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Hall of Fame or Bust – Five of the Biggest Flops in Automotive History

Darrek Olson

As tonight marks the official start of the 2014-2015 NFL season, many fantasy football team owners are eagerly awaiting to see how their players do. Will your running back bounce back from the disappointing year he had last year? Will the gamble made picking up that player in a late round despite him being suspended for a few games pay off? Or is your fantasy team going to flop after your entire starting line up suffers from torn ACL injuries, concussions, or even a broken leg?

To celebrate the kickoff, we’ve made a list of five of the biggest car flops and one-hit-wonders in the automotive industry. They all had such potential for greatness, but couldn’t quite produce the sales numbers and ultimately led to these manufacturers closing their doors. Hopefully none of these vehicles made your Vehicle Dream Team, or your team would likely not have made it too deep in the playoffs.

Bricklin SV-1


The Bricklin SV-1 was only produced between 1974-76 and manufactured in New Brunswick, Canada. The name, SV-1, stood for “safety vehicle one” which looked to be a safe and economical sports car. Malcolm Bricklin also believed that smoking while driving was very unsafe and therefore an ashtray and cigarette lighter were absent from the vehicle. Despite the gull wing doors that opened automatically, the SV-1 flopped after only a few years.

Sebring-Vanguard Citicar

The 1970’s were a troubling time to be a new car manufacturer apparently as the Citicar was another that was only produced from 1974-77. The Citicar was first produced to help America’s with the rising fuel cost of the 1970’s. This completely electric vehicle is a moving geometric shape with completely flat sides all around; including the windshield. However, the design of this car left it as basically a box with wheels and didn’t have the features in a vehicle that many people look for.

DeLorean DMC-12


The DeLorean DMC-12 might have had better success if only the movie series “Back to the Future” would have been made a few years earlier or the DeLorean made a few years longer than just 1981-82. This vehicle also features gull wing doors similar to the MV-1. The DMC-12 went through many changes during the short production as the manufacturer couldn’t commit to any exact design or configuration. People just weren’t buying cars in the 80’s and as a result the DMC-12 never truly lived up to the potential it had.

Eagle Talon

Eagle Talon

The Eagle name was born in 1990 as a joint venture of two “parents”, Mitsubishi and Chrysler, which formed the manufacturing plant Diamond Star. Not all parents are like Dale Earnhardt or Archie Manning where their offspring are destined for greatness. Much like the Talon, the Plymouth Laser was also a joint project of Mitsubishi and Chrysler. The Talon was redesigned in 1995 while the Laser was replaced with the Plymouth Neon. Other vehicles made under the Eagle brand were the Summit and Vision; both with limited success.

Amphicar Model 770


Is it a car or a boat? The Amphicar pushed the boundary as far as what a car what capable of by going from land to sea. However, the floor of the car was unsuitable as it very easily rusted out. Although the car was intended to be taken to waterways, it was intended to float on the top of the water and therefore a rusted floor was not a good feature. That compiled with the high price tag doomed the Amphicar and the Model 770 was the only vehicle produced.

Car manufacturers have come and gone throughout the history of the automobile. Most recently were the death of Pontiac, Saturn and Saab. The vehicles listed above all started off as potentially great automobiles but failed to catch on in popularity with the general consumer. Hopefully your fantasy football picks fair better this year compared to these vehicles.




Darrek Olson
Darrek Olson

Darrek is an enthusiast driver who values the journey more than the destination. A self-proclaimed Miata fanboy, his obscure knowledge of cars sometimes prevents him from remembering what he had for breakfast.

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