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Bryan
Hagerty Employee

4 canceled vehicles that deserved a second chance

The automotive industry is brutal. Dollar signs drive design decisions every day, and if a product doesn’t continue to satisfy bean counters and board executives, it’s tossed aside regardless of the cult that might follow the nameplate to its grave. 

 

Today we both celebrate and mourn the loss of several models that were axed before they could be polished or refined to the full extent. Read the full article on Hagerty.com:

 

https://www.hagerty.com/media/lists/4-machines-that-deserve-a-second-chance/

122 REPLIES 122
TKDMaster
Pit Crew

Not a Chrysler fan particularly, but the Dodge Magnum was just cool looking!  Mitsubishi 3000GT; I worked in a Mitsubishi dealer parts department....................Uh..................NO...complexity for the sake of complexity....other than that...........

TKDMaster
Pit Crew

but can't argue with the Hellcats and their police cars, good job there.

Ajtarman
Passenger

The asstek was the ugliest car

Ever made. GM employees, in some

Cases were forced to buy. So ugly

Many have next to zero miles on

Their maladjusted marque. So

Ugly they kept them hidden in

Garages with the doors locked

Shut. Like the crazy aunt one

Would keep in the basement.

Pontiac hated the car buying

Public at this time. Pontiac's

Predetermined suicide also

Eternal rests with the :06-09

G 6. G6 retractable hardtop

Drop top. I bought this POS for

30000$. The top went down once.

On the electronics that made the

Entire car run. GM owned patents

On repair parts. Would not make

Parts and would not sell patents.

GM bankrupted Karmann which

Made the top as well. I called 12

Dealers. Not one would touch this

Topless whore of a car. This

Top was also used on the 80000$

Cad of that time period. One went

Nuts on a car serviced at a local

Dealer. Destroyed the Cad.

 

jimv
Passenger

Not really,  Most of them had no chance then or now

Anthony73
Passenger

The new Lamborghini SUV resembles the Aztec. Stretch the Aztec and there it is. The GM b body should of stood around the Impala SS was a great car a would of been better. 

Fazang
Pit Crew

Still have my 1996 Imp SS as a daily...300K and counting 🙂
Sajeev
Community Manager

Keep the faith!!!

autbone
New Driver

I went to the dealership with cash ready to buy a 2006 Magnum, right after they came out. I still owned a 1979 Magnum (completely different vehicle) and thought it would be cool to have both, plus I love wagons! But when I opened the rear and saw the cargo space I walked away. It did not have a "cargo area" I could use for hauling stuff, it had a trunk, about 14 inches deep and three feet square. It was nothing but a stretched sedan - I think they call them "Shooting Brakes," now.

 

Also, I owned a Stealth R/T Turbo and regret ever selling that monster! I'd buy a newer one in a minute. Actually maybe I should check the classifieds for a Hennesey modified version!

jimv
Passenger

Second chance? No way.  They do get the crown for fastest depreciation and lowest resale value.  One of them looked like leftover parts that did not go together.

autbone
New Driver

RE the "ugly" Aztec,

Has anyone seen a Nissan Murano convertible? That thing makes an Aztec look beautiful, by comparison. Actually even the non-convertible was butt-ugly.

 

antijam
Pit Crew

For Europen markets Chrysler marketed the 300C Touring, derived from the Dodge Magnum. I owned one with the Mercedes 3.0 litre V6 Diesel. In spite of its size it was well suited to european roads - and a great drive. 40mpg, sub 8 seconds 0-60 and 140mph without breakinfg a sweat. I miss it ( too big for my wife)

DaleL
New Driver

Thanks, I needed a good laugh.

DaleL
New Driver

Thanks. I needed a good laugh!

jimnecci
Passenger

The Aztec was just plain ugly.  I was working for Pontiac at the time and a lot of thought its looks were at fault.

DarrylBirch
Passenger

The Aztec was ugly and stupid.  No surprise there.  

 

The Phantom was a VW that should have been badged as an Audi.  

 

The Mitsubishi 3000GT and Dodge Stealth was wonderful.  Back in the day I wanted one.  

 

The Dodge Magnum, there aren't enough good words in the English Language to describe it properly.  I see this as a modern day, and better Chevy Nomad.  These when found need to be put away, then in 20 or 30 years brought out to stun the collectors market and car shows everywhere. 

Yarbles
New Driver

Despite its bulk the Dodge Magnum didn't have a lot of cargo space.

