To me, this picture is the death rattle of full carbon (unpainted) cars loosing their “cool factor”. Speaking for myself here, I have always had a thing for full carbon cars. Whether it was the first time C-West rolled out their full carbon S2000 time attack car, or seeing a Pagani Zonda without paint, full carbon cars were the epitome of a hardcore tuner car. I always loved seeing those testing version Super GT cars with the bright green rims and the raw carbon bodywork much more than the finished cars with the flashy livery. My dream for many years was to have a full carbon car and leave it all raw carbon. But times change…
In the past couple of years I’ve wanted to cover my carbon fiber parts up more. It can be seen on my gold S2000 with just slivers of exposed carbon on the carbon fiber hood or mirrors. It can be seen on the painted carbon of the various GT-Rs that I’ve produced where carbon was used sparingly as an accent. And in the future I’ll surely cover up the carbon fiber more and more on the car’s I’m involved with. Why? Because it has gone from a functional display of tuning prowess into a gaudy display of wealth without any of the underlying meaning for its existence. Nothing defines that point more than a full carbon G-Class Mercedes, one of the heaviest and least aerodynamic road going cars.
The picture above I think defines this point for me, I’m used to seeing carbon fiber mere millimeters away from race rubber and aggressive offset racing wheels. Instead I’m looking at some heavy big luxury wheels and about 6 inches of fender gap with squarish 1970esque body panels. This car is not a functional use of carbon fiber in even the faintest stretch of the imagination. What I mean by that is that Mansory has produced this Mercedes G-Class with full carbon fiber body panels and with matching Mansory women’s hand bags. You’d never get that strategy confused with Amuse’s Carbon R. Now don’t get me wrong, I fully appreciate carbon fiber’s use in fashion and as an exotic material. I’m all for carbon fiber home goods and accessories. Hell I’m the guy who blogged about carbon fiber flowers that shoot flames here! But when I see a full carbon fiber G-Class, something inside me dies. Put your favorite full carbon sports car next to this and suddenly that sports car is not quite as special as it once was.
This car has in my opinion stolen the mojo away from the full carbon tuner car. So to conclude, I’m saying here that I think full carbon (unpainted) tuner cars have jumped the shark.
What do you think?