What Car Got Retro Design Right?

What Car Got Retro Design Right?

Photo: Toyota

Carmakers love to rehash old designs. Call it nostalgia, laziness, or just limited possibilities. There are only so many ways to make a box on wheels, after all, whether it’s a big box, little box, a box stuck to another box, or a Ford Ka. The challenge of designing a car that’s both novel and comforting for creatures of habit could be why automakers borrow from previous designs on a regular basis. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. What car do you think got retro design right?

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Carmakers love to wax poetic about heritage or tradition but in the end, retro car designs are really just low-risk, high-reward propositions. Usually, anway—it was certainly not the case of the awful fifth-generation Ford Mustang, which undid the sleek design of the New Edge Mustang. But the new Lexus GX and Toyota Land Cruiser absolutely nailed the boxy, retro look.

Sometimes, though, the past really does deserve the reverence we’re quick to ascribe. So, what cars managed to bring an old, iconic model up to date with a reinterpretation of its design? What car do you think got retro design right?