The Christian Science Monitor July 30, 1957
This article from the Christian Science Monitor appeared at the onset of the 1957/’58 recession which hit American automakers hard. Ushering in the end of the tail-fin era, smaller European cars, such as the Volkswagen Beetle, were becoming increasingly attractive to consumers in the U.S. as an affordable alternative to larger America models. Though initially dismissive of these smaller imports, Detroit began to take note of their increased sales in the mid-fifties and, by the end of the decade, began offering their own trimmed-down designs to compete with those from Europe.
“America’s long-awaited ‘small car’ revolution is here. It now is assuming the proportions of a full-scale, foreign-directed invasion of United States highways. . . . [T]he strongest market is emerging from the second-car urge of Americans to buy cheaper vehicles that can be easily parked, that cost less to maintain, and promise upward of 35 to 40 miles to the gasoline gallon. In this category are the Hillmans, the Morris cars, Ford’s British models, the German Lloyd, France’s Renaults, and Italy’s Fiats.”
Harvey, W. Clifford. “Small-Car Invasion Prods Detroit to Act.” TheChristian Science Monitor, Jul. 30, 1957, p. 9.