More than one vehicles have been launched this week, so today’s newsletter will feature a few concepts shown at Monterey Car Week and one highly relevant look at the world’s most successful very good sports car maker.
I’m a pessimistic dreamer, so when I see any vehicle for the first time, one eye appreciates the evolution of form and the other is looking for problems.
Most of the time, I swallow that down and don’t write as negatively as could. But there’s something about these two particular cars that rings hollow and illustrates a crisis of understanding.
To understand luxury, you just need to be considerate. The most enduring companies catering to high net worth individuals have all found a way to earn each of their customers: service. It’s not simply transactional, it’s a record of trust in a job well done.
Generations of generational wealth on either side of the counter continue this dance between client and established maker, builder, designer—and oth-ers.
This is true of the auto industry, where coachbuilding is very much still a thing. You want it? Many can build it. Fewer can service it. An even smaller number can help you live happily ever after with it.
Understand that in a future filled with EVs, flat floor batteries, and compact motors, makers will have all sorts of freedom to craft forms that are striking, functional as a vehicle, and road legal.
In other words, the western car industry endgame seems to be in stamping out life-sized Hot Wheels for $100,000 a pop.
Heater cores will still be buried, somewhere, a 10 hour labour job for somebody else. We just have to show the thing and build the thing.
In fact, this current has been flowing for years: when many outlandish concepts from the past were wheeled out in front of media, they were nominally electric, and only “driven” by some guy standing backstage holding a remote control.
Maybe it’s a mistake to pile the weight of generational wealth on the Acura Precision EV Concept (aka the new ZDX) and Lincoln L100, but they were unveiled in mid-August, in front of the god-monied audience at Pebble Beach and not in mid-February, in front of normies at the Chicago Auto Show.
Interesting: the Acura’s exterior was said to have been inspired by boats, and the Lincoln’s screen-for-a-floor interior belongs on a boat.
Lincoln designers also mounted its traditionally anorexic greyhound hood ornament inside the glass frunk. I’ll concede that of the two, the L100 would blend more homogeneously into our inevitably hermetically-sealed future.
But as luxury? The forms are eye-catching, sure, though they’re coming from companies that lack the ability to follow through on the level of service needed to have their machines become the kept conveyances of the ultra wealthy.
Affording the most fantastic Lincoln, Acura, whatever, is not the question. How will this make lives any better? That is what every automaker needs to answer.
see also ::
- The Lincoln Model L100 Concept Vehicle • Lincoln on YouTube, &
- Acura, electrified. Introducing the Acura Precision EV Concept • Acura on YouTube
Don’t let its title fool you: this video is far from a takedown of Porsche.
In this 20 minute video, SuperfastMatt drives Porsches, talks to experts, asks Porsche owners honest questions, and investigates the brand’s mystique from a perspective you don’t often see: an unbiased one.
Speaking as someone who has done the research and has more drafts than I’d like to admit on the Stuttgart brand’s long-forgotten villainous moves, it’s tough to reveal shadows where others see only light. And Matt does well to keep it pretty light.
tl,dr; It’s really entertaining and he nails exactly what makes me less inclined to want to rejoin the P-car club in the future.