You probably get thumbs up when you drive your
Mercury, because it is soo different from anything on the roads today, and people are impressed that you have a car that is over 50 years old. Sure, it is something special these days with a lot of nostalgia, but back in '55, this car was nothing special, and the '55 Mercury is not on many peoples list of desirable classic cars. Hats off to you though for preserving a car like this, modern cars don't deserve to be preserved. They probably will all just be recycled to make more blah-mobiles.
Exactly right, you are out numbered, and there are a lot more than a few people who enjoy these cars. Take a look at other Town Car threads, or even Park Avenue and DeVille threads of all years, and see how many people respect and enjoy them; you would have a lot of arguing to do!
Also, if time and technology changing is so important to you, maybe you should unload your Merc. Or maybe give it to me and I'll sell it so I can buy a beautiful 71 Riviera... go ahead tell me that's an unattractive car.
Here's my last comment on this. So I will apologize for making negative comments about full size 90's American cars. Drive what you want, and if you think it looks great, then drive it and love it. If I hurt feelings, I am sorry for that.
But at the same time it's fairly apparent that the Big 3 have made some big departures from the luxury cars they used to make, and the ones they either now make, or are getting ready to make. Cadillac used to make fairly unremarkable puffy looking land yachts all the way through the early 2000's. My aunt had an 89 Caddy, and there was nothing remarkable about the thing. Just a giant car with an overstuffed interior. Now they make some stunning cars like the CTS-V and CTS-V coupe. Beautiful cars with style. They're starting to push the ball on that brand. Some of their new concepts are mind-blowing and original.
From what I've read, Ford is going to re-launch the Lincoln brand, and return to making respectable luxury cars - which I hope means not re-branding a Ford and sticking bits of chrome on it. If that's what they're going to do, then great - more power to em', because what American car makers need is to return to their roots of having great design and great technology.
I for one welcome these changes. It's not that I am against big cars or even huge cars. But if you look back in time to say - the 30's-50's, America made the most beautiful cars on the planet, and these were cars that some of the wealthiest, most highly paid people in the world wanted. That's the sort of cars I'd like to see. Cars that are cutting-edge, beautiful, and inspirational. I personally feel a lot of that was lacking in the cars made by the Big 3 for the better part of 30 years or so. Again - my opinion.
But anyway, live and let live. Drive what you love. Over and out.
True, like you state above, a lot of the highest paid people in the world liked and owned Duesenbergs, Imperials and Caddies from that era 30s->50s, but in that era they were the cars of the MEGA RICH, just like today's Bentleys, Ferraris and Porsche sedans, which are for the mega rich of today.
BUT WHO IN TODAY'S WORLD can buy one of the above mentioned, even in ten or twenty years time, with colossal mileage on them?
NO ORDINARY WORKING CLASS PERSON CAN, THAT'S WHO.
So do not be comparing affordable cars or near affordable two to five year old Lincolns to something that is only for the emirate sheiks, or completely lost touch with reality show offs, who just happened to get lucky, and find it very easy to splash out hundreds of thousands of dollars on 4 wheels, while the remainder of us scrimp and scrape to get by.
There's a difference between something like a Ferrari and say - a BMW, Mercedes, or Audi. Even though those brands are usually costly, they do offer a full model lineup with models at more modest prices, as in the 30k range or so. If you look at what seems to be the most desirable luxury or semi-luxury brands, they are ALL pretty much European brands. It's because they tend to be more cutting edge and innovative. That, and these brands have garnered a following - deserved or not - and have attained a level of prestige that makes them perennial favorites of those who want that luxury car experience. Basically, they are desirable.
The Big 3 let their luxury brands go for so long that they fell out of relevance, especially in the core luxury car buying demographic. This was because the cars they made were following the same formula that might have worked in the 60's and 70's, but had fallen out of favor by the 80's. This in turn damaged the brands. Most of the American luxury car makers became synonymous with the cars retirees drove. But what's more, this perception of old people cars became heavily attached to these brands, simply because the cars didn't change for decades.
So the challenge is going to be for the big 3 to succeed in re-launching these brands and turn public opinion. I believe Cadillac has done this pretty well so far. If Ford does what it says it will do, which is develop Lincoln into a re-launched brand, then hopefully they will succeed as well. If anything, I find this time period to be pretty exciting, because you're starting to see old luxury brands that had been moldering for decades on the vine, suddenly get rejuvenated.
In the end, I would absolutely love to see the likes of Cadillac and Lincoln be right up there and beyond with BMW and Mercedes. It'd be great to have these brands represent American design, the way they used to.
As the owner of a Lincoln, I would say that in the past couple years, they are starting to compete with Euro-luxury, with models like the MKS and MKZ; nice cars, but too small for my taste.
As far as Cadillac, another brand I've owned in the past, I believe they started to compete with Euro-luxury in 1992, with the redesigned Seville and attractive looking Eldorado, with good Northstar performance, stiffer suspension and better road manners, but still retained traditional interior comfort and size. These Caddys were the sportiest cars they ever saw at the time, but they still offered full-size Devilles and Fleetwoods, so therefore they had something for everybody, which is the way it still should be, but is not.
You are very right, we are heading to a time when we will no longer be able to decide which size of car we want to drive. If the EPA has their way, we will all be driving sub-compacts like in Europe and most of the rest of the world. It would be nice if we could still have the option of driving a full-size car. I can't imagine that GM and Ford would lose money building cars like the Park Avenue, DTS, and Town Car if they didn't invest any money in new body changes or advertising. Just build them for another 10-15 years until they no longer turn a profit, then at least those of us that don't want a Japanese or European knockoff from Detroit would have something to buy. Problem is, the youth are the driving force in marketing, its been that way for years. This makes no sense to me, since the older people are generally the ones with a bigger pocket book.