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Bryan
Hagerty Employee

20 pairs of doppelgänger cars

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right? If that’s the case, there must be plenty of automotive designers doing an awful lot of blushing, because we managed to outline a long list of cars that share more than a passing resemblance to totally different models. We’re skipping badge-engineered cars or captive imports—that’s just cheating. Without further ado, here are 20 sets of cars, trucks, and SUVs that look a lot alike, whether by accident or by intent.

 

Read the full article on Hagerty.com:

https://www.hagerty.com/media/lists/20-pairs-of-doppelganger-cars/

121 REPLIES 121
spitfahr
Passenger

I don't recall Bitter ever using a V8.

aerowagon
Passenger

A couple modern favorites were always the W210 E-class vs. Kia Amanti -

 

Also the pre-facelift Lexus LS430 vs. pre-facelift Ford Five Hundred

wendy834gt
New Driver

My mother gave me her 1976 Toyota Celica GT Liftback when I was 18. I loved the car because I thought it looked exactly like a Mustang. I think the '76 is a closer match than the '73 though. As kids, we each had our favorite car. My brother's was the Javelin, which also resembles the Mustang. My first love was the Corvette in the early 70's (Corvette Summer), and I still love that car, although I drive an '04, 5 speed (real cars have 3 pedals) Mustang GT. I always thought my sister chose her favorite car, the Opel, because it looked like "my" corvette. It was great to see both these comparisons, letting me know I wasn't crazy. Great article !!!

spoom
Technician

yeah, the '76 totally was more like a Mustang. 

lotuspete
Passenger

Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta > AC Ace/Bristol > AC Cobra

lotuspete
Passenger

Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta > AC Ace/Bristol > AC Cobra

cdkrek
Intermediate Driver

FC RX7 vs mid 80s Dodge Daytona/Plymouth Lazer?

 

if you squint hard, I think the side profile of current Mustang is similar to Ferrari Daytona

cdkrek
Intermediate Driver

Can you add the headlights from a 2000 Merc C class to  1976 Camaro?   Always wondered what that would look like.  Front is kinda similar

Craige
New Driver

Looking for a carbon copy? Check out the Mazda Miata and the Lotus.

Dentman
Passenger

I agree with some but not at all with others.

Hagertydoug
Passenger

My wife's 2008 Saturn Aura bears much resemblance to an Acura sedan of the same era.  Even the name is similar.  Coincidence?  I think not!

richsfordsx4
New Driver

KIA looks like any kia 

kill in action

Jost
Intermediate Driver

Fun to see, the only disagreement I have is the two Kia's. Both are the same make so they are supposed to look the same . Its like putting the Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable or Chevy Silverado, GMC Sierra, etc... But thank you for the smiles. Liked them all and never thought about things like that

Okey78
Intermediate Driver

In the early 70's it seemed Chevrolet looked to Maranello for some styling inspiration, such as:

The Ferrari 250 GTE and the Chevrolet Vega

The Ferrari 250 GTB SWB and the 2nd-generation Camaro

The resemblance is strongest from the front.

 

The Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider and the VW Karmann-Ghia Cabriolet from the rear.

 

Although the Porsche 986 Boxster was a deliberate homage to the 550 Spyder racers from the 1950's, from the rear there is a resemblance to the Lotus 23 sports racer.

 

Finally, in BMW Z3 there is a bit of echo of the Arnolt-Bristol.

JDHilton
New Driver

Tony Lapine worked on Corvettes and (to my eye) improved on them when he designed the Opel GT not long after "Generous Motors," as he called it, sent him to Germany. But when I interviewed him in the early 1980s he never mentioned being inspired by the Pacer! 

Brandan
Hagerty Employee

It mentions it in "The Cars of American Motors: An Illustrated History" by Marc Cranswick.

Cool-isAmerican
Pit Crew

To begin with PLEASE don't us cut off photos of the various cars; especially where one of the photos is full view and the other is cutoff on front of back or both.....irritating to say the least!

Brandan
Hagerty Employee

The photos aren't cut off, they're just scaled to fit in the column. Click on the photos and you'll see the full cropping.

02-orignal-ownr
Intermediate Driver

Several more:  The first series Corvair's wraparound belt line molding was copied by European and Japanese designers: BMW's Neue Klasse sedans (1962), and later the '02 series, the VW Karmann Ghia 1600, the NSU Prinz, Mazda Familia and even the Russian GAZ 966.

 

Auto Union (DKW)'s SP 1000 was a direct crib of Ford's original two seat Thunderbird.

 

And the copying crossed the Atlantic in the other direction with Ford's 10th generation Thunderbird (1989) whose silhouette, roof line and distinctive Hoffmeister Kink on the C-pillar was copied from BMW's E24 Six series.  

 

One more--although they were developed almost simultaneously:  Renault's 4CV and the postwar Morris Minor...

TomP
Pit Crew

When the famous Orphan Car Show in Ypsilanti opened up to foreign cars several years ago, someone brought a Russian car that was clearly a copy of the Volkswagen Beetle.  I don't recall what make the Russian vehicle was, though.

GForce
New Driver

I figured someone else would mention the Thunderbird and BMW six series. I had a 1989 SC and the first time someone told me it looked a little like the BMW, I hadn't thought of that. But once I did, I couldn't "unsee" it.

