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Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

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  • Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

    http://www.bangshift.com/blog/Speedy...rformance.html

  • #2
    Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

    How the hell did you forget about spoilers?
    Ford even stuck them on the plain jane Taurus in the 90's so folks would think it looked faster.
    Act your age, not your shoe size. - Prince

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    • #3
      Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

      Originally posted by studemax
      How the hell did you forget about spoilers?
      Ford even stuck them on the plain jane Taurus in the 90's so folks would think it looked faster.

      Look under "air management".

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      • #4
        Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

        Of course one could argue that most OEM spoilers manage to do little but add static weight and aerodynamic drag. > For the most part, factory spoilers are the "tail fins" of our era.

        BTW, there are other elements that suggest high-performance.

        In fact, WIMPS define how our bangshifted bombers are generally perceived.

        WIMPS? Yep. WIMPS.

        W: Wheels (the first "bling" most folks see; the thing otherwise oblivious non-Bangshifters notice (READ: spouse)
        I: Induction (dominates the first impression under the hood)
        M: Mufflers (i.e. sound)
        P: Paint (and the bodywork supporting it)
        S: Stance


        Obviously, a designer or Bangshifter could use many of the 11 styling gimmicks I described in the column, but if the WIMPS are all wrong, the vehicle will look absolutely ridiculous. For example, ever seen a conversion van or pickup with huge tacked-on fender flares ballooned out over narrow stock-width wheels and tires?

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        • #5
          Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

          WIMPS...thats funny....
          If you can leave two black stripes from the exit of one corner to the braking zone of the next, you have enough horsepower. - Mark Donohue

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          • #6
            Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

            And ironic. The general public's perceptions of automotive "muscle" are determined by WIMPS.

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            • #7
              Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

              a king cobra hood decal is bad ass

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              • #8
                Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                I guess I score a zero on this one...
                While I may have "blacked out" the grill and headlight bezels on the G30, I have removed the chromed plastic "Chevy Van 30" fender tags...for stealth reasons of corse, as not to let anyone know that I can haul at least 2000 pounds of cargo. Although, my, also, "blacked out" dog dishes do hide my 8 lug nuts. 'Corse any Bangshifter would note the 14 bolt, higher than normal stance, and 16" rims.
                So why didn't flames make it onto the list?
                But here's a good question...The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest a Sleeper?

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                • #9
                  Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                  Flames didn't make the list because: (a) I've never seen a new OEM car or truck with factory-installed flames, and (b) there were only eleven slots on the list.

                  I'll see if I can come up with a sleeper Top 11 for a future column. But for the most part, building a sleeper ususally means hiding or eliminating anything that telegraphs performance.

                  Using the WIMPS model, a successful sleeper will usually be of a size and body style that's not often associated with high-performance use and will feature the following:

                  WHEELS -- stock appearing.
                  INDUCTION -- stock and undisturbed appearing.
                  MUFFLERS -- stock sounding and looking (when idling and driven normally).
                  PAINT -- nondescript "used car" or neglected.
                  STANCE -- stock or "stock sag" (i.e. you can sometimes slide by with a car that sags a bit on the driver's side if other cars of that year and model typically sag).

                  Note that some F.A.S.T. competition cars might be considered sleepers because their performance is much greater than their appearance suggests.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                    This is a well though-out and articulate list of goodies. But, with no offense to the author, I think it might've spun a little off-track from the way it started. In the beginning, we're talking about why the GTO looked tame and the Camaro looks like a performance car, right? Well, honestly, I think the selection of accessories is really pretty trivial, here. You could take both of those cars, delete every exterior option on each one, paint them both solid vanilla-plain white, and set them both on black steel wheels (my favorite, actually), and the Camaro would still look a hundred times tougher. It's all about the shape of the car. The styling guys in the '60s and '70s spent a lot of time and money planning the lines and proportions of a car, and the accessory stuff came later.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                      at least a 13 second or quicker time slip . just screams high performance

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                      • #12
                        Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                        Originally posted by brownbuick
                        This is a well though-out and articulate list of goodies. But, with no offense to the author, I think it might've spun a little off-track from the way it started. In the beginning, we're talking about why the GTO looked tame and the Camaro looks like a performance car, right? Well, honestly, I think the selection of accessories is really pretty trivial, here. You could take both of those cars, delete every exterior option on each one, paint them both solid vanilla-plain white, and set them both on black steel wheels (my favorite, actually), and the Camaro would still look a hundred times tougher. It's all about the shape of the car. The styling guys in the '60s and '70s spent a lot of time and money planning the lines and proportions of a car, and the accessory stuff came later.
                        No offense taken. But the post does acknowledge the overarching effect of body shape to perceptions of high performance.

