Some decades are just more iconic than others, and the 1990s are one of those decades that really brought a lot of change—especially for cars. For instance, the 90s gave the world a glimpse into the future, with advances in all things technical, but the 90s especially saw a brand new increase in automobile technology.
Plus, it came at a great time, as the wonderful world of motoring was flailing after the 70s and 80s producing a whole host of terrible vehicles. That's right, the clean air act of 1979 somewhat hindered the making of supercars, with the act putting forward strict requirements with regards to environmentally friendly engines and so forth. The 80s were just as bad, with cars seemingly coming second best to everything else that was going on in the world. Sure, there were some beauties, but nothing that really shook audiences or offered drivers the wow factor.
Thankfully, the 90s arrived, a decade that showed innovation through technology and design. Suddenly, cars became popular again, and car manufacturers across the world jumped on the chance to offer car enthusiasts something different. The boxy frames of the previous decades were shown the door and cars now mostly focused on performance and speed. However, that's not to say that didn't have to look good too, with cars now sporting a slick and tidy frame along with softer edges. So, let's take a look at some of the more unique cars to have come from the 1990s. Where are these 20 cars from the 90s now?
20 Saab 900 Turbo Convertible
The Saab 900 was a compact luxury automobile produced between 1978 and 1998. The car had two generations throughout its life, with the first generation now known as the "classic" and the second being the "new generation." Overall, the vehicle was received well and quickly became a firm favorite among the younger generation of the time. At the time, the 900 was an expensive car and was promoted mainly on its performance. However, the Saab 900 was a tough little vehicle and could withstand all conditions whatever the weather. These days, they can be found on auction sites all over the world and go for as much as $25,000 dollars.
19 Chevy Camaro Z28
The Chevy Camaro Z28 has often been referred to as a "race car for the road" and most definitely fits the bill when it comes to speed. The car has a number of features that wouldn't look out of place on a race track, from the racing suspension to a slick finish. However, over the years, the car has undergone a number of generations and has somewhat faltered with regards to its new appearance. Sadly, the car isn't as great as it used to be and can often be pushed aside in favor of new and more exciting automobiles. In 2018, the latest version was released, with mediocre reviews and an even more mediocre look.
18 Pontiac Firebird
The Pontiac Firebird is a car that was produced by Pontiac between 1967 and 2002. The name "Firebird" was previously used by GM during the 1950s and 1960s, but the name made it over to the Pontiac division and their iconic vehicle. The Pontiac has been used in a number of movies over the years and has become somewhat notorious. For instance, the car starred in the cult classic, Smokey and the Bandit, a movie which also starred the legendary Burt Reynolds. As a result, sales of the car massively increased, with the car still connected to the movie to this day.
17 Aston Martin DB7
The Aston Martin DB7 is noted for a number of things and is probably one of the most iconic vehicles on the planet. The car was produced by Aston Martin between 1994 and 2004 and became the highest produced Aston Martin ever, with over 7,000 automobiles created. Over the years, the car has been labeled as being effortless quick, extremely efficient, and most importantly, exceptionally handsome. Aston Martins are the James Bond car, after all. These days, the car can be found all over the place, especially the UK (where it was born) and can reach prices some could only dream of.
16 Lotus Esprit
The Lotus Esprit was a flashy sports car built by the legendary car manufacturer, Lotus Cars. The car was produced between 1976 and 2004 and was the first of its kind with regards to the design. That's right, notorious designer Giorgetto Giugiaro used the Lotus Esprit as the first prototype for the famed, polygonal "folded paper" design. Over the years, the Lotus Esprit has become part of supercar history and has become somewhat of a cult classic. Nevertheless, the car has its issues, with problems such as the handbrake, suspension, and steering a common concern among complaints.
15 Mercedes-Benz S500
The Mercedes-Benz S-Class is world-renowned and famed for being somewhat special. That's right, the supercar sedan was officially introduced by the giants of Germany, Mercedes-Benz, in 1972, and hasn't looked back since. Over the years, the S-Class has displayed the latest factory innovations, along with the newest technology and latest features. Furthermore, it regularly places in the top ten of best-selling luxury vehicles and continues to win awards each year. These days, the car just keeps getting better and better, with each generation somehow managing to outdo the last one. Yes, it really is that good. So what are you waiting for, go and get one!