StuA
Pit Crew

1979 Mazda RX7 vs 924 Porsche.

Dallas
Passenger

Plymouth Sundance/Dodge Shadow and Maserati Biturbo.

BEB
Passenger

Every car on the road today and every other car on the road today.

Jagernaught
New Driver

BEB,

exactly right! 

Today’s manufactures all went to the same wind tunnel testing site and came up with the same answers.

Same old same old today.

Boring as hell .

wendy834gt
New Driver

**bleep**...you're so right. My daily driver is a Nissan Versa. Can't find that **bleep** thing in the parking lot. No problem finding my "04 Mustang. 

Maestro1
Detailer

It's fascinating. Thank you.

Artkadet
New Driver

Also, the 2008 Nissan Altima Coupe and the Bentley Continental GT, especially the rear end.

RokemRonnie
Intermediate Driver

Virgil Exner didn't mind when Ghia, which was building Chrysler's concept cars in the '50s, took his Chrysler D'Elegance show car and had Giovanni Savanucci scale it down for Volkwagen's Karmann Ghia.

Manease
New Driver

240Z and Jaguar.

roadio55
Intermediate Driver

I left for college in 1976 fantasizing about the Celica as my college car. That did not happen. By graduation, I had a friend with a Mach 1. He would park next to my 1956 Studebaker President 2-dr. near the entrance to the campus. Coolness! I don't see any scallops on that Mustang.

When I told my friends I was buying a new car in 2006, they asked if it was "the PT or the Chevy". It was the HHR (Heritage High Roof). 

Real_Life
Pit Crew

The 2000 Toyota MR is actually a direct lift of the MG F.

spoom
Technician

I totally don't see the '55 Chrysler/'56 Volvo comparison, but the rest seem fair enough. 

 

alaskossie
New Driver

The Volvo in the picture is actually a 1969-1970 Amazon with B-20 engine, not a 1956 Volvo.

PhillipinSD
New Driver

Take a look at the 1983 Mercedes G Wagon 280 and the 1985 Mitsubishi Pajero (Montero).  Mitsubishi almost compied the G-Wagon completely in lines and dimensions. Also the dashboards were almost identical. The MBZ G-Wagon won the 1983 Paris-Dakar rally then in 1985 Mitsubishi won with the Pajero and basically owned that rally for years to follow.

PhillipinSD
New Driver

Take a look at the 1983 Mercedes G Wagon 280 and the 1985 Mitsubishi Pajero (Montero).  Mitsubishi almost compied the G-Wagon completely in lines and dimensions. Also the dashboards were almost identical. The MBZ G-Wagon won the 1983 Paris-Dakar rally then in 1985 Mitsubishi won with the Pajero and basically owned that rally for years to follow.

Brandan
Hagerty Employee

We were going to use Montero and Isuzu Trooper. There are plenty of boxy SUVs that would have fit the bill.
Alikat51
Pit Crew

Volvo PV544 1958-65 and 40 ford sedan!

boxdin
New Driver

Porsche 928 and Dodge Daytona

OregonMotorCo
New Driver

As a former Puma GTE owner, I can state my belief that the Puma is not a copy of the Dino as the Puma was designed at the same time if not slightly beforehand.  You also missed one of the most obvious pairs: the Ferrari 365GT 2+2 and the Chevrolet Vega.  The Vega copied directly from the earlier Pininfarina design.

Pepperalls
Detailer

Fun article. Glad some posters mentioned the influential 1953 Studebaker.

 

E-series Studebaker trucks begat 2nd Gen Dodge Ram

 

Shelby Daytona (more than Cobra if you really look at them) begat Dodge Viper       ---Lutz involved in both by the way.

 

Not a direct doppler... but so many design cues introduced (or at least seen in North America on a volume-selling car) on the first Buick Riviera became standard design language for decades after.

PeppyLIbido
Passenger

I feel bad for the person who came up with this idea and the cars selected. You guys should hide this article as soon as possible. You can trust us. We will deny ever seeing it.

Mach1
Passenger

I could be wrong, but the picture of that 1972 Jeep Commando is of a miniature model. Also, they grabbed the wrong picture of the Sidekick as they specifically were comparing the '89 Daihatsu to the '89 Sidekick and they posted a 1998 Sidekick Sport. Was it really that hard finding pictures of these cars on the internet?

Brandan
Hagerty Employee

Yes, it was.

Brandan
Hagerty Employee

The Commando photo is from an auction. It's a full-size Jeep. Maybe the shallow depth of field is throwing you off.

TomP
Pit Crew

I think someone needs to look up the definition of doppleganger...

Unpretentious
Passenger

Was looking for the ‘55 T-Bird and ‘64 Sunbeam Tiger & Alpine comparison. They’re too close to be just a coincidence!

Car10
Passenger

Certainly gives us pause to think and see the similarities — I think the most odious one would be the Bentley Continental with the Chrysler 300. 

Ragtop69
Intermediate Driver

How about the Jaguar XKE coupe and the Datsun 240Z?  I owned one of the latter and always wished I had owned one of the former.  I was looking at my Z car one day and realized how much like the XKE it looked.  R.E. the Porsche 925 and the AMC Pacer, what were you guys thinking.  They both had big rear glass.  That's about it.  Also, wouldn't the Porsche 944 be a better match up with the second gen Mazda RX7?

Egodriver71
New Driver

Cadillac Catera and the Chevy Malibu