Ten Totally Retro Rides

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Hey, remember the 80s? Or the 60s? Or the 40s? Here are the ten totally retro rides you budding retronauts thought were most indicative of the past.

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This is Answers of the Day - a feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!

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10.) Checker Marathon/A11

Suggested By: dmoon

Why It's Retro: Once a mainstay on the streets of New York City, the Checker has since been relegated to the history books and replaced by Crown Vics, Toyota Siennas, and an assortment of other hybrid options. Cars that were once the iconic choice for taxis are now no more. The few purchased for civilian use are odd ducks as well. Their mid-50's styling and fairly horrible aerodynamics doomed them to irrelevance, but they're so big and so iconic you can't help but feel nostalgic.

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Photo credit: Checker Icon

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9.) Jaguar XJ

Suggested By: ssrock64

Why It's Retro: Though it's more modern looking than nearly any Jag that came before it, the overall look and feel of the car hadn't changed from 1968 to 2009. Big, luxurious sedans with large greenhouses and larger engines were the order of the day for 41 years until the line was updated with a completely new, completely modern looking car. That old shape is immediately recognizable however, and immediately conjures up thoughts of 1970's style and guys with mustaches.

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8.) 1955 Lincoln Futura

Suggested By: Quattro-luvr

Why It's Retro: The space age rocketship-themed styling immediately put the Futura squarely in the 1950's. Not that that's a bad thing- it still looks awesome, just not like we imagine the future to be now. The one original Futura created by FoMoCo in the 1950's wound up in the hands of legendary hotrodder and customizer George Barris. Some years later it would transform into the first Batmobile, destroying one retro automotive legend and creating another.

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Photo credit: autogaleria.hu

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7.) Cord 810

Suggested By: The Second Spitter

Why It's Retro:Despite a few modern styling cues — the covered headlights and headers, concealed door hinges and rear-opening hood — the 810 is still clearly of its pre-War era. It's no less cool than it was on the day it was unveiled at the New York Auto Show in November of 1935, but seeing one on the street is like instantly walking into a Raymond Chandler novel.

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Photo credit: The Confident Pilot

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6.) Morgan Plus 4

Suggested By: mkbruin

Why It's Retro: The Plus 4 is just one specific example of the retromobiles produced by the Morgan Motor Company. With cars built on wooden frames with only lightly modified aesthetics, Morgan is no doubt the most retro of any car maker around. But that's why we love them. A bunch of British craftsmen in a shed, building the same cars their fathers made decades ago makes for a company that is easy to appreciate. The fact that the cars are still good helps too.

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5.) Nissan Figaro

Suggested By: Dirt Pirate

Why It's Retro: Do you really have to ask? The Figaro debuted in 1991. It looks like it's from 1965. It's just about as retro as it gets (without being a Morgan). There were exactly 20,000 built, and they were only available in four colors. They also look like they could be blown away by a stiff breeze. And as neo-retro begins to fade away, it's sort of doubly retro.

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4.) Subaru XT

Suggested By: Scrubcakes

Why It's Retro: More 80s than Max Headroom singing Wham songs, the sharper-is-better Ginsu era of design is fully on display with the first generation XT. Even better, on the inside the XT featured a joystick-mounded transmission button, psuedo-3D orange graphic LCD display and a digital readout. It's a perfect accessory for your calculator watch.

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3.) AMC Pacer

Suggested By: fhrblig

Why It's Retro: The jellybean shape can mean only one thing: hello 70s. With ample room for your bell-bottomed friends, the Pacer is definitely a car of its era... mostly because the future didn't embrace the idea. Like most icons of the 1970s, it's great in moderation.

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2.) Lamborghini Countach

Suggested By: NomadaNare

Why It's Retro: It doesn't matter if the car was first built in the 1970s, there's nothing more 80s than a Lamborghini Countach. It's Reagen-era excessive and the design, though attractive at the time, hasn't aged well. It's like the Cybil Shepard of cars. Anybody want some coke?

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1.) 1957 Chrysler Imperial

Suggested By: Buster Brew

Why It's Retro: Retro is often good, and the best example of this is the 1957 Chrysler Imperial, seen here as a Ghia-designed limousine. When Chrysler was on their game, they were fantastic. Every angle screams "America on the rise." If you want to know why we won the Cold War, look no further than the wonderfully late 50s Imperial.

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Photo credit: AutoHistorian

DISCUSSION

theworldofvee
The World of Vee

I love this q/a thread stuff but this is the single more GARBAGE list I've ever read. Retro cars are cars that look like OLD CAR REMAKES when the time they were made...Like the Figaro and the XJ. Not like cars from that time period. This one was almost as bad as the last list, Cars that are still made cannot qualify as cars that could still be sold in showrooms! They're still made!! Jesus, who's doing Quality Control on this site lately? Even Deadspin is better than this!

Let's break it down:

10) The checker is the quintessential 1950's Car. Last time I checked, the car was also made in the 50's...how is that retro?

9) I Agree with the XJ. It (used) to look pretty retro even in its newest form.

8) The Futura MIGHT fit your half-assed description of a retro car because it tries to look futuristic...but once again it didn't look like ANYTHING BEFORE IT, so it can't really be retro can it?

7) If I traveled back to the 30's, I'd expect some wealthy man to be driving a Cord. It screams 30's, and it was made in the 30's

6) The Morgan Plus 4, ok...it sort of fits. The Aero 8 would be a much better fit.

5) This is a RETRO CAR. If was built in the 90's and made to look like the 60's. You said it yourself! if that's your definition of retro, how the hell does a cord from the 30's look retro?

4) The Subie XT SCREAMS 80s, and whaddya know? It's from the 80's!

3) My pops had one of these in the mountainside of Vermont in the 70's. It was beige and had brown cloth/valuer leather. That's 70s tweed for ya. How is THAT retro? Maybe if you mentioned the new GTIs Tweed cloth seats..

2)The Countach..I think of Cubans with Gold Chains roaming in Miami. Do you? Do you think of the 80's? Yes you do you mentioned it. This is the 80's bottled up in car form. I cannot stress that anymore than I have. It's the 80's. It's not retro. If lamborghini made a countach remake, then THAT would be retro!

1) The Imperial was ahead of it's time, not before. Chrysler was on top because they made good cars the defined the era. Other cars started to model themselves off of this model! Not the other way around.

I'm not upset that you didn't pick my responses, that's not it. but if you're going to pick retro cars, pick cars that are RETRO. Like the prowler, the FJ Cruiser, the Defender, the Wrangler, The PT, the New Beetle, The City (south african MK1) etc.

These cars are VINTAGE, not retro.

/rant

Is that quality commenting or what?