SHattered
Passenger

The Aztec sucked so hard people thought it was a rogue weather system. Actually watched one almost tip over going around a tight corner too fast. Too tall, too skinny and just butt ugly. The guy that designed it should have been put against a wall and... well, y'know. I really used to like Pontiac until the penny pinchers put it into the ground.

jessid
Passenger

Alas, Aztek. With a better front end, it might have challenged the equally funky Honda Element. That car had no tent, to my knowledge. Unlike the Aztek, it has a cult following. Try to snag a used one and you will see how fast they sell.

 

Honda, bring back the Element, with a tent!

Jerhofer
Passenger

I had a 2005 Magnum R/T as a company car when they first came out.  I loved it.  Reasonably quick, handled well for a car of that size and it was very comfortable on trips. I changed companies while I had it and hated to give it up.  My successor was not a car guy and did not appreciate it for what it was.  On one road trip, I carried two large rolls of carpet in it.  Very practical.  I am still a station wagon guy and now have an Audi Allroad.

Stickman
Navigator

The Aztec? Wow. I'm shocked you forgot the Edsel!

 

(The 3000GT yes, for sure, and the Magnum yea, but the Aztec is nuts.)

mfp4073
Intermediate Driver

The Dodge magnum has a big following in my area.  And the prices show it.   As far as the Aztec is concerned, I remember my dentist getting one brand new when they first came out.  He was so proud of it.  I could never figure out what he saw in it.   I thought maybe it was because he had to look into peoples mouths all day long and it affected his judgement to some degree.

skylane
Passenger

Aztec?? What were you smoking?

AngryBird
New Driver

Pontiac division...no wonder it's MIA!
Shocker
Passenger

Will we be adding the RHD C8 Corvette to this list?

Zephyr
Detailer

VW: nobody wanted to spend that much money on a car with VW's track record of high maintenance and poor reliability . Mitsubishi GT3000 - every time you got into a relatively minor accident involving the front end it wiped out one of the intercoolers. But Mitsubishi's main problem has always been their lack of dealerships. 

Axel
Passenger

I own an auto repair and restoration shop, and have multiple cars of my own.  I will never part with my 07 Magnum SRT8 in black.  Factory chopped, hot rodded, tinted, slammed, and graciously optioned . I'm reminded often how sad it is that it was canceled before the hellcat generation. 

pbukhari
Passenger

The Phaeton story was sad, but i cannot understand why the VW people did not take advantage of the LEXUS story. Imagine if the lexus carried the toyota logo on the cars, would anybody  like to spend the money on a longer version of Camry,  What killed Phaeton was the same problem.  Like Lexus, they should have created a different logo, separate dealer ships and marketing.  They could have put the VW in the 'O' in PhaetOn, I would still like to own a 10 cylinder diesel Phaeton, if they replaced the Diesel Particulate Filter free every time.  I have a Benz GL320CDI, it cost $3000 to replace the DPF at 150,000 miles.

Pioneer27185
Pit Crew

If Dodge had put the Magnum Wagon out as a Two door Hatchback with a luggage rack on top, they would have outsold the Chevy Nomad by miles! Dodge will go the way of Plymouth if they don't get with the program soon!

topher339
New Driver

The Magnum deserves the Hellcat treatment. A big power, American V8 wagon would be a glorious thing. Specially if in manual.

aktwg
Passenger

Chevy Volt for me.  Too bad GM ceased production last Feb.  Put the voltech drivetrain in a compact crossover.  

Blackpanthers81
Pit Crew

hmmm not the pontiac aztek

RonW
New Driver

We had a 2007 Magnum SXT. If it had a Hemi I think I'd still have it. We really enjoyed that car. Drove it from coast to coast a couple times at least. Comfortable, practical and a bad boy look. One of the few cars I miss not having any more. I still check the used cars once in a while in case a clean Hemi or SRT shows up. 

Rich8
Pit Crew

Bring back the Corvair! 

MST
New Driver

I knew a dentist who owned a VW Phaeton and drove it because he wanted a luxury sedan without giving his patients the appearance that he was above them. Driving a Volkswagen made him one of us. I think that may have been the market Volkswagen was aiming for or perhaps trying to create.

67rmjcorvet
Passenger

Were is the Ford Excursion ? I would Take a Newer one over any Of These !!

SkyHogg
New Driver

I miss seeing Magnums (kinda rare around here), and while I probably wouldn't go for a 700+ HP model it really would be an interesting car.  The Aztec?  C'mon...no level of tech, performance or accessories could make up for those lines.  It put the "Ug" in ugly.  So what are the new ideas coming out of the auto makers?  Hey, let's build a 4 door electric sedan (good idea) that we'll call... a Mustang?  I think the values of my '67 and '69 just went down.

