Sunday, October 7, 2012

Blast from the Past: See the USA in Your (Shitty) Chevrolet!

The car from hell. Image from AOL.
This post is a combination of my usual Sunday Blast from the Past feature, and a complaint to General Motors and its Chevrolet division. Now, I will concede that the modern-day fleet of Chevys is pretty cool: the new Malibu, Sonic, Spark, Volt, Corvette, Cruze and Camaro are awesome to look at. And I'm also aware that the Chevy Impala is due for a complete makeover. But it cannot be said loudly or often enough, the 2013 Chevrolet Impala sucks for air! Not only does the body style date back to the Bush era--2005 for the 2006 model year--but it has either been de-contented or has never been good, at least for the rental market.

Our recent trip to the Oregon coast was fantastic in nearly every way, except for the rental Impala, driven nearly 600 miles each way from San Francisco. The front driver seat was tolerable, barely. The front passenger seat had no back support, and the seat was insufficient for long drives. The backseat? intolerable. Horrible. We actually thought that it had been folded down, then reinserted improperly. It was like sitting on a foldout, convertible sofa from the 1970s. 200 miles into our adventure, we stopped at a Walmart for dining room chair cushions, just so that we could mitigate the torture! We used them for the rest of the jouney, and still weren't comfortable. Add to that a set of barely usable cup holders (wobbly coffee, anyone?) tiny visors, and a glovebox the size of a macho burrito, and you have a fairly shitty driving experience.

A Chevrolet I actually owned and liked!
Beyond all of that, for a full-sized car, the passenger cabin was woefully cramped. We had two six-footers with us, true. But we have more room--far more room--in the backseat of our Toyota Corolla-based Scion xB at home. And the cabin of the car was no bigger than the interior of my mid-sized Mitubishi Galant. The only place the Chevy excelled was in the trunk, which sleeps six. The car sucked. Hard. So, here then is my salute to all the shitty Chevys over the years (even though one of my favorites was my 1986 Chevy Cavailier RS). GM, you can do so much better.

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