Detroit Door Wars

Detroit Door Wars

Sunday, May 30, 1999
| Matthew 28:16-20

Detroit is desperate for new ideas to get people into their cars. The Saturn sedan now touts a third, reverse-opening back door; and asks in its commercials "Why didn't anyone think of this before?" The church's mandate is clear: If people are unwilling to come in the front door, let's unlock the side door, or take a chain saw and cut out some new ones.

"Nobody else gives you a full line of four doors standard," boasts an ad for Ford F-Series Trucks. "Nobody."

Four-door cars I understand. But trucks? What's going on here? "Hey, we know it's a free country and everything," the ad continues, "but why would you want to drive around in their three-door extended cab when Ford F-Series Supercab gives you four doors standard? Four doors standard for the price of their three-door. Four doors standard for easier access. A full line of four-door supercabs. That's a standard nobody else lives up to" (Ford F-Series Truck ad, Newsweek, November 9, 1998, 85).
Once upon a time, pickup trucks had two doors. Then someone added a third. Now it seems that the standard is moving up to four. Remember when additional brake lights were added to vehicles back in the mid-1980s? Certainly that third light, positioned above and between the two existing lights, was eye-catching and accident-preventing because it was new and different. But what are...

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