What Car Ended Up Being Better Than Its Concept?

Usually, the production version of a concept car is something of a disappointment. When you all of a sudden have to take a car made of dreams and ideas and magic ground-up fairy testes and somehow try and make it only cost $25,000 and able to drive over bumps bigger than snoozing gnats, the fun bits often get lost. But not always.

Rarely, there’s a car that somehow, despite having to exist in our brutal reality, manages to be better than the idealized concept car that preceded it. The Nissan GT-R is a good example of this. The car came out in 2007, but back in 2001 the first GT-R concept was shown, and as you can see, it was something of a dopey, heavy-looking slab of silver.


It was clean without, somehow, being sleek. Some of what would become the GT-R’s lines were there, but they hadn’t matured into the athletic, modern look that the production GT-R became.

I know it’s tricky, but there must be other examples, right? Help me out — let’s see what you come up with, smarties. Oh, and I’m going to go ahead and say the Citroën DS with balls for wheels doesn’t count as a concept car. So don’t use that one.

(Tavarish suggested the GT-R, by the way. It was a good suggestion. Happy now?)

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