3 December 2009

Hagerty Lists Top 'Threatened, Endangered and Extinct' Cars

The passenger pigeon was once the most common bird in North America. Flocks were said to have blackened the skies. Yet history records that the last passenger pigeon—a bird named “Martha”— died in the Cincinnati Zoo in 1914.

Scant attention, however, was paid to the last chirp of the Plymouth Cricket. Thousands of these British-made captive imports were sold by Chrysler-Plymouth dealers in the early 1970s, yet evidence of it in the automotive fossil record is nearly non-existent. The Chevrolet Monza did an even bigger disappearing act. More than 300,000 Monzas were produced between 1975 and 1980, yet recent sightings have been so infrequent that the Chevy Monza must surely be considered “threatened.”

Other once popular cars have likely disappeared to the extent that they’re “endangered” or even “extinct.” Honestly, when’s the last time anyone saw a Chrysler Cordoba (with or without the “rich Corinthian leather?”)

If someone turns up a running and driving example of a car on the Hagerty “Extinct” list, we’ll happily remove it – when presented with the proper evidence, of course, such as a photo of the car with the owner standing in front of it holding the day’s newspaper. Send your tips to mediaservices@hagerty.com. And, for obvious reasons, we prefer breeding pairs to single cars.

The Hagerty “Threatened” List
Cars originally built in numbers greater than 10,000 of which Hagerty insures fewer than 25

1. 1975-80 Chevrolet Monza: The Monza, based on the infamous Chevy Vega, might well have been the most attractive GM car of the mid-1970s. It was also available with a small V-8 and a manual transmission. Monzas raced successfully, and although the styling was a quality job, build quality wasn’t better than anything else of the era, which may explain the scarcity of survivors.

2. 1963-66 Studebaker Wagonaire: Old station wagons are hot, but few Studebaker Wagonaires ever seem to surface. A pity, as they could be ordered with column shift manual transmissions and V-8s with four barrel carburetors. A unique sliding roof over the cargo area also meant that everything from surfboards to refrigerators could be carried inside.

3. 1971-74 BMW Bavaria: The Bavaria, a precursor to the modern 5-series BMW, followed the successful formula of the 2002 in putting the largest possible engine in the lightest platform – in this case, the 2.8 liter six in the basic 2500 body. Mercedes sedans of the era are still quite common but their competitors from Munich seem to have all but disappeared.

4. 1988 Pontiac Fiero GT: Pitched as an economic commuter car, the four-cylinder mid-engine two-seater was initially no sports car. But by 1988, it had a potent V-6 and a re-worked suspension tuned by Lotus engineers. Alas, it was all for naught. GM killed the car after finally getting it right.

5. 1971-77 Toyota Celica: In 1971 – a little late to the pony car craze – Toyota fielded this Shetland that resembled a miniature Mustang. While it lacked the V-8 engine of a real Detroit pony car, or for that matter the more potent twin-cam home market motors, the first-generation Celica handled pleasantly and was an attractive, well-built car. And as we mentioned, the Liftback was a dead-ringer for a 3/4 scale 1967 Mustang.

The Hagerty “Endangered” List
Cars originally built in numbers greater than 10,000 of which Hagerty insures fewer than 15

1. 1971-76 Mercury Capri: The Capri was Ford of Europe’s answer to the Mustang. Like the Mustang, it was built on rather ordinary sedan underpinnings but the result was handsome, well made and, in the case of the V-6 powered cars, fast. It was quite popular in the early 1970s, selling more than 100,000 units in its first two years. Where they all went is anyone’s guess.

2. 1971-74 Mazda RX-2: The RX-2 was the first rotary-powered car to make an impact in the U.S. market. The engine, built under license from NSU Wankel in Germany, was compact, had few moving parts and ran very smoothly. It also offered V-8 performance in a small car. Unfortunately, it also offered V-8 thirst and when the fuel crisis hit, most early rotary cars disappeared.

3. 1975-81 Volkswagen Scirocco: The first-generation VW Scirocco was positioned as a replacement for the popular Karmann-Ghia. It was a thoroughly modern, VW Rabbit-based, front-wheel drive, water-cooled car with angular styling courtesy of Ital Design and Giorgetto Giugiaro. As rust-prone as anything of the era, the ranks of first-generation Sciroccos have thinned to the point that extinction may loom, particularly for first-year cars with pretty chrome bumpers and funky plaid seats.

4. 1979-81 Toyota Supra: If anyone ever decides to chronicle the history of Toyota’s luxury division, this car has to go down as the proto-Lexus. By adding a few inches of wheelbase, a fancier grille, leather seats and a big, smooth straight six, Toyota discovered that there was a market in the U.S. for Japanese quality and execution in a bigger, cushier and pricier package.

5. 1971 Plymouth Cricket: Produced in the U.K. by Chrysler’s subsidiary, The Rootes Group, it was known there as the Hillman Avenger. Like most captive imports, Chrysler’s heart was never into selling the car in the U.S. and its dealers were perplexed. Chrysler squashed it just before the energy crisis, selling the entire design to Iran’s state car company where it was produced under license. Add that to the Shah’s litany of crimes. As a genuine car guy himself, he should have known better.

