Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

  1. Welcome to GM Inside News Forum General discussion forum for GM

    Welcome to GM Inside News Forum - a website dedicated to all things GM.

    You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, at no cost, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, Join GM Inside News Forum today!
     
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 35

Thread: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

  1. #1
    GMI Staff Member Premium Member nadepalma's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    10,739
    Thanks
    382
    Thanked 1,974 Times in 973 Posts
    My Ride
    2007 Ford Fusion

    Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs
    Ruggedness is the wagon's last saving grace as far as American buyers are concerned.
    By Noah Joseph
    FEB 25, 2020
    Car & Driver

    • Wagons given a rugged treatment to make them more like SUVs are vastly outselling traditional-looking wagons in the U.S. market.
    • As two examples, the Subaru Outback (pictured at left above) found 181,178 buyers in the U.S. in 2019, whereas the Mercedes-Benz E-class wagon (right) sold an estimated 8000 units.
    • Still, brands including Volvo, Audi, and Mercedes make it clear they will continue competing for buyers in the limited wagon market.

    We've all heard the common refrain: the station wagon is all but completely dead in America, its place largely taken by crossovers and sport-utility vehicles. And we're not here to tell you otherwise: Jeep, for example, sold more Grand Cherokees alone last year in the United States than all the wagons combined. But if the station wagon does have a future in America, it's to pose as an SUV.

    Over the course of 2019, ruggedized wagons outsold "conventional" wagons by a ratio of more than nine to one. Automakers typically differentiate these models by raising their ride height, adding lower-body cladding, and fitting all-wheel drive as standard, all in an effort to increase the wagon's appeal in a market hungry for sport-utes. And in relative terms, at least, it's working.

    CONTINUE AT LINK ABOVE
    "La vita come un albero di Natale..c' sempre qualcuno che ti rompe le palle!"

  2. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to nadepalma For This Useful Post:

    eklauss (02-28-2020),SierraGS (03-01-2020)

  3. Remove Advertisements
    GM Inside News
    Advertisements
     

  4. #2
    GMI Staff Member Premium Member nadepalma's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    10,739
    Thanks
    382
    Thanked 1,974 Times in 973 Posts
    My Ride
    2007 Ford Fusion

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by Car & Driver
    Add up those numbers, and the resulting picture is crystal clear. Of the approximately 216,000 wagons sold in America last year, ruggedized wagons accounted for more than 196,500, or nearly 91 percent of the total. The Outback, which remains Subaru's most popular model in the U.S., accounted for nearly 84 percent of the wagon market all by itself.

    With less than 16 percent of that already small market left to be divided up by the other competing automakers, it should come as little surprise that Buick, Volkswagen, and BMW won't be offering their wagons here any longer.
    Incredible to think that the Outback is still their most popular model (would have though the Forrester supplanted it), and kind of makes it the "Jeep Wrangler" of the segment (many have tried to emulate it and failed, but the Wrangler still dominates it's segment).

    Still, there may be a lesson in there for GM and others. If the market ever shifts again, or gasoline prices once again impact buying habits, "rugged" wagons could be a means of recapturing sales.

    As an aside, one has to wonder if this is where the "sedan" market is ultimately going.

    With Ford's announcement that they'll quit all passenger car production for the US market (minus the Mustang and, for now, the Continental), there have been reports that Ford is going to "re-invent" and "re-imagine" the bread n' butter family sedan. The Fusion has been an incredibly popular and solid competitor in the market. And as GM, Ford, and Chrysler end passenger sedan output, it's only spotting volume to their foreign competitors -- driving once loyal customer elsewhere as they shun the current Crossover/SUV craze for more plebeian metal.

    And yet, as this recent story from Autoblog illustrates (Ford Fusion-size crossover spied with lifted wagon looks), in a market dominated by crossovers and SUVs, perhaps the way forward for passenger car sales are ---- rugged wagons?

    Image courtesy of, and credited to, autoblog.com


    If that actually comes to fruition, it would almost seem as though Honda/Acura were a bit ahead of the game with the Crosstour and ZDX, respectively.

    While both are a bit more "coupe" looking in appearance, it would be interesting to see how they compare to what Ford ultimately produces and slaps the Fusion nameplate on the back of.




    Of course, a big irony could ultimately be that any such resulting product would have a similar look and utility (though a smaller footprint, since the Fusion is "mid-sized") as Ford's own now-deceased Freestyle/Taurus X:

    Last edited by nadepalma; 02-28-2020 at 03:40 PM.
    "La vita come un albero di Natale..c' sempre qualcuno che ti rompe le palle!"

