2 Times Golf Influenced the Design of Sports Cars
Few sports are as readily associated with luxury sports cars and convertibles as golf. Many an Audi, BMW, or Cadillac owner will slip out at 2 PM on a Friday to hit the links with their favorite set of clubs and favorite golfing buddies. However, there are a couple of cars with specific design influences to ensure you don’t have to expose your golf clubs to contortionism to head to the course, like the Chevy Corvette and Jaguar XK.
Which sports cars had a golf club mandate in their design?
It’s not much of a secret that a sizable population of Chevrolet Corvette owners enjoy hitting the links. However, fans of the storied Jaguar brand might not know that one of its more recent GT cars had golf on the mind as well. Both of these cars had specific design mandates to accommodate owners’ clubs.
- Chevrolet Corvette
- Jaguar XK Convertible (X150 generation)
While the game of golf might have a negligible impact on the design and development of sports cars, some manufacturers realize the potential of ensuring that their golf-playing clientele is happy.
Can a Corvette carry golf clubs?
The Chevrolet Corvette won’t just carry golf clubs; it has design proportions tailored to ferry a set of clubs. According to General Motors, the space behind the C8’s LT2 engine will swallow up two bags, a golf bag, or even the Coupe’s roof panel.
The C8 isn’t the first Corvette with golf clubs on the mind, either. Specifically, every generation since the C5 has included specifications that accommodate clubs, likely due to the sports car model’s popularity among golfers.
Can you fit golf clubs in a Jaguar XK?
Both the Jaguar XK Coupe and Convertible had a design mandate to accommodate golf clubs. It’s easily believable with the Coupe, as it has a liftback rear design. However, even the reduced, nearly 10.0-cubic foot capacity of the sports car promised enough space for a set of clubs.
When Jeremy Clarkson still worked for Top Gear, he explained how the process of ensuring the X150 XK Convertible would swallow up a set of clubs compromised the stability of the model. Expressly, Clarkson referred to the rear window proportions being too small for a third brake light, which meant it had to reside on a decklid spoiler. You’d think this wouldn’t be an issue, but the spoiler inadvertently created front-end lift at high speeds.
Why do automakers care about fitting golf clubs into cars?
Automakers, specifically sports car makers, think about the popularity of golf and the likelihood that players will buy their vehicles. A GT car manufacturer like Jaguar or Aston Martin knows that an American golfer’s average annual household income is about $125,000, per Benchcraft. Consequently, it makes sense to design sports cars for potentially lucrative markets.
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