Is A Factory Screwed-Up Car Cool?

Illustration for article titled Is A Factory Screwed-Up Car Cool?
Photo: Jacksonville Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Westside

If there’s one thing I especially enjoy about being painfully into cars, it’s that the sheer breadth of just how that manifests itself is pretty staggering. Gearhead tastes are wildly divergent, and I’m certain that what I consider a dream car is something that many others would reject in favor of a nice long coma. That’s why I want to put this out here today, because at least two of us here on the USS Jalop think it’s cool. But I suspect we may be in the minority.

I’m talking about cars with screw-ups right from the factory.

The car that inspired this line of thought is a brand-new 2020 Chrysler 300 — a car that, while pretty long in the tooth and perhaps the last survivor of the Daimler-DNA Chryslers — still has some aesthetic appeal, I think.

This one is from a Jacksonville, Florida, dealership, and it was brought to our attention by a reader named Rick who noticed that, hey, those headlights don’t match. And the passenger’s side window trim is different from the other three doors!

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So, one headlight has the dark design, one light, three doors with chrome trim, one with black. This isn’t really all that unusual—sometimes cars go down the line and particular parts run out, so substitutions are made. What is odd is that this wasn’t caught and fixed before the car was shipped off to the dealer.

And yeah, it doesn’t really speak well about FCA quality control, but they’re by no means alone. It happens all over, sometimes, but the real question is this: Is a factory screw-up car kinda cool? Because I think it kinda is!

Rory, our Editor-in-Chinos, agrees with me. And I bet there are other readers out there who would find a car with some strange aesthetic factory mix-up kind of appealing, in a certain perverse way. I mean, not a screw-up that would actually impair the car from driving, just stuff like trim and seats and colors and that kind of thing.

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So, who’s with us? Are factory fuck-up cars cool?

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus, 2020 Changli EV • Not-so-running: 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!: https://rb.gy/udnqhh)

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DISCUSSION

I saw the headline and the car and thought you were talking about the entire car.

They still build the 300?

Why?