(Note: if you were looking for a serious car critique article, you should read something else. I don't pretend to be even close to a profesional reporter or anything like that. I hereby just share my opinion and open a way to discussion.)
Here are some cars that, in my honest opinion, lost their charm in the most recent redesign.
1. Mazda3 (AKA Axela) Sedan
This car came out in 2003 and back then it looked pretty good. Both the Sedan and Hatchback models (they look pretty different). They had minor facelifts in the past years, but the overall look of the car remained unchanged.
However, we recently got a first glimpse of the 2010 model that is going to hit the roads next year I believe. I expected a car that looks as good as the one we were used to see — maybe even better — but what I saw was something that looked more like an animal face with a huge smile slapped on it.
The car still looks good, but it lost its style.
2. Dodge Caravan
"What!? A minivan?", as Ligthning McQueen would say. Yes. Caravans started looking pretty good at the 3rd generation. Back then I think they just didn't care what it looked like.
The 4th generation, introduced in 2001, looked even better, maybe somewhat cute with its big eyes. And less "fat" than the previous one.
However, for the 2008 year model, they kinda crossed the 2nd and 4th generation, resulting in a boxy thing that you would most likely not even notice on the road because it looks so plain.
Seems like we're back to old-school Caravans that were made between 1984 and 1995.
3. Infiniti FX
In honestly don't see so many of them on the road, but I honestly think it's one seriously good-looking SUV. Sexy, even.
I found out they "facelifted" it in 2009. I hoped it still looked as good, but for some reason, I was worried. And I was right to be worried.
What the… alien? Monster? First off, what the Hell are these headlights? They're creepy. And second, make sure the guy who drew its grille gets off drugs. The rest looks actually good, but they still ruined it. Finally, its look went from "proudness" to a weird evilish "rawr". Not a good transition.
4. Pontiac Sunfire VS. G5
The Pontiac Sunfire was introduced in 1995, as a successor to their Sunbird and also the Asuna Sunfire, which was discontinued in 1993. Design-wise, it looked good. Particularly good for an affordable car. The second generation, which spanned from 2000 to 2002, which only had a minor facelift, looked as good, and was popular as hell.
Shit started to happen in 2003, with the third generation. It still looked good, but not as good. Its new front had something… that didn't look as good.
It even got worse when they discontinued it and replaced it with the new G5 model.
Err… is it just me or this car looks… horribly plain? I would walk past it without even noticing there's a car in there! Not even close to the Sunfire's cool look.
5. Pontiac Vibe (AKA Toyota Voltz)
Another Pontiac. Well, the Vibe was introduced in 2001 as their first Sports Hatchback (or quasi-SUV as Wikipedia states). This car proved to be useful for families, with a fair share of passenger comfort and storage space, yet smaller and much more fuel-efficient than a minivan. It looked sporty enough, and good. It was a pretty car. In 2005, they facelifted it with a new grille.
Just as good, or almost. Nothing alaraming, really. Actually I only noticed the difference lately. Same cool look. Different taste. However, in 2009…
Wait. Wait a minute. W… wha…… what is this mess? They transformed a cool-looking car into some kind of… hideous beast? It looks like a Guinea pig on steroids! The first time I saw it, I couldn't think of anything but… what kind of car is this? And then, when I found out it's a Vibe, I just… facepalmed. And this thing has been in my driveway! My own driveway! Many times!! (My brother's boss has one) I need an exorcist. Fortunately its brother, the Toyota Matrix, looks much, much better.
Now I'm asking you guys. What cars do you think they just ruined that isn't in this post? Comment and share.