Update: The 1971 Cricket was originally listed as "extinct," but a reader – and '71 Cricket owner – has pointed out that his car has been insured by Hagerty since September. We've confirmed his claim and we stand corrected. We're happy to upgrade the car to "endangered" status!

6. 1981-85 Chevrolet Citation X-11: The Citation was one of GM’s X-cars, its first high-volume front-drivers. Any of its stablemates, such as the Oldsmobile Omega, Buick Skyhawk and Pontiac Phoenix, could have made this list, but the X-11 – the performance version of the Citation – was the most interesting and clearly the best candidate for species preservation via a captive breeding program.

The Hagerty “Extinct” List
Cars originally built in numbers greater than 10,000 that Hagerty insures no examples of

1. 1980 Dodge St. Regis: One of the “lost” cars built during Chrysler’s first flirtation with bankruptcy, the St. Regis was a full-sized, four-door sedan with little to distinguish it other than its occasional service with police departments, which were evidently disappointed with the lack of continued availability of the AMC Matador.

2. 1985-86 Chrysler Laser XE: The Chrysler twin to the Dodge Daytona Turbo Z emphasized luxury, but the 2.2 liter turbo engine produced a bit of performance which was unusual for the era. Chrysler’s mediocre build quality at the time and years of deferred maintenance by owners no doubt accounts for the fact that the car has gone the way of leg warmers, really big hair and Men at Work albums as an ‘80s artifact.

3. 1987 Renault/AMC Alliance Convertible: Truth really was stranger than fiction with the Alliance—a French Renault built in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Consumer magazines of the day were dismayed to find out that the Wisconsinites assembled the cars as indifferently as the French. Still, the convertible was interesting as AMC’s fist drop-top since the 1968. We’re hoping that when somebody cuts their grass for the first time since 1992, one of these will turn up.

4. 1983-86 Isuzu Impulse: The Impulse’s Giugiaro styling caused a sensation when it was introduced at the 1979 Geneva Auto Show as the Isuzu Ace of Clubs concept car. Surprisingly, it went into production almost unaltered. Unfortunately, the best Isuzu could do for underpinnings was an uninspired Chevette-derived chassis. The clay mockup may have handled better. Later versions had chassis tuning by Lotus and more competent handling.

