The auto industry is one of the most competitive industries in the world. There are multiple automakers from different parts of the globe making different types of vehicles. As a result, there have been thousands of different models introduced over the last century.
Out of all these models, there are several that gearheads will always love and remember – the Volkswagen Beetle, Toyota Corolla, Ferrari 250 GTO, Lamborghini Countach, Ford Mustang, and Dodge Charger, to name a few. Unfortunately, many other models have ended up being forgotten, even when they were just as good or even better than the idolized models. This article explores ten fantastic sports cars that most gearheads have forgotten about.
10 Saleen S7
Not many gearheads have heard of Saleen Automotive, even though the small American company built one of the coolest American sports cars – the S7. The S7 was Saleen Automotive’s first production car, but you wouldn’t tell just by looking at it as it had a great design, advanced technology, and a mighty V8 under the hood.
In 2005, Saleen added a pair of turbochargers to the S7, turning it into an absolute beast. With an output of 750 hp, the S7 Twin Turbo had a top speed of 248 mph, making it one of the fastest 2000s cars.
9 Bristol Fighters
Bristol is a small British automaker best known for combining European design with American performance. Of all Bristol cars ever built, the Fighter is arguably the best.
Introduced in 2004, the Fighter was Bristol’s launchpad into the 21st century. It was developed to show that Bristol could still compete with European heavyweights and even had a futuristic design with gullwing doors. At the heart of the Fighter was a monstrous 8.3-liter V10 producing 525 hp, giving it great performance.
8th Toyota Celica
Every gearhead knows and loves the Toyota Supra, particularly the fourth-generation variant that was featured in the Fast and the Furious franchise. However, not many gearheads know that the Supra actually started as a trim level for another Toyota sports car model – the Celica.
The Celica is a superb sports car that Toyota produced from 1971 to 2006 over seven generations. There are multiple Celica models, but our favorite has to be the high-performance GT-Four that Toyota built to meet WRC homologation requirements.
7 TVR Chimaera
TVR may not be as revered as Jaguar or Aston Martin, but the small British automaker has built several world-class sports cars over the years. The Chimaera is one of them.
Introduced in 1992, the Chimaera is a fantastic grand tourer that was built on the same chassis as the more popular Griffith. The Chimaera also used the Griffith’s engine – a 5.0-liter Rover V8 producing 340 hp.
6 Lucra LC470
In 2006, Luke Richards established Lucra Cars with one goal – to build the ultimate American sports cars. One of Lucra’s best creations has to be the LC470 – a hand-built roadster with a gorgeous design.
The LC470 also has the power to match. Buyers could choose between two engines – a 6.3-liter V8 producing 430 ponies or a monstrous 7.0-liter V8 cranking out 505 hp.
5 Dodge stealth
In the ’90s, there was a huge demand for cheap sports cars. As such, Dodge collaborated with Mitsubishi to build a new sports car that could compete with more expensive European options. The result was the Mitsubishi 3000GT or Dodge Stealth in North American markets.
The Dodge Stealth turned out to be a great car. It had an eye-catching design, and if you bought the high-performance R/T version, you got a twin-turbocharged V6 with 300 hp on tap.
4 Volvo P1800
Volvo isn’t known for building sports cars. However, the P1800 shows that the Swedish automaker can build a top-class sports car if it wants to.
The P1800 had everything – a superb design, excellent driving dynamics, and while its 2.0-liter four-cylinder wasn’t as powerful as other sports cars, the P1800 was still a joy to drive. The best feature of the P1800, though, is its reliability. The P1800 holds the mileage record for private vehicles, having covered over 3 million miles.
3 Opel GT
In 1965, Opel unveiled the GT as a styling exercise at the Frankfurt and Paris motor shows. The GT borrowed a lot of styling cues from the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette, which explains why so many loved it. The GT became so popular that Opel decided to put it into production in 1968.
Buyers could choose between two engines in 1968. A 1.1-liter inline-four producing 67 hp or a 1.9-liter inline-four producing 102 hp. The GT was slow and boring regardless of the engine choice, which explains why many have forgotten about it.
2 Alfa Romeo SZ
Alfa Romeo rarely disappoints when it comes to design, as many of its cars are included in the list of the most beautiful Italian cars. However, even Alfa Romeo gets it wrong sometimes, which is exactly what happened with the SZ.
The SZ resulted from a collaboration between Alfa Romeo, Zagato, and Fiat in the late ’80s. Many gearheads dislike the SZ’s design, as it has a blocky, toy-like appearance. However, there’s a good explanation for its unusual design – the SZ was one of the first cars designed using a computer.
1 Porsche 968
The 968 is a fantastic front-engine sports car manufactured by Porsche in the early ’90s. It was the final evolution of Porsche’s series of front-engine water-cooled RWD models started two decades earlier by the 924.
The 968 replaced the 944 as Porsche’s entry-level model and shared about 20% of its parts with the 944. The base 968 was powered by a 3.0-liter inline-four engine developing 237 hp. In 1993, Porsche introduced the 968 Turbo S, whose 305-hp turbocharged inline-four made it a joy to drive.
Europe’s 10 Coolest Forgotten Sports Cars