14 Buick Roadmaster
The Buick Roadmaster is a vehicle built by legendary car manufacturers Buick. The car was produced between 1936 and 1958 and then again from 1991 to 1996. These days, the car can be found all over the internet, as well as at auction houses and car dealerships. The Roadmaster has also become a cult classic, with fans all over the world applauding the iconic metal machine. Sadly, others don't agree, and the car has also been labeled as ugly, as well as slow and depressing. However, despite the negative comments, many people claim that the Roadmaster is the best car they have ever owned. Now, that's something.
13 BMW M5
BMW is probably one of the most iconic car manufacturers in the world, with their cars found all over the world. The company has a number of exquisite vehicles, including sports cars and luxury automobiles. The BMW M5 is one of BMW's most dependable cars and has been at BMW since 1985. Over the years, different versions of the M5 have been built, with each generation better than the last. Although the car is extremely fast, extremely practical, and extremely comfortable, it is also extremely expensive. That's what you get if you want luxury and performance. The car is still in production and can be found across the globe. However, due to the hefty price, it can be difficult to get your hands on.
12 Toyota 4Runner
Toyota was somewhat of a big deal during the eighties and nineties and released a number of impressive vehicles throughout the two decades. The Toyota 4Runner was one of them and was first released all the way back in 1983. The car is still around today and is sold throughout the world. Over the years, the automobile has had its fair share of improvements and is extremely different to what it once was. Back in 1983, the original 4runner was a compact SUV, and little more than a standard pickup with a shell. Nowadays, it is much bigger, as well as extremely sturdy. In fact, in 2016 the truck ranked in the top 10 for longest-lasting vehicles in the US.
11 BMW E30 325i Convertible
The BMW E30 is the second generation of the BMW 3-Series, a fleet of cars that have become extremely successful over the years. The convertible was first introduced in 1985 and was immediately popular. These days, the automobile is considered a classic, with most of the convertibles over twenty years old. On reflection, the car is extremely attractive, with some going as far as calling it handsome. The vehicle has been praised throughout its run, with many highlighting the smooth engine and solid appearance. These days, the car can sell for prices of up to $10,000—that's if you're lucky, anyway.
10 Jaguar XJS Convertible
The Jaguar XJS is one of the slickest cars around and was created by Jaguar between 1975 and 1996. The convertible, which debuted in 1988, was arguably much cooler and was released to immediate success. In its prime, the XJS was considered to be the best car in the world, with only the rich and successful being able to get their hands on it. However, over the next few years, car designs changed and the world realized that it wasn't actually very good. Nevertheless, the car is now regarded as a classic, especially the convertible, which oozes appeal through its handsome design. The car is often found in the midst of a car enthusiast's collection, managing to somehow look effortlessly cool.
9 Mazda MX-5
The Mazda MX-5 is one the most popular two-seater convertible sports cars in the world and has exceeded just over a million units sold since production began in 1989. Although the vehicle was first marketed in 1989, sales didn't really explode until the early 1990s, when the rest of the planet seemed to finally understand just how great it was. For instance, the car is noted for its recognizable pop up headlights, which have become part of its signature appeal. However, multiple changes have been made over the years, such as engine modifications, light alterations, and an increase in size. Despite the changes, the car is still going strong.
8 Subaru SVX
The Subaru SVX is one of the most solid cars to have come out of Japan around the time of its release in 1989. Between 1991 and 1996, the car really shone, with sales steady throughout this period. The SVX was a gamble and was the first to combine comfort and performance, which was not the priority at the time. The shiny and sleek bodywork, compiled with the aircraft-inspired, glass-to-glass canopy windows, propelled the SVX to cult stardom. However, interestingly, Subaru actually lost around $3,000 for each vehicle sold, which caused a total loss of $75 million dollars.
