Posted By RichC on January 21, 2020
Although mentioned in publications before (here’s an older article), I always smile when I see the Little Tikes Cozy Coupe in automotive stories. In part, because the car is not what people envision of when they read “World’s Best-Selling Car,” but also because the manufacturer, Little Tikes, was founded in Aurora, Ohio (where I worked and we lived when first married) and manufactured the best-selling one-seater in Hudson, Ohio (the plant and headquarters was about a mile from our house in the 1980s and 90s).
Anyway, Hemmings.com posted an article last week highlighting Jim Mariol the designer and his alma mater, the University of Cincinnati (LINK to their article about him). I enjoyed reading the article and all the links, especially now that my granddaughter drives a Cozy Coupe (photo of Annalyn a couple years ago) … and remembering the smell of the plastic when the wind was just right from the Little Tikes plant (they were bought by Rubbermaid in 1984, now Newell Brands).
Jim Mariol designed the world’s best-selling car, beloved
by toddlers for 40 years
Daniel Strohl on Jan 16, 2020
It seats just one, has no luxury amenities, sports zero-wheel drive, and its original design didn’t change for 20 years. Still, the car that Jim Mariol, a former Chrysler illustrator and Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild winner who died over the weekend at 89, designed – the Little Tikes Cozy Coupe – went on to outsell every car on the market for decades and remains popular to this day, more than 40 years after it was introduced.