View Full Version : What's the best word to use... (for our import cars British/German/Italian, etc...)

05-09-2004, 01:30 PM
OK... weird thoughts passing through my head.

It seems to me lately the the term "import car" in relation to any of the older import vehicles many of us drive is becoming diluted by the so-called "rice rockets" and events they run. Names like "Hot Import Nights" to describe the shows they run seem to dilute the meaning of the word "import car".

What does the term "import car" mean to the average car enthusiast now? I've heard from a friend of mine back in Ontario that back in the 1960's when import cars were less common here that the term "foreign car" was often used, especially by those who were mostly into the American cars. Now with the dilution of the term "import" by the "rice rocket" generation, is there a better term to broadly describe our older import/foreign cars (be they British, German, Swedish, whatever other country).

Hope this discussion makes some sense... My mind is rather strange sometimes, graemlins/crazyeyes.gif especially in the morning when I've only been up for a short time.

05-09-2004, 01:35 PM
European Imports? images/icons/wink.gif

05-09-2004, 01:58 PM
graemlins/iagree.gif Seems to be the best term. We could have a special event for LBCs....."Luke-warm Import Nights" Catchy don't you think?

05-09-2004, 09:47 PM
OIL Spills................LOL

05-10-2004, 12:02 AM
I always call them European, and I use a very non politically correct terms when refering to those fine Japanese piles of plastic, and fiberglass.

Cheers, graemlins/thirsty.gif graemlins/driving.gif

05-10-2004, 02:24 AM
OK... weird thoughts passing through my head

I think they wrote a song about that..no not the passing of your thought...I think it's about...what you say or I say...whether you say either or I say e"i"ther...neither or ne"i"ther...lets call the whole thing off...etc...

Import works for me...I can also go alone with the specific country...like British Import, Italian Import, Japanese Import, German Import...

Foreign Sports Car works to...I generally don't care what you call me...just don't call me late for dinner... images/icons/shocked.gif images/icons/wink.gif

[ 05-09-2004: Message edited by: Henri ]</p>

05-11-2004, 02:04 PM
That's one of the great writers' dilemmas, finding the right terminology. I tend to call cars by their country of origin: LBC, vintage British/Italian sports cars...or I'll call them as a segment: European Sports Cars, modern Japanese imports.

05-11-2004, 02:20 PM
My wife was saying recently how she'd like a European car. I said "but we already have two!" She was not impressed and said she was talking about a modern one not old pieces old junk. images/icons/grin.gif

05-11-2004, 02:50 PM
To me they're all foreign cars. With Subarus built in Indiana, Ford Crown Vics built in Mexico, Chevs built in Korea, Hondas built in England - what does it matter? In the past, there were distinct national differences, but don't try and tell me that a Toyota Avalon isn't just a traditional American sedan with better build quality.

People get hung up on being nationalistic on car brands, but it doesn't make any sense in the modern world. Witness the good ole boy driver in the NASCAR truck series slagging Toyota for entering the series, because Japan had bombed Pearl Harbour. He was driving for Dodge - a German-owned company.

Drive what makes you smile. It probably wasn't manufactured where you think it was, anyway. graemlins/canpatriot.gif

05-11-2004, 06:41 PM
Aloha All,

I think Eric has a good point, who knows where modern cars come from, you can't just assume because it is a US manufacturerer, the model was built there. I remeber in the 60's Renaults, Fiats, MGs etc were "foreign" cars. I refer to my cars as British like Henri and others. I liked 78Z's comment, "My wife was saying recently how she'd like a European car. I said "but we already have two!" She was not impressed and said she was talking about a modern one not old pieces old junk." My wife tells me that the reason I have two LBCs is so I can have one to drive while I repair the other one.

Safety Fast,

Bruce Bowker
05-11-2004, 09:15 PM
I remember my frst trip England. I was impressed by all the cars being foreign. images/icons/wink.gif

05-12-2004, 12:58 AM
A slight tangent but a funny/interesting story:

My father-in-law had this thing about not buying German cars, because of the association with WWII. He called any Mercedes, Audi, VW, BMW, Porsches etc.. "Nazi mobiles," and figured only an anti-semite would ever drive one. I had to explain to him that Max Hoffman, a Jewish man, was the reason German cars were imported to the US in the 1950s, and was instrumental in the creation of the Porsche Speedster.

Anyway, at one time a couple years ago, I gave him a list of automakers from which he could buy a car. First, I explained the problems with ownership of his current cars:

Ford Expedition,(now he has a Lincoln Navigator,) Jaguar S-Type, 1948 Lincoln Continental: All owned by Ford -- Henry Ford was the inspiration to Hitler's hatred of Jews -- all based on "The International Jew" written by Ford. (Hitler kept a life-sized portrait of Ford in his office.)

GMC Sierra, '65 Impala, '67 El Camino: GM -- GM supplied fuel technology to the NAZIs, instrumental in their WWII combat strategies.

Then I explained that based on his WWII logic, he certainly was wrong in previously owning a Toyota Supra...So no Japanese cars.

