These sports cars were supposed to be smash hits (but they failed miserably)
Over the years we have built some truly spectacular sports cars like the Miata and 911 lineup, these cars were worthy of the hype surrounding them and they were exactly what the community was promised. Sometimes the latest manufacturer announcements seem a bit mediocre or on the contrary too good to be true like the Tesla Model 3 or the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, but once they get off the drawing board and hit the public road, they s ‘turn out to be excellent.
But more often than not, automakers like to exaggerate their latest disclosures to make buyers’ mouths water, but more often than not, they turn out to be much worse.
Let’s cover one thing before the list begins; not all of these sports cars were necessarily bad, but they over-promised and failed in some ways.
The original Thunderbird was a classic American muscle legend, and with fans pressuring Ford to revive the name, the company had little choice. And the rebirth of the Thunderbird destroyed any chance of retaining its royal reputation.
It might be powered by an adequate 250bhp V8, but it struggles to use that horsepower as it is such a big, heavy bird, despite its size it still had a fairly narrow interior. The only thing the 2000s Thunderbird had going for it was its retro styling, although it might look a little wacky.
If we could turn back time with the DeLorean, we would go back to the 80s and prevent the DMC-12 from existing. The only reason it wasn’t a complete failure was because of his feature in the blockbuster film, Back to the Future. Inside the DeLorean was a weak, 130bhp 2.85-liter Peugeot-Renault-Volvo V6 that drove the DMC to 60 mph in over 10 seconds.
But the ultimate end of the DeLorean’s lifespan were quality issues as the project was rushed and the car went from inception to full production model in just 28 months – the average production car is developed in 72. .
Henrik Fisker, the man behind the design of the breathtaking Aston Martin DB9, founded the company Fisker Automotive and, shortly after its inception, revealed its revolutionary plug-in sports sedan, the Karma – and it looked a lot better than she actually was.
Two eclectic engines that generated a total of 403 hp powered the beautiful hybrid, with that massive amount of power it had to be quick – but it turns out the 2.4 ton weight really slows you down. With a top speed of 125 mph and a 0-60 second time of 6 seconds, the revolutionary solar-paneled roof vehicle suddenly seemed out of place as buyers expected much more for its $ 100,000 price tag.
Designed by Design Q, the Jensen SV8 was a stunner with a powerful 4.6 liter Ford Mustang Cobra V8 engine, a 0-60 second time in 4.8 seconds and a top speed of 160 mph, so what made it end up on our list? Investors even spent a whopping £ 10million lump sum to fund Jensen’s project, but only got about 20 working cars from the production floor in return, and less than 20 remained incomplete.
That meant each car had to sell for £ 500,000 to break even, but they were well undervalued… at £ 38,070 to be exact. And in addition to this huge rip-off, despite the SV8’s impressive performance, it still offered buyers an indifferent driving experience.
Before Hyundai found its footing among other automakers, it dipped its toes in various puddles, and the Tiburon was its first attempt to carve out a niche in the sports car market. Of course, the Tiburon wasn’t a horrible car, but it did have strong competition like the Nissan 300SX, Honda S2000, and Toyota Celica.
In the early 2000s, the 172bhp, 2.7-liter V6 Tiburon only hit 100 km / h after 8 seconds had passed, which meant that the Hyundai RWD was utterly disappointing and couldn’t not follow his rivals.
Even if we had to overlook the wacky hot rod style of the Prowler, his heart doesn’t match on the outside. Some features like the lack of fenders covering the wheels and the roof not too far off the ground looked like a hot rod, but others like the V6 engine and automatic gearbox saw it as an impostor.
Surely the market wasn’t ready for something so … different when it was first released. Nowadays, the public is more accepting of the eccentric Plymouth sports car, celebrities like The Rock already adding one to their personal collection.
The Crossfire was like an extremely confused teenager, unsure of what he was meant for. The exterior was quite attractive but it looked like there were still a few small tweaks that weren’t complete, the interior was an absolute mess with hormones flying all over the place.
The Crossfire was co-built by Mercedes-Benz, so it drove pretty comfortably, but the rowdy V6 or even the supercharged V6 of the 330bhp SRT-6 model made the teardrop-shaped coupe act like a muscle car. Most importantly, the SRT-6 Crossfire was overpriced at $ 45,000, meaning it exceeded its weight class.
The 914 was a very small German sports car powered by a Volkswagen engine and had a very original design. This strange Porsche came with a 1.7, 1.8 or 2.0 liter four or six cylinder engine. The six-banger had a short lifespan due to its high price tag, inability to compete with its rivals, resulting in a lack of demand.
Porsche’s attempt to dominate the entry-level sports car market has been an unfortunate failure, putting out just 100bhp to the rear wheels and sagging to 60mph in over 10 seconds. In those years, a gorgeous Volkswagen Karmann Ghia would have been a better buy, to be honest.
Ford Mustang II
The original Mustang released in the ’60s was an absolute muscle car masterpiece, but its successor, the Mustang II, completely missed it. The circumstances of the 80s really limited what the Mustang could evolve towards because it was in the midst of the oil crisis.
The deflated muscle car ditched the defining first-generation V8 engine and replaced it with a disheartening 100bhp 6-cylinder engine. The combination of bland styling and weak engine makes the Mustang II the worst racehorse of all time, but we still enjoy keeping the Mustang name alive when it was meant to die out.
Holding the world record for the fastest production car from 1992 to 1993 with a top speed of 212.3 mph, the Jaguar XJ220 must surely be misplaced on this list, right? This long and wide British supercar could have turned out to be a record breaking car, but it fell far short of what had been promised. When this Jaguar’s first concept was first unveiled, it was said to have a centrally mounted 6.2-liter V12 sending 500 hp to all 4 wheels.
With a production number limited to less than 300 models, if you wanted to get one you had to deposit a deposit of $ 50,000. Now imagine paying $ 50,000 for an AWD 12-cylinder supercar and receiving one with half the cylinders and only half the wheels gaining power – at least you still have a sleek, record-breaking supercar.
It’s easy to dismiss these cars because of their make or how they look, but anyone who’s taken them for a spin can tell you how amazing they feel on the road.
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