  5. #3
    6.0 Liter L76 V8 sdotjeezy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Posts
    2,473
    Thanks
    774
    Thanked 2,139 Times in 1,095 Posts

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Unfortunately Americans only like station wagons that are slathered in plastic cladding. The Regal Tour-X looked a zillion times better as just a regal wagon than with the cladding...The Volvo V90 looks better as just the V90 and not the cross country. And this thing is hands down the sexiest FWD mainstream wagon on the market...too bad we'll never see it in the US:

    My Rides:
    '19 Buick Enclave
    '07 Dodge Magnum SRT-8
    '19 Mazda 6

  6. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to sdotjeezy For This Useful Post:

    autofan (03-02-2020),dannyg (02-28-2020),gkr778 (03-01-2020),nadepalma (02-28-2020)

  7. Remove Advertisements
    GM Inside News
    Advertisements
     

  8. #4
    GMI Staff Member Premium Member nadepalma's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    10,739
    Thanks
    382
    Thanked 1,974 Times in 973 Posts
    My Ride
    2007 Ford Fusion

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by sdotjeezy View Post
    And this thing is hands down the sexiest FWD mainstream wagon on the market...too bad we'll never see it in the US:

    Agreed. That's a really attractive wagon.
    "La vita come un albero di Natale..c' sempre qualcuno che ti rompe le palle!"

  9. #5
    R2-D2 Astromech Droid Premium Member Neanderthal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    A sunny cave in Transylvania
    Posts
    34,743
    Thanks
    9,001
    Thanked 7,379 Times in 4,489 Posts
    My Ride
    17 Soul&/01 PT LTD/15 JD130

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by nadepalma View Post
    Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs
    Ruggedness is the wagon's last saving grace as far as American buyers are concerned.
    By Noah Joseph
    FEB 25, 2020
    Car & Driver

    • Wagons given a rugged treatment to make them more like SUVs are vastly outselling traditional-looking wagons in the U.S. market.
    • As two examples, the Subaru Outback (pictured at left above) found 181,178 buyers in the U.S. in 2019, whereas the Mercedes-Benz E-class wagon (right) sold an estimated 8000 units.
    • Still, brands including Volvo, Audi, and Mercedes make it clear they will continue competing for buyers in the limited wagon market.

    We've all heard the common refrain: the station wagon is all but completely dead in America, its place largely taken by crossovers and sport-utility vehicles. And we're not here to tell you otherwise: Jeep, for example, sold more Grand Cherokees alone last year in the United States than all the wagons combined. But if the station wagon does have a future in America, it's to pose as an SUV.

    Over the course of 2019, ruggedized wagons outsold "conventional" wagons by a ratio of more than nine to one. Automakers typically differentiate these models by raising their ride height, adding lower-body cladding, and fitting all-wheel drive as standard, all in an effort to increase the wagon's appeal in a market hungry for sport-utes. And in relative terms, at least, it's working.

    CONTINUE AT LINK ABOVE
    I've been calling these utes Tall Wagons for a while now.
    2017 Soul &, Titanium

    The freedom of Speech may be taken away, and, dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep, to the Slaughter. George Washington

    Hidden Content

  10. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Neanderthal For This Useful Post:

    eklauss (03-02-2020),Mr.Buttons (02-28-2020),skylark68 (03-03-2020)

  11. #6
    4.6 Liter Northstar V8 Mr.Buttons's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    In my room
    Posts
    1,618
    Thanks
    1,944
    Thanked 997 Times in 578 Posts

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    I love seeing previous generation Ford Escapes running around with that empty differential cradle in the rear and snicker to myself " What a dopey looking car who people think it's a rugged SUV.".

  12. #7
    Chevrolet VOLT Premium Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    The land of the hethan
    Posts
    10,596
    Thanks
    1,530
    Thanked 3,725 Times in 2,419 Posts
    My Ride
    The coffin on wheels
    Different time when people preferred the truckster look, the majority of those buyer never going truly off road.
    Interesting that Ford intends using Bronco styling cues to create Bronco Sport as an alternative to the Escape.
    I wonder how Escape will fair in all of this

  13. #8
    2.8 Liter Turbocharged V6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    SE MI
    Posts
    783
    Thanks
    511
    Thanked 359 Times in 204 Posts
    My Ride
    2008 HHR SS

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    GM is not going to put enough effort into anything like this to make a difference. The Buick wagon has never been advertised anywhere. Guess it was a failure. Kill it. There are some real idiots out there. After the money is already spent to build it, and bring it here, could you at least TRY to sell them?

    You would think that once the money was committed, the lack of sales would result in canned asses, but no... what a world!

