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Unsuccessful facelifts


GeordieInExile

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The change from chrome to black headlight surrounds in the update from 18/85 to "Six" did the Wolseley version of the landcrab no favours.

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16 minutes ago, Justwatching said:

The 75 was very classically styled on launch, but then it got face-lifted using very contemporary looking wheels, lights and bumpers. Always thought the design languages clashed and gave it an identity crisis. 

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I think this is quite a dividing topic because I can see what they were trying to achieve, although of course they failed miserably in doing so, which was to attract to a different/wider market. There's no denying that the preface 75, as classy as it is, looks very dated (nothing wrong with that in itself) I don't think anyone can blame them for having a go at making it look a bit more modern, and the end product bearing in mind the fierce limitations they faced. 

It could be rose tinted specs but I was very happy with my facelift 45, yes it had the silly rear end (saloon) but it had plenty of kit such as heated seats and electric windows front and rear, which was not a given on a family car back in the day, and it looked a lot more modern inside than the earlier, dying breed fake wood explosion found in the HH-R 400 and earlier 45. 

I do completely see what you're saying but I can't help but offer a possibile interpretation of what they were trying to do. I don't think anyone can blame them for having a go at getting rid of the fake wood and making things a bit more modern. 

The change to the badge though? Ridiculous, unnecessary and inexcusable :)

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25 minutes ago, Asimo said:

Funnily enough, I have always thought the “facelifted” BMC Farinas were a real improvement upon the early cars.

Front end I agree, but back end has to be fins for me.

My Dad had a 59 Oxford V series with VI series front end, so I may be bias 🙂

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37 minutes ago, adw1977 said:

The change from chrome to black headlight surrounds in the update from 18/85 to "Six" did the Wolseley version of the landcrab no favours.

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If that's a publicity or brochure shot - which I think it is, it also shows how poor BMC's and BLMC publicity was.

Miserable location - lonely road by a hedge, lonely single male middle-aged driver, grim colour to the vehicle, strange tint to the windscreen, black and white plates on an M reg, and the full on front shot of the car looking slightly down on it just emphasises how ungainly it is. Did they really black- out the grille. Was it a 'new car'? Who were they trying to fool.

Meanwhile Ford had their own ungainly turkey - but at least they tried harder to shift them.

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That Wolseley picture was used at launch, I have an earlier issue of the brochure where the plate is the same but ends on K or L, although white on black is still very out of date for mid 1972. Manufacturers would often ‘edit’ the plate suffix in this way.

For example, those ‘J’s on the Zephyrs above look a bit wonky and were probably G or H in reality. 

Agree that the rest of the Wolseley picture is weird, the bloke looks like he is hanging on for dear life yet the car is stationary. 

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8 hours ago, AnthonyG said:

Agree that the rest of the Wolseley picture is weird, the bloke looks like he is hanging on for dear life yet the car is stationary. 

The car is really close to the verge for such a wide, empty road , which leads me to think he’s either parked up or broken down. 
He should turn all the lights off before trying to start it again. 

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11 hours ago, bunglebus said:

Unfortunately US bumper laws saw a lot of car designs ruined 

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See also

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9 hours ago, lesapandre said:

If that's a publicity or brochure shot - which I think it is, it also shows how poor BMC's and BLMC publicity was.

Miserable location - lonely road by a hedge, lonely single male middle-aged driver, grim colour to the vehicle, strange tint to the windscreen, black and white plates on an M reg, and the full on front shot of the car looking slightly down on it just emphasises how ungainly it is. Did they really black- out the grille. Was it a 'new car'? Who were they trying to fool.

Meanwhile Ford had their own ungainly turkey - but at least they tried harder to shift them.

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A84D2166-82A0-4510-B56D-BDAFAA016803.jpeg.12dae2770c0a061a85a43365ee9cee26.jpeg
I love MkIV’s and have owned 5 of the things, but…

That has to be the creepiest promotional picture ever and would have put me off buying one new!

That chauffeur looks ashamed to be there with his boss dropping off his “ niece” as they used to euphemistically say in old films and books. Nice that he took his pipe out before going in for the full snog.

 

To get back on thread, the move to 14” wheels and a fake grille did improve the MkIV.

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31 minutes ago, NorfolkNWeigh said:

To get back on thread, the move to 14” wheels and a fake grille did improve the MkIV.

The fake grille wasn't really a facelift of the Zephyr, it was a distinguishing feature of the Deluxe trim level.  The standard version continued unchanged. 

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12 hours ago, barefoot said:

 

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I quite like the smoothed out look to the facelift but didn't like the Facelift when they made it the 968

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12 hours ago, RoverFolkUs said:

Very subtle, but JUSTICE FOR THE GINGERCATORS :(

(And this rather iconic peppermint(?) green colour they decided to do away with..)

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I actually disagree on this one, I think the Mk1.5 looks better - much more modern while still sticking to the original design language. 

