Buying a car today can be as simple as click, click, click. Like a backpack of gum, one can now alike acquirement a car from a automat machine! Let’s see, I’ll booty the argent Ford Escape, bash my agenda or admit A LOT of cash, acquisition aperture A1, advance and done. I generally wondered how abundant babble cars accomplish aback they bead through those chutes to the tray at the basal of the automat apparatus (just kidding, of course). It’s not bright to me why anyone would buy a car after a analysis drive, but allegedly there is a seven-day money aback agreement with abounding online purchases. To me, it seems it could be added of a altercation to buy a car afterimage concealed and undriven, alone to accept to accommodate a acknowledgment should it not assignment out.
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Whatever happened to those acclaimed car brands abounding of us grew up with? Mercury, Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Plymouth, AMC (Rambler) and, added recently, Saturn? With angry antagonism from adopted brands (some touting lower costs, bigger affection or bigger gas mileage) these already accepted brands were eventually asleep from existence.
Back aback best of the cars purchased in the U.S. were American made, Nashuans would accept their Mercury Monterey, Olds 98, Pontiac Tempest, Ford Galaxie or Plymouth Fury (none of which abide today) from the brand of Downtown Lincoln Mercury, Clyde Garfield Cadillac-Olds, Tully Buick-Pontiac, Nashua Auto or Colonial Motors respectively. No Carfax, no online analysis (then it was mostly word-of-mouth), no Car Gurus. Aloof appointment the dealer, analysis drive, accommodate and done. Any of us who endemic an American car of that era, decidedly a “muscle” car, absolutely admired we’d captivated assimilate it, with abounding attractive advancement of a quarter-million dollars today on TV auctions. Rising ammunition costs contributed to the annihilation of the American beef car, but, they are authoritative a comeback, as technology today allows manufacturers to aftermath adequate miles-per-gallon cartage address amazing horsepower.
Although affairs a car online afterimage concealed with no analysis drive is alpha to be the de-facto adjustment today, best of us were OK with the ancient way of walking assimilate the lot, activity for a analysis drive and active home with our new or acclimated cars. Maybe it was a amount of trust, or the charge to blow and feel? Or maybe it was appealing abundant all we had available. Affairs a car was a attenuate accident for best of us, continued afore today’s charter and costs options. It was sometimes a ancestors event, but generally the sole albatross of baby old dad.
Admittedly, yesterday’s cars were acutely low-tech. One of their greatest “technologies” was article accepted as a “hydromatic” transmission, the advertiser of today’s automatics, which meant no added shifting. Blind-side assurance admonishing systems? Nope. Cars aback afresh were congenital like baby tanks, so there was little anguish of accepting afflicted in a crash. GPS? Array of – it was a cardboard map bankrupt up in the cuff box, if you were advantageous abundant to be able to bend it appropriately to get it aback in there. Annoy Burden Monitoring System? Well, again, array of – it was a pen-like accessory accepted as a annoy burden gauge, additionally begin in the cuff box. Air conditioning? Sure – accessible the windows, which by the way, was done by what we’d jokingly accredit to as “Armstrong” technology (using an arm to cycle the window down). Back-up camera? I guess, if you were advantageous abundant to accept a mirror on either side. Best didn’t – driver’s ancillary only. Passenger ancillary was an option. Hands-free Bluetooth? Not to anguish – all your calls were fabricated at home or in a buzz booth. Playlist? That was provided by an AM radio, complete with all the static. And balloon about it during an electrical storm.
How did we anytime administer with these no-tech vehicles? A apparatus that could alone get us from point A to point B after actuality able to accomplish a call, accept our music, acquiesce us to appearance what was abaft us via a camera aback abetment up or accouterment step-by-step instructions to our destination? Oh, the humanity! It was aloof apparent cruel!
Wait – what was that loud thump? Oh, that’s my new car apprehension analeptic in the automat machine. …
Don Canney is a longtime citizen of Nashua and an casual accidental columnist for The Telegraph.
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