And no Italian cars, since they conspired with the NAZIs.

So no Fords: Ford, Lincoln, Mercury, Land Rover (although it was owned by BMW at the time,) Volvo, Mazda.

No GM: GMC, Chevy, Olds, Pontiac, Buick, Hummer, Saab, Saturn (ok, nobody in their right mind would buy a Saturn images/icons/wink.gif ) Kia used to just have a distribution agreement, but now they have sold significant shares to GM.

Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth/Mitsubishi is now German, and as we now know -- that's evil.

So I explained, he could buy British...ummm....what independent British companies exist? Mini, Rolls and Bentley are German. Shortly after the list, Rover/MG was purchased by a local group, but they do not export to the US. TVR doesn't either (and they'll sue you if you try.)

Lotus is Malaysian, which was okay, although the mostly Islamic nation is extremely anti-semetic (PM announced that Jews were the enemy of Islam.) So that should rule out Lotus.

How about independent American manufacturer's? Saleen and Panoz both use Ford running gear, as does Superformance Cobra replicas... It's the running gear of hate.

Daewoo is gone.

Which left ONE MAKE OF CAR that he could buy with a clear heart...

.... do you know which one?


The morale to the story was: leave political and emotional hang-ups out of car buying. Finding a good car is hard enough without the hangups.

Some of the Japanese makes are more American than the so-called American makes.

I'm not sure what my next new car will be, but "buy american" won't factor into my brain. I'll buy whatever global brands' vehicle is comfortable, sporty, fits my family and has great build quality and dealer support and leaves enough money in my pocket to buy a new high torque starter for my Triumph, which is a marque now owned by BMW...

05-12-2004, 12:10 PM
But the new Morgan Aero 8's use BMW V8's! And the 4's use Fords. Your dad will have to walk (in Chinese made shoes, no doubt! images/icons/grin.gif

05-21-2004, 01:55 PM
Came across this album in Webshots... /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/lol.gif


For more...


05-21-2004, 11:13 PM
But the new Morgan Aero 8's use BMW V8's! And the 4's use Fords. Your dad will have to walk (in Chinese made shoes, no doubt! images/icons/grin.gif" border="0

[/ QUOTE ]

Actually, at the time we were discussing it, the Rover engines were also BMW, but since the company is independent, and simply sources the engines from BMW (and then reworks them a tad) I felt it was ok -- mostly because almost every car has parts from German companies (Bosch etc...)

05-22-2004, 01:31 AM
And considering up until fairly recently, all cars purchased in Canada were foreign cars. Why were/are US built cars considered "domestic" cars here?

05-22-2004, 02:06 AM
/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/lol.gif Love the ricer form James. I like the ricer gauge on there the page also pretty funny stuff.

05-24-2004, 12:55 AM
Before the late 80's, the Autopact treaty with the US ensured that for every US car imported into Canada, there was one built in Canada. Helped the Canadian auto industry no end, even if they were all branch plants of US companies. Hence US cars were domestic due to build numbers, although mostly its a hangover from when US cars were the vast majority of what was available. However, to me, they're all imports, as there is no real domestic car industry in Canada. While we build Fords and Chevy's in Canada, we also build Hondas and Volvos. Are any of these domestic for a Canadian? Not really. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/canpatriot.GIF

05-24-2004, 02:40 AM
Don't they still make Lada's in Russia? They were allies for a while anyway..

Mind you, I'd rather walk... /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/pukeface.gif

05-24-2004, 10:50 AM
Perhaps the last *real* American car...still available (in kit form). Just add your own Kohler engine. Info:



05-24-2004, 01:55 PM
I can understand some of the comments about the vast gray area between what is or isnít ďtrulyĒ domestic or foreign. However I donít think itís really fair to criticize or belittle those who might make their choice to purchase a vehicle based along nationalistic lines.

I have never criticized those that donít care one way or another and select their vehicles accordingly. So I donít think itís fair to bash folks that have decided not to purchase a vehicle based on their deeply held feelings that are as fresh today at they were in those dark years.

I for one would never try to persuade my wifeís father who served in the Merchant Marines during WW2, that he is wrong for not wanting to buy Japanese or German (or even Italian) vehicle. Likewise wouldnít I try to tell a person that has worn the uniform, or a family member who lost a loved one fighting Imperial Japan in the Pacific or in the liberation of Nazi occupied Europe.

The thing to remember is that in most cases these folks donít make their decisions based on bigotry or racism. In other words - those who served &amp; their family members earned the right to make that choices without being criticized for it.

FYI - We lost two family members fighting in the Pacific and one in Europe during WWII. And as Iíve said in the past I think there are many fine vehicles out there that I just canít bring my self to drive. Not out of hatred, but out of respect for my families loved ones that where lost in that horrible conflict.

Bruce Bowker
05-24-2004, 09:24 PM
The thing to remember is that in most cases these folks donít make their decisions based on bigotry or racism. In other words - those who served &amp; their family members earned the right to make that choices without being criticized for it.

[/ QUOTE ]

Very well put.