Home » There Can Be Only One: Cold Start

There Can Be Only One: Cold Start

Cs Panda Hannah

Remember the Highlander movie from the ’80s? It was about a bunch of immortal people who live among us right here, on Earth, the only place in the known universe you can get chicken strips, and every now and then they meet up and try to cut off one another’s heads, because, according to their culture, there can be only one. Well, for some reason, that was the phrase I thought of when I saw that ad for the SEAT Panda Montaña, which made me think of Hanna Montana, because that’s how it sounds.

Before we go into this extremely tenuous link, allow me to show you the Highlander trailer, complete with Sean Connery as an ancient Egyptian who now lives in Spain but somehow just speaks exactly like Sean Connery:

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Does this really have anything to do with the SEAT Panda Montaña and Hanna Montana? Not really, except for the how the similar-sounding names caused me to imagine a world where entities, car or teen sensation, that shared names that sounded strangely similar, felt compelled to fight to the death because there can be only one.

As I type this, I realize it’s inane. Oh well. Let’s talk about the Panda Montaña, which I came across via this wonderful tweet:


The SEAT Panda Montaña is an interesting little car!

Cs Panda Cutaway

That’s because it’s a license-built version of the Fiat Panda, a fantastic, utilitarian little car that Giorgetto Giugiaro nicknamed the “fridge” but in an affectionate way. He also said this of the Panda:

“The Panda is like a pair of jeans, that simple, practical, no frills piece of clothing. I tried to bring into this car the spirit of military machinery, especially helicopters, that means light, rational, built-for-purpose vehicles.”

Fantastic, right?


Cs FiatpandaThese also were one of the few cars that came in air- and liquid-cooled versions at the same period in time!

There was also the legendary 4×4 Panda, but that’s not what the car I’m talking about right now was based on, strangely. Yes, the Spanish-built SEAT version, in Panda Montaña form, was just the 2WD Panda, but outfitted with a tough-looking faceguard to protect the lights, chunky tires, an oil pan protector, and that great roof rack up there.

Cs Pandamonta 2

Honestly, I bet these things did okay off-road! It’s still light and nimble and has the weight over the drive wheels, so I would feel confident taking it in some rough stuff. I mean, look at it, all cool and filthy!

So, yeah, if there truly can be only one, and the Panda Montaña and Hanna Montana have to fight to the death, I think I know who I’m pulling for.


Besides, it’s okay to root for a car to kill a little girl if that girl is technically fictional, right?



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Martin English
Martin English
24 days ago

After watching the Eras movie, my daughter insisted I buy her a Swift.

Last edited 24 days ago by Martin English
Mike F.
Mike F.
25 days ago

Personally, I just feel honored to have a writer from The Atlantic right here in Autopian Land. https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2024/01/electric-cars-cheaper-china-than-america/677290/

(Behind the paywall, for those without a subscription.)

Last edited 25 days ago by Mike F.
23 days ago
Reply to  Mike F.

Weirdly it let me read it for free but threatened that they were really really serious that it was my last free article.
Torch is the best writer on the Atlantic hands down.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
25 days ago

Well you move around and luve forever your accent adjusts. I mean you think they would speak Neanderthal? No one asks why Edward and the werewolves in twilight don’t have accents at all do they?

25 days ago

“… right here, on Earth, the only place in the known universe you can get chicken strips.”

This may be my favorite Torch of all time. Thank you for the wonderful tangent.

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