Un fan al designului german vorbeste porno despre intoarcerea Brerei in America
Alfa Romeo's American Orgasm
Will the hot Italian brand's U.S. homecoming mean more sex for you? The Alfa Brera says, Hell yes
I never owned an old Alfa. I know almost nothing about the renowned Italian brand's heritage or their politics or design manifesto, and hence have almost zero nostalgia for antique Alfa automobiles or Dustin Hoffman's cool little car in "The Graduate".
Truly, my modern German engineering-loving heart does not really beat for creaky old automobiles in general, and when it comes to Italian cars I still tend to refer to the great line I read somewhere: "When you buy an Italian car, you get a great engine with some other stuff thrown in for good measure." Rim shot.
Well, not anymore.
To my mind, there is but one reason for celebrating the news that Alfa Romeo will finally be returning to the U.S. auto market in 2009 after a nearly 15-year absence: the Alfa Romeo Brera. A.k.a. the sexiest coupe ever. A.k.a. an orgasm on wheels. A.k.a. another precious reason to live, to pray that the world's petroleum reserves hold out just a little longer, to blithely ignore the fact that we all really should be turning our national attention to alternative fuels and Earth-friendly transportation and that we are ruining the planet with our gluttony and our oily wars and our Bush. I know.
But sweet Jesus with a leather chamois and a tub of warm carnauba wax, have you seen this car?
I'm rather shocked to admit it, but something good finally seems to be happening to modern car design. Which is a very wonderful thing indeed, given how we've endured over 20 years (30? More?) of horrible aesthetics and tepid imagination and lumpy jelly-bean sedans and the numb Honda Accordization of America. The good news is there now appears to be a return to sensuality and subtle curviness in car design, to sleek lines and slippery ergonomics where there was once only bulbous futuristic experimentation and/or random angular dissonance and (in America, certainly) never-ending macho piggishness.
Is the Brera the sexiest production car on the road today? Very possible. But we also have the Merc CLS, the visual equivalent of having hot sex with your best friend's mom in a wine cellar. And the new Porsche Cayman has an ass that makes J.Lo look like an amateur. The Audi TT is like a naked yoga teacher, tight and athletic and built to bend roads backward. Then there's the new BMW Z4 Coupe, looking like the mutant offspring of an angry reef shark and a Goethe love poem. Beautiful.
But the Brera, with its pinched razor headlamps and glass roof and edible rakish tail and lines like a Prada sports shoe, makes them all seem like so many VW Jettas. Well, OK, maybe not that boring. But you get the idea.
Maybe it's new sheet-metal-bending technology. Maybe it's the general mainstreaming of porn, a yummy salacious energy that's titillated all the design school geeks and exploded onto their sketch pads. Maybe it's a new generation of car designers raised on Apple iMacs and Photoshop's Trace Contour filter and the Internet's design library, all overlaid by a quiet resurgence of divine feminine sensibility as evidenced by a swarm of sleek new ergonomic vibrators. Whatever.
Alas, all this talk of sexy design really only refers, of course, to the European brands. Here in the United States it remains a slightly different, uglier, more macho story. All we get is the low-slung, cartoonish, overcooked Corvette. Or the Dodge Caliber. Or the 2009 Camaro, all wide stances and thick necks and the finesse of an NFL linebacker on steroids. That's essentially our value system in a nutshell: We've always valued fat shoulders over tight hips, stubble over silk, grunt over grace.
Hell, there hasn't been a truly luscious, sensual American car design since ... since ... oh right, there isn't one. Maybe the Saturn Sky? Sure, a little. But sadly, there remains this decidedly American need in auto design to always show off some hint of dumb muscle, to flex our cars in front of the mirror like frat boys at the gym. Cars like the Brera can only look over at these preening boys, grin slyly, order more Chianti.
Quick backstory: Alfa Romeo, faced with a stack of complaints about quality and reliability, slumped away from the American car market in 1995 with a whimper. They have barely been missed. But then corporate parent Fiat kicked the brand into gear, reworked everything, unveiled a new design direction, a reinvigorated aesthetic and dedication to quality and a whole new corporate structure. The brand came back to life in Europe, started winning awards and getting heaps of new praise and saving innocent kittens from burning buildings. Or something. Does it matter? I mean, have you seen this car?
According to Car & Driver, Alfa will kick off its U.S. return with the dazzling, ultra-lux $200K 8C supercar. This is merely the attention-getter. The flash and the glitter. Who buys silly $200K supercars? Arab sheiks? Jay Leno? Exactly.
Ignore the 8C. Focus on the more affordable Brera, which, along with the lovely 159 sedan, should soon follow, in both coupe and Spider iterations. Let us now celebrate the resurgence of sex and lust in automotive design. And thank Italy (and Brera designer Giorgio Giugiaro) once again for replanting its design aesthetic on our shores via something other than cute overpriced Alessi teapots and B&B Italia sofas, as it helps us forget all about the grunting thugs of the Italian World Cup soccer team. There -- I said it.
Oh, I know, it's enviro-blasphemy to worship internal-combustion cars in this day and age. Hell, I've argued this very point myself, even in the face of my unashamed love for my gem of an Audi A3. I know. But sometimes -- especially in the case of sex and design and beauty in the face of a torrent of skanky sheet metal and snot-ugly SUVs and a decidedly tepid, fear-based American agenda of sameness and uniformity -- a little juicy blasphemy is good for the soul. I mean, sweet Jesus with leather seats and a Bluetooth integration kit, have you seen this car?