Leveraging Nostalgia to Create Innovative New Concepts

Even though I was very young in the 70s, I still have a lot of nostalgia for the aesthetics of that decade. Everything seemed better in a lot of ways and less homogenized. And while it increasingly feels like there is less and less this Gen Xer wants to shop for, Ford may have broken the cycle.

Introducing the 1978 F100 Pickup: a new all-electric concept for 2021.

While my dream has always been to get either an old 70s F100 and put a modern stereo in it or a 1974 or 1975 Gran Torino (owned by Starsky and Hutch… and my parents, too), Ford just gave car nerds the best of both worlds.

See this new 70s-inspired electric Ford concept truck - CNN Video

While it appears that most marketing and product development efforts are focused on Millenials and Gen Z, us middle children (who have the most spending power and income despite being the smallest generation) are often ignored.

I’m increasingly seeing this in my own life. My Gen X friends are becoming more and more frustrated with lack of inventory, selection, and variety we want (only made worse by the pandemic) and essentially opting out.

Why go to a store and deal with the hassle if the experience is:

A. going to be awful, and

B. you often leave empty handed?

Honestly, this was half the appeal of the latest season of Netflix’s Stranger Things, seeing a neon-lit, brick and mortar mall that actually looked enjoyable and worthwhile.

This Ford concept is one of the first products I’ve seen in some time that actually excites me because it feels squarely aimed at my generation’s interests. There is a sizable cross-section between people who love cleaner, more green electric vehicles and classic Ford designs.

Fingers crossed more brands figure this out and develop more interesting concepts pointed at Gen X audiences.

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