Today it’s Halloween. So, gear up with popcorn, go to a horror move marathon or send your kids on the usual trick-or treat run. And, since there’s no Apocalypse that we know off – the Mayan calendar craze has faded into the sunset – we might explain how and why some people drive “zombie” vehicles.
It won’t go Christine on you and won’t dry to eat your brain. A “zombie” car is actually a great reference used by Experian Automotive as a moniker for vehicles that are still on the road although their brand has been discontinued. According to the research & consulting services firm, on US roads we can still find a massive number of zombie cars – 14.7 million. And to that extension, for the auto industry the latest economic crisis of 2008-2009 has truly been a Zombie Apocalypse. Some of America’s auto brands got the axe back then as General Motors and Chrysler emerged from bankruptcy and restructured.
GM killed off (production wise, there was no blood involved) the Pontiac, Saturn, Oldsmobile and Hummer brands. Ford had a very close call with the process and got rid of Mercury. The Pontiac brand is the most prominent victim here – 32.1% of zombie cars belong to the brand and it also has three models in the Top 5 “undead” models: the Grand Prix, Grand Am and G6, according to Experian. Mercury models are the second largest zombie category (19.4%), with the Grand Marquis also snatching a place in the Top 5 models still on the roads. Saturn comes next (16.1%), followed by Oldsmobile with 11.7% and Suzuki at 4.9%.