X marks the oil spot

Generation X, we are told, has different automotive priorities than do we dinosaurs Baby Boomers. Let’s see what they have in mind:

To quote the philosophical Kate Gosselin, when it comes to cars, it’s all about the kids. I like the Prius, but are you kidding me? I can’t cram five people into that car and drive 600 miles to Tennessee to see my sister Faith. That is, unless I want to arrive with children who have poked each other’s eyes out and bitten off each other’s phalanges. It wouldn’t be pretty. We need third rows.

So: a minivan using some variation of the Prius powertrain?

We will buy minivans as long as they don’t umm, look like minivans.

Although the guys have slightly different priorities:

Gen X men want cars that outrun Wile E. Coyote and go beep, beep. Actually, Gen X men want Tuckers at the 1948 price.

According to one source, the projected price of the Tucker was $2450, which was a bit on the high side for the day: the most expensive Chevrolet for ’48 — a Fleetmaster woody wagon — ran $2103.

Although they might prefer a slightly newer wagon:

Did you see Julie & Julia? Gen X wants the 1950 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon in which Julia Child knocked about Paris. Yep, Gen X wants a station wagon retrofitted with air bags, child restraint systems and the latest and greatest alternative fuel conversion kit.

Well, maybe, if it will fit in the garage. These behemoth Buicks sat on a 125-inch wheelbase and weighed somewhere on the far side of two tons.

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8 comments

  1. Cindy »

    15 December 2009 · 8:28 pm

    Is that why I look at volvo station wagons and feel a little envy? I’d love one, but I can’t afford a new one and used seem to be quite rare.

  2. Jeffro »

    15 December 2009 · 9:31 pm

    A big ol’ Buick with an updated 455 – fuel injection and so on – would work just fine. I want my portable living room to move when stomping on the loud pedal.

  3. CGHill »

    15 December 2009 · 10:10 pm

    Wonder how much it would cost to replace the carb on this little darb?

  4. fillyjonk »

    16 December 2009 · 5:44 am

    Actually, as much as I hate to admit it (being a Gen-Xer), a lot of those observations are spot on. (I drive a minivan that looks like one. But I don’t have kids; I haul field equipment instead. And I admit to being sad that I won’t be able to replace my Windstar WITH a new Windstar; they’re all now “crossovers” which sounds too much like “SUV,” which, I know, if I buy one, is going to get me harassed by my Prius-driving colleagues.)

    I like my car because I can refer to it as “my small white van” and at least a few people get the literary reference.

  5. jen »

    16 December 2009 · 6:09 am

    you crack me up. Hey, i like these comments! Especially JEFFRO’S and FILLYJONK’S. I have this undeniable need to own a very ugly car. In fact, I want a 1967 something – you know for the year I was born. The uglier the better. I want to drive it all over the United States. I’ll pack it full of books and call it the Gen X Book Mobile. I’ll plan Tweet Ups with former latchkey kids. It totally could happen. =) hahahaha!

  6. fillyjonk »

    16 December 2009 · 10:09 am

    And here’s another thought:

    “I like the Prius, but are you kidding me? I can’t cram five people into that car and drive 600 miles to Tennessee to see my sister Faith. That is, unless I want to arrive with children who have poked each other’s eyes out and bitten off each other’s phalanges.”

    Well, there were only four people in my family when I was growing up, but I remember a trip from Ohio to Cape Cod taken in a circa-1978 Plymouth Arrow (talk about small back seats), and both my brother and I still possess all our fingers and both our eyes. And what’s more, we still talk to each other. AND we didn’t have dvd players or iPods or any of that stuff. We played license-plate bingo and did Mad Libs and stared at the scenery and asked our dad if we were there yet, or could we stop for an ice cream, or that we really really needed to stop SOON even though yes, we were just at a restaurant that had perfectly fine bathrooms 200 miles back…

    I’m wondering if the need for a third row is partly an issue of parenting…or of not wanting to deal with the kids.

  7. Jennifer »

    16 December 2009 · 2:10 pm

    It’s true. Love the wagons. Hubby was driving a Honda Civic wagon when we started dating. We still miss it.

  8. McGehee »

    16 December 2009 · 5:33 pm

    We will buy minivans as long as they don’t umm, look like minivans.

    I actually kind of liked that boxy Toyota “Town Ace.” It made me think of the chariot from the original “Lost in Space.”

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