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Old 14 Jan 2012, 02:58 pm
PiperGeorge's Avatar
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Default An Old PT Article

PT Cruiser Takes Fast Lane To Success
Jun 16, 2000 - Kevin Reed

The PT stands for "Personal Transportation" - it could just as easily mean "perfectly trendy".

Creating gridlock wherever its sighted, Chrysler's PT Cruiser owes much of its appeal to the fact that no two people see the same thing.

Enthusiasm for the wonder car's retro-looking exterior reminds older folks of 1930s and'40s sedans and delivery vehicles while baby boomers dream of being the first on their block to own the much sought after, nearly impossible to get status symbol. Teens, always on the lookout to set themselves apart, see a ready-made cool ride fit for customizing.

The rage is reminisceent of the early days of the new Beetle, which in 1998 scored 4,852 sales in its first month. Cruiser, with twice the factory output, notched an amazing 8,322 its first month on the market.

Even long-time car buffs liken PT Cruiser mania to the launch of the 1964 Mustang, with eager buyers sleeping outside dealerships, waiting for the doors to open.

And while the near celebrity status brought on by the ability to turn the heads of envious Mercedes and Porsche drivers might at first seem a hoot, Cruiser owners are finding themselves unprepaired for the unbridled fanaticism of PT wanna-be's.

"It's getting to be a pain," said one local owner. "I come out of the mall and there's always a flock of people surrounding my car, gawking and touching and strangers asking for rides - it's a little too much. Someone got so close they dribbled melted ice cream all over the hood, just like it was bird droppings. These people are worse than pigeons."

And more than one stressed-out owner has reported in online chats of calling in the police to break up bands of onlookers gathered on their front lawns and driveways to view their prized vehicles.

Its the Internet, in fact, that's helping propel interest in the Cruiser. Michael Challis of Long Beach, Wash. and his wife, Cindy, have created the PT Cruiser Club web site, which since its inception has seen its membership swell to over 1,000 with about 15 new members joining daily.

Dues are $39 annually, which entitle members to a laminated membership card, personal password, an online roster of fellow enthusiasts and more. The site is updated with current news and forums for members to leave views and comments and information regarding rallies and charity runs.

Cruiser mania has even spilled over onto the auction site eBay. One recent search yielded over 500 items up for bids, from PT Cruiser mouse pads and coffee mugs to a six-pack of PT Cruiser root beer - not to mention the real deal, which at 17 bids was fast approaching $21,000 with several days still remaining.

And where does this Cruiser craze leave the seemingly thousands of PT-less patrons that Chrysler hopes to lure into show rooms once the car's output finally catches up with demand?

Needing deeper pockets, no doubt. Chrysler, savy to the popularity of their hot-ticket transport, already is planning on boosting prices on fully-loaded vehicles by 4%, or $800 and on basic entry models by as much as 2%, or nearly $200.
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Old 14 Jan 2012, 05:07 pm
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Default Re: An Old PT Article

I looked at them at the Chrysler dealer's in Arlington, VA a few months after they came out - they were priced at $3,000.00 over sticker and were selling at those prices. I didn't get mine until 2005, when they were more available and it actually had a 1,000.00 "rebate" going for it.
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Old 16 Jan 2012, 07:14 pm
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Default Re: An Old PT Article

amazing.....remember that like yesterday.... in 10 years when not many are left in good shape:....they will be a fixtures at car shows,,,,,,
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