that I object to being called Malaise Era

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I have always had eclectic tastes in vehicles. The only thing I really haven't warmed up to is the modified 4WD trucks. And that is more sigma than taste.

 

I like the fact the the group of cars has been named: Malaise. Giving identity gives them recognition. I have a couple.

 

This 1986 Electra Park Avenue came my way in 2011. That was when gas was nudging $5.00 per gallon. I thought, what a nice car to take into the future; a Buick convertible that gets 25 MPG and looks pretty good. When I bought it I took pictures to my local Buick Club chapter meeting. I might as well have told them I bought a Toyota pickup. But it pleases me.

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After owning two 1994 Buick Roadmasters I picked up this 1994 Impala SS.

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It is another car I enjoy driving a lot. Acceptance by my age group, nada according to Hemmingway. Invisible at most gatherings it has attended. That one even got a "Those cars are a rough riding piece of crap" at a Buick event. If I was 30 I wouldn't have come back. Actually I think I may have missed an event or two since.

 

I like a lot of different cars. It is good to see a peer group that recognizes these cars. Interesting thought, I started teaching trade programs in 1982. I always felt good about keeping up the association with younger people and their interests. Maybe that is more important to me as I age. I bet they'd even let me attend with the 15 year old "old car" I just bought.

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I upgraded my daily driver(and only car :( ) to a 98 Buick Lesabre back in December. I had a 97. My family doesn't really understand why I like "old" cars, had a lot of questions at Christmas dinner on why I would buy the same car. I'm looking for a Reatta now. Mostly because it's older,cooler, and affordable. I also love pretty much the entire Buick lineup between 1990 and 1999. Especially the Roadmaster wagons. Most of those are what are generally described as "old people cars". I guess those would be part of this Malaise Era. But I like them. And there has to be someone for every type of car no matter how weird, boring or overlooked. As mentioned above people go for what they remember when they were young, one of the reasons I like them so much is the Bench seat in the front. My dad's 66 Mustang had one. Granted my mom made him get rid of it when I was about 12 and buying one when I was 16 was in no way an option. So the front bench was an option I looked for in cars. Luckily Buicks came standard with them. Although my list of cars I want stretches far and wide with model years, makes, and models. My list of what I can afford, like, and have the skill to maintain is a very short one. I don't doubt I'm alone in this thought for younger people. I know of a few car clubs by me that are mostly newer stuff Subaru's and other Imports. But even though these are younger guys with newer cars I'd like to think they'll be meeting up when them and their cars are considered old. 

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1 hour ago, 60FlatTop said:

I like the fact the the group of cars has been named: Malaise. Giving identity gives them recognition. I have a couple.

 

I like that too and I have embraced this group and enjoy their enthusiasm. 

 

The only problem is the 1972-95 timeframe is pretty broad and the participant’s interest can vary from the 1970s through the 1990s.  For example I am personally interested in 1970s cars but not really in 1990s models.  Our own Linc400 says the 1970s cars are not really malaise since they are not somber but were still marketed with bright colors and interiors with lots of variety compared to the conservative 1980s and 1990s. 

 

I see his point but would contend that they are definitely malaise; by association with the 1979 Jimmy Carter speech and also by the spirit of the automakers trying to do more with less in the face of looming gloomy times.  But the common thread is that as a group in the old car world they represent a very specific genre that I support wholeheartedly--that of preserving a bit of the post-musclecar era that has been pooh-poohed by older enthusiasts for decades.  The malaise group is picking up the mantle of buying an old car just for enjoyment and community, with little expectation of making a quick buck or just following the money like those of us that came before.  More power to them, Todd C 

 

Edited by poci1957 (see edit history)
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There were some interesting cars in that period, my 78 Sunbird won A Lot of autocrosses and have always thought the 77-78 Firebirds looked good (though a bit heavy).

sbird.jpg

Said I've never had a Ford or a pickup. OTOH have had tow cars since 1970. Current one is the best.

 

rigc.jpg

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The concept of the Malaise cars reminds me a lot of Hemmings Magazine introduction of Special Interest Cars Magazine in 1970. I don't have a copy to quote the first editor's comments, but it went something like "devoted to those overlooked cars of the 1940's and 1950's that are not recognized by mainstream collectors".

 

All of today's 70 year olds were about 25 then.

 

I remember being quite happy to see cars I could relate to featured in those early issues. Now, that made me laugh. 25 and being quite happy with articles about cars the 70 year olds abhorred (unless they had one for sale).

Bernie

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56 minutes ago, 60FlatTop said:

The concept of the Malaise cars reminds me a lot of Hemmings Magazine introduction of Special Interest Cars Magazine in 1970.... I remember being quite happy to see cars I could relate to featured in those early issues. Now, that made me laugh. 25 and being quite happy with articles about cars the 70 year olds abhorred (unless they had one for sale).

 

Exactly right Bernie, my equivalent was Car Exchange magazine circa 1980 featuring 1960s "special interest" cars.  For the younger reader "Special Interest" was the label then for cars with potential collector appeal but less than 25 years old and thus not yet antiques.  The 1980s car today is in a similar place except they actually ARE over 25 years old and still not widely embraced by traditional collectors.  I recall many issues where the car on the cover or in a feature was only 15 years old or less but to me they still seemed like artifacts from a distant time compared to a 1985-90 model today, Todd C 

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11 hours ago, MarkV said:

The idea is that they are bogged down with smog equipment and 5mph bumpers culminating with obd2 in 1996

 

I know and I agree that logically that timeframe is probably appropriate for those reasons. 

 

My observation was more a personal thing since to me the 1970s thru mid-1980s and the late 1980s thru mid-1990s seem like such different eras in automobiles, but I am in for the accepted 1972-95.  I look forward to meeting the Malasian contingent at the Iola Car Show next month and to personally see the soon-to-be iconic Golden Smog Pump (a genius idea IMO).  Todd C   

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" the late 1980s thru mid-1990s seem like such different eras " That was when cars changed from reworked cars of the 60s to the leading edge of the modern era.  Almost all were computer cars with FI and DIY reprogramming was common. 6 and 7 liter 200 hp engines were replaced by 3-4 liter 200 hp engines. Energy absorbing bumpers were hidden. Use of chrome declined The rebirth of the horsepower race was still a few years off but the seeds were there. I suspect that at some point in the future some cars of this era (like my 88 Reatta with a touchscreen in the dash) will be recognized for what they are. That said I still have a few tripowers and dual quads waiting for me to install on something.

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