This list of vehicles will earn you a lot of love from fellow owners.
Everyone likes to feel welcome and part of the cool crowd. Humans are pack animals in many ways, and when it comes to the many hours we spend in our vehicles our instincts are the same as they were when we were hunter-gatherers. Wouldn’t you like to own a vehicle that owners love so much they want to wave at other folks with the vehicle? There are such models and they are widely different types of vehicles. There are cars, SUVs, convertibles, and motorcycles that have a much tighter community of owners than typical cars. The biggest benefit is that you will get a wave from the driver of that vehicle when you pass. Here is a rundown of which models have such a community and a bit about how they show their colors.
Of all the vehicles on the road with a tight-knit community, motorcycle drivers stand out. When passing one another in traffic riders give each other a polite hello. If you are expecting a big old Forest Gump-type of a wave, guess again. The biker wave is very subtle. Usually, a couple of fingers from a down-stretched arm pointed down at an angle on the lane-divider side of the bike. The wave is a bit controversial. Some Harley-Davidson drivers are dead-set against it. Others will only wave to someone on their brand of bike. The video above goes into the fine details of bike-wave culture.
Having just tested the all-new Jeep Gladiator pickup, which from the front looks nearly identical to the iconic Wrangler, we can tell you that Jeep owners are 100% behind the Jeep wave. It’s rare that a Jeep owner will miss a chance wave to another Jeepster based on our testing. The Jeep wave is simple. Two raised fingers, a.k.a. the “peace sign” by a hand on the top of the steering wheel. The Jeep wave started as a Wrangler thing, but we can assure you, the Gladiator is now part of this culture.
The Miata wave began with the early generation, NA Miatas that had pop-up headlights. Owners would lift and fold the headlights to say hello. The problem is that the second and third-generation Miatas didn’t have pop-up headlights, nor does the current ND generation that debuted in 2016. So, the Miata wave has had to evolve. Some drivers pull the headlight stalk forward for a polite flash of the lights. Others literally wave. Some don’t do anything and others will turn around and follow another Miata. This is an enthusiastic and diverse community with no set rules on the proper way to show your love to a kindred spirit.
Dodge Challenger/Charger – Wave?
The Dodge Challenger and Charger went from being a no-show in sales compared to the Mustang and Camaro, to being the talk of the town when the Hellcat showed up. The Charger and Challenger are now a thriving cottage industry for FCA America and the brand loyalty and pride of ownership the drivers of these vehicles feel and exhibit is almost spooky. There isn’t really a wave. However, we have had the pleasure of testing a half-dozen of the Challenger and Charger line cars and fans and fellow owners will literally stop traffic to greet you or do you a favor. The first time we noticed it was turning left across a busy street. Waiting, waiting some more, then a break. By a fellow Challenger driver with a wide grin and head nod. Then something similar happened later that week.
One neighbor who owned a Dodge brought his children over to have a tour and test drive. This is exactly how brand loyalty is passed down through generations. And it isn’t just folks we knew who stopped to chat. People in parking lots would tap us on the shoulder and proudly say something like, “Sweet Scat Pack, I have a Demon and my wife has a Widebody.” Dodge owners have their own language along with their pride of ownership. As far as close-knit communities go the MOPAR folks are maybe the tightest group of all.