2002 Jeep Liberty Sport
2002 Jeep Liberty Sport by Boyd (CC BY-NC)

Motor Memoriam: 20 Cars We Said Goodbye to This Past Decade

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2002 