Some automobile grilles are glorified mesh -- just a little too open to actually keep bugs off the radiator.
Others are sculptural, of a design intended to give the car identification as a specific make or model. Back in the 1950s the goal of design management for most American car companies was to have a grille that would indicate the make for a viewer half a block or more away.
Put another way, subtlety in a grille's close-up view was of almost no importance. So I was a bit surprised when I finally noticed that certain models of the Lexus RX crossover SUV series possessed grilles with features that could only be appreciated at close range.
Note the converging vertical bars and the small insets running up to a point about 40 percent of the height of the grille. Subtle and elegant -- fitting for an upscale car line.