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Question of the Day: Whither Masculinity?

This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.
This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

Why are there no more manly cars? Certainly, things are better now than they were in the 1980s, when manliness consisted of tacked-on plastic bits to compensate for emissions-controlled horsepower strangulation. Today, you can stroll right up to Claus Ettenberger and say, "I'll have your beefiest Brabus," and do it with far less shame than you would walking up to minimum-wage Ralph at the local pr0n emporium and asking for the latest Veronica Moser film.

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But as impressive as a beefy Brabus is; as terrifying as its torque can be to something even as entirely inanimate as one's long-dead pork loin languishing on an artfully-appointed slab of porcelain, the damn car's still not as manly as a wheezing Opel Manta shotgunned by the death of a thousand rusts. This, friends, is a problem. We request that you stop waxing your chests immediately. We ask you to sacrifice build-quality and horsepower for questionable weight reduction and a hint of consistently-impending disaster.

We also ask you to add your two cents, with some caveats. Anything Burberry stays at the door, unless you own a Bugeye Sprite and are over the age of 153. OTOH? Dolce & Gabbana? Yes, please. Versace? As long as it's accompanied by a broken Ferrari part from 1981 or earlier (unintentionally-cubed Lamborghini Urracos also accepted). Armani on a case-by-case basis. Al Navarro's hairshirt is fine, as long as he states his case while listening to R.E.M.'s Chronic Town EP and posts from Athens, Georgia — with verifiable evidence that he has done so. Corduroy Ocean Pacific shorts? You need not ask permission for anything, friends. Especially if you have impeccable calves. Now get to it.

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DISCUSSION

Okay, for most manly car...

I think that any large 70s/80s vintage 2 door SUV (before they were called that) like a full-size bronco/blazer/scout with manual gearbox and non-autolocking front hubs, run without the not-really-all-that-easily removable top removed so it looks like some WT landaulet mobile. I would move over quickly if I saw that coming up behind me (even if I were driving a Brabus Rocket).

Bonus points if the car is lifted and has a snorkle fitted to the V-8 for fording streams. Double bonus points if owner has those classic box speakers (mini monitors for the home really) mounted via swivel brackets to the rear edge of what's left of the roof (when the "top" is off). Triple bonus points if Iron Maiden is playing. Quad bonus points if the driver is sporting an Burt-style 'stache, 100% non-ironically of course.