SEE: Is that a Renault Scenic bakkie? Europe’s favourite cars get a US makeover

Image: SelectCarLeasing
Image: SelectCarLeasing

Ever wondered why what would happen if American automakers had free reign in designing some of Europe's most popular cars?

Select Car Leasing have been busy giving cars such as the Fiat 500 and the Renault Scenic American makeovers whilst providing them with the tools to succeed Stateside.

The results are quite entertaining:

Fiat 500 vs Hot Rod:

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Europe's favourite city car, the Fiat 500 has been mashed up with an all-American hot rod. After selling a measly 5000 in 2018 vs Europe’s 118 000 its clear that like most city cars in the US, its lack of space, engine size and comfort levels just won’t cut it. With the many events celebrating hot rods every year across the US, often drawing in large crowds, SelectCarLeasing  thinks that the Fiat 500’s small chassis could be perfect for this odd adaptation.

Volkswagen Golf vs 70’s Woodie Wagon:


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                                                       Image: Evolved

Next Select turned its attention to Europe's favourite hatchback, the Volkswagen Golf. The Golf is a staple of Europe’s roads with sales of over 445 000 vs only 42,000 in the US in 2018. Like many other hatchbacks with dwindling popularity in the US, the Golf never even had a chance at success. Instead, Select have turned the popular little 5-door into a classic Woodie wagon, mostly recognisable from 60’s and 70’s America. Considering the Golf’s iconic styling and history, a timeless throwback to their heyday by Volkswagen could be a refreshing change in a crowded market.

Volkswagen Passat vs American Saloon:

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The VW Passat has been one of Europe’s favourite saloon’s since it first rolled off the production line in 1972. It lacks appeal in the US most likely due to the more stylish alternatives on offer from more popular American brands such as Chevrolet, Acura and Nissan. In 2018, the Passat sole a modest 41 000 units in the USA which was completely trumped by Europe, after selling over 150 000. 

Select have decided the Passat is simply just too boring for flamboyant Americans. They recommend that Volkswagen should leave behind the sensible styling, efficient economy and aerodynamic design. By adding tailfins, lowered suspension and hood ornament it could help the Passat shake its stuffy image and stand out from the crowd.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class vs Corvette/Viper:

graph mercedes

                                                              Image: Evolved

The Mercedes E Class is an iconic executive car on roads across Europe and does actually sell relatively well in the US market hitting 45 000 sales in 2018. However, when comparing US sales to Europe, the German manufacturer still struggles to compete with the continental competitors such Acura, Infiniti, Lexus, Cadillac and Genesis.

The E Class may be a little tame for the American market and needs to stand out in order to compete. Select have clearly taken inspirations from two classics; the Dodge Viper and the Chevrolet Corvette.

By keeping the back seats, think Porsche 911 or Audi TT, but added distinctive side exhausts and hood and side vents to transform the E Class into an awesome American sports car, fit for all occasions.

Audi TT “Muscle Edition”:

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When the Audi TT was first launched, it was greeted relatively warmly in the American market, selling 12,000 units compared to Europe’s 38,000 in 2000. In the very same year it was also nominated for the North American Car of the Year . Unfortunately, since then sales of the coupe have tailed off substantially in the US, despite frequent sale spikes in Europe due to new model releases.

Select’s answer to this failed cate is to add some American muscle. The beefy tyres, raised suspension, NASCAR-style rear spoiler, longer chassis and protruding front engine make the Audi TT perfectly placed for the American market. Muscle cars are an American institution, normally comprising of a car fitted with rear wheel drive and a powerful V8 engine.. The Audi TT's conversion from dainty coupe to muscly beast is sure to turn a few heads across America.

Renault Scenic vs bakkie:   

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                                                             Images: Evolved

The Renault Scenic is Europe's favourite MPV, selling a staggering 90,680 units in 2018 alone. The Scenic has never actually touched down on US soil, with Renault giving the entire market a swerve in favour of countries such as China, Russia and India. Select reckon that given some slightly drastic styling tweaks, Renault can make a great success of the Scenic in the States. 

Bakkies are one of America’s most popular motoring segments, models such as the Dodge Ram, Ford Ranger, Jeep Gladiator and Chevrolet Colorado are staples of the American road, frequently commanding sales figures twice that of the standard family saloon. Opening the back of the Scenic, raising its suspension, adding additional headlights and a beefy bumper, this powerful design ensures there’s no scenario the Scenic bakkie can't navigate with ease.

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