7 Alfa Romeo 164
In the 1990s, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Lancia, and Saab agreed to team-up on an executive four-door saloon, an exciting development at the time. As a result, the Alfa Romeo 164 was born, with designer Enrico Fumia at the helm. The car was unique thanks to its suspension geometry and the design was seriously one of a kind. However, after nearly 300,000 sales, production was suspended, with sales coming to a halt in 1997. These days, the car continues to be popular and can be found all over the place. In fact, the car is somewhat of a favorite among car enthusiasts and is often customized and modified to suit its owner.
6 The Nissan 300ZX
The Nissan 300ZX was first marketed in Japan between 1983 and 2001 and was a member of the Nissan Z-Car family. The car first appeared in the United States in 1984 and lasted until 1996. At first, the car wasn't very popular, both in Japan and the United States. However, after a while, things started to pick up, and the car ended up selling well. In fact, the automobile was so popular that it often ranked among the best cars in the world for a number of years. For instance, Car and Driver placed the vehicle on its Ten Best list for 7 consecutive years, with Motor Trend also giving the car the Import Car of the Year award in 1990.
5 Lexus LS 400
The Lexus LS is a large, luxury car manufactured by the legendary brand Lexus. The car first served as the flagship model for Lexus and for the first four generations, acted predominantly as a rear-wheel-drive sedan with a V8 engine. Over the years, the car has slightly changed and now uses a V6 engine. Development first started on the car in 1983 and cost over $1 billion because it took over five years to perfect. At first, the car debuted to extremely strong sales and was actually responsible for the successful relaunch of the Lexus brand. These days, the car is still performing well, but nowhere near the standard of the past.
4 Volkswagen Corrado G60
The Volkswagen Corrado is a compact, four-passenger, front-wheel drive hatchback made by supergiants Volkswagen. The car was available between 1988 and 1995 and was designed by famed car designer, Herbert Schäfer. The Corrado lasted a whopping seven years, with 97,521 car manufactured throughout this period. In fact, the vehicle eventually took over the other shining light of the Volkswagen fleet, the Scirocco model, and quickly became Volkswagen's standout vehicle. Over the years, the automobile won a number of awards, as well as high praise. For instance, Auto Express magazine described it as "VW’s best ever drivers’ car". Furthermore, the car was listed as one of the "25 Cars You Must Drive Before You Die" by UK magazine Car. Nice!
3 Toyota Land Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser is a four-wheel drive SUV produced by the trusted carmakers from Japan, Toyota. The car is iconic in that it is Toyota's longest-running model ever and as of 2018, the cruiser's sales have totaled a whopping 6.5 million units worldwide, Production on the car first came about in 1951, however, the Land Cruiser really came into its own during the nineties. Overall, the Land Cruiser's reliability and sturdiness have led to its huge success, especially in Australia. That's right, the car is currently the best-selling four-wheel-drive SUV down under and has continuously been so over the last few years.
2 Cadillac Allanté
The Cadillac Allanté was a luxury roadster created by Cadillac in 1987. The car had a successful run and ceased production in 1993. However, despite its success, the car was expensive to make, with the complete bodies flown all the way to the USA from Italy for final assembly. Overall, 21,000 units were built throughout its run, with the majority of them still around today. These days, the car is considered to be a classic and can sell for large amounts of money. In fact, the vehicle is often referred to as the most desired junkyard find, with car enthusiasts often declaring their love for the automobile.
1 Ford Mustang Convertible
The Ford Mustang is a Detroit classic and one of the standout cars in the whole wide world. The car was originally released all the way back in 1964 but has undergone several changes over the last few decades. The Mustang really came into its own during the nineties, where it wowed audiences across the globe. Over the years, the car has reached somewhat of a celebrity status and features regularly in movies, music, and television. In fact, the car is probably the most sought-after vehicle in the world, with each generation considered a classic. As of 2018, Ford has produced over 10 million vehicles, a number that will only continue to grow.
Sources: Road and Track, Autocar, and Wikipedia