Those Little Flourishes That Make You Go "Mmmmmm".

I’m as guilty as everybody else. We all coo and wow over every new shiny projectile that shows up in Hooniverse News. We also all salivate over whatever extraordinary artefact Hooniverse dredges up from Craiglist, whether it be an unseen-by-human-eyes-for-decades barnfind or some insane combination of chassis, engine and build-sheet that defies any possible explanation and is all the more awesome because of it.
We love this shit. But I can’t help but feel that we all look a little too far from home to find something to celebrate.
So, I’m laying down a challenge to everbody anybody willing to accept. Your challenge is to go outside, right now, to your daily driver and photograph just one thing that you really, really like about it. If you can’t think of anything right now, the chances are you’re driving the wrong car. But go and take another look and find something. Then come back and show us.
Meanwhile,  to provide inspiration and to show that beauty can be found anywhere, take the jump to see two features I like on a 1997 Rover.

Before we go any further I’d like to thank you for taking the jump. You’re obviously intrigued, so I hope I can make it worth your while.
The Rover 800 first corroded upwards into being in 1986 and then, to grotesquely simplify things, pretty much carried on for 12 years. There was update upon update upon update visited upon the poor thing, some of which were for the better, some of which, er, weren’t. But two pieces of the design continued largely unaltered throughout the car’s lifetime.
The roofline. The 800 series always had a semi-floating roof. The A, B and C posts were finished with black trim to match the tinted, flush glazing, to create a band which ran around as far as the rear side window, and I think the way they did this was quite elegant. I also like how the doors cut into the roof without having anything so awkward as a gutter to worry about. I know similar treatments exist on other cars, but here it is on my daily driver.
And the door handles, which are contoured to be flush with the styling swage line that runs around the car. Now, Rover had been fitting flush door handles for ages (Hello Range Rover, Morris Marina….and subsequently Lotus Esprit) but I think they work particularly nicely here on the 800 series.
So there you have it.
What can you find, on your own car, that we can spend a little time celebrating? Over to you. Now we’re hooked up to Disqus it seems there are a variety of ways to share your images, so get to it!
 (Images copyright Hooniverse 2015. Lead image was a phone photo of a DSLR screenshot of my laptop showing a phone photo.)

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47 responses to “Those Little Flourishes That Make You Go "Mmmmmm".”

  1. Hatchtopia Avatar

    The biggest thing for me has been this. After a few years of driving an auto, the return to the manual transmission was revelatory. I gave up about 45 horses from the previous car, but totally worth it.

    1. Hatchtopia Avatar

      And these 17 inchers from a Ford Fusion made a significant improvement, even with the cheapo tires.

    2. Kiefmo Avatar

      I once test-drove a Tribute with the 4cyl/manual/FWD drivetrain. It was more sprightly than I expected given the size of the vehicle relative to the engine. I was seriously considering it (because bass rig) until the same Mazda dealer got a 2002 Protege with a manual and sunroof in on trade. I really liked the sharpness of the Protege, and it was a couple thousand cheaper, so after confirming I could cram in my 4×10″ rig, I pulled the trigger on the Protege instead.
      I never did upgrade to the 8×10″ cab, so it worked out fine.

      1. Hatchtopia Avatar

        It’s certainly not the fastest car that I’ve ever owned, but it does exactly what I want it to. That and the fact that my 1.5 mile commute never gets above 35 mph helps me not notice the lack of blistering performance. Oh, and 26 mpg in mixed driving too.

  2. Muthalovin Avatar

    Just the paint. I know it’s not for everyone, but I have grown quite fond of this color.

    1. Kiefmo Avatar

      There’s a FiST in my parking garage at work. Same color, except he’s swapped to all seasons on steelies for the winter. It makes me smile every time I see it, just like seeing my car does.

  3. Andrew Avatar

    I think one of my favourite features of my car is the panoramic view out of it. The pillars are skinny and the belt line is much lower than most new cars. It’s also a bit harder to take a picture of “double wishbones front and rear with adjustable camber, caster and toe.”
    There are also the illuminated keyholes for both the driver door and
    the ignition. That’s kind of fluff but actually kind of handy too.

