Hooniverse Asks- What Cars Won't Be Here Next Year?

Grim-Reaper Hoon

Have you driven a Fisker Karma yet? No? Well, let me tell you it’s a unique experience. That’s because while actually driving it isn’t all that special – it goes, stops and corners like it’s heaviernshit (which it is) – sitting in it is like being inside the world’s smallest art gallery. If you’re into exotic sustainable woods and vegan upholstery materials, you might just want to check it out. 

I mention this as something to be added to your To Do list as it’s looking like Fisker as a whole is going the way of the Dodo. Henrik himself has jumped ship and the company’s lawyers are presently circling the hybrid wagons for the inevitable bankruptcy. It’s a damn shame too because it seems like Tesla is – for the moment at least – making a go of it, so why can’t Fisker? 

So, the Karma looks like it’s on its way out, and what I’m wondering today is whether or not you think other cars and trucks might just be following it out the door and into the history books. We’ve already heard that Fiat is killing all of Lancia after first torturing it for a while by forcing it to sell rebranded Chryslers, but what other marques and models do you think won’t live to see another birthday? And relatedly, which ones do you think deserve such a fate?

Image sources: MyWalls,  The Truth About Cars


  1. "We’ve already heard that Fiat is killing all of Lancia…" We did? I'm surprised because I haven't heard that at all.
    "And relatedly, which ones do you think deserve such a fate?" I'm not even going to go there!

      1. Ugh!
        I don't even know what that's called, but then again, for a couple decades Bentley was largely an appearance package on a RR. Soooo…. given what the Thema looks like, I guess it may be like that from now on.

      2. CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Bring out your dead!
        FIAT: Here's one — nine pence.
        LANCIA: I'm not dead!
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: What?
        FIAT: Nothing — here's your nine pence.
        LANCIA: I'm not dead!
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Here — he says he's not dead!
        FIAT: Yes, he is.
        LANCIA: I'm not!
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: He isn't.
        FIAT: Well, he will be soon, he's very ill.
        LANCIA: I'm getting better!
        FIAT: No, you're not — you'll be stone dead in a moment.
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Oh, I can't take him like that — it's agains regulations.
        LANCIA: I don't want to go in the cart!
        FIAT: Oh, don't be such a baby.
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: I can't take him…
        LANCIA: I feel fine!
        FIAT: Oh, do us a favor…
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: I can't.
        FIAT: Well, can you hang around a couple of minutes? He won't be long.
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Naaah, I got to go on to Robinson's — they've lost nine today.
        FIAT: Well, when is your next round?
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Thursday.
        LANCIA: I think I'll go for a walk.
        FIAT: (to LANCIA)You're not fooling anyone y'know. (To CAR-BUYING PUBLIC) Look, isn't there something you can do?
        LANCIA: I feel happy… I feel happy.
        FIAT: Ah, thanks very much.
        CAR-BUYING PUBLIC: Not at all.
        <img src="http://images.fanpop.com/images/image_uploads/Bring-Out-Your-Dead–monty-python-and-the-holy-grail-591432_800_441.jpg&quot; width=400>

    I know they've really been dead for 20 years, but even so a terrible Group B rally crash just happened in my heart.

  3. I'm worried about Lincoln. Have you seen their ads lately? Maybe it's just the ones they're buying on airplanes (only place I see 'em), but they're not trying to sell the cars. Instead, they have interviews with the design employees, the current cars are only shown briefly, but only after they've shown one or more truly classic Lincolns, often with the classic car morphing into the new one. Then they mention "45mpg" as the only bullet point worth writing out as a feature of the new car. At the end of the commercial, in a weird tacked on way.
    They aren't selling the car, they're selling the brand. That seems like a bad sign to me. It means marketing over at FoMoCo seems to think they don't have a product to hawk, and they're having to do something else, anything else to staunch the bleeding.
    At the end of the day, I think Ford will shape up and get Lincoln a new breath of life, but at the moment isn't looking good, and I might have said that about Mercury a few years ago. OTOH, they already jettisoned Mercury, and Lincoln would be a hell of a marque to mothball.
    (Am I the only one who thought the Chrysler 300 rebadge as a Lancia Thema was actually a good idea?)

    1. Yeah, Lincoln's long, slow, public starvation is pretty painful to watch. I think the Thema is actually a perfect fit and probably the only huge American sedan available in Europe. People wanting it there is another issue entirely though.