82 Reader Comments

  • 1
    DeserTBoB CA June 9, 2013 at 16:05
    The early Celicas were garbage...pure and simple. Bad engine (18 R-C with frying exhaust valves and other problems), sloppy, overrubberized driveline, chintzy interior. I know all too well...my dad had two of them, the '73 of which was passed down to my sister. Working on them was NEVER fun, as Toy-OEM parts are notoriously overpriced. Toy even today is gussied-up junk, but people fall for it every time. "Unintended accelleration", anyone? Worst car Toy ever made? Try the 1971 CROWN! 101 were built with left-hand drive to be sold in the US as part of a "collusion" deal with Nissan, and my family had one! WORST car EVER.
  • 2
    SteveW Florida June 12, 2013 at 15:18
    Some of the cars you mention may not be as rare as you think. Why would you insure a rusty '70's or '80's heap with Hagarty. Most are likely covered by Bob's Insurance World type agencies. For instance, there are probably more Citation X11's out there, I know of one here in the small town I live in. Don't think anyone mentioned the Renault Fuego either. Probably rarer and more collectable than the Mazda RX-2 was the RX-3SP with factory stripe kit. There are many more cars eligible for the endangered and threatened list.
  • 3
    Rochelle San Francisco June 12, 2013 at 16:04
    My first car was a 1974 Dodge Colt 4dr that I could get out of and run faster than it drove. Sold it for $500 one Saturday after about 6 months. Then I had a 1977 Toyota Celica I adored, except when the neutral switch for the tranny went out & my Dad had to install a bypass switch so I could start it. It later got totalled by a drunk driver while parked infront of my parent's house. I then bought a 1983 Supra in 1992 from the original owner who had lowered it by 3" and installed an aluminum exhaust, Tokiko shocks and Eibach springs - that thing was like velcro on the road! Great 6 speed manual transmission. Had to sell THAT when I was pregnant with my twins 12 years ago - you could not get 1, much less 2 carseats into the backseat. :o( Wish daily I still had that little road rocket! My Mom also had 2 different Fiat 124 convertibles (a '74 & a '78) when I was in high school - our Great Dane used to love riding around with her and would sit in the passenger seat and look over the windshield when the top was down. My Dad had both those Fiats running absolutely perfectly!
  • 4
    Patrick Lynch Paris, Kentucky June 12, 2013 at 20:46
    Hagerty insures my 1968 Plymouth Fury VIP fast top, but doesn't currently insure my 1979 Dodge St. Regis which should be every bit as 'endangered" as the 1980 model on the list. The remarks about it in the article I thought were a bit uncalled for as my St. Regis has been one of the most reliable cars I've ever owned in spite of the era it was built in. Granted the styling is not particularly glamourous compared to my Fury VIP but this car has always gotten the job done and outlasted the cars that were meant to relieve it from daily driver status. It currently has 246,000 miles on it. I'm hoping to get the body work done and repaint it soon.
  • 5
    Matt cali July 30, 2013 at 23:02
    Quite a fee years ago my cousin and I stumbled upon an early 80s toyota station wagon with a straight axle under the front and since then have not seen or heard of another. I'm curios if anyone might know something about it
  • 6
    joe w pa. September 24, 2013 at 19:36
    why is the 85 riveria convertible,of which only 400 were made not included as being rare?
  • 7
    Marty Moorhead,MN November 8, 2013 at 22:58
    I have an 89 NISSAN SENTRA WAGON XE AWD. And can't find anything about it or no picturs other than mine. They came standard with five speed and the option of the 3spd auto. And I have the 3spd which makes it more rare. Can any tell me something other than its rare. Or very super rare. Nissan of North America quote " it's obsolete "
  • 8
    CJ central indiana November 9, 2013 at 09:31
    1975 Chevy Cosworth Vega here...for sale too.
  • 9
    jaybird usa December 2, 2013 at 19:48
    all are piles except the Impulse .
  • 10
    Pete Montreal,,, Canada,, January 4, 2014 at 17:37
    I've seen the renault alliance convertible and the Daytona-Z. Here in Quebec Canada,,, so they are not extinct yet! I also own an citation XS wich is in the Endangered list.
  • 11
    JB Idahoastan January 14, 2014 at 13:16
    I'd be curious to know how many '74 Mustangs you insure. I saw an abandoned one 10 years ago and had to think how long it'd been since I had seen one. Another oddball car from the era was the Renault "Le Car". They used to have these stupid commercials showing some guy who had one in Alaska and felt the car was the best one you could possibly have in Alaska. Sounded staged to me. Re: Mazda, I remember someone with a new Mazda pickup about 1975. They had a huge "Rotary Power" emblem stamped on the tailgate in 6-inch-high letters of their rig. Haven't seen one of those lately....the recent Mazda pickups don't seem to have that at all on their tailgates.
  • 12
    Mike California January 15, 2014 at 18:26
    Not as extinct as you might think...1980 Dodge St. Regis Just found one for sale right on ebay in pretty good shape!
  • 13
    Glen Charlottesville April 9, 2014 at 13:34
    The reason almost all the these cars were crushed is that almost no-one cares about them. They are girly cars and not worth saving!!! Rarity does NOT equal value. Show me a barn find Torino, Mustang fastback, GTO, Chevelle....etc then you'll get my heart beating. If you want to talk about something different and rare... a little different and maybe worth going after...try why not talk about a olds toronado front wheel drive with super rocket engine...425 ci and first front wheel drive in 68' or maybe a 63 riviera...stylish, powerful ..etc
