Tuesday, November 8, 2011

14 Car and Truck Models to be Discontinued Next Year

Though car sales in the U.S. have stabilized after their dramatic fall during the early stages of the Great Recession, it is obvious that automakers are still feeling the effects. What’s more, it is liable to get worse as the effects of the end of the cheap-oil era continue to grow. One indicator of this is how many car models have been disappearing in recent years. In some instances, whole lines like Pontiac have fallen by the wayside.

So here comes a story from Yahoo News spelling out the latest models which will no longer be produced. The only model I have recent experience driving as my office has a couple for business use is this one:
Chevrolet HHR - Once upon a time Chrysler took a boring small car (the Neon), grafted a body that recalled 1930s-era roadsters on top of it and created the PT Cruiser. Seeing Chrysler's initial success, GM copied Chrysler's play step by step — hiring the PT Cruiser's designer to draw a body meant to evoke the 1930s-era Suburbans and using the chassis of the compact Cobalt sedan. Imitation may be flattery at its most sincere, but GM didn't copy Chrysler's sales; the HHR was big and cheap but thirsty, and like the PT never received enough updates to stay current — although the supercharged SS version ranks as one of the best modern sleepers available.
Personally, the HHR is a hideous vehicle that never should have passed through the design stage. The windshield is tiny and the weird configuration of the front seat and my somewhat above-average height meant that the driver’s side sun visor is at eye-level. Trust me, I won’t miss them. For that matter I also don't miss PT Cruisers, which were discontinued a couple of years ago.

Here are the other 13 on the list;

Buick Lucerne

Ford Crown Victoria (oh noes—there goes the CLASSIC police car!)

Cadillac DTS & STS (seriously, who other than senior citizens and pimps still drive Cadillacs?)

Dodge Dakota

Ford Ranger

Honda Element (gets my vote for the UGLIEST car currently on the road)

Lotus Elise (I’m not sure if I’ve ever even SEEN one of these)

Mazda RX-8

Mitsubishi Eclipse & Endeavor (I didn’t realize Mitsubishi was still a going concern)

Volvo S40 & S50 (my wife had a Volvo. Very dependable, except that every accessory was prone to breaking at a HUGE cost to repair)

Bonus: I just couldn't resist!


  1. Not the Crown Vic!! What are grandpas going to drive?

  2. I am really unhappy that they are getting rid of the Ranger. I drive a '99 Ranger and I will consider replacing it with a newer used model when the time comes. Several of my friends have Rangers dated from as far back as 93 to 03. All of us love them; fuel efficient for a truck, power enough to pull a small trailer. It really bothers me that the last small truck is dying out of the US market.

  3. @Lee Mints - yep, about the only truck option these days with gas $3.50 a gallon is one of those huge, gas guzzling behemoths. Go figure.

  4. I drive an Element. My wife hates the way it looks, too. I don't care, since we camp. It also hauls tons of stuff. Until we run out of gas I am going to enjoy myself.

  5. @Lee Mints, agreed, I was surprised to see both the Dakota and Ranger on there. I used to have a '93 Dakota and loved it, got to drive the newer ones around a couple of years back for the Navy and found them to be rather pleasant.

  6. When the PT Cruisers came out, my wife and I asked her parents (who grew up in the 30's), "Hey, don't you guys want to get one of those?" They were not nostalgic. They'd had cars that (sort of) looked like that, way back (they drove an old '39 Hudson when they were first married after the war) -- why would they want another? They wanted a NEW car!

  7. @kleymo - okay, I'll change my vote to the Nissan Cube. :)

  8. I don't know about the Ranger being fuel efficient. I own a Mazda B3000 with the v6 and it sucks for mileage. They need to bring back a 4cyl pickup like the Datsuns or the Ram 50 which get better mileage.