    2. The TV ad that starts out with a 90s Lincoln Town Car morphing into a fireball and coming out as some kinda Fordish sedan is certainly interesting, if only for the bravery of TV ad showing people a Town Car from the 90s.
      By the way, isn't Lincoln THE Lincoln Motor Company (by special appointment by His Excellency Woodrow Wilson) now? They're reorganizing, distancing from Ford.

      1. Isn't Lincoln using the ad company that MINI used when they started back up?
        Selling a lifestyle and not a hint of HP numbers anywhere.
        Lincoln has been lingering for more than a decade- which was all Caddy needed to distance itself from the 70's barges, 80's Cimarons and 90's Cateras.

    3. I don't know why Ford doesn't look to Cadillac's recent success and try and mimic their plan for Lincoln. The new MKZ is a great car, but it's no where near enough to save the company. They need to return to their true luxury roots and come out with some interesting RWD cars. They need a 3-series/ATS/C-Class fighter. HOPEFULLY Ford is planning to do something with the new Mustang platform. It's perfect. it's the right size, it's going to have IRS, and it'll already have instant access to the perfect range of engines. The rumored 2.3L Ecoboost is an absolutely perfect base engine, the 3.7 V6 is a great mid-range, and the 5.0 will make a perfect LSC to go toe to toe with the ATS-V. And then they need a new Continental. A midsize-large, RWD luxury sedan to go against the likes of the Mercedes E/S Class and BMW 5/7 series.

      1. Hey, isn't Dodge selling Darts with a FIRE engine now? Might be time for another retro name reboot…

    1. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      Also, I gave you a thumbs up because for some reason someone gave you a thumbs down.

  4. You know, I will say Mitsubishi. They have one product that is way overpriced and totally bloated from its original design that I remotely want (i-Meiv), and the rest are all poorly reviewed and very slow sellers. I would be surprised if Mitsu calls it good, and sticks to teevees.

    1. The Evo is a nice bit of kit if, you know, reliability on a rally stage is down at the bottom of your priority list.
      Other than that, Mitsu's automotive offerings are pretty much the same as they have been for the last 5 years. In fact, I think the same Galant has been sitting in the Mitsu dealer parking lot by work for the last 5 years. They also have 5 iMiev's sitting there, which is probably the same number of iMievs that have been sold in North America in the last year.

      1. Aren't they canning the Evo, even though it's the only thing that brings people into the showroom? Also, the Galant is gone now, though I imagine there's a ton of unsold inventory.
        The weird thing is that they just launched in Canada about 6 or 7 years ago, so the dealers are all new and now they don't have product anybody wants.

        1. I'd say Mitsubishi dealers are much like Suzuki dealers in that they mostly sell other companies' used inventory, except I know of at least one that mostly stocks used Outlanders and Lancers, so I guess someone's buying.

          1. The ones I'm familiar with are in Saskatoon and Regina. Saskatoon was a brand new showroom about 5 years ago, and last time I was there had all sorts of new inventory, though it's part of a larger chain so maybe they have shifted into a used car superstore.
            Regina is Saskatchewan's only i-MiEV store (joy!) but now that I think of it the lot was mostly used. They're connected to a Nissan dealer – literally, they're in the same building which is divided by some strategically placed walls – so at least if Mitsu goes under it's not a complete loss.

      2. I saw an iMiev on the road yesterday, the first I've seen in Kansas City. Given the typically long drives of the central midwest (my 26 mile one way commute isn't unusual), this is a largely impractical vehicle.

    2. Yep, Mitsubishi is at the top of my deadpool. Most people I've mentioned them to are stunned that they're still in bussiness. I was helping a friend look for a cheap mid-size sedan that could be beaten unmercifully for kid and dog duty, and I told her to look at the Kizashi and the Galant, since you could pick either up for a song and her husband is mechanically inclined enough that the potential lack of dealer support wasn't an issue. She asked "they still make the Galant? Mitsubishi's still around? I thought they went out of bussiness like 5 years ago."
      They're only interesting product is the Evo, and it's ancient at this point and about to be phased out. Everything else is so boring and forgettable it's kind of scary.

  5. I can't imagine Honda is happy with the sales of the CR-Z so far… I don't think it will be gone by 2014 MY, but I can't imagine it lasting much longer unless it gets a redo.

        1. The CT200h is doing pretty well out here, but it's the Bay Area. I kind of expect good uptake on that car here.

        2. Apparently central KY is not the hot bed for those, as I think I've seen 2 in the 2 years I've been here.

  6. What cars won't be here next year?
    – 2014 Saab Sonett IV.
    – 2014 Suzuki Kizashi RS Coupe.
    – 2014 Hummer H4X.
    – 2014 Pontiac G9.
    – 2014 Saturn Aerion.
    – 2014 Mercury Cyclone.