  • 14
    Dana Parkhurst United States April 9, 2014 at 09:42
    i saw a cricket in new condition at a junk yard, The owner had acquired it from an uncle that passed away. it wouldn't start and it was difficult to sell so he junked it. The interior was already gone but the milage was close to none and still included the safety glass sticker and emissions sticker on the drivers side window. I attempted to purchase the thing but was informed the only way would be to parts it out there and remove it per piece as per NY state. they eventually crushed it. The bumpers were still new.
  • 15
    Bill K Long Island NY April 9, 2014 at 12:26
    My first car was a 1982 Dodge Challenger. I have searched high and low on the internet and still cannot find one... Mine was like new at 12 years old and over 200,000 miles....
  • 16
    Julian Heersche Wichita, Kansas July 21, 2014 at 21:56
    I have a 1975 Chevy Monza coupe that I have restored. I drive it to car shows. I am considering selling it. What would be a reasonable price to ask for it?
  • 17
    Eric Wilkins Alpharetta, Georgia July 31, 2014 at 10:30
    I have found a few cars, that are in the field covered with small trees and brush, I dug threw and found a few cars I've never seen, been in the automotive business for 25 years, I need help in identification on what this could be, can you help. Thanks Eric Wilkins
  • 18
    Charles Isabell TN August 5, 2014 at 05:01
    1974 oldsmobile 442 just 1420 made with 350 rocket
  • 19
    Joe Richmond, VA August 20, 2014 at 19:27
    There is a reason the Chevy Monzas vanished: they were dreadful (but good looking) cars. Oh, the woes of a Monza owner. As for the Celicas, it had the reliability but not the durability. They rusted to pieces. Pity on both counts, as they were both lovely cars.
  • 20
    Robert Evans Houma, La. August 20, 2014 at 21:19
    I still have 75 Cosworth Vega.bought it used in 78. Engine went out at 346,982.3 miles.Cut fire wall, and inner fender wells to put 350 4 bolt Maine. Still running when parked in uncle's barn in 83.for purchase of 53 Hudson Hornet.
  • 21
    DMcG United States August 20, 2014 at 23:50
    I don't think anyone ever said the original Celicas handled pleasantly. I believe the term "grinding understeer" more closely approximates the situation. As to Capris, RX-2s, Monzas and Sciroccos, those are all cars that were owned by close friends when we were in high school. Loved them all. The Capri was very stylish and popular, the RX-2 was a hot rod, and the Scirocco was really sharp except I couldn't sit in it without slumping. Not a bit of headroom. We had two Buick Skyhawks (Monza clones) in our circle. One was quite unique and characteristic of the GM build quality of the era, since it was definitely a Buick, bought from the Buick dealer with all the right labels and markings, but it had an Oldsmobile dash pad. Really. Said "Oldsmobile" in chrome script, right there on the dashboard. Not entirely sure I would have bought that particular one, but my friend thought it was hysterical and it was surely the only one. None of these cars were good for 100,000 miles, unfortunately, so the chances that many have survived nearly 40 years seem slim.
  • 22
    Scott Hill Charlotte, NC August 21, 2014 at 13:00
    I beg to differ on the 85-86 Chrysler Laser as being put on your "Extinct" list. Unless of course you count only the "XE" version being the difference maker (which was only leather seats and a digital read out dash with female voice warnings) from the NON-XE version of the Chrysler Laser Turbo. My 1985 Chrysler Laser Turbo has been insured by Hagerty since the fall of 2007. Granted it may still be the only one insured by Hagerty, but that still makes (1) rather than (none) insured. I guess it needs to be put on the "Endangered" list instead?? But if you are refering to the XE model exclusively...I have to concede to your judgement.
  • 23
    JonGault Virginia August 21, 2014 at 14:08
    When is the last time you saw a running, or even not running...5.7 diesel Oldsmobile?? I'd say virtually extinct at this point. I have a 1980 Custom Cruiser diesel that I bought new.
  • 24
    Seed_drill Tryon, NC September 11, 2014 at 12:01
    Just saw a Monza yesterday. Several, actually. Of course they had been converted to dirt track racers, so they aren't going to show up on insurance registries!
  • 25
    lakecity Syracuse, In September 29, 2014 at 16:25
    I do own a 1985 Isuzu Impulse with 35,000 actual miles on it. I purchased it at the South Bend Warehouse sale (the old Studebaker Plant) in Dec. 2013. It had been stored for over 25 years. I had to change the tires and some lines and fuel of course, but she's running great!
  • 26
    gary catlin Seattle October 27, 2014 at 17:14
    I am desperately searching for a 1975 or 76 Monza 2+2 for a collector. I am willing to pay top dollar for the right one. You can email me at Garyc@vulcan.com
  • 27
    jeremy double garden michigan October 30, 2014 at 21:09
    I have a 1982 dodge mirada cmx with the fake convertable roof. Very hard car to find parts for.
  • 28
    jeremy double garden michigan October 30, 2014 at 21:10
    I have a 1982 dodge mirada cmx with the fake convertable roof. Very hard car to find parts for.
  • 29
    Bill Akron Ohio November 20, 2014 at 14:46
