It's just that, well, we've been waiting for so long.
This list is all about cars that came so, so close to our grasp. Cars we were promised, cars we adored.
But before I get too deep into that, let me tell quickly tell the story of one of the greatest blue balls of the car world that finished with a happy ending.
As reader Pessimippopotamus points out, a successor to the classic Jaguar E-Type was rumored for decades. All through the 1970s, car fans hoped the company would finally sort out the odd and awkward XJS. All through the 1980s, Jaguar worked on a beautiful set of XJ41/42 prototypes that were destined for production... but they were rebadged and debuted as the Aston Martin DB7. In the '90s there was the XK180 concept, which ran and drove. In 2000 there was even an 'F-Type' concept, but almost no one could believe that Jaguar, the the biggest tease in the business, could ever bring something to a showroom.
And here we are in 2014, and there is an F-Type in production. The styling is gorgeous, the engines are thunder, and sales are holding up the company.
I still can't believe it finally happened.
Ok, now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
10.) Every Big Cadillac Concept
They've been doing it for years: the imperious Sixteen from 2003, the stunning Ciel from 2011, and the fantastic Elmiraj of 2013. All Cadillac has ever needed to do is shove them into production, regardless of cost.
Suggested By: JayBe_III, Photo Credit: Cadillac
9.) The 1990 Pontiac Fiero
The whole Fiero story is like this — just as the car was starting to get good, it was cut down. The final second-generation Fieros were getting in the groove, and Pontiac planned and developed a third generation prototype. Good suspension, contemporary styling, and finally (finally) deserving four and six-cylinder engines.
I met the GM engineer who was in charge of the program once. I asked him why the car never made it into production. "I was at the meeting when Roger killed that car," he said, and that was all he could muster.
Suggested By: StalePhish, Photo Credit: Wingnutmd
8.) The US-Spec BMW E36 M3
Over in Europe, the E36 M3 got a hot 282 horsepower engine, a heavy duty diff, strong rear axles, and floating rotors. In America, the E36 M3 didn't get any of that. We sufered along with a 240 horsepower motor and everything else was a little bit simpler and weaker, too.
Suggested By: Chairman Kaga, Photo Credit: BMW
7.) Mazda Miata Coupe
Mazda actually built a handful of coupes, but they're so hard to come by they might as well have been made out of diamonds. I've seen one in person and it is painfully well executed.
Rumors persist, as always, that a production Miata coupe is around the corner.
Suggested By: burglar, Photo Credit: Mazda
6.) A New El Camino
It's a constant source of woe for American enthusiasts that we have such limited exposure to Australia's big V8 RWD family cars. They're more American than what's in American showrooms. But even more than our desire for a turbo-six Ford Falcon, we longed for a Holden ute sold here in US as a reborn El Camino. It came close to production in '08, but the Recession killed both Pontiac and the ElCo at the same time.
Suggested By: PilotMan, Photo Credit: Pontiac
5.) A Jeep Pickup
There's a huge list of small pickups that weren't sold in America thanks to our ultra-cheap full sizers and our punitive Chicken Tax. Mahindras. New Ford Rangers. VW Anoraks.
But the worst of all has nothing to do with any import restrictions — Jeep has shown off a pickup version of the Wrangler since 2005, and Jeep fans have been begging for a truck since the '80s.
Suggested By: cazzyodo, MrTheEngineer, and damnthisburnershitsux, Photo Credit: Jeep
4.) A New VW Microbus
VW could be printing money by selling a roomy, funky hatchback/mini minivan like their 2001 Microbus concept. In 2011, VW showed off another retro concept, the Bulli. Both concepts were absolutely adored, and completely ignored for production.
Suggested By: PumpedSump, Photo Credit: VW
3.) A New Mazda RX-7
A new, light Mazda coupe (and a return to the rotary engine) is always rumored by some off-brand car magazine. It's always supposed to debut in two or three years and it never happens.
Suggested By: hammerheadfistpunch, Photo Credit: Mazda
2.) A Mid-Engine Corvette
This one's been going around since the '70s and is best referred to as The Car Rumor That Wouldn't Die.
Suggested By: Green Pig, Photo Credit: GM
1.) Flying Cars
Thankfully, this worst-of-both-worlds pipe dream of a car that is not very good at being a plane and a plane not very good at being a car is fading away. Good riddance.