Terrencepflynn
Passenger

C'mon Haggerty!!!!   The Mercury Marauder from 2003-2004 is mandatory for this list.  Recommending an Aztec is a complete joke.  Past the Aztecs terrible build quality, el cheapo plastics and stupid design its a reflection of everything wrong with GM, and continues to be wrong with GM.   Haggerty, if you are going to pass yourself off as experts at least have someone who truly has in depth knowledge on what if you bought you could honestly invest in safely, and not go bankrupt over repair bills like in the VW.  One more thing:  When I worked at GM the Aztec was such a dismal failure they forced employees with company car benefits to drive Aztecs, the thinking was that if people saw them on the road it might sell.

Guitar74
Technician

I always had a jonesing for a Marauder
Healeydays
Passenger

The car I was waiting for that never came was the final 3rd hoping that a ragtop was in it's future as the lines made the possibility a potential looker.   I had 2 of the previous 2nd generation Rx7 convertibles loving every driving mile of them, but I held off on buying a 3rd gen .  Unfortunately it never came and I headed to a BMW M roadster.  Nice car, but it's not a rotary...

jelliott
New Driver

Umm, if the Magnum only lasted through 2008, it has nothing to do with FCA, i.e. it ceased to exist prior the creation of the FCA name/entity; it was only ever produced by DaimlerChrylser and then by an independent Chrysler, before they were acquired by Fiat. (Does no one proofread these things before they get published?)

Mech39
Navigator

I currently own a 05 Magnum RT, it is one of the most fun daily drivers I'v ever owned. I fully believe it will be a very collectible car someday in the future. If it was still being produced I'd  buy a demon powered Magnum in a heart beat.

Guitar74
Technician

I love the old commercial where the guy in the Magnum passes the supercar and the supercar driver asks shat he has in it it only to be told what's in the cargo area. Great car. I also liked the styling of the Crossfire, but the Magnum was just plain cool.
llawrence9
Intermediate Driver

Mitsubishi quality, and parts pricing at the time were horrid. I had two Mitsubishi products, and they were cheap used for good reason. Rust in Peace.

The first Hyundais in the US were Mitsubishi clones, and look where they went with devotion to quality control.

Caroll
New Driver

I would add the VW Corrado and the 2nd generation CRX Si to this short list.

Agree on the statement that VW was daring a lot on the Pheton. Thé Artheon might unfortunately live the same story.

Michaelmotorcyc
Pit Crew

Arteon is just an A5 in VW wrapping
bugsplatter
New Driver

That camping shot looks like someone is forcing the Aztek into a trash bag.

 

67airvair
Passenger

The biggest problems the Aztek had were 1) it was a fastback, which precluded it having a third row of seating, unlike its sister ship, the Buick Rendevous; and 2) that it was butt UGLY, also unlike the Buick. Simply put, styling sells, always has. The Aztek was so ugly that as soon as it hit the dealers' lots, the company announced a second year "freshening", almost unheard of in the industry, and a huge red flag that screamed "we're in deep in trouble" to everyone.

MagnumSmitten
Passenger

My wife and I currently own a 2006 Dodge Magnum R/T AWD with the 5.7 L Hemi. We bought this car brand new, and still own it all these years later at 169K miles. We've maintained this car as new all these years and it has always had a spot in the garage. Best car we've ever owned, and we've had many. Will not let it go. It now resides with our 1971 Dodge Superbee, 71 Plymouth Scamp, 1963 Polara 500 convertible and our 2015 Shaker Challenger. Of all these, the Magnum is the greatest street racer. Sleeper is the word for this car until you unleash the 340 horses to all 4 wheels. No wheel spin and no anti-spin system cutting out the engine power. This car HAULS butt, and 2x4s when needed. It has surprised many Mustangs, Camaros and yes, Challengers with way more horsepower. The thumbs up from the guys who get it at the next light, and the sour puss looks of those who don't are both great. On it's way to being a collectible? Maybe? The wife now drives a new Durango, so this Magnum has become part of the collection. Only time will tell.

Spotter
New Driver

I worked at a Pontiac dealership in Colorado at the end of Aztek production We sold lots of the Aztek's brother, the Buick Rendezvous. We sold every used AWD Aztek we could get our hands on. Very popular with young families living up in the foothills. Set of winter tires and they were good to go.

Project3SI
Passenger

The information on the 3000GT and stealth is so inaccurate it's disgusting.  Jesus man.. do some **bleep**en research first.  Wikipedia alone could of helped clear up the obvious mistakes made.