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Big Grilles Were Always A Thing

Well in a sense. Just hear me out.

Initiation

So we have all noticed the big grille trend in the car world. I think it's safe to say most of us dislike this trend. Personally I don't care about the size of the grille. I care about the design. But if we take a deep look into the past where cars were built better and were cooler, we may notice that grilles were big even back then. Now you all can disagree with me because I'm writing this for fun not for fact. But I am going to discuss current cars with big grilles and than share examples of old cars that have big grilles too.

Current Offenders

BMW M3

Now this is one of the most "popular" offenders of using a large grille. This design is definitely unique to say the least. In a good way or bad way though? I'll let you decide, but there is no arguing that it's eye catching rather that's good or not. Some say it looks like a pair of kidneys or a pig face. I don't know what BMW was thinking when they signed off on the obscure grille styling, but it is what it is. From it's 3.0 L Twin-Turbocharged Inline-6 it can produce a fantastic 406 lb ft of torque and 473 sinister horses. Not bad at all.

Motor Trend

Motor Trend

Toyota Tundra

The new 2022 Toyota Tundra is the most controversial Toyota since the Supra. Not only are people upset that the Tundra has dropped the I-Force V-8, but it has the strangest design. And of course a massive grille that looks like it could swallow a planet. From some angles the truck looks like it's ripping off a GMC Sierra and from others it looks decent. But the grille definitely throws off anything that is appealing to the design. I'm more sad about the disappearance of the V-8 than the odd design, but a solution is getting a Ram or an older Tundra.

Toyota US

Toyota US

Lexus LC500

Now the Lexus LC500 is a sexy car, with a fantastic V-8 mill and I will defend this car until the end of time. Sure it will get smoked by any and every current supercar, but who cares? It's built to be a comfortable GT car that can thrill you when you desire. It has a fairly large, luxury style grille that I truly do think looks modernly classy. It's okay if some of you disagree, but you can't change my mind. And after all, the LC500 is powered by a 5.0 L naturally aspirated V-8 that produces 471 horsepower and 398 lb ft of torque. It has dual overhead camshafts and a cross-plane crankshaft. It has all the modern engine tech with the perfect displacement and glorious soundtrack. There isn't much to complain about with this comfortable cruiser that lives in the fast lane. There are many, many more current offenders, but the main topic is how big grilles were always a thing. Even in the olden times.

Forbes

Forbes

Classic Car With Big Grilles

Ford Edsel

The Ford Edsel was a financial failure. It came out at a time where America wasn't doing so hot economically and Ford built up so much hype that the car didn't have in store for customers. And it was considered incredibly ugly at the time. And it lost buyers just for that reason. I've seen two of them in person and I completely disagree with the majority of people. I think the Edsel is an attractive car. Anyways, what is the first thing that stands out when you lay your eyes on the Edsel? The quirky and obtuse grille. It is very tall with a dull point at the bottom. Looks like no other grille you've ever seen. Again I don't know what Ford was thinking with the design, but as I said before it is very different from other cars and I actually think its a beautiful car. And people forget that it's 410 cubic inch V-8 was quite the powerhouse at the time. It contained 475 lb ft of torque and 375 horsepower. These were incredible figures in the 1950s.

Ford Authority

Ford Authority

Plymouth Fury

The particular Plymouth Fury I am talking about, is the 1958 one. If it wasn't for Stephen King's Christine novel and John Carpenter's movie, both of which came out in 1983, the Plymouth Fury would be very unknown. Heck I still think it's very under-respected. It's a drop dead gorgeous classic that was loaded with technology at the time. Expensive AC that costed $446 at the time which is equal to $4,221 in today's money which is a steep amount. It also had power steering, power brakes, button activated 3-speed automatic transmission, optional power windows, optional power seats, and very few were fuel injected. The Christine version (and my favorite) uses a 350 cubic inch "Golden Commando" V-8 with a pushrod valvetrain and dual four-barrel carburetors. It could produce 305 horsepower and 395 lb ft of torque. This was an insanely performance capable car at the time. It could do 0-60 mph in 7.7 seconds. Which sounds slow today, but that was enough to smoke a Ford Fairlane and Chevy Impala. Now onto the grille. The grille isn't super massive, but it is very long and still makes up over half the front end. And don't you dare call this car ugly. It's one of the most eye-pleasing automobiles that will ever be made. The Chrome bumpers are shaped in an indescribable way, but they are very pretty. I will own this car one day. Even if it requires a few years of work to make it look perfect and run flawlessly.

Fine Art America

Fine Art America

1968 Dodge Charger R/T

On the savage 1968 Dodge Charger, the whole front end is just the grille. It is far longer than it is tall, but because it takes up the whole front end, I think it can count as a big grille. It doesn't have headlights showing. One of the most bad ass features of all time is the Charger's hidden headlights that expose themselves in the dark. With the 1968 Charger you could get the beastly sized 440 Magnum that produced 375 horsepower. Or you could get the historical Elephant 426 Hemi and show everyone the finger as you blasted by at 6,000 RPM. It could produce 425 horsepower which is only 19 horsepower less than a 2021 Porsche 911 Carrera.

GAA Classic Cars

GAA Classic Cars

1959 Cadillac Eldorado

There isn't a single soul on the face of the earth that thinks this 1959 Caddy isn't stunning. And if there is someone who think's it's revolting, god help them. Before Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW or even Rolls Royce and Bentley became the top leaders, Cadillac was the most premier luxury car brand that you could have the pleasure to buy. And my goodness, would it be a real premium experience to own one in the time. Even now. And it's fabulously massive grille looks miles better than any current large grille. Cadillac really was a brand of exquisiteness. Sadly it's not the case anymore. But if you owned one back in the day, people knew you were of a higher class. And if you own one today. You sure as hell are.

Barrett-Jackson

Barrett-Jackson

1970 Dodge Coronet Super Bee

The overall design of the 1970 Super Bee is sublime. It looks like it will eat every car and human it sees. Maybe it will. With an optional 440 Magnum or 426 Hemi, this is no car you give to a 16 year old. Yeah looks like I'm not getting to drive one anytime soon. 375 horsepower to 425 depending on the mill you choose. But the separate, angular grilles is the coolest grille design that will ever be featured on a car, period. It is my absolute favorite muscle car and that opinion is yet to change. Still one of the most underrated Mopars, since the Charger and Challenger are so prolific. Maybe one day I could see one. Maybe even own one.

Auto Evolution

Auto Evolution

Many other cars

Ford F-100, 1941 Dodge truck, Buick Skylark, Bugatti Royale, Buick Riviera, Brewster Town Car, Hudson Hornet, Many Rolls Royces and so much more that you should list in the comments. Thanks for reading!

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Comments (39)

  • Yes, but this is ridiculous

      29 days ago
  • The issues isn't with big grilles as a whole, it never was. The issue is about how they're integrated and what they look like. The LC500 has a very well designed grille, the Bimmer does not.

      29 days ago
  • Coronets have a long history of big grills, all the way back to the first generation.

      29 days ago
  • These ford coupe's were bloody fantastic

      29 days ago
  • *cough Audi summer cookout grills *cough*

      29 days ago
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