Looking Ahead - By Tony C.


Remember the first time you ever saw a Corvette? It was around 1962 when I first saw the male American dream. The car was unlike anything on the road.

It didn't have batman fins or a huge chrome bumper. It was sleek, futuristic and sexy. The Corvette represented a radical departure from the old way of looking at the world.
Remember those two guy's on the old TV show Route 66? That was freedom baby! The Corvette embodied everything that the baby boomers would come to know and love.

That love has lasted for half a century now. The problem with any love affair is that it only lasts as long as both lovers are still alive.

The Corvette baby boomers are now well into their 40's and early 50's. The love affair has kept this American icon on the showroom floor. Advances in technology and GM's need for some glitz have kept the Corvette in the minds and hearts of the American public.

The question is what happens when the baby boomers are too old to buy their next sports car?
Ask any twenty or thirty year old what sports car they would love to drive. The answer might just surprise you.

In the 1960's through the 1980's only one answer would be uttered, Corvette. This is not however the case in 2005.
Shock, heresy how could anyone say that todays youth don't want a Corvette in the driveway.

In case you haven't noticed todays young people have a completely different view of the world. In 2005 made in Japan means quality, reliability and sex appeal. This a far cry from what it represented in the past.

The X generation views the Corvette as an old mans car. It's the car that their father drives on Sunday afternoons.
GM has never really tried to lure the younger generation towards the Corvette. They have been content with good sales numbers from the boomers. It's the same problem GM faced with the Cadillac. Too little too late.

The seventy year olds bought their last Caddy several years ago. All of a sudden GM realized that they lost the market to Lexus, Infinity, Mercedes and BMW. The loyal Caddy owners who fought in WW2 are too old to buy another car.
The boomers were never seduced by GM into to buying a Caddy. The car of choice for us boomers is in the foreign market that has the big "bling bling" factor.

Is the Corvette is doomed to relive the same fate as the Caddy? The boomers, ages 40 to 60, may be the last generation that will even consider buying a Vette. The Corvette will be a retirement toy. This translates into good Corvette sales for at least another five years. Then comes the inevitable slide as the boomers, like the WW2 gen. gets too old to buy another sports car.
That gives GM some time to market the Corvette to our grandchildren.
Its too bad that the "X" generation will never get a chance to experience what we take for granted.

Parking Notes   

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