Thirty-five years later, I can still remember Ford’s 1978 ad campaign:
“Introducing the new Ford Granada ESS. Can you tell its looks from a $20,000 Mercedes-Benz?
This fifteen year old answered the television with an emphatic “YES!”. Even the the knock-off hubcaps (pun intended) were a pathetic travesty. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, I’m pretty sure Ford unintentionally insulted Mercedes.
I’m reminded of this because of my recent sighting of a rare, still functioning Granada. Unlike the Mercedes, which (a) tended to last more than five years, and (b) was worth maintaining and/or restoring, the Granada was crap.
But hey, a trip to Autozone can work wonders. The aftermarket hubcaps resemble AMG alloys, and those ubiquitous fake fender vents mimic, um… a Buick? And if you look carefully you’ll see a vaguely Cadillac style wreath around the door lock. Throw in a new feaux cloth top and a paint job, and you’ve got yourself a classic.