                        "4. Air management: . . .vehicle shape may have the strongest associations with perceptions of power and speed . . . "
                        "2. Engine emphasis: . . successful designers try to alter body shapes to emphasize the engine."
                        Obviously, body shape is a key factor. It was the only real difference between the prosaic Ford Falcon and the seminal, category-defining pony car -- 1965-66 Mustang. But the Mustang's styling didn't arise in a vacuum. Most of its basic elements were inspired, at least loosely, by prior art.

                        The Camaro looks "tough" because we've long historically associated the long hood/short deck/"broad shouldered"/tapered semi-fastback coupe look with sporty high-performance.

                        Compare that to the 1964-1967 Pontiac GTO. It shared basic body lines with a six-cylinder Tempest, yet was perceived as a leader in the muscle car movement. Now while Billy Mitchell's crew did add a number of suggestive "tough" elements to the basic style (e.g. broad split grille, tail lamp cove, "flying buttress" C-pillars (1966-1967), mild fender flares, tapered rockers) the bulk of the original GTO's visual image came from "accessory stuff," backed up, of course, by better-than-average performance and a tidalwave of clever adverstising hype).

                        If we look at other modern non-Bangshift-style high-performance cars, such as various iterations of the Subaru WRX and the Mitsubishi EVO, virtually all of their visual performance image comes from WIMPS and "accessory stuff."

                        To be sure, a major part of the "persona" of a Corvette, Ferrari, Lamborghini or other sports car is communicated by body shape. That has also proven to be true in the more practical realm of pony cars, as well as to a somewhat lesser extent in sedan/coupe based muscle cars. But even when saddled with a pedestrian form, savvy designers can communicate high-performance intentions much better than the 2004 GTO.



                        You might be shocked to learn that the foregoing is one of Australia's most coveted "classic" muscle cars. It's an example of "accessory stuff" communicating virtually all of the visual cues of high-performance.

                        Originally posted by SpiderGearsMan
                        at least a 13 second or quicker time slip . just screams high performance
                        Probably takes a 12 second slip nowadays. Back in the 1960s, a pass in the 14s was enough. Now, some base-model sixes run that quick.

                        But quick without the visual elements generally only sells to a limited number of "hard core" buyers. The 2004 GTO was quick and fast. . . and it languished because not enough buyers thought it LOOKED quick. The same story could be written about the Dodge Magnum/ Magnum SRT-8 (of course body shape was a huge factor there).

                        On the other hand, the early 1990s Impala SS wasn't really very quick or fast, but the designers used a few "accessory" tricks to convince buyers that an "almost Corvette" small-block engine in a taxi cab was the Second Coming of the RWD muscle car.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Speedy Says: The 11 Styling Elements That Suggest High Performance

                          Originally posted by brownbuick
                          This is a well though-out and articulate list of goodies. But, with no offense to the author, I think it might've spun a little off-track from the way it started. In the beginning, we're talking about why the GTO looked tame and the Camaro looks like a performance car, right? Well, honestly, I think the selection of accessories is really pretty trivial, here. You could take both of those cars, delete every exterior option on each one, paint them both solid vanilla-plain white, and set them both on black steel wheels (my favorite, actually), and the Camaro would still look a hundred times tougher. It's all about the shape of the car. The styling guys in the '60s and '70s spent a lot of time and money planning the lines and proportions of a car, and the accessory stuff came later.
                          I agree with shape of car. add wings scoops rake ..more and more it tells me.. it is a piece of underengineered crap.

                          a wagon plain jane looks like 300mph to me more than anything...as long as rake is slightly positive.

                          broad shoulders is old school association with very bad live axle primitive suspension....It tells me that...versus bimmer with wheels negative cambered and so close to the wells, it is nearly unsuspecting to be the master...
                          Previously boxer3main
                          the death rate and fairy tales cannot kill the nature left behind.

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