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Only True Car Enthusiasts Will Recognize These Vintage Vehicles

by jvcc
There have been thousands of exciting automobiles released in the last decades. Many of them have gone down in history and are considered legendary classics. They’ve become famous either because of their record-breaking performance, innovative safety features, or distinctive styling. Some cars, however, didn’t get the love they deserved. In fact, many of us have even forgotten that they ever existed in the first place. These vintage cars have been under the radar for years, though some are managing to rise back to fame.

AMC Rebel The Machine

The Machine, a high-performance trim of the AMC Rebel, was one of the best-valued muscle cars of the early 70s. The vehicle offered exceptional performance and distinctive styling for a very competitive price. Despite all this, the American manufacturer only sold around 2,000 units before shutting down the production line.
The production run of The Machine was short-lived. In fact, AMC only offered it for one year. Today, the demand for one of these monstrosities is through the roof. The remaining units can easily reach hundreds of thousands of dollars at auctions, no matter what condition they’re in.

Jeep Gladiator

’63 was indeed a good year for Jeep. That’s when the American automaker revealed the Gladiator, a monstrous pick-up truck based on the Jeep Willys truck. It was a true game-changer, arguably being the best pickup truck available on the market at the time. The first-gen was quickly changed in 1971, Jeep decided to drop the Gladiator nameplate and continue selling the model as the Jeep Pickup instead. Most seemed to forget that the original Gladiator ever existed. That is, until the American manufacturer revived the legendary nameplate for the 2020 model year.

Chrysler 300 Hurst Edition

The muscle car craze had arguably reached an all-time high in the late 60s. That’s why Chrysler decided to drop a monstrous big-block V8 beneath the hood of the 300, tune it for maximum performance, and cash in on the success of yet another Mopar muscle car. The Hurst Edition was quickly forgotten just years after its initial debut. The American automaker only built 501 units of this precious muscle car, including two convertible units. Today, the Hurst 300 is among the most desired American cars from the 70s.

Jensen Interceptor

The Interceptor was a rather interesting attempt to create a muscle car for the British market. Today, this cool automobile is a well-known model among car fans. However, things were not always this way. Sadly, this quirky vehicle wasn’t exactly a hit among consumers. Car buyers in Britain didn’t exactly want a British muscle car, while petrolheads in the US preferred powerful muscle cars made in their homeland. The model was discontinued just a decade after its debut, with only around 7,000 units sold in total.

Plymouth Duster

Most Mopars from the early 70s have indeed gotten the appreciation they deserve, though the Duster is not one of them. In fact, this muscle car remained a hidden gem for nearly 4 decades after its initial debut! The Plymouth Duster was introduced on the market as a relatively cheap alternative to some of the more expensive muscle cars offered by Chrysler. Despite its attractive price tag, less than 13,000 units were sold throughout ’71. What a shame!

Saab 900 Turbo

Back in the 80s, roads all over the world were literally flooded with Saab 900s. These quirky-looking things were one of the first non-performance automobiles powered by a turbocharged powerplant. The 900 Turbo made between 140 and 200 horses, depending on the production year. As years went by, the amount of Saab 900s on the roads dramatically decreased. Around 3 decades after the car’s initial debut, the 900 Turbo was virtually gone from the streets.

Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser

If you’re a fan of That ’70s Show, you probably recognize this beautiful station wagon. Eric Foreman, one of the main characters in the show, owned one of these! Sadly, Foreman’s car wasn’t the rare 442 variant. Nonetheless, it was a sleek Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser powered by a smaller V8 motor. The 442 variant packed a four-speed stick shift, a four-barrel carburetor, and twin exhaust tips. Oh, and it packed a monstrous 455-cubic inch V8 under the hood, too.

Mercury Comet Cyclone

The Mercury Comet Cyclone was the latest variant of the performance-oriented Comet back in 1964. Ford offered this spectacular two-door coupe with either a regular top or a convertible roof. Today, the convertible remains rarer and, in effect, more valuable. Throughout its production run, which lasted until 1971, Ford only managed to sell around 12,000 units of the Comet Cyclone in total. Most experts agree that only around 400 units remain in existence today!

Buick GNX

The Buick Grand National Experimental, or GNX for short, is easily one of the coolest American cars that have come out in the 1980s. It’s difficult to believe how criminally overlooked this beast was when it first came out, given its popularity today. The GNX could reach 60 miles per hour in just 4.7 seconds, thanks to its turbocharged V6 motor that was developed with the help of McLaren Performance Technologies, an American company that’s often confused with the British supercar manufacturer.

Volkswagen Golf GTI

The original Volkswagen Golf GTI, also sold as the Rabbit GTI on some markets, is easily one of the most significant German cars of the 20th century. Today, its importance goes without saying, though that was not exactly the case back when this car was new. The Golf GTI, considered to be the world’s first hot-hatch, quickly became forgotten just years after its initial debut. The plummeting sales went in hand with the car’s decrease in popularity. Today, the first-gen GTI is back in the spotlight.

Chevrolet Corvette C4

The Chevrolet Corvette C4 is perhaps the most underrated generation of America’s first sports car. This is especially interesting because at the time of its debut the C4 was an absolute revolution in the world of Corvettes. Early units of the C4 only make around 250 horsepower, though the high-performance ZR1 variant produced a whopping 375 horses! A few years ago, you could pick up a base C4 in less-than-ideal condition for only a few thousand dollars. Today, the prices are beginning to pick back up, paving the way for a precious classic within the coming years.

Buick Wildcat

Back in the late 1960s, the Wildcat was the ultimate luxurious muscle car. Unlike the majority of American vehicles at the time, the Wildcat offered the ideal mix of luxury and performance. The full-size model saw a short production run that only lasted 7 years and spanned two generations in total. Beneath the hood, the Buick Wildcat naturally packed a gigantic V8 motor. The automaker only fitted enormous V8 engines in the Wildcat, which varied between 401 and 455 cubic inches in displacement. Today, the big-block 455-powered Wildcat remains the most desired version of them all.

Oldsmobile Rallye 350

Like many other vehicles on this list, the Oldsmobile Rallye 350 was overshadowed by its competitors. Though this stylish muscle car was an absolute bargain at the time of its debut, most buyers flocked to get their hands on a Chevy Chevelle or a Dodge Dart instead. Beneath the hood, the Oldsmobile Rallye packed a powerful 350-cubic inch V8 engine. Despite being a great deal, the car was discontinued just a year after its 1970 debut.