    The Laser XE My friend has one that he bought new in 84 50k miles and is mint will be my next purchase when he is ready to part with her. I have a 1976 Cordoba still running also a 77 Charger Daytona T top car. Many of the GM Monza type cars are at dragstrip or are retired race cars still in owners garages I spot one from time to time when a garage door is up as I pass thru.By the way I have a Dodge Mirada less than 52,000 over 4 yr run 80 - 83 more rare is the Cordoba LS of same time period
  • 30
    Reinhard Speer Staten Island,NY 10305 November 20, 2014 at 15:48
    I have a 1980 Ford Fiesta, I haven't seen another one on the road or listed for sale in years. I bought it used in 1986 for $ 1000, only had 20,000 miles on it. I shipped it to Germany in 1989, where I drove it every summer and sometimes in the winter for 25 years, the rest of the time it spent sleeping in my parents barn. Fantastic car, took it across the Alps on the highest passes a dozen times. I just had it shipped back and now it misses those smooth German and Italian roads, so it doesn't get to go out much. But it's a blast to drive, goes like stink, and handles like nothing else. The carburetor (Weber 2-barrel) hasn't needed adjustment in 25 years. If anybody knows of another one for sale, please tell me. They were probably all junked, how sad. Still has only 83,000 miles on it, incredibly reliable and easy to maintain. I know there is one like new in a garage in Rockland County, New York, if you know of it please tell me. Thanks, and Ilove Hagerty (the company and the newsletter).
  • 31
    Leon Reed Kansas November 20, 2014 at 07:16
    How come the berlinetta 120 isnt on the list? With only 1 known in existance in the world and people trying to builld them from scratch (Texas two guys completely built a body in thier garage ). I have searched the globe for this car and the only one found is in a car exibit in europe not for sale.
  • 32
    Patrick Dunmore November 20, 2014 at 22:20
    Why doesn't Haggerty include a picture of each one of the cars they are discussing? The articles are good but they need to have a picture of each car.
  • 33
    Glenn McNeish Munhall, PA November 20, 2014 at 23:45
    Although a Pro Street version, Hagerty insures my Monza.
  • 34
    Craig Palm Springs,ca November 22, 2014 at 13:04
    I still have two v8 Monza all orig,two buick Skyhawks all orig. a ,V8 oldsmobile Starfire all orig,and a sunbird all orig ,if u know the faults in any cars and all of these all had the same problem u learn it and fix it but there fun to drive everybody loves them and it's a blast to pull all 6 out and park them out front the neighbors wonders what's going on,lol still have a Mercury bobcat for sale all orig with only 6972 miles yes and orig tires goes with car
  • 35
    Neil Huntington Beach CA November 24, 2014 at 17:33
    My '76 Celica GT Liftback is a delight. Among my 5 classics, this stock restoration turns heads on the road or at "Cars and Coffee" and gets more thumbs up than I can count. I'm amazed at how many people share their own story about the Celica they used to own "back in the day"...all of them wish they never let it go! Easiest car to work on that I've ever had.
  • 36
    Tracy ohio November 26, 2014 at 23:02
    The Chrysler Laser XE and it's t-top brother the XT are both still alive and well and many can be seen on several Laser exclusive and Dodge Daytona/Laser specific facebook groups as well as several forums dedicated to such vehicles. The most notable being www.turbodoge.com where they, and the even more endangered cousins, the Dodge Shadows, happily survive in the hands of enthusiastic and loving owners such as myself. Check us out sometime!
  • 37
    TJ LANG northern nj November 27, 2014 at 09:01
    I had a monza and its clones the skyhawk and the Starfire all 1976 now I own a Daytona Pacifica.Evan more rare than a shelby
  • 38
    Terry Endicott, NY November 27, 2014 at 00:00
    The Chrysler Laser XE is NOT extinct. I have a 1984 Chrysler Laser XE Turbo that I have owned since I took delivery of it in Jan of 84. There are actually quite a few of them still on the road.
  • 39
    Bob Le Royer Taunton, MA December 10, 2014 at 20:46
    My wife's first car was a beautiful burnt orange 1976 Mercury Capri, 4-speed, V6 that was almost scary to drive. That car was a true sleeper and of all the vehicles we've owned, it's the one we miss the most. I'm shocked to learn that more haven't surfaced.
  • 40
    Davis Jones Columbus Ohio December 10, 2014 at 21:35
    There is a citation x-11 here in Columbus I think the guy/girl had it for sale once..I would love to have a 84-86 Dodge Daytona /Chrysler laser turbo with leather..sunroof..and of course the electronic voice alert
  • 41
    Jeff Charlotte NC December 10, 2014 at 21:48
    I differ with Desert Bob on the first gen Celica. I bought a new '73, still one of the best quality cars I've ever owned (including well-known German cars). Had none of the issues he mentioned, although many years later it did start rusting. It did understeer (so did almost everything else then, except the ones that oversteered) but I later made a few modest mods that cured that -- in fact it became a great autocross car. Also mine was a 4-speed with ridiculously high stick (again typical of era) -- much I later converted it to a 5-speed with shorter stick. I sold this car in 2010 on eBay with many bids. Competitors I considered when I bought the Celica were Vega GT, Capri, Opel 1900, Mazda RX2 and Corolla SR5. The Mazda was the best to drive but more $ and I was worried (correctly, it turned out) about rotary durability. The Vega GT was attractive but junky, same for Capri. The Opel was hard to find without automatic and vinyl top , and Buick dealers wanted to move me into a Century. I think there are far more Celica survivors than any of the others mentioned here. I don't know who is insuring them!