  14. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Chassis Guy For This Useful Post:

    autofan (03-02-2020),eklauss (03-02-2020),richmond2000 (03-02-2020),SierraGS (03-01-2020)

  15. #9
    6.2 Liter LS9 Supercharged V8
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    St. George, Ut.
    Posts
    9,824
    Thanks
    12,460
    Thanked 3,539 Times in 2,298 Posts
    My Ride
    2016 Nissan Rogue SV AWD

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by sdotjeezy View Post
    Unfortunately Americans only like station wagons that are slathered in plastic cladding. The Regal Tour-X looked a zillion times better as just a regal wagon than with the cladding...The Volvo V90 looks better as just the V90 and not the cross country. And this thing is hands down the sexiest FWD mainstream wagon on the market...too bad we'll never see it in the US:

    Other than certain Subaru type things. Buick Regal Tour X was slathered in cladding but didn't seem to help it. That looked worlds better without.

  16. #10
    7.0 Liter LS7 V8 JimmyDiablo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    4,177
    Thanks
    1,874
    Thanked 2,210 Times in 1,257 Posts

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by 1958carnut View Post
    Buick Regal Tour X was slathered in cladding but didn't seem to help it. That looked worlds better without.
    I would really be curious to know how many more would have been sold had it been offered... I thought it was really nice.


  17. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to JimmyDiablo For This Useful Post:

    1958carnut (02-29-2020),autofan (03-02-2020),criticalmass (03-01-2020),kmacleod (02-29-2020),SierraGS (03-01-2020)

  18. #11
    6.2 Liter LS9 Supercharged V8 big swede's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    8,746
    Thanks
    297
    Thanked 802 Times in 402 Posts
    My Ride
    Scat Pack Shaker

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Get rid of the roof racks that no one uses and they would look even better.

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to big swede For This Useful Post:

    gkr778 (03-01-2020)

  20. #12
    2.8 Liter Turbocharged V6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    795
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 249 Times in 122 Posts

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Great looking wagon. too bad it's FWD based and only a 2.0T. basically a better looking minivan to me.
    The competition cleans it's clock, but are certainly uglier.

  21. #13
    2.4 Liter SIDI ECOTEC
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    St Peters, Mo
    Posts
    299
    Thanks
    15
    Thanked 100 Times in 60 Posts
    My Ride
    Lone Star Skipper Sea King 35

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Not surprised they don't know the difference between an SUV and CUV.

    For the record most of us in the "stay off my lawn" generation all owned wagons at some point and most of us liked them. I would buy one today as our traveling car except our Acadia is so much more comfortable and easier to get in and out of than any sedan based trash hauler big enough to do our job. I don't see us ever giving up the taller seating, even after we give up long distance driving. Currently have 3.7K behind us and a couple K left to go this winter.

    The only wagon I see in my future is something mid size 60's-70's as a daily driver to get away from the modern stuff for a second car. I have hobby activities involving boats and old motors and a car like that would serve me well.
    Last edited by Larkbill; 03-01-2020 at 08:37 AM.

  22. #14
    2.8 Liter Turbocharged V6
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    825
    Thanks
    550
    Thanked 516 Times in 304 Posts
    My Ride
    CTS-Vagon/11/BD/VetGS/19/white

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    Quote Originally Posted by JimmyDiablo View Post
    I would really be curious to know how many more would have been sold had it been offered... I thought it was really nice.

    Zero difference I imagine. I recall when I bought my wagon, I got a huge discount as they wanted to just get rid of it. They'd had it for a few months with no takers. While I was there, I also looked at the coupe version. I thought the coupes were stunning and even though I needed the utility of the wagon, I could have been swayed. I asked about pricing. As I recall they were adding a market adjustment to the coupes and not budging. So I picked up the wagon, along with the 1600 people who bought them total. Caddy should not make that mistake again. I imagine the only reason Buick offered the TourX was it was imported from Europe where they do buy wagons. Why do so many on car forums wish for wagons when the facts are no one buys them.

  23. #15
    CJH
    CJH is offline
    6.2 Liter LS3 V8 CJH's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    MinnesoTAX
    Posts
    3,660
    Thanks
    4,779
    Thanked 1,705 Times in 954 Posts
    My Ride
    Audi S4, Merc GL

    Re: Station Wagons Sell in U.S. Mainly When They're Disguised as SUVs

    The V90 is the best looking Volvo, IMHO. It just fits their design language.
    Hidden Content Originally Posted by CJH Hidden Content
    Don't be loyal to a company, be loyal to good product and service.
    Past Rides:
    Audi A6 4.2L
    QX80 - @Big Salvage Yard in the Sky
    Audi S4 2.7TT
    Durango Limited Hemi 5.7L
    Ford Explorer 5.0L
    Pontiac Grand AM 3.4L
    Chevy Corsica 3.0L
    Toyota Tercel "Turdcel"
    Ford LTD Station Wagon 5.0L "Blue Thunder"

  24. The Following User Says Thank You to CJH For This Useful Post:

    richmond2000 (03-02-2020)

  25. Remove Advertisements
    GM Inside News
    Advertisements
     

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 2 users browsing this thread. (1 members and 1 guests)

  1. JTL2017

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v4.1.2