To my knowledge my grandfather named only two of his cars, they were both 36’ Plymouth’s one was a coupe that he had before the war and the other was a convertible that he acquired post WWII, that car is still in the family. He named them both Emily there was Emily I and Emily II. These cars develop names as they develop personalities, they may remind you of previous relationships, good or bad, they may have no relation to any one you have ever met and have a personality all their own. I started naming my vehicles after I had my first 99’ Dodge Ram. I had been through so much with that truck I formed a strong emotional attachment with it. I had put all of my own labor into her and we had certainly had our ups and downs. That truck became like family, it was a truly sad day when I sold her. I named her Roxanne or Roxy for short. Previous to that I had not really named my cars, I'm not entirely sure why.
Naming vehicles seems to be a fading tradition with a few exceptions. The modern trend toward “naming” vehicles is not actually giving them a relate able or human name, removing some of the attachment factor. Names of builds has become the new “naming” of cars some examples of this are, project rattle trap, general mayhem, evo1, blasphemi. These are names that people have been giving cars. I may be wrong but I prefer the old school tradition of naming cars after women. It may be a bit chauvinist but I suppose I am just an old soul who also clings to chivalry. I have had (Roxy) 99’ Dodge Ram, (Nanna) 96’ Subaru, (Jessica) 04’ Dodge Ram, and (Liz) 87’ Jeep. I am currently looking to name my newest truck. These personalities do not come in over night, it's the time spent with a vehicle that you learn what personalities they have. My newest truck is due for a name as it has already been quite the companion. The day after I had purchased it I used it to tow my Jeep to Moab and back, then just a few short weeks later I drove it to Salt Lake City and back, I have used it to produce supplemental income with its plow, its personality is there the name just hasn't come around yet, I have a few that I have been mulling over but nothing that truly fits yet.
Why is it that the tradition of naming cars has gone to the wayside? Well I have a theory on this. What we now consider to be older cars and classic cars, when they were new they were very different from what we think of today when we think of a new car from the dealership. Sure they were more reliable than the cars of their own yesteryear of the 30’s and 40’s but they were far from being the reliability safety net that people get with today's modern cars. Without overcoming adversity, just like people, they are boring and have no personality. With no personality people have no relationship with their vehicle and thus when they do work on them and make a relationship with them they name them after the build of the project not the personality of the car. The other reason people have stopped naming cars is because the car enthusiast is dying off. Younger people are more interested in their tight jeans, apple watch, and on the look out for their next social media update. With the self driving car ever looming, people will eventually forget about cars being anything other than a useful tool like your microwave oven. This saddens me a great deal but hopefully I will pass before this happens; then and only then can you pry my steering wheel from my cold dead fingers.
In order to end this on a high note instead of the depressing funnel we found ourselves in, I have found the name for my new truck. Again don't take this as a spur of the moment decision, this has been in the making since day one of ownership and through this creative outlet I have been inspired. It is not a name that I was mulling over, this is something new. These things just line up right and fit when you get it right. Henceforth my most recent 99’ Dodge Ram shall be known as Caroline.