Alfa Romeo SZ (1989–1991)
The Alfa Romeo SZ (Sprint Zagato) was a limited-production GT collectively designed by Alfa Romeo, Fiat and Zagato. Built by Zagato, it was powered by a 154 kW version of Alfa’s charismatic V6. Its performance and looks led to it being dubbed Il Mostro – The Monster – and only 1 036 were made.
AMC Pacer (1975–1980)
Produced by the American Motors Corporation, the glassy, bulbous Pacer hatchback was a groundbreaking design, being wide, yet short, taking the American term ‘compact’ to a new level. It featured a number of technical innovations too, including a passenger door 102 mm longer than the drivers.
BMW Z1 (1989–1991)
The Z1 two-seat roadster was basically a production test-bed for a number of innovative designs and technologies, including doors that retracted into the sills, high-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps and the very first use of the company’s famed Z-axle. 8 000 of these cars were built, all left-hand drive.
Jaguar XJ220 (1992–1994)
The prototype XJ220 was developed from the company’s successful V12-engined Le Mans racers by an informal group of employees called the Saturday Club. It featured four-wheel drive, but the final production version had a V6 turbo engine and rear-wheel drive, resulting in many pre-orders being cancelled.
Honda NSX (1990–2005)
Featuring advanced aerodynamics, Honda’s New Sportscar eXperimental was the first mass-
produced car to feature an all-aluminium body. Targeted at Ferrari, each car was hand built and 20 000 were made. It showcased Honda’s engineering skills but lacked Ferrari’s supercar cachet.
Mazda Cosmo Sport (1967–1995)
Mazda’s long association with the Wankel engine began with the Cosmo Sport 110S, powered by a two-rotor 982 cc motor that produced 110 hp (82 kW) – hence the 110 name. Only 1 519 of the production models were made, and all of them were painted white.
Plymouth Prowler (1997–2002)
The Plymouth (later Chrysler) Prowler was a retro-styled V6-engined hot rod based on a 1993 concept inspired by a design by TV’s star customiser, Chip Foose. It featured an advanced body construction of aluminium panels adhesively bonded to the chassis. The total run was 11 700.
Renault Sport Spider (1996–1999)
The mid-engined Spider was designed as a road/race car by Renault Sport and raised the company’s image as a sporting brand. The chassis was aluminium, while the body, with its upward-swinging doors, was glass-reinforced plastic. Only 1 276 were built.
Subaru SVX (1991–1996)
The aerodynamic Subaru Vehicle X was the company’s first attempt to enter the luxury GT market. Designed by famed Italian stylist Giugiaro, the side glass featured an unconventional window-within-a-window. Powered by a 3.3-litre flat-six engine and typically with 4WD, the SVX sold 24 379.
Toyota Mega Cruiser (1995–2002)
Toyota’s answer to the Hummer H1, the 4.1-litre turbodiesel Mega Cruiser was designed primarily for military and public service use. With front, centre and rear diff locks and four-wheel steering, it could go almost anywhere. A civilian version became available but was not a sales success.