  • 42
    Al K SoCal December 11, 2014 at 16:44
    Being the original owner of a 1980 Celica the little brother to the 1st gen Supra, I can say that I was truly impressed by the build quality, style and solid construction. It was a good foundation if you wanted to DIY build in the handling and performance of a sportscar at a fraction of the cost. BTW, It is currently insured with Hagerty and turns heads (shakes heads in disbelief....LOL!) at Irvine Cars and Coffee. http://hotrodhotline.tumblr.com/post/96191468098/world-on-wheels-toyota-celica-with-a-ford-cobra
  • 43
    Seth New york State December 11, 2014 at 09:36
    X-11's are alive and well. I have five and just visited three in Florida!!
  • 44
    Bill Davenport, IA December 11, 2014 at 11:30
    Wow. I had 3 of these, 1971-76 Mercury Capri that my brother rolled, 1971-74 Mazda RX-2 that I destroyed in high school(cut it in half) , and a 1987 Renault/AMC Alliance Convertible (that was an odd duck). What attracts me to oddballs?
  • 45
    Bill Davenport, IA December 11, 2014 at 11:31
    Wow. I had 3 of these, 1971-76 Mercury Capri that my brother rolled, 1971-74 Mazda RX-2 that I destroyed in high school(cut it in half) , and a 1987 Renault/AMC Alliance Convertible (that was an odd duck). What attracts me to oddballs?
  • 46
    EJ St. Louis MO. December 13, 2014 at 02:35
    How about a 1974 Corona Mark ll wagon. Also the 2 door coupe and 4 door sedan. It was TOYOTA's top dog after they got rid of the crown. It came with the 4M straight 6 auto or 4speed. Another one that's close is the corolla's also.
  • 47
    charly monroeville nj December 26, 2014 at 22:40
    I have an 83 cavalier convertible, fewer than 500 ever made 45,000 miles on it. If any one has interest in it email me at growfood@comcast.net thanks charly
  • 48
    Dave P Levittown pa April 6, 2015 at 05:53
    I own an 81 Imperial a 70 AMX 390 4 speed go pack and a 69 427 caprice sport coupe, and drive them all as daily transportation when the roads aren't salted. I can count on two fingers the number of Japanese cars around here, yet I know of 3 other AMX's within 6 miles from me. Where are the millions of Japanese cars from the seventies and eighties gone? Every car was a rust bucket then . Old "junk" American cars are common sights right here in the buckle of the rust belt.
  • 49
    Jack Shea Oregon April 25, 2015 at 13:37
    Most of the comments made by the above are to kind ! The vehicle's listed where poorly designed and rust buckets. I know well as I worked in retail at the time most where new. Having survived WW-II Germany, Japan, Italy and the US learned little if any about Rust Prevention ? During the war most metal components shipped overseas where coated in rust proofing cosmolene , a thick coating of petroleum by product to protect from severe salt spray in countered during overseas shipping. Instead of developing a similar product to protect hidden metal inside the chassis and under side of a new vehicle, all the above rushed out cheap crap that just disintegrated right in front of your eyes.
  • 50
    Steve Lynchburg VA May 9, 2015 at 23:03
    I'm restoring a 1975 Monza Towne Coupe W/ 262CID V8, Muncie M20, 3.11 posi rear drive (all factory), 50,462 original miles right here, right now.
  • 51
    Ramah Smith Bogalusa la. May 11, 2015 at 23:19
    I have a 1978 Chrysler Cordoba running with 360-2bl and also nice Corinthian leather.... 4 sale if anyone is interested...
  • 52
    Glenn New York July 14, 2015 at 09:44
    1981 Plymouth Gran Fury police package or civilian, 7719 made. You just insured one for me.
  • 53
    robert Syracuse n.y. July 30, 2015 at 13:41
    1962 f-85 olds 4 Dr find one of those good luck but I have one in my driveway
  • 54
    April Batavia, NY August 5, 2015 at 13:41
    You forgot a car.81-83 Dodge Mirada. I can not find parts or cars anywhere. I'm trying to replace the left and right rear filler panels,
  • 55
    Don McCuistion Omak, WA August 7, 2015 at 22:21
    I have owned 5 Chevy Monza's and currently have a 1977 Monza Mirage. 4097 made and believed to be less than 50 remaining. I bought mine from the original owner. 5.0 motor, 4 speed, posi, aftermarket A/C. I also have a second one that needs restored. I've owned this one for 3 years and only one person even knew what a Monza was. I have another rare one. 1959 Cheverolet Brookwood 2 door wagon.
  • 56
    Dave Washington August 18, 2015 at 12:19
    I currently own and drive a 1985 Chrysler Laser XE, upgraded to the turbo II intercooled motor. NOT extinct, but I have not seen another in, well, ages. Scoots pretty nicely too.
  • 57
    joseph Charlotte nc October 22, 2015 at 04:44
    Some of these are bs are there rare yes but not extinct, like the delorean very very few existing today around 6000 in the world and most are totalled or wrecked,most people may never see one there so rare he'll u will see 100 Lamborghinis or royls royce before seeing one
  • 58
    Steve Albuquerque November 8, 2015 at 21:18
    The four door siblings of many classic two-door muscle cars were all crushed or parted out. If anyone knows where I can find a good base model 1964 Tempest four door sedan with its factory V8, please let me know.
  • 59
    Sam Lincoln, Nebraska November 18, 2015 at 21:20
