Daily Features

BUMPER CARS: UGLY IS ONLY SKIN DEEP

By on November 1, 2018

 

Within the basic rules of society lies a simple truth: more than one person involved in a decision-making process means the process will get more complicated in direct correlation to the exact number of ego-driven people at the meeting.

 

Human nature also dictates that one or more of the attendees will hijack the meeting and attempt to impose their will on the other unlucky people who have been forced by circumstances to attend this bureaucratic circus.

 

Some people who attend meetings are either required by their job description to be at the festivities while others just love any opportunity to hear their gums flap and egos enlarge while they attempt to impose their will on the unfortunates who have to share the same space with them.

 

 

 

This situation gets even worse when somebody in a large corporation or, even worse, a government job wants to prove their worth by creating pointless and at times counter-productive new rules within their department. These individuals want to justify their job by changing something that did not need a change; one that instantly became more complicated and ridiculous after their ill-advised intervention.

 

 

A good example of this horrible outcome became painfully evident during the 1970s and no-it wasn’t the dawn of the disco era-no matter how painful that musical reality became when the Bee Gees cinched up their shorts and sang ’Stayin Alive’.

 

 

The Bee Gees’ self-neutering program and disco music aside, there was another grim example of bad decisions made during the Seventies: 5 mph bumpers. Incidentally, 5 mph equals 8 km/h for Canadian readers who were forced to make a switch to metric measurement during the 1970s. That fact is another example of uncontrolled legislation created by power-mad bureaucrats from a bygone era.

 

 

Realistically, there was nothing wrong with 5 mph bumpers on a car. These bumpers were designed to withstand low speed impact with ease and subsequently save auto body repair bucks for new car owners in the 1973and-newer model years of the Seventies bumper cars.

 

 

That was the noble part of the 5 mph car bumper equation. The less acceptable part of the equation was the cosmetic appearance of the bumper on most cars because they looked like a set of antique dental braces on Farrah Fawcett’s famous poster pose at the time. Even a toothy smile would not have helped Charlie’s hottest angel if she was forced to wear braces during her poster heyday in the 1970s. A 5 mph bumper had the same effect on 1970s cars.

 

 

Eventually the automotive world was able to adapt to the 5 mph bumper legislation and build more style into the unholy alliance of bumper and car during the 1970s–and therein lies the problem: somebody made a knee-jerk reaction and legislated bumper car laws before the manufacturers had an opportunity to design cars with bumpers that were not an ugly, mandatory add-on to a 1970s vehicle.

 

 

The Seventies was a time when Detroit’s finest cars had already been fixed in that canine way by heavy-handed engine legislation that did the sum total of nothing to solve gas consumption issues at the time. In fact, the cars became slow gas-guzzlers that crushed the souls of the average car guy during this era.

 

 

The cars themselves were actually good-looking with some grim exceptions: homely econo-boxes trying to win new customers with sluggish performance, smaller sizes designed to hurt passengers during confinement, and better gas economy.

 

 

 

The problem? Even the cool-looking 70s era cars had these nasty bumpers on them. It was painfully clear that no car guy DNA could be found in the 1970s bureaucrats who concocted the 5 mph bumper legislation for cars.  

      

BY: Jim Sutherland

 

Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section. 

 

print
27600 Total Views 5 Views Today

About admin

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Facebook

Featured Ads

Rear View Mirror

FEBRUARY 12, 2018: SRT (STREET ROD TECHNOLOGIES)—THE FUTURE OF THE CAR HOBBY

  The future of the car hobby is one of the most frequent conversations I have at car shows.   The demographics and vehicles are older so the question...

February 12, 2018 View more...
may13-lateimgp0309-002

MAY 26, 2013: SOMETIMES YOU JUST HAVE TO ACT ON IMPULSE AND COWBOY UP IN LIFE

  I got a call from my nephew about his buddy’s car crop and took an immediate interest in them.   These are the days when old cars and...

May 26, 2013 View more...
may12-50trkbimgp7469-001

MAY 3, 2012 STAR TRUCKIN’: 1950 STUDEBAKER TRUCK-MAKING A 100% STUDEBAKER RESTO-MOD WORK

  Dave Abma is a hardcore Studebaker guy.   He owned one when he was a teenager and he currently owns two of them. He respects the history behind...

May 3, 2012 View more...
59plymto cranbrook- as we drive along we see a coaster coming up behind us aug 15 10-1

MAY 21, 2011: THE COASTERS TOUR–BELLE A 1959 PLYMOUTH BELVEDERE…CLASSIC FINS ON THE ROAD

  The Coasters tour featured an incredible variety of old rides from the classic 50s era and this 1959 Plymouth Belvedere was a great example.   Virgil Exner is...

May 21, 2011 View more...

Most Viewed

My Star Showcase

MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR OCTOBER 2018 ROAD WARRIORS—A COUNTRY-WIDE LOOK

  MyStarCollectorCar Road Warriors can be found on any street or highway across diverse regions.   For example, this Camaro was on a street in Quebec.     This...