  4. Citric Avatar

    After an adventure last night in a friends’ Intrepid, I have a sudden and fervent appreciation for easily accessed tow hooks, because that car doesn’t have any. Which is GREAT when your friend puts it in the ditch and everyone nearly freezes to death desperately trying to find a hard point to pull it out. But that’s just a rant that built up over the previous evening, I’ll find something else on my own car in a bit.

  5. mdharrell Avatar

    First a new commenting system, then I have to borrow a camera from an unsuspecting coworker and walk out to the parking garage. And back. Hooniverse is unusually demanding today. Anyway, this is what I’m driving; I bought it primarily for its steering wheel:
    Less so for its upholstery:

    1. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

      A sound motivation for buying if ever there was one.

  6. Citric Avatar

    Alright, real answer, I love this squiggly line in the headlights.

    View post on

    Whoever decided that the headlights needed to be defined by a funky weird line like that makes it look like he was enjoying what he was doing, and I like that. And I enjoy the car.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      Do you have some kind of hood bra on your car?

      1. Citric Avatar

        Its a sort of bug deflector thingy, doesn’t seem to do much but doesn’t seem to hurt anything and the other red one in town doesn’t have it. Bought off the lot, it was on it already.

          1. Citric Avatar

            Those bugs are driven by mad people, gotta do what you can to deflect them.

  7. PotbellyJoe★★★★★ Avatar

    My 2009 Vibe GT. The independent rear suspension, found only on the GT and AWD models, however the GT was the only one of those two to have an available 5-Speed.
    The manual was a given, but the IRS is what makes the Vibe GT worthwhile.

  8. Guest Avatar

    I’ve known for the last decade that I’m driving the wrong car and I’m hoping someone would just light it on fire so I’d be forced to get something else. It’s been running the stock wheels and suspension for the past five years again, but here it was in 2006. Haven’t bothered taking many pictures after that. <img src="; width="500"

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      What’s keeping you from getting a different car?

  9. Dean Bigglesworth Avatar
    Dean Bigglesworth

    I’ve known for the last decade that I’m driving the wrong car and I’m hoping someone would just light it on fire so I’d be forced to get something else. It’s been running the stock wheels and suspension for the past five years again, but here it was in 2006. Haven’t bothered taking many pictures after that. <img src="; width="500"
    sdmglnx fjhsgf,ewzfjae

  10. Bret Avatar

    The dog friendliness of the Miata is not acknowledged as much as it should be. My little fellow can find plenty of places to make himself comfortable. His favorite is on the back deck when the hardtop is on. The door sills are also the perfect height for chin resting while we’re in line at the drive-through.

    1. Vairship Avatar

      Things I like about the PT Cruiser: manual transmission for surprisingly spirited acceleration (I hear the auto boxes are slugs), compact size for parking yet room for all four dogs with the seats folded up or removed, low flat floor that’s perfectly even with the high sidewalk on our street (easy on the two older dogs).

  11. longrooffan Avatar

    Both in the same shot….clam shell tail gate and hooniverse decal

  12. roguetoaster Avatar

    I like quad headlights a lot! I’m consistent too, as all but one of the cars I have had have been so equipped. With the only exception being the ’76 2002, which only has two 7″ lights.

  13. SlowJoeCrow Avatar

    I drive a Saturn SL2 so it is devoid of flourishes, so I will nominate the hinged panel the fills the door handle opening of a Subaru XT coupe

  14. Kiefmo Avatar

    Not unique to this era Merc or anything, but I’ve never had a car with a hood ornament before this one, so I really enjoy it.
    Except when it gets crooked. It bothers me to no end when I look out over that long hood and it’s canted to the left or right.

    1. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

      Agree with you on this one. Being able to aim at people using the tri-point gunsight makes for a strangely rewarding experience, even in a lowly C180.

      1. HDS Avatar

        I love that pointed star when driving my wife´s w204. I also hate it when its crooked, it makes me want to get out of the car at a red light to fix it.

