When a new automotive design comes along, it replaces an older version as an evolutionary step forward. This dates back to the late 1800s when Bertha Benz realized her husband’s brake design was subpar and invented brake linings.
We have seen plenty of innovations since then, including retiring leaded gasoline and discontinuing wooden body panels on station wagons. Even modern xenon and HID lights are on the chopping block as more automakers look toward LED technology. Buyers don’t want old ideas. They want fresh, cutting-edge designs that set new standards for automotive advancements.
Nevertheless, we have yet to come across a person who doesn’t think a 1955 Chevrolet Nomad doesn’t look fantastic. People love classic cars, regardless of how unsafe or outdated they may be. That got us thinking. If we were able to revive a handful of classic car components, what would we bring back?
What we came up with were 10 features that could be reborn with modern materials and engineering. Some were so far ahead of their time that they only would require a simple refresh. Retro designs continue to be popular, and automakers brave enough to revive the following components stand to set themselves apart.
1. Quarter glass vent windows
This was one of those additions to a vehicle that played a crucial role in keeping people cool before air conditioning. These miniature wedges of locking glass gave everyone up front plenty of airflow, especially when both sides were angled just right. They also were a great way to open a window without rolling one down. We wonder whether vent windows led to the coining of the phrase, “Crack a window!”