Thank God to Chrysler PT Cruiser, a cultural touchstone

From the June 2021 issue Car and driver..

Every decade of the 20th century, a finally defined identity was developed. And usually a 20-year buffer provided a lens for us to get a perspective on that period. It was reflected on TV —Happy days, Wonderful days,and That 70’s show Everything debuted 10 to 20 years after they drew it. Life was dramatically different and cheerful, so I was able to have a 70’s theme party in the 90’s. That is no longer true. At the turn of the millennium, we all bought stainless steel appliances and the culture stalled.

Magazine Creation 101: Always write headlines in two possible ways so that the cover is old, even if the car is not old.

Recently, I unearthed a song buried deep in one of the playlists, Groove Armada’s “Superstylin”. It sounds like you can hear it next to a pool in Miami. Released in 2001. One of Netflix’s top shows last year, officeWas invented in 2001. This was also when Tom Brady embarked on the Super Bowl MVP season. Are you familiar with it? Twenty years ago, the trendiest food was cupcakes. Where I live now, one of the two bakeries in town is the place for cupcakes. If you live in the 2000s, how do you make fun of it? The 2001 theme party looks the same as it is now, but the phone is bad and more guys are wearing shirts. I barely laughed for a year or two until mom’s jeans returned to unrealistic popularity.

Thank god PT Cruiser..

If ever Bill & Ted In the movies they time-traveled in the early 2000s, there is no visual shorthand to set the scene like the PT Cruiser.And I’m not saying the PT Cruiser was bad — in fact it was on 2001 10 Best List.. But it seems old and outdated, and that’s how pop culture objects from 20 years ago are supposed to work. And the car is, by its very nature, a cultural touchstone. They are a very visible part of everyday life, but they are always affected by a product cycle that is firmly placed at a defined time. Unlike clothes, music and television, they are fixed in time. How do you know when a photo was taken by looking at a dateless photo of the cityscape? You look at the carIf That 70’s show Family station wagons will be replaced with yellow if there was a ’00s spin-off Nissan Xterra..Or maybe Pontiac Aztek..

While certain cars are symbolic in their own right, there are also a wide range of trends that have come to represent each era of the car. About 20 years ago, the retro was hot: Chrysler PT Cruiser, Volkswagen New Beetle, Jaguar S-Type, Mini Cooper, Ford Thunderbird, Chevrolet SSR Everyone turned around rather than positively, and in the process mistakenly time-stamped their time. Every ten years, it was cool at the time, but in the end it needed a fad to run the course, and retro was that. At least the SSR seemed a bit suspicious that day. When it was new, I was attending a Media Drive event. At that time, another writer, his hair was messed up and was pulled up to SSR from the top down. The man next to me complained, “If a flock of seagulls comes out, I think we have to drive it.”

But now? Chevy’s bizarre roadster truck, with its April 2000 cover in the form of a concept, cost less than half the cost of a new one, but is generally far more valuable than the Mercedes S-Class of the same period. And part of the reason is that SSR symbolizes an era when car companies sometimes say, “Yes, let’s make that concept car and see what happens.” The year 2000 problem didn’t have the epidemic of disco and pickled jeans, Plymouth Prowler..

The car dares to have a point of view, even if it seems to be heading in the wrong direction. New BMW Grill I’m going to tick the era, I tell you. A flashy grill and crossover “coupe” — that’s today. It looks stupid tomorrow and will be cool again next week. I predict in 2041 that I would look out the window and see the gray Audi e-tron Sportback passing by and say, “It’s the 20’s.” Then hike mom’s jeans, remove the paper from the cupcakes, and return to watching. office..

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Thank God to Chrysler PT Cruiser, a cultural touchstone

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