When a Dodge is regarded as a exclusive automobile you know you are dealing with a big time cultural clash. I just saw a Dodge Charger in a parking lot rented from or representing an “exclusive” car service (there was a website advertised on the chassis somewhere.)
Last August I rented a similar one in Boston from Enterprise. No upgrade, nothing flash. Standard full size fleet car (I presume since I didn’t pay extra and it was one of the choices.)
I picked it because it looked fun and because I knew my 5-year old would associate it with Lightning McQueen from Disney’s movie, Cars
Truthfully I was disappointed by its lack of “muscle”…and let’s keep in mind…it’s a modern Dodge. The car brand Dodge doesn’t conjure up luxury and exclusivity in the run-of-the-mill American -or Bostonian- (whether merited or not.)
This reminds me of the cultural clash more than a decade ago when my husband I were renting a Pontiac Grand Am. He was all excited because it was a “Pontiac” and all I was thinking was…”Sheesh, all we get is a Pontiac.”
It does go to show that status symbols and quality reputation is both a matter of marketing and propaganda but also of cultural perception. So here I am straddling the cultural divide ridiculing anyone trying to show off with a Dodge. It reminds me that regardless of culture or national identity we’re all potentially idiots.
After all, Volvo is the intellectual elite’s luxury status symbol in the US. Just drive though Wellesley (MA) one day. Try to tell that to Lars-Evert from Uddevala and watch him belly chuckle in his wooden clogs.