5 Modern Vehicles that are Older than You Might Expect
These days, most autos are all about being “new and improved,” with fancy features like continuously variable transmissions and cylinder deactivation. Even in this constantly changing world, however, there’s still a place for vehicles that have a long, established past behind them. In honor of this fact, we present the following five models that may be considered “long in the tooth” but are still going strong. Ford Expedition
When SUVs first hit the market, they were conceived of as trucks that offered both freight and person-hauling capabilities. Since then, the design approach has shifted to so-called “crossover SUVs” that are more of a study in identity crisis than anything else.
Not so with the Expedition. First introduced in 1992 as a concept vehicle, it’s Ford’s last truck-based SUV, sharing many features with the F-150, including off-road and towing abilities. In a market crowded with models trying to be all things to all drivers, it’s refreshing to see one that still knows its place.
In the second half of the 1980s, Ford was where it has been many times: on the verge of bankruptcy. The company from Dearborn needed a car that would appeal to American drivers wooed away by the Japanese. It found its savior in 1986, with the release of the Taurus.
Ford’s leaders have rarely missed a chance to shoot themselves in the foot, however. They killed the star of their show in the 2000s. Then they once again drove the firm to the brink of disaster. Happily, Alan Mulally resurrected the carmaker, and its Taurus nameplate, just in the nick of time.
One model that has had no lack of support at all is the venerable Corolla. First released in 1966, by 1974 it was the best-selling car on the planet. In July 2013, more than 40 million Corollas had been sold worldwide. Now in its 11th generation, the little car that could is still providing reliable transportation, as well as giving jobs to over 2,000 Americans at the Nissan plant in Blue Springs, MS.
It’s one of the great ironies of history that the car Hitler helped create became the ride of choice for America’s Love and Peace generation in the 1960s. Fact is, however, that the real mastermind behind this indestructible vehicle was Ferdinand Porsche, who took from 1932 to 1938 to perfect the design. Of course, having one of history’s greatest monsters looking over your shoulder could put a drag on anybody’s productivity.
Hitler and his 1,000 year Reich both met their end in 1945, but the Beetle kept chugging along. Though it saw its demise in the States in the 70s, it was built in South America until 2003. The first of the new EPA-approved versions found its way to our shores in 1997. Though looking somewhat flatter these days, it continues to draw legions of new buyers, who find its funky charms irresistible.
Ford F Series
Having beaten up on the boys from Dearborn earlier in the article, it’s only fair that we now look at something they have been doing right for over six decades. The first F series pickup rolled off the line in 1948. It has been the best-selling truck line in the US for the last 43 years, proving that the managers of Henry Ford’s legacy can get something right when they try.