      1. Hey, youre laughing now, but if Olds was still around don't pretend that they wouldn't be selling something like that. Brr… ::shudders::

        1. Even worse, my grandparents (in their 90s) would be spending money on it.
          Think second-gen S-10 Blazer with vinyl roof, RR-style radiator grill, landau bars, Vogues and, for a little extra cash (of course) a continental kit.

      1. By the way, I had lunch with Alff yesterday and finally delivered his poster-sized copy of "Fire Equipment With Flaming Van In Mid-Air Also."

        1. Excellent. I'm still making up my mind where to put mine, I think one is going to find its way to my office.

          1. Devin mine is right above my youngest son's bunk. It's the first and last thing he sees every day.

          2. Originally it was going to be in the living room, but my wife made me put back the painting of the two kids on the beach. Across from it is another with three kids, also on the beach, just like our family. My line of reasoning failed. As did my pleading next.

          3. Oh and this is even more terrible. This month there is a very nice brown Citroen on the hooniverse calendar hanging in the kitchen. It made it til April 3rd, now the garbage stickers are hanging in front of it. That's really something considering Miss March.

          4. I'm sorry you couldn't get preferred placement. I don't even ask – my wife and I have a long-standing division of responsibilities, and artwork is in her wheelhouse. This almost always works to my benefit.

          5. I have my Hooniverse calendar hanging up at work. A co-worker (who's not much of a car guy) came into my cube the other day just stared at it for at least 30 seconds, then said, "Man, why can't they build cars that look like that anymore?"

    1. This one actually sells, though, albeit slowly. It's due for a refresh, sure, and hopefully its replacement will be just a hint less ugly and rather more squared off at the back, Venza-style, so it'll actually be useful.
      I'd rather see the Pilot go. There's ugly and square, and there's the Pilot.

      1. Yeah, I see those around, and I don't think they look bad. I'm guessing Honda will double down with the curvy styling when they refresh. Worst problem with all those big fastback hatches is the divided rear window.

  7. I'm getting a little worried about Volvo, not for any rational reason say like them selling so few here or not even having any brochures on hand to give-out at auto shows for the third straight year, but cause they announce the wagon is returning to US. They always seem to get that second wind right before they curl-up under the porch and never wake-up again.

    1. I'm not worried, you can't swing a yoga mat without hitting one here in the SF Yay Area, and their styling of late is hotter than those recalled see-thru Lululemon pants.
      Had I the money, the new V60 would be at the top of my list as our next MILF-mover.

    2. I've just discovered a few weeks ago that Volvo has a TON of models that they aren't selling in North America. Including ones that seem to have been specially made for this market.

      1. The AWD v40 seems like it would be a pretty ideal small crossover for US, but pricing wouldn't work I guess here. That's why it is being heavily advertised in Poland. Think about that, the prices are so low for new cars in US, that Volvo goes for a very small (they will probably sell like 30 at most this year in Poland) but growing and near-by for them market instead where they can make money on the cars. It's kind of depressing to think about, but that's the way it is.

  8. <img src="http://www.logowallpaper.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Smart-Logo-Wallpaper.jpg&quot; width=300>
    Sure, in Europe they make sense. Small and the diesel's very efficient.
    In the US, there are ever so slightly larger competitors (500, iQ, Spark) that are more practical and get as good or better mileage.
    Perhaps the new ForFour, based on the Twingo will save them, but only if Daimler keeps the patient alive and sends that yet to be seen car here.
    <img src="http://www.blogcdn.com/www.autoblog.com/media/2013/02/smart-forfour-628.jpg&quot; width="600/">

    1. See, I suspect the Smart is probably selling about as many (or few) as Daimler expected, and given that it's a solid way of getting youth into Benz showrooms without diluting the brand (and also that they've set up Car2Go in a number of North American cities), I'm not sure it'll go away so soon. Granted, they should expand the lineup to meet the B-Class/CLA, but at the same time, only the 500 seems to be as successful.

  9. I'm seriously questioning Mitsubishi's strength in the US market. I don't think they're going to last too much longer. Especially when they only make one fun car, and after this week with one…I can't afford to run it, I don't know how the target market can.

  10. I must say Mitsubishi is in dire straights.
    This car company was usually the first to showcase the newest technology from Japan. For example the Mitsubishi Starion is considered to be one of the originators of the modern Japanese turbocharged performance automobile genre, and the first to use electronic fuel injection.

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