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post #14 of (permalink) Old 10-02-2010, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by jallingt View Post
All the newer Lotus designs look the same, and they all look like Lambos or Accords.
From the front, the new Lotus designs all look the same except for the Elise. I dont like this because you cant tell one model from the other. Maybe in person, they look different, but from the pictures they look the same.

This can either be positive or negative depending on how you look at it.

I hate the fact that all Porsches look the same from the front, and I also have trouble trying to tell a Lambo Murcielago from a Gallardo from the front. And dont even mention Aston Martin- All of their cars look identical from the front and back. Mercedes did this in the 70's and 80's too. You had to read the back in order to see if it was a 300 450 or 560 series. Some people bought the cheaper ones and debadged them so you had no idea of what model it was.

What the similar front end does is identify the brand. This is a good thing. A kidney shape grill is a BMW trademark, but theiir cars dont look exactly the same from the front. It is easy to tell a 3 series from a 5 series, and a 7 series.

The problem with having all the cars look the same from the front is that more people who are into status symbols might buy the cheaper cars because they look like the more expensive cars. Porsche Boxsters look almost the same as 911's until you look at them from behind. A person may by a Boxster since it looks like a 911. This might be good for the brand because people who cant afford the top of the line car can buy the lower priced car. I think this is why Porsche is successful. $50K for a Boxster might be OK for some but over 100K for a 911 (or whatever they are called now) might be out of the range of a lot of people. Their old 924's looked similar to the 928's and were about one third the price. Champion Porsche became the largest dealer in the country becasue they bought out the unsold 924's back in the 80's and sold them at bargain prices, which then increased their allocation for the more expensive models that they were able to make a bigger profit on.

However, the cars looking the same might turn offf purchasers of higher end models. Why pay $200K for a top of the line Aston Marin 12 cylinder, when a 6 or 8 cylinder model looks identical to it and costs half the price, or looks similar to a Jaguar that costs 1/3 the price. Why buy a 911 Turbo when a Boxster looks the same. However buyers of the top of the line cars usually have more disposable income and want the extra performance that these models offer. Many Ferrari owners traded in their 360's to get 430's even though they look identical, but since they have the money, they just want the newest model and dont care about the cost.

What I would like to see Lotus do is make the front ends look similar but not identical. Jaguar had mesh grills their suoercharged cars to distinguish them from regular models but this is not enough. I hate the way that Bangle made the cars look but like I mentioned before BMW has done the best job of keeping brand awareness while having model identity separate.

Personally I dont like the rear design of the cars except for the Esprit, and think the 4 door looks too much like the Fisker or Maserati. The one car looks like a Solara convertible from the rear and the other looks like an old Mitsubhi Eclipse.The rear ends need to be more exotic looking and share a similar but slighly different look- sort of like Ferraris having round lights or Corvettes having 4 rear round or oval lights. It doesnt have to be the taillights, but some styling element that would make it stand out and identify it as a Lotus.
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