    I fell in love with the Chevy Monza when it was introduced and I still think it's one of the modt attractive cars Chevrolet ever produced. I also was a big fan of the Citation X11 and ordered one through the PX when I was in Germany but a supplier shortage caused GM to cancel my order Another car I think you can add to your "extinct" list is the AMC/Renault (later, Eagle) Medallion. Two of my brothers bought them and they turned out to be real clunkers. One of them ended up being a dealer buyback under my state's "lemon law." According to the brochure that one of my brothers brought home with his new car AMC also produced this car in a station wagon ad well as a sedan but outside of the brochure I've never seen one.
  • 60
    Scott Allred Chico, CA November 19, 2015 at 14:14
    The problem with a lot of the cars on this list was rust. I loved the VW Scirocco, but they, like late '50s Mopars, began to rust in the first year of ownership. Others, like the Cilica and Cricket, were simply done and gone by the time the owners got rid of them. People have claimed to get 300,000 worry-free miles form their Toyotas. I have no argument, but who wants a car with 300,000 miles on it? They ended up in the junk yard. It's a shame, but it's also a reality in this time of throw-away products.
  • 61
    Bruce P Northridge, CA January 13, 2016 at 23:03
    My mother drives a like new Citation X-11 in black and gold. She is starting to get people asking her if it is for sale.
  • 62
    jw Northeast USA February 10, 2016 at 20:05
    Saw the Chevy Monza on the list.... Why anyone would pine away for one of those is a mystery to me... I'm old enough to remember when they were selling them new, and as good as they may have looked on paper, they were the most poorly executed and sloppily assembled car ever to come out of Detroit. Never got into one that wasn't a rusting, rattle trap. Yes, they were available with a V8... which made them into a nose heavy, impossible to service nightmare...
  • 63
    Ed Geore Maryland and south February 11, 2016 at 14:27
    The Fiero community is alive and well. The '88 GTs are very collectible but the less produced '88 Formulas and '84 Pace cars are are just as desirable.
  • 64
    Dan OH February 11, 2016 at 09:01
    There's someone in our classic car club here at work that has a 1986 Chrysler Laser -- has owned it since new. I'd attach a picture if I could. He will likely reach out to you!
  • 65
    Kalee California February 17, 2016 at 15:34
    Cannot for the life of me find the 1970s Toyota model that I first drove in 1980. Four door wagon type. It's nowhere to be found. Please help. Driving me nuts. My dad bought it used for me. Why wouldn't it show up anywhere??!! I'd recognize it in a second. Was a great dependable car. Automatic.
  • 66
    Alex North Carolina March 2, 2016 at 10:48
    Well, as far as the biggest underdog goes: The '76-'83 Renault LeCar/R5; well, umm', I always loved them. Friends of mine had them in high-school and college. Some were great, others?....well you know. It just so happened, that I found one for sale up North recently in really great condition (except for some very fixable front floor rust issues; none of it structural). I immediately drove 9 hours up there to have a look only to find that the guy had "quite a few" and some in phenomenal original shape. He likes the two-door models, I lean towards the very rare 4-door and that is what this one is. After a few weeks of talking and looking into shops near me that could bring it to complete-pristine levels physically and finding a mechanic who can keep it tuned/running, I bought that little gem. As I was hauling it down I-81 South, I got more thumbs-up than ever before than in any other car I have been in (and I have been in some sweet rides both classic and new). It is a Deluxe model with the "big" cloth sunroof. As far as parts go?....the seller has plenty from his parts' cars and a good stash of dealer N.O.S. parts for those few across the country who are still driving them and "RockAuto" has stuff too. Yes, they were not known for being great cars, but there are many who did have good luck with them because they had people who knew how to take care of them. I know of one with 167,000+ miles on it, running fantastic on the same engine and transmission. I loved these underdogs as a kid and have always wanted one. Took a long time to find it, but there is a small following for these tiny lunchboxes. It definitely needs to be on the Endangered "Underdog" List. Funny thing?...It rides better than anything in my garage including our mint 2010 Outback! Those French suspensions are amazing. And it is just "grins and giggles" to drive it. The semi-rare massive cloth sunroof makes it that much more special as well. Pure tin-box happiness. The shop I lined-up went nuts when I brought it in. They could not believe how great a condition it was in overall. Owner of the shop said it is a pure delight for him to work on oddball cars since all he sees are Muscle Cars (which do make him a ton of money,,,,but he said he gets his greatest joy on the super rare, oddball cars). "My Car", he said will be a joy to bring to new condition especially since it is not far off from that now. He loves when the "odd duck" challenge comes in. I got everyone lined-up to keep it running well also. The R5/LeCar 2-door and 4-door really are a hoot to drive. Yes, I know; "not one" person on here will agree. To each his own.
  • 67
    Ryoni777 Boston, MA March 17, 2016 at 09:33
    The 1st car I got stopped by cops in was a 75 Monza Towne Coupe, green/white half top, w factory 350V8. What a s@$%box? It was so uncomfortable, like sitting in a bathtub. It stalled out multiple times. Some of you are restoring one?? Really? Who are you, Al Bundy? It's a POS, that will never be valuable.
  • 68
    Bad news Buffalo n.y. April 5, 2016 at 13:33
    Proud owner of a 78 monza wagon Pro street car!
  • 69