  15. Guest Avatar

    My favourite part is looking under the hood. How many other car owners have this view?

    And the last two are just for fun, because I can.

    1. roguetoaster Avatar

      Sadly, for many owners it’s the last sight they see before the SHO makes its final trip to the scrapper. On the plus side, those intake runners make for awesome wall art.
      I just noticed, I see no brake booster, is it remote boosted? Hydraulic boost?

      1. Guest Avatar

        I actually don’t know….

        I’m more of what one would call a car “historian”, but I’m working on learning the mechanical bits. Anyone knowledgeable care to comment?

  16. Batshitbox Avatar

    This is not my truck. Best stand-in, tho.
    Favorite feature? The long bed, which in the case of a C1500 means a 35 gallon gas tank (not shown.) (Giant source image, will it resize?)

  17. hwyengr Avatar

    Taking some liberties with “daily driver” here, since there are no featuers of the CTA 3200-series that are particularly noteworthy. I’m not sure why this one detail tickles me like it does. Maybe because it’s an artifact of having a gloriously long hatch, or that such design attention was paid to these seats which have probably been used fewer than 10 times in the past 30 years. But rear sun visors in a 2+2! Come on!

    1. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

      Those designers must have really thought about reversing.

  18. ptschett Avatar

    Since it’s still winterish enough for me to be DDing my Dakota, I’m going with the rear-opening half doors on the extended cab. So handy for tossing groceries/whatever in behind the driver’s seat.
    *file photo
    On the Challenger I’ll go with the telescoping center armrest, and on the ’96 Thunderbird I’ll go with the front seatbacks which don’t have to unlatched to swing them forward.

  19. JayP Avatar

    Daily driver – 230,855 miles.

  20. Sjalabais Avatar

    Got to admit, this is the first time I thought about the Hooniverse coming into my work parking lot in the morning…so here’s mine:
    I love the short distance between steering wheel and gear lever on my ’02 Honda Stream. Okay, I don’t race the thing, but it is a joy to shift gears quickly on this van.
    Other things I like are the very tight and precise steering (this 13 year old beats some new cars in this discipline), and the meaty brakes that just don’t fade (it’s supposed to be able to carry 700+kg).
    /minivan guy shuts up

    1. Hatchtopia Avatar

      Minivan with a stick? You don’t have to shut up.
      /CUV guy shuts up.

      1. Sjalabais Avatar

        Oh, yes, I live in stick country though. My wife’s Camry is an automatic – biggest downside to the car.

  21. Volvo_Nut Avatar

    Hard to take a picture of my Stealth 740 starting, every single time. I love it when it does that.

  22. neight428 Avatar

    The tack on ding guard is period correct, but will get 86’d eventually.

    1. salguod Avatar

      So, you appreciate the stickers or the vent?

      1. neight428 Avatar

        The ’79-81 Firebirds got better looking as GM tacked on more stuff.

        1. salguod Avatar

          I was hoping that would be your answer. i agree.

  23. Tiller188 Avatar

    Too lazy to go out and take a picture right now, but for me and my WRX, the large, front-and-center tach. (The little sweepy-thing that all the gauges do on startup is a fun bonus, too.)
    What makes it even better/more amusing to me is that it is unique to the WRX/STi; the Imprezas get a speedometer there instead.

  24. mzszsm Avatar

    I’m kind of cheating cause I have been driving a Toyota this winter, I guess I like having an armrest on my right and that indentation at the top of the dash. But on the Amazon I love the gutters, ribbon speedo, and tailgate with fold down license plate.

  25. Petrov Avatar

    In love with the optional HID headlights on the mk4 Golf, they provide way more light and look more elegant than the halogen ones.

  26. Fresh-Outta-Nissans Avatar

    I love so many things on my FR-S. If I had to pick one, it’s the maximum number on my instant-mpg readout: 127.0 mpg.
    Not 99 mpg, not 100mpg. Not even 999 mpg, and certainly not anything realistic. One hundred twenty seven, in its native language, reads “11111111.” Because the computer is in charge here, we are playing by its rules, in its language: Binary.