You can take the car out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the car.
Without doubt, when it comes to country, the truck is the king of the road. The Ford F-Series is the best-selling car in just about every state that isn’t a part of New England (and actually some that are). But if we forget about trucks for a moment, what other cars are tied to the country, for better or worse?
Some cars earn their association by reputation, others by sales numbers, and still others by popular culture. When it comes down to it, it is just as difficult to disassociate these vehicles with country as it is trucks. Here are the 10 most country cars that aren’t trucks.
Though recently fallen out of vogue, the Cadillac used to be the symbol of style and country cool. It is still synonymous with quality and top-of-the-line product (often being used as a comparison for women). Elvis had a pink Caddy. Hank Williams died in a white one.
If a big, hunking Cadillac wasn’t your style, a Corvette was. And while Cadillacs eventually lost much of their appeal, Corvettes just kept getting sexier. It is a proven fact that every country boy had a poster of a Corvette tacked up to his wall at some point in time. Even die-hard truck owners tip their hats to the Chevy legend.
The Toyota Camry gets the nod here for sheer numbers sold. It is the only passenger car among a bevy of trucks in the top 5 most sold vehicles in almost every southern state. But if you don’t know someone who drives a Camry, you probably know someone who drives an Altima, Accord, or a Civic.
RVs are so country that you can’t avoid hearing about trailer parks and double-wides in country music (see Toby Keith and Kasey Musgraves for a start). It would be a major error to overlook the impact the RV has had on the country lifestyle. Granted, the RV is usually associated with a subsection of country living, but it’s an important one.
6. The Lemon
Country kids know that they don’t get to drive daddy’s brand spanking new F-150 until they put some time in behind the wheel of an old beater. Whether it’s a dented up Volvo station wagon or a white Corsair with one purple door, it almost doesn’t matter; the car is a second-hand piece of junk. But it’s also the only thing you’re going to get, and you love it anyway.
5. General Lee/Dodge Charger
Without a doubt the most famous car in country history. The 01 car made hood-sliding cool and stunt jumps commonplace. Over 320 were used to film The Dukes of Hazzard tv show and 17 still exist. That doesn’t include fanatics who have pimped out their own rides. From the blazing orange to the horn that plays “Dixie,” there’s no doubt when the General Lee is in town.
Eliminating trucks makes the Mustang the all-American car. It has reached legendary status around the world as a U.S. symbol, packing as much power as possible into a stylish frame without concern for much else like handling. The Mustang was the original pony car, paving the way for other legends like the Challenger, Camero and Firebird. It remains popular in all of its generations as a first car for new drivers to a reclamation project for mid-lifers.
This Ford legend was built as a compact SUV then later enlarged to fit a shortened chassis of an F-Series truck. In both iterations, the Bronco is a country classic. Shaped like a box on wheels, the Bronco more than holds its own with whatever terrain you throw at it. Frequently seen in muddy fields and around campfires. Sadly, production stopped in the 90s, but that just cements the Bronco’s country status as an original.
2. El Camino
Is there any other (affordable) car that has such a cult following. The car version of a mullet, the El Camino is coupe in the front and pickup in the back. It makes a crappy coupe and a crappy pickup, but one heck of a fun car. Just ask Dierks Bentley.
Go ahead and tell the owner of a Wrangler that a truck is better, and you’ll be in for the fight of your life. Wrangler drivers are fiercely loyal to their rides, and rightfully so. The Wrangler is an incredibly fun, useful car that is as close as it comes to rival the truck for most country car. Plus you can take the top off.