    Catherine Klimenkov North Las Vegas Nevada May 20, 2016 at 22:56
    The reason the Dodge St.Regis was hated by the cops that drove the car, it was unreliable with the stupid "lean Burn"Ignition it would quit when they were in a high speed persuit of a bad guy. Chrysler installed the computer under the hood and when it would overheat the car would quit running.
  • 70
    Jeff Ferrin California June 23, 2016 at 12:49
    As far as Capri's I have seven of them in my backyard... They are still around if you look hard enough... There is also a Capri Club...online Forums (The Caprilist) And a parts supplier (Team Blitz) who can supply you with any parts you should need..
  • 71
    bob prusinski Michigan August 19, 2016 at 12:51
    had a 76 Monza. One day on the X way, it just stopped running. Ruled out a spark problem, must be fuel problem. Being a "car guy", I looked all over for the fuel pump. Looked high and low. After the tow to the garage, found out about electric fuel pumps in the gas tank. And the $300 to fix it. But, it was one looker of a car.
  • 72
    James w Colorado September 22, 2016 at 12:06
    They mention cordobas which i had seen but not the charger model.... im trying to figure out if im the only one with a 1975 charger left or if theyre endangered but everyone always brings up that damn codoba.... though the charger isnt as ugly in the back!
  • 73
    David TN October 18, 2016 at 17:38
    My first car was a Blue 1980 LeCar. I loved the car, it had a canvas top. The only problem was getting parts for it in the late 80's. Napa sold the oil filter for $8.00, I thought that was a lot. I was in a McDonald's drive though and it over heated. The electric fan went out. I took it to a mechanic and he said the best thing I could do is roll it off a cliff. I thought that was not cool. I traded it in on a Mustang which I still have. They only gave me $400 for it. It was in good shape. I wish I still had it.
  • 74
    Bret Mannon California November 3, 2016 at 01:56
    I've owned a V-8 Vega since 1979. Except at car shows or race tracks,I haven't seen a Vega on the road since 2007. In a state with almost 40 million people this is pretty close to extinct. The smog program starting in 1984 absolutely killed off the Vega in California. By 1984 nobody still had the original engine in their Vegas and the hassle to get them into compliance was monstrous.I lucked out. I was able to grandfather my car through smog because it had had a V-8 in it at the time of the first State inspection.They made just shy of 2,000,000 Vegas. Chevy made more 1971 Vegas than Ford made 1932s.Any body who has been to Goodguys would find that hard to believe. Also,the only people who know what a Vega is are age 50 and up or were were kids and their parents owned one.High School age kids are fun. They have no idea what this thing is.Some get reasonably close by guessing Maverick,Comet,Camaro of (my favorite) a Barracuda. Barracuda? Snicker snicker...'fraid not! At the rate I'm going I'll be buried in this car.
  • 75
    John Alberta November 23, 2016 at 14:10
    The continuing fascination with muscle cars forces attention away from many better cars. A rare AMC is the 78 Matador Barcelona Coupe, 250 cars in red, and 250 in gold. Most had 360 engines with full accessories. That's rare!, not just scarce, as these were among the last 'big cars' by AMC.
  • 76
    ChrisP East Coast November 28, 2016 at 10:23
    Wow. I know this article & comments area is been up for 7 years. I guess that makes them all the more rare. Unless a huge hoard was found some where !! Anyway you listed many cool cars, I had a RX-2 in the 80's & early 90's but lost it due to frame rust by the thermal reactor. Long story short, I always kept my eyes open & kept all the hard to find parts. When I noticed the prices starting to rise out of range fast, I found a solid RX2 a few states away & got my Favorite car back again. Hagerty how many Mazda RX-2's are on your books these days ? Thanks & Love this article.
  • 77
    Marco New York February 8, 2017 at 11:53
    I have one of the 25 monza spyder's insured by Hagerty... Looks exactly like the one posted in the brochure picture above. You can follow this car with daily updates
  • 78
    Mike Florida March 21, 2017 at 14:32
    I have in my possession 1999 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4 true twin turbo.
  • 79
    pete kasz colorado March 30, 2017 at 01:05
    I had a 1983 Renault alliance it was my scca road race car as well as my daily transport I kick my butt for selling it I am 6,5 a tall guy I fit had a lot of room inside loved that car
  • 80
    Tony Mi June 10, 2017 at 17:27
    What about the Maverick grabber /Comet gt? V8 4spd cars are fun to drive.
  • 81
    Bryan Sehie MO June 28, 2017 at 23:08
    The 86 impulse lives! I just saw one pass me on the highway in Norfolk, VA last week. It had mismatched body color panels but was licensed and running. I did a double take when I saw it. Also my first car was a 1980 dodge st Regis. My family actually had two of them. Kinda wish I never sold it.
  • 82
    David Easley, SC July 5, 2017 at 22:50
    I own a nearly perfect 1977 Cordoba. Bought from original owner 1 year ago. No rust ever, always garaged from new. Original white paint shiny. Has white leather - not a crack, rip, or wrinkle. Has the 400 Lean Burn engine. Car is as long as my new Lincoln, so much for the smaller Chrysler. Has the rare Halo roof, and rare Road Wheel options. We call it the Beast. Love it, but would love to trade it for a vintage Lincoln of equal value. Yes, its insured by Hagerty.

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