October 19, 2018 View more...

JULY 2018 ROAD WARRIORS—THIS IS WHY SUMMER IS ACTUALLY A COOL SEASON

  Winter is the enemy of classic iron but summer is its best friend.   That’s why you’ll see cars like this shoebox Ford in the summer months because...

July 13, 2018 View more...

MSCC MARKET REPORT 2018

  MSCC MARKET REPORT 2018   Welcome to the MyStarCollectorCar Market Report.   This will be a regional look at prices for collector vehicles based on actual sales so...

August 3, 2017 View more...

MSCC Products and Services Showcase

These are all great businesses and they support MyStarCollector Car through their advertising  so we can continue to bring you our  insight into the old car hobby 365 days...

July 13, 2016 View more...

More At My Star

IN PRAISE OF FOUR-DOOR HARDTOPS

  One of the most popular car models ever built in North America was the two-door hardtop.   The two-door hardtop was introduced in the late 1940s by General Motors as a mass production vehicle.     The post-war automotive builders danced with the concept for a few years prior to the introduction of the See More

THIS WAS YOUR FATHER’S OLDSMOBILE…..WHY MESS WITH A GOOD THING?

  Oldsmobile was a renowned “tweener” car in the GM lineup: an Olds was not quite a Cadillac-but it was more than a Chevy in the General’s battle plan for Big Three domination.   An Olds left the GM factory as a luxury model that offered a competitive edge when it came to self-image in See More

MSCC NOVEMBER 9 FEATURE FRIDAY: WHAT MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR LEARNED ABOUT CARS FROM OLD TV SHOWS AND MOVIES

  We at MyStarCollectorCar have found many sources for our interest in the car hobby over the years.   Our sizable list includes any film or movie that includes footage with old vehicles in it and we have touched on this topic over the years.   We have labeled old TV shows and movies as See More

THE OTHER MEMBER OF THE 1960s FORD HERD: THE FIRST-GENERATION BRONCO

  The name Ford Bronco became synonymous with OJ Simpson after he was involved in a two hour low speed police chase while he was a fugitive passenger in a 1993 Bronco.   However, the Bronco name was already famous before Simpson’s infamous flight from arrest for a gruesome murder charge in 1994.   In See More

Editor’s Picks

MSCC NOVEMBER 14 “WHAT’S IT?” WEDNESDAY—THE LIGHTS ARE ALL YOU GET

  WELCOME TO MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR “WHAT’S IT?” WEDNESDAY FOR 2018   This is the third year for MSCC “What’s It?” Wednesday.   This feature was an overnight success back in...

November 13, 2018 View more...

FIVE QUESTIONS WITH EG AUCTION’S TODD SCHWINDT

  EG Auctions has been a player in the western Canadian car hobby for years and they’ve grown to the point where they have expanded into the U.S. market....

October 23, 2018 View more...

GET COACHED ON THAT CAR PROJECT—REYNOLDS-ALBERTA MUSEUM VEHICLE RESTORATION WORKSHOPS

  Restoration projects are not easy.   In fact, a full restoration can be the most complex and difficult job you’ll ever take on but the pain is definitely...

September 3, 2018 View more...

NOVEMBER 1-4 2018 PALM SPRINGS CALIFORNIA CARS STARS ROCK N ROLL Collector Car Auction

    NOVEMBER 1-4 2018 PALM SPRINGS CALIFORNIA CARS STARS ROCK N ROLL Collector Car Auction 11th Annual Red Deer Fall Finale Classic Sept 7 to 9, 2018 COLLECTOR...

May 31, 2018 View more...

Car Shows and Events

ST ALBERT’S ROCK’N AUGUST: THE RAIN, THE PARK, AND A BRADY BUNCH CAR-PLUS A MOPAR FEST

  MyStarCollectorCar was on the road to St Albert, Alberta this past weekend for their annual Rock’n August car show held on the grass in their famous park system....

August 11, 2018
JULY 28, 2018 19th ANNUAL MICHENER ALLEN CLASSIC AND COLLECTOR CAR AUCTION

FEATURE CAR—THIS MONSTER ’69 CHARGER       The 2nd Generation Chargers are widely seen as one of the most iconic muscle cars ever built. They looked fast from...

June 19, 2017
NOVEMBER 1-4, 2018 PALM SPRINGS, CALIFORNIA EG AUCTIONS CARS STARS ROCK N ROLL Collector Car Auction

    NOVEMBER 1-4 2018 PALM SPRINGS CALIFORNIA CARS STARS ROCK N ROLL Collector Car Auction SATURDAY FEATURE LOT 162     1969 CAMARO RS SS 396 – 375HP...

April 21, 2017
NOVEMBER 2018 CAR SHOWS AND EVENTS MYSTARCOLLECTORCAR

  NOV 1-4: PALM SPRINGS, CA Cars, Stars and Rock and Roll Collector Car Auction     NOV 4: SURREY, BC Kruise for Kids 2018 604-521-3021   NOV 16-18:...

September 29, 2015

Ads

Ads responsive