VEGA HISTORY: FINE LINES- Vega styling press quotes

by Robert Spinello (vegabob)

Unlike other small cars of its era, Vega was more than cute. It was
handsome in all its variations. If you bought one then, or still like
them now, chances are its because of Vegas good looks.

GM prototype had the smooth, clean body lines and flared wheel openings
of the production car, but featured a Nova-like square front end with a
high hood and large bumper. Not very attractive. When presented to
Chevrolet division, they thought it wouldn't sell. In the final hour
after design was presented to Fisher Body division for tooling, Chevy
stylists drafted a new proposal. They dropped the hood, added a buldge
(to clear the high overhead-cam engine), and drafted a '70 Camaro-type
front end with egg-crate grill and front mid-way blade bumper, Four
Chevy-style rear lights were added for Coupe and Sedan. Chevy presented
their revised design to GM President, Ed Cole-Vega's chief engineer. He
liked it. Fisher Body regrouped and this is how it was introduced.

I wouldn't be going out on a limb saying the original car's styling will
drive up its collectible status in years to come. It holds up rather
well 34 years later, especially with a current trend returning to high
belt treatments and "retro" styling features. GM and Chevy stylists, in
the Vega, produced a clean conservative design that looks good through
decades of changing styling trends.

CHEVROLET- "teaser ad" 1970
"If you like the 1971, you'll like the 1975...
We've got it the way we want it, and we think you'll like it."

MOTOR TREND- "Vega styling is quite reminiscent of 1955 Chevrolets from
the front with the verticle checkerboard grill and high mounted single
headlamps in each fender." -'71 buyers guide

"Styling is well balanced with some very distinct traces of the Camaro,
including the grill."

...."The wagon body style is good looking."

"The Vega was a hatchback coupe with crisp, uptown styling that makes it
one of the most visually appealing small cars on the market." -'72
buyers guide

"Vega GT...all surrounded by the sleekest styling package this side of Turin."
-12/71: super coupe comparison test

"Will the real Ferrari 365 GT 2+2 please stand up? Vega coupe has roof,
window, and deck forms extremely-and not accidentally-similar to those
of Italian luxury car."

...."A few years ago we criticized the irrational flamboyance of the
Corvette. now we must applaud the sensible, if conservative, Vega."

...."What is surprising is that GM should produce a car with such
"engineered" (as distinct from "styled") body lines; this suggests an
appeal to intellect rather than image."

...."Vega wagon has extremely simple but pleasant overall shape."

"The plain Vega sedan is as good-looking a car as you'll find in its
class...with the Vega they've turned out one of the finest-looking
compact sedans in the world."
-'72 road test annual

"Chevrolet's Vega is the heaviest, longest, lowest and most stylish car
of the group."

...."All five drivers thought it was the best-looking of the group, a
subjective triumph."
-1/71: 5 car comparison test

"The 1973 Vega is still the stylish, somewhat sporting economy car it
was when new, but improved."

...."it's a pleasure to report that the current Vega is attractive,
respectably quick, and frugal....Well done Chevrolet."
-6/73: GT coupe

"The Vega vies with the Pinto for "most stylish of the group."
-10/73: "A dozen small wagons"

"The restyled clean and interesting....although many Vega
enthusiasts prefer the older front end."
-'74 Fuel savers annual

"The Vega, even the most basic model, is one of the most stylish economy
-4/74: "25 MPG & Over"

"Vega's styling is..non-controversial and a sure-fire success."

"While some of the styling features are those of the Camaro, this
handsome little car used no "borrowed" parts from the other models in
the Chevrolet line."

...."the styling and general outward appearance of the Vega line is
probably the best of all the compacts."

"The GT version of the Vega wagon is highly styled, but there's no
mistaking the fact that it is a Chevrolet, at least from the front.The
black, Camaro-type grill dissected by the high front bumper readily
identifies the GT Vega as a Chevy Sportster."

...."The Vega wagon looks like an elongated import from the side. The
clean lines are broken only by the GT emblem and the rear air extractor
-7/72: GT wagon

"When you've got a winner, why change?"
That was no dought the question across the table at the '75 design
conference for the Vega, and one which brought out the obvious answer."

"Fastidious attention to detail that's typical of General Motors makes
it one of the best appointed small cars, one of the best-looking inside
and out."

"The Chevrolet stylists have clearly done it again with the GT package."
-'72: GT coupe

"The styling, or for that matter the design of the overall exterior and
interior package, is the best we've ever seen on a small car."

...."The wheel arches are beautifully flared."

...."On the GT model the rocker panel is painted black to further
accentuate the lowness of the car."

...."The Vega hood is fairly long in keeping with the sporty car look.
Each fender stands out clearly as the hood tapers down between them to
the grill in front."
-'71: GT wagon

"Clean, uncluttered lines give the Vega a handsome profile."

...."Chevrolet design theme is carried out with commendable restraint."
-4/71: coupe

"We liked the styling of the coupe. It's clean and sporty."

"It took us a long time to get used to the new front which came out last
year-like at least one year!"
-'75: GT coupe