New cars are born and old cars die every year. It’s just the way of things. This past year saw a departure of another round of sedans, little cars, convertibles and wagons. The list, predictably, is conspicuously lacking in crossovers and SUVs. Color me surprised.
So this is our tribute to our friends, the cars. Some of the deaths were a surprise—not because they were unexpected, but because we were genuinely surprised to learn of the death of cars we didn’t even know existed. Others were downright tragic, because the cancellation of a car that’s objectively and legitimately good is always a shame.
And for the near future, America and its trucks and SUVs march onward. Onward, toward the fiery sunset of excess.
Despite being a certifiably meh car, I suppose I do feel kind of sad over the cancellation of the Buick Cascada. What are all the Middle American tourists supposed to rent when they visit Disney World now? I guess Buick just hates the idea of people getting some sun on their faces.
Smart cars! The main selling point of a Smart was that you could park perpendicularly in a parallel spot. In the United States, of course, this didn’t work out, so the cars lost their one huge advantage. So Smart just sort of became a weird-looking tiny car that was pretty easy to park and navigate a city with, minus its one big party trick.
Sales, predictably, weren’t stellar.
In 2018, Smart announced a worldwide, all-electric push that included the plan to sell electric Smarts only in the North American market after the 2017 model year. Soon after, in March, we learned Geely purchased a 50 percent stake in the brand. And then, Smart announced it was leaving North American shores after the 2019 model year.
Alright, so, just because the gasoline-driven XJ is no more, it doesn’t mean we won’t get an electric version. Nothing’s been announced yet, but a girl can dream.
Before you freak out—no, this doesn’t mean the end of the Golf R for the rest of eternity. It just means the end of the R for the Mk. VII Golf. The Mk. VIII version is on its way, and there’s probably a Golf R variant in the works, too.
In a one-two-three punch, BMW axed its bizarre humpback lineup, which people either loved or hated, and the big, two-door 6 Series model. Forgive me for forgetting the 6 Series GT was ever a thing, but I can’t pretend that I’m not happy the horrific 3 Series GT is finally gone.
The 6 Series Gran Coupe is a shame, though, despite its inaccurate name. I suppose because the 8 Series Gran Coupe now exists, it makes more sense for BMW to get rid of redundancies in its lineup. Also, it can charge more for the 8 Series.
I guess it was too good to be true to expect a tiny, little European car to last in the United States. The Fiat 500 had a good run (we even got an Abarth version out of it), but now it’s time to go. Fiat Chrysler won’t offer it in North America anymore after the 2019 model year.
Honest question: Who bought this car? I know people aren’t buying sedans, but did anyone ever buy this car?
This is the end for the Cadillac XTS, a car I never knew normal people to buy, only New York City limousine services to do so. The very last XTS was built at General Motors’ Oshawa, Ontario, plant earlier this year and that marked the end of the XTS era.
At long last, the Maserati GranTurismo is calling it quits. It’s a car that started production roughly during the Paleozoic Era and outlived at least 91,486 Lamborghini models. It’s a naturally aspirated beauty and now is the time for it to finally sleep.
Goodbye, sweet prince. You graced us all with your drop-top greatness and V8 thunder. Your looks were great and you rode nicely.
You GUYS. You didn’t buy enough of these wonderful cars and now they are going away. This is all your fault. The TourX was legitimately wonderful. I guess the people who did buy them now have something of a rare car.
The pro-SUV movement is a global one, which means it hit Australia, too. Holden, an Australian subsidiary of GM, killed off the Commodore this year. The Commodore used to be quite popular in Australia, but its numbers have dropped dramatically in recent years.
Now that the Commodore is gone, the Holden lineup will be the Acadia, Colorado Ute, Equinox, Trailblazer and Trax.