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Hooniverse Asks- Are Looks Important?

Robert Emslie July 6, 2010 Hooniverse Asks No Comments

Earlier today, Jeff  thrilled you with a review of the Acura TSK RSK BVD LOL oh, something with a three-letter name. If you haven’t read it (and you should, it’s a great read) I’m not spoiling the surprise for you by telling you it’s a pretty nice automobile, but I will add a personal opinion about its looks, which is: day-um, girl, what happened to your face?

Now, I know what happened, Acura tried to shake things up after years of anonymity with an angular and provocative design aesthetic intended to provoke dialog and controversy. I think they universally look like ass, and wouldn’t even consider buying one, no matter how nice they are to drive. But not everyone is as cut and dry as I am, and many folks would overlook a car’s visual challenges if the seat time was sufficiently rewarding. The question is, which side of that fence do you come down on?

There’ve been a lot of fugly cars that have driven brilliantly. And in contrast, there are a number of beautiful cars that are  hell to pilot (I’m looking at you Mangusta). These days, there are very few cars out there that you can buy that aren’t perfectly reasonable to drive, although there’s plenty that you’d likely need to put a bag over their heads in public. Why that is – the engineers seem to be doing a better job than the stylists – I don’t know. Maybe it’s schooling, perhaps it’s some sort of pay inequity, or maybe the stylists are just pissed over something and foist crap designs on their bosses who are too unversed in the creative aesthetic to complain? Who knows. All that I know is that the Ford Focus is one of the most highly-rated small cars for quality and drivability, and yet it’s as ugly as a junk yard dog’s butt. The aforementioned Acuras certainly have achieved the goal of getting people talking about the company, unfortunately it’s typically folks complaining about them having the reverse effect to Viagra.

But does that affect sales? What’s your take on the physical appearance of your car, do you demand beauty, or do you just want function over form? Me, I can’t drive something I find stylistically repugnant- which is why I’ve been giving BMWs a wide berth for the past decade – well, that and the fact that my car budget doesn’t extend into their neighborhood. But what about you? Would you drive an ugly car because it was otherwise good?  Would you eventually get used to it, or would it always be there, as a reminder?

Image sources: [Cars.com, Progalu.com]