What if you were the last of your kind?
Well, we’re humans so that will never happen but it has been happening in the car industry. And some cars will probably never be made again.
Some Awesome cars have been made throughout car history. With innovations come cars that push the limits and break new grounds. But while we welcome change there are also some peak moments with the current technology. Things that characterize certain types of vehicles that made them so fun and memorable.
Here are 10 types of cars that will never be made again.
1. Honda Civic Type R (FN2): Last NA Type R
Every Honda with an R badge has always had a naturally aspirated engine from its inception. Honda made the cars very fun to drive as they were seen as momentum cars that could keep up with anything on a windy road. VTEC was very prevalent in these cars which the Honda purists love so much. But with advancements in technology and with turbos being so efficient the switch was coming.
The last naturally aspirated type R engine had a 2.0 liter 4 cylinder engine which made 201 horsepower. The replacement came in 2015 and of course with a turbo attached it made more power. This makes the FN2 civic type R the last type R with an NA engine.
2. VW Golf R32: Last V6 Hot Hatch
Today we’re seeing hot hatches getting as fast as normal sports cars but this isn’t the first time this has happened. Back in the early 2000’s VW was making a fast Golf with a special engine. The MK V Golf has a 3.2 liter V6 which made 241 horsepower with all-wheel drive. It was previously known as the VR6 but this new golf was called the R32. It lasted until 2008 when manufacturers started downsizing to smaller engines with turbos and making more power. The R32 is the very last V6 hot hatch.
3. BMW M140i: Last RWD Hot Hatch
A hot hatch always has a simple recipe which is being a small, cheap, front-engine, and front-wheel drive car. In some cases, some manufactures like Ford, Mercedes, and Audi may go with all-wheel drive for maximum traction. BMW was the last company to make a rear-wheel drive hatchback.
The M140i has a 3.0 liter straight 6 turbo engine which makes 340 horsepower and sends all of it to its rear wheels. The car was eventually replaced in 2019 and its successor now sends power to the front wheels.
4. Audi Q7 V12 TDI: Last Diesel V12
Audi is most famous on the rally stage with their Quattro all-wheel drive platform but they’ve also seen success racing Lemans prototype cars. One of its most successful racecars R10 TDI, was a racecar that had a turbo V12 engine and was very successful. Audi decided to do what they’ve always done and share their racing success with their road car.
The engine was originally planned for the R8 supercar but that wasn’t feasible. They then put the engine in their biggest car which is the Q7 SUV. The car made 500 horsepower but since it was a diesel engine, torque was over 1000Nm. The 0-60 time was about 5 seconds and was one of the quickest SUVs at the time and the only mass-produced SUV with a V12 diesel. Sales did not go well for the SUV, so the engine was eventually scrapped for more favorable options.
5. Porsche 993 911: Last Air-cooled Porsche
The prices of air-cooled Porsches are through the roof and since no ore air-cooled cars are being produced, it seems justified. For those who may not understand, air-cooled cars make use of natural air to cool the engine instead of a radiator filled with water. The faster you drove, the more air passes through your car, and the more your engine cools itself. The obvious issue here is when you’re stationary there’s no air passing through the car and it starts to overheat. The more powerful a car is, the more heat it produces, and more air is needed to cool it down.
To make more power more efficiently, most car makers switched to water-cooled engines by 1986. It took Porsche until 1997 to catch up with the 996 911 which was the first water-cooled 911. It was a more efficient engine, made more power easily, and polluted the air less. This makes the 993 911 the last air-cooled car.
6. Mazda RX8: Last Rotary Engine
The Rotary engine was made famous in the ’90s with Mazda’s RX 7. But it was never a popular engine, to begin with so very few manufacturers used it. The rotary engine makes us of a Wankel (triangular rotors) which spin around an axis inside a chamber. This means the rotary uses fewer moving parts and this makes the engine very compact. The rotors spin very fast and thus revs very, producing a lot of horsepower but not much torque.
The rotary was used in the Mazda RX 8 until 2012 but just like any mechanical component, they had their flaws. The higher than normal revs resulted in horrible gas mileage as well as excessive use of engine oil. The seals inside the rotors were a known failure point in these cars from inception. Even after decades of refinement this problem was never completely solved and Mazda finally ended the Rotary with the RX 8. But the rotaries are some of the best sounding engines out there, listen to this:
7. Toyota GR Yaris: Last Rally Bred Car
When you think about modern rally-inspired road cars you think of the Mitsubishi lancer Evo and Subaru WRX. But with Toyota surprising us with the return of the supra name, they’ve also surprised us with a rally-inspired car, sort of.
The Yaris name is recently being used for rally racing and following homologation rules Toyota needs to sell road versions to participate. The Yaris never went racing due to the unforeseen coronavirus pandemic but the road cars have already been built. It has the most powerful 3 cylinder engine on sale which produces 261 horsepower. It also has its transmission and suspension as well as a wider body from the rally car. The GR Yaris shares almost no parts with the ordinary Yaris.
Everyone who has driven the GR Yaris has said it’s a great little fun car and shows how innovation can come from the racing world. But it’s unlikely such a car will ever be made again.
8. C8 Corvette: Last NA Mid Engine V8
The V8 engine is the most popular choice for sports cars and supercars today for any form of performance. But things are not the same as they used to be. The most powerful naturally aspirated V8 is the mid-engine is the Ferrari 458 Italia which produces. But that car was eventually replaced with a turbocharged variant.
The base Chevrolet corvette used to be a front-engine naturally aspirated car. But with the new C8, the base model is still a naturally aspirated V8. The engine sits in the middle of the car automatically making the C8 Corvette the only NA mid-engine V8 on sale today.
9. Dodge Viper: Last Front Engine V10
The Dodge Viper is America’s icon just like the Mustangs and the Corvettes. But unlike those cars with the tried and true V8 engine, Dodge went big and went with a V10 engine. Very Few cars have ever been made with a V10 and very few had them upfront.
The dodge viper has one of the largest displacement engines. An 8.0 liter naturally aspirated engine which in its final form was making 640 horsepower. The viper production ended in 2017 with the Viper ACR but it didn’t go out without a bang. The viper smashed multiple track records with its high downforce setup beating cars like the Mclaren P1 and Ferrari Laferrari at Laguna Seca. Only manual transmissions were available for this car.
10. Gordon Murray T50: Last Manual Supercar
The Pagani Zonda has the novelty of being the very last manual supercar being produced until the recently announced Gordon Murray T50. Every supercar now comes in some form of Automatic gearbox with the latest in technology being the dual-clutch gearbox. Some cars still use a single-clutch gearbox to make the shifts seem more engaging. We’ve formerly made a list of some of the last manual supercars and you can check it out here
The Gordon Murray T50 is unique in today’s world but knowing who’s creating it makes total sense.
Technology and innovations are meant to make our lives easier but they sometimes take away the unique characters of cars we love. Due to new regulations and safety in motor vehicles, most of these types of cars will never be able to make production again.
What cars will you miss the most when they’re gone? For me, it would be a naturally aspirated engine paired with a manual transmission.