I like to think of cars in terms of how long it’ll take for it to be cool to show up to a Cars and Coffee with one. For instance, a brand new $65,000 BMW 5-Series is a fine car but boring and would be out of place. A 1971 Ford Pinto, which is a terrible car, would be welcomed by enthusiasts because they’re rare and weird.
I’d guess that after about 50 years you can bring almost any car to a Cars And Coffee or a car meet and people would think it’s interesting even if, in its day, it wasn’t particularly noteworthy.
In a strange way, cars that were hated just a decade ago would also likely be appreciated. A base 2008 Ford Taurus would reasonably be sent to the parking lot outside the parking lot, but a Pontiac Aztek? People get excited about a Pontiac Aztec.
The one car that manages to neither be weird enough to be noteworthy or interesting enough on its own might be the Saturn L-Series/LS1. A rebadged, last ditch effort to foist a mediocre Opel on budget-minded Americans was yet another failure of a brand that wanted to be Detroit’s answer to Honda.
I will probably not be alive long enough to see anyone get excited about a Saturn LS1. Can you think of a less interesting car?