Don't they all have that?
November 6, 2017 2:18 PM   Subscribe

Looking for specific examples of automobile features considered (by the manufacturer anyways) so advanced as be worthy of being proclaimed on exterior badges and are now considered mundane "features" of modern cars.

  • Caution Disk Brakes - 59 Jaguar
  • Front Wheel Drive - K car
  • ABS - 90s Pontiac (practically all GMs of the era)
  • Twin Cam - MkI Escort, DOHC - Ford Taurus (among many)
  • 24V - Ford Taurus (among many)
  • Automatic Stickshift - VW Beetle
  • Fuel injection - 1958 Chrysler-DeSoto
  • Air conditioning (selectaire) - 59 Ford
posted by Mitheral to Technology (18 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Volvo's Lambda Sond emission sensor
posted by gyusan at 2:29 PM on November 6, 2017

Power-steering, power brakes and automatic transmission were all whiz-bang features when they came out. As late as the 60s one paid more for these, and could easily get a car without them. But it's been a long time since I've seen them advertised in this country.
posted by ubiquity at 2:29 PM on November 6, 2017

Turbo, CVCC (Honda Civic)
posted by splicer at 2:37 PM on November 6, 2017 [2 favorites]

Automakers will still put badges on cars for mundane (or even universal) features. Whenever you see an "i" in a name badge, that probably is there as a palimpsest of bygone badges to indicate fuel injection. You can't even buy a new carbureted car in the USA anymore. Turbocharging is pretty ubiquitous and is always called out. All-wheel drive, likewise.

Ford was the first inexpensive carmaker to put a V8 in their cars, and they slapped V8 badges on all of them.

The Tucker touted a lot of safety features, including a padded dash, independent suspension, steerable headlight (this kind of idea is still pretty unusual) and disk brakes.
posted by adamrice at 2:37 PM on November 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

Audi's procon-ten was prominently labelled in window stickers, but I think not actually in metal.

There's some amazing discussion of badging fuel injection with an i in this 1990s documentary from the UK. It also comes up later on, too (he is saying i, even if it sounds like a). 16V was more common than 24V in the 4 cylinder environment of the UK.
posted by ambrosen at 2:41 PM on November 6, 2017

Here's a five speed (manual) badge on a 1970s Fiat.
posted by ambrosen at 2:45 PM on November 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't remember which cars but electric windows and built-in CD players were a big deal.
posted by DarlingBri at 2:48 PM on November 6, 2017

And here's OHC, for Overhead Camshaft. Can't get more mundane than that, I think.
posted by ambrosen at 2:48 PM on November 6, 2017 [2 favorites]

Many VWs have a "TDI" badging which simply indicates it's the diesel model.

Current gas VWs have a "TSI" badge which apparently stands for "Turbocharged Stratified Injection" aka a normal turbocharged VW engine. I think post-Dieselgate every North American VW has a "TSI" badge on the back, making it pretty meaningless.
posted by GuyZero at 2:54 PM on November 6, 2017

Toyota VVT-i, variable valve timing.
posted by JoeZydeco at 5:01 PM on November 6, 2017 [2 favorites]

HO for High Output (Jeep 4.0l)
posted by patnok at 6:32 PM on November 6, 2017

AWD (all wheel drive) is quickly becoming the next such moniker.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:04 PM on November 6, 2017

I love the Mercedes KOMPRESSOR badges, indicating that the car’s engine has a supercharger.
posted by actionstations at 10:44 PM on November 6, 2017 [2 favorites]

The ubiquitous 'R' after the model name has become almost meaningless, except that it may be a slightly more sporty edition of a base model.

'Hemi' is still a thing.

More recently, an 'Eco' emblem may mean several different things to different mftrs.
posted by artdrectr at 11:28 PM on November 6, 2017

It wouldn't be proclaimed on the badging but I recall Volvo was the first to have cross-chest seat belts which are now absolutely standard in cars.
posted by belau at 4:36 AM on November 7, 2017

I think I remember seeing chrome announcing ABS, anti-skid braking system.
posted by SemiSalt at 5:19 AM on November 7, 2017

Mercedes puts BLUETEC on the back of its diesels that take diesel exhaust fluid. Which is urea and water. It's funny when you consider they've made a brand out of something so humble.
posted by adamrice at 6:07 AM on November 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

The stupid PZEV label, meaning partial zero emission vehicle, as if you could subdivide zero. It actually just means low emissions, but given current technology and rules, it is on almost every new car these days including many gas guzzling SUVs.
posted by w0mbat at 11:22 AM on November 7, 2017 [2 favorites]

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