With the return of the Supra, I got to thinking, what are some other cars I wish they would bring back. In my time I’ve seen the Camaro leave, and come back, and supposedly leave again. I’ve seen the Viper come and go. The entire end to Pontiac just as they were making some fun cars again. And the demise of Saturn. Oh wait, not that one. In an SUV-craved world it would be nice to see some of these models come back. Spoiler alert, not all of them are cars.
An Actual Mitsubishi Eclipse GSX and Evo
I’m not talking about the crappy Eclipse crossover they currently released. I am talking about the honest to goodness AWD turbocharged monster from the 90’s. Unfortunately, Mitsubishi doesn’t have any real fun engines anymore but I hear they’re bringing back an actual Evo so you can just stuff whatever motor you are putting in that thing in one of these. Now the accountants may whine that they are cannibalizing sales from each other but it doesn’t seem to bother Dodge. They have both the Challenger and the Charger. The Charger has four doors the Challenger is two. Other than that they are basically the same car. The Evo would be four-doors the Eclipse two. An Eclipse GSX also made my list of best wings of all-time.
Chevy SS/Pontiac G8 GT
I owned a Chevy SS and it was one of the best cars I’ve had. Unfortunately, it met an untimely demise. Either of these cars are great and they both have the same features. Four doors, six-speed manual, big V-8 in the front, rear-wheel drive. The Chevy SS won many sedan shootouts and was a favorite of automotive journalists everywhere. The car made over 400 hp and had the magical magnetic suspension. I have no idea why these didn’t sell. Maybe it was the name. Malibu and Impala were taken but lesser vehicles. Maybe Chevy needs to revive those nameplates and bring this car back as the Impala SS. Four-doors, big engine, big brakes, great suspension, manual transmission. Pretty simple.
Chevy El Camino
Well anyone that knows my car collection knows I’m a big fan of the El Camino. I have a 1972 GMC Sprint that is more or less the same as the El Camino minus some emblems. Some people frown on them but I tend to get thumbs up everywhere I go which is better than any market study. How can you beat muscle car speed with truck utility? You may say, “just buy a fast truck” but I disagree. Something about the low stance with the truck bed and the big V8 out front just make this fun. Throw some tubular suspension, big sway bars, and big brakes and have some fun! Something like this would probably never fly today. At least the Australians are still making them!
I don’t know why I liked these so much. They only made them for three years, but the Subaru Baja just looked cool. I never owned one but they came with a manual and a turbo engine plus they were a Subaru so you instantly want to take them off road. At least I do. They weren’t even that pretty to look at. If I brought one back I would keep it simple. A little turbocharged engine in the front, AWD, and a manual. That’s it. No crazy high-horsepower version or giant shocks. Just a simple, fun to drive pickup. Who am I kidding, I would upgrade the turbos instantly!
Chevy S10/GMC Syclone
Another truck on the list. What’s lacking from Chevy’s current lineup is a two-seat truck with a short bed. You can get the Colorado in crew-cab short bed but its not the same. Back in the day, you could get a GMC Syclone them with a 4 or 5 speed and anywhere from a tiny 1.9L four-cylinder all the way up to a 4.3L V6. You could also get them in rear or four-wheel drive. The V6 in the current Impala makes over 300HP and would likely be a good fit in this tiny truck. I would avoid bringing back the Extreme edition of these cars. The last thing we need is more tribal tattoos.
I would love to see one of these little go-karts on the road again. Since the last one rolled off the line nearly twenty years ago, many of the CRXs you see on the road are not in good shape. You could get one with a 5-speed manual and the top of the line engine which was the 1.6L VTEC B16A1 engine that made 150 hp. Most people think that VTEC means 1,500 hp but it’s not true. While 150hp doesn’t sound like a lot, these cars weighed under 2,000 lbs from the factory. Bring it back with that little turbo engine from the modern day Si and you would have a fun little rocket ship.
The current Mazda lineup consists of some of the best looking cars on the road. Unfortunately, they don’t really have a performance car in their lineup. Bringing back the Mazda RX7 would fix that. I am not a stickler for their needing to be a rotary engine. Mazda hasn’t had one since the RX8 ended production. The requirements would be a two-seater coupe, lightweight, at least 300 plus horsepower in the front, rear-wheel drive, and a manual. Purist may scoff if there isn’t a rotary but if it makes that kind of power and sounds good, I think they will come around. It also has to look amazing but I think with their current designers this won’t be an issue.
Another car they should bring back includes one of the best rally cars of all-time. Audi has attempted several times to bring back the Quattro teasing us with concepts in 2010 and 2013. If they bring it back it should be a mid-sized two-door coupe with AWD, a turbo motor, and a manual. It must be at or below 3,000 lbs or it won’t make sense. They also need to actually run it in rally racing. What made the original so cool was seeing it barreling down mountain roads and unreal speeds. It should also have factory mud flaps I can get at the dealership. I love mud flaps.
Just when they were hitting their stride, Ford pulled the plug on all cars but the Mustang. They had the fun Fiesta ST (I bought one!), Focus ST, Focus RS, Fusion Sport, and the Taurus SHO. The Fiesta and Focus ST’s were fun little turbocharged hatchbacks that came in manual only and made just enough horsepower to be fun. The Focus RS was an AWD turbocharged monster that truly earned the RS moniker. The Fusion sport was a fun AWD sedan that made over 300hp. The Taurus SHO was old but still had a turbocharged V6 kicking out 350 hp and AWD. All these great cars and Ford pulled the plug for SUVs. Great. Accountants win again. I guess it is better to die a hero than to live long enough to see yourself become the villain. Malibu and Impala I’m looking at you.