The Mk1 looks significantly dated now, the Mk1.5 still looks like a crisp and up-to-date design to my eye. Also, Mk1.5 headlights are GR8 in the dark. 

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The Focus facelift did make the indicators less visible, especially with headlights on, so it was a step backwards in safety even if it was more aesthetically pleasing.

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14 hours ago, chaseracer said:

Yes.

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OMG yes.

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WTF?

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Sorry Dave, but if you're going to do a S1 CX GTI T1 then you have to compare to a S2 CX GTI T1

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OK, so they arent AS pretty, but hell they were just as good. And now i'm having HUGE CX turbo withdrawl sadness

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13 hours ago, RoverFolkUs said:

I think this is quite a dividing topic because I can see what they were trying to achieve, although of course they failed miserably in doing so, which was to attract to a different/wider market. There's no denying that the preface 75, as classy as it is, looks very dated (nothing wrong with that in itself) I don't think anyone can blame them for having a go at making it look a bit more modern, and the end product bearing in mind the fierce limitations they faced. 

It could be rose tinted specs but I was very happy with my facelift 45, yes it had the silly rear end (saloon) but it had plenty of kit such as heated seats and electric windows front and rear, which was not a given on a family car back in the day, and it looked a lot more modern inside than the earlier, dying breed fake wood explosion found in the HH-R 400 and earlier 45. 

I do completely see what you're saying but I can't help but offer a possibile interpretation of what they were trying to do. I don't think anyone can blame them for having a go at getting rid of the fake wood and making things a bit more modern. 

The change to the badge though? Ridiculous, unnecessary and inexcusable :)

I agree with this however when viewed face on, the facelift versions headlights look like top close together. The bumpers were cleaned and sharpened up nicely though, especially the back, very clean.

The pressed-alloy badges look terrible though, because Project Drive.

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I always felt the early Mk5 Escort had great lines and they ruined it with the facelift. I remember at the time that the smiley face just looked like an upside down grille.

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Then they didn't do much better with the Mk6:

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They did exactly the same with the Transit. Original pen looked great, but the smiley face Transit didn't look as good.

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16 hours ago, morrisoxide said:

It would be easier to name the facelifts that actually worked, the list would be tiny. 😄

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17 hours ago, chaseracer said:

Yes.

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OMG yes.

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WTF?

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I respectfully disagree! Plastic bumpers FTW

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2 hours ago, Stinkwheel said:

Sorry Dave, but if you're going to do a S1 CX GTI T1 then you have to compare to a S2 CX GTI T1

image.png.cc39cafdeb82adfe8eb5fd9d125f27cc.png image.png.282d37efdb1347ae5f0eae4cb881c0d2.png

 

OK, so they arent AS pretty, but hell they were just as good. And now i'm having HUGE CX turbo withdrawl sadness

Grace agrees...

 

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Maxi 2. Sixties design trying to look eighties by blacking out the chrome and fitting naff wheeltrims fails miserably.

The British Citroen?

 

LOJ 921X - 1981 Austin Maxi 2 1.7 L

 

 

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I always rather preferred the original front end treatment of the Mk 2 Clio (which I didn't realise they ever sold in Australia)

2001_Renault_Sport_Clio_(X65)_3-door_hatchback_(2015-07-24)_01.jpg.140bda828d1e8ce4a9695a467ffe6029.jpg

to the redesign 

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And I always thought the pre facelift Ibiza Mk2 was rather pretty

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And much better looking than the 1999 facelift

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I've had 2 407 saloons (yes, I know)

1 pre facelift, 1 post.

As much as I thought the newer was better in certain ways, the rear treatment on it wasn't one of them.

Apart from the tail lights I thought it looked a bit odd. I'm not sure why they decided they only needed a body moulding on the bumper corners, and dropping the rear number plate made it kinda look hunched in.

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20 hours ago, Asimo said:

Wrong. 
The first 244s with round headlights and the massive forged-aluminium bumpers were properly Volvo.

IMG_3025.jpeg.28cfeb343ffc4d0c6d2242934ab29e36.jpeg
 

Later models look like they lost their self confidence and just want to be popular, like Datsuns.

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Difficult one for me as I like both. I prefer the actual late versions better than the mid run early 80s though, I don't feel like the chrome does them any favours, it's a bit too generic as you said and feels stuck on.

The thing that makes it more difficult is the length of production run. A 70s one is almost a completely different car from a 90s one in every respect.

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I like the black trim GLTs with virgo wheels as above, peak 240 in my opinion. Like they got their confidence back.

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Agree, the Allegro 3 is worthy of a design award compared to that. Funnily enough the Ital estate looked a lot less cack-handed…

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As a serial Granada licker it hurts to say it , but I think the Mk2 series 1 looks a lot better than the facelift. 
 

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Crisp, stylish. Looks fast and willing to go places. 


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Heavy, bloated. Satisfied with being stationary. 
 

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1 hour ago, GeordieInExile said:

This is easily my favourite crap BL facelift:-

 

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Blame it on Ital Design*

* not true - It's a Harris Mann confection...

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