Sports cars are easily the most exciting aspect of the car industry, and throughout the years, it has gone through a lot of changes, especially in terms of technology. Nowadays, it is easier than ever to get an affordable, powerful sports car that can compete with much more expensive ones. Sometimes, like all cars, sports cars get discontinued, and this often results in major uproar. Well, when those are good cars, of course.
For example, car enthusiasts far and wide were extremely sad to hear of the demise of the RX-7, a legendary sports car by Mazda. But other times, it makes complete sense for a sports car to be discontinued, such as the Maserati Biturbo, the Italian automaker’s attempt at making a more affordable car. It ultimately ended up only being a stain in their history. Today, we have compiled a list of 10 justifiably discontinued sports car, as well as 10 we wish were still around. Let’s get right to it!
20Justifiably Discontinued: Alfa Romeo 4C Coupe
In 2009, it was announced that Alfa Romeo would discontinue the 4C Coupe. According to the Italian automakers, this is because they are ditching their sports cars to focus on other vehicles in their lineup. This one came with a four-cylinder turbocharged engine, and with its miniscule truck, it was highly impractical. In addition, it was difficult to get in and out of the car, especially with the roof on.
19Justifiably Discontinued: BMW I8
In April 2020, the Bavarian automakers will completely halt production of the hybrid i8. Rumor has it that they will bring it back in 2022, but this hasn’t been confirmed. The reason why it was discontinued may have to do with the fact that there has been a move from plug-in hybrids to fully electric cars in the market, and this may have happened faster than BMW anticipated it.
18Justifiably Discontinued: Front-Engine Chevrolet Corvette C7
Last summer, the front-engine Corvette C7 was discontinued by the American automakers, making it the end of an era after 66 years of production. The last one ever produced was sold for a whopping $2.7 million at an auction, with proceeds going to Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, an organization supporting veterans.
17Justifiably Discontinued: Mercedes-AMG SL63
Last year, the German automakers announced that they were discontinuing the Mercedes-AMG SL63, one of their most iconic vehicles ever. However, in 2022, they will be releasing the next-gen SL class, which was first unveiled at the 2019 New York Auto Show, and it will be developed by AMG.
16Justifiably Discontinued: Ferrari Mondial
The Ferrari Mondial was released in 1982, and only three years later, the model was discontinued. This came as no surprise as the Mondial was an absolute flop with way too many problems. In fact, it has the reputation of being one of the worst sports cars ever built.
15Justifiably Discontinued: Saturn Sky
Ironically, the Saturn Sky was the car that the American automakers hoped would save them, but it actually did the opposite, having had a big part in the company’s demise. In terms of looks, it was way too underwhelming for a sports car, but this was far from the only issue with it.
14Justifiably Discontinued: Ford Thunderbird
The Ford Thunderbird, released in 2002, was a huge flop, and it ruined the Thunderbird name as their previous models were quite good. Unfortunately, its design was more appealing to an older crowd, and the car was designed to provide a relaxing ride rather than an exhilarating, sporty experience.
13Justifiably Discontinued: Maserati Biturbo
In the late 1980s, the Maserati Biturbo was released, and it was a huge stain on the Italian automaker’s reputation. The Biturbo was Maserati’s attempt at creating a more affordable car, but it had plenty of corrosion problems, and although the cabin was quite beautiful, the material used was cheap.
12Justifiably Discontinued: 1992 Chevy Camaro
It might be surprising to see the Camaro on this list, but not all their models were successful, and a good example of that is the version released in 1992. It was way too slow for a sports car, and to make matters even worse, it constantly needed repairs. So, if you’re ever after a used Camaro, 1992 is not the one for you.
11Justifiably Discontinued: Cadillac CTS
Last year, it was announced that the CTS would no longer be produced by the American automakers, making way for the newer CT5. The CTS wasn’t a terrible car in terms of performance as it had great handling and a decent engine, but due to how unreliable it was, it’s understandable that it’s being discontinued.
10Should’ve Stuck Around: Jaguar XJ220
The Jaguar XJ220 has quite the interesting story. Jim Randle, head engineer for Jaguar at the time, wanted to build a powerful sports car that was also capable on-road. So, the concept was born, and it was unveiled at the British International Motor Show in 1988, but it was never meant to be produced. However, people were so enamored with it. So much so, they began to write cheques to reserve one. However, when it was finally delivered, it was a disappointment.
9Should’ve Stuck Around: Mazdaspeed 3
The Mazdaspeed 3 was a phenomenal car, and it’s great to hear that it might make a comeback to give the Volkswagen GTI a little competition. It was originally produced from 2007 to 2013, and it was a great performing car with tight, responsive steering. We really hope the rumors of its comeback are true.
8Should’ve Stuck Around: Honda CRX
We really wish that Honda would bring back the CRX, one of their most iconic and beloved models yet. At one point, many car enthusiasts believed that the CR-Z hybrid would be its successor, but ultimately, it turned out to be a disappointment. Who knows – maybe one day the legendary CRX will be back!
7Should’ve Stuck Around: Porsche 928
The Porsche 928 was first released in 1978 before being discontinued in 1995. It came equipped with a powerful V8 engine, and it was the first Porsche to be a four-seater, which was surprising at the time. Last year, rumors spread that the iconic 928 would be making a comeback, although nothing has been confirmed yet.
6Should’ve Stuck Around: Lotus Elan
The Lotus Elan might just be the most influential sports car ever. Unfortunately, it’s extremely rare as only 16,000 were produced. It can be said that it’s one of the first modern sports cars, and it was famous for having outstanding handling. For the time, it was quite quick, but with its amazing handling, it was definitely one to take around corners rather than on straight line.
5Should’ve Stuck Around: Lotus Esprit
The Lotus Esprit might be one of the coolest-looking cars ever produced, which explains why it featured in The Spy Who Loved me, the James Bond flick. This car is symbolic of the ’70s and ’80s, but it was actually produced all the way to 1994. Oh, how we wish they would bring this one back.
4Should’ve Stuck Around: Mazda RX-7
Car enthusiasts all over the world went up in arms when they heard that the legendary Mazda RX-7 would be discontinued. Today, it remains one of the greatest sports cars ever when you consider its performance as well as its value. Plus, you can still get one for extremely cheap.
3Should’ve Stuck Around: BMW Z3
The BMW Z3 might look a little strange, and some complained that it looked too similar to a MX-5 Miata, another great sports car. However, this was done to create a perfect balance between weight, handling, and power, and today, the Z3 is remembered as a little sports car that was insanely fun to drive.
2Should’ve Stuck Around: Chevrolet Impala SS
The Chevrolet Impala SS was almost too good to be true. At a price of around $65,000 – cheaper than the Mercedes-Benz S500 – with its 5.7-liter V8 engine, its acceleration was quicker and brakes were just as good. In addition, the suspensions on this iconic car were simply out of this world, with the rear suspension taken from Chevy’s police package.
1Should’ve Stuck Around: Mitsubishi 3000GT
The Mitsubishi 3000GT was truly ahead of its time. It’s known for being very reliable, and it is a great sports car to modify. For its price, it would be difficult to find a car that performs as well, as it is able to compete with cars double or even triple its price. Unfortunately, it was discontinued in 1999.