1. Modern Cars are Homogenized
One of the primary reasons that classic cars have more charm and character when compared to modern cars is that new autos have become homogenized over time. The primary reason for the similarity in look and feel of today’s autos is due to the vast expansion of government regulation of the car industry over the past 40+ years. Some of the largest areas of regulation during this timeframe have come in required crash protection, emissions, and gas mileage standards. Although all regulations have been thoroughly thought out and researched for the betterment of society, they have had a significant impact on the design and functionality of today’s automobile when compared to classic automobiles. These improvements have made driving in the modern era significantly safer than post WW II, but still leave car aficionados wanting more out of automotive designers.
2. Modern Cars are not Unique
Over time, the total number of auto manufacturers in the world has decreased during the past several decades. Between company mergers, going out of business due to profitability concerns, and acquisitions, there is just not as much choice available to the consumer on a day-to-day basis as there was in the past resulting in modern cars not having as much charm and character as those made in the past. The varieties of autos that are sold on today’s market are less risky in their overall design appearance in order to ensure economic success of the model line. Even the largest car manufacturers are not able to afford the economic risk of putting a new auto model on the market without thorough testing and consumer feedback in hand. The negative fallout on the overall performance of the car manufacturer is big for just one failed car model in today’s economy.
3. Impact of Improved Crash Standards
Over the past four decades, there has been a significant investment by the auto industry into improving crash standards in all vehicles. This research was triggered by federal regulation implemented in order to make it safer to drive on the busy highways and roadways. A big side effect of these improved standards is the impact it has had on the front-end design of cars. In order to meet current regulations, cars must be designed to be able to withstand a certain level of force. The styling is also limited further by not being able to incorporate any protrusions that will lead to more harm if the car hits a pedestrian. The combined effect is to limit the design possibilities of modern cars making them appear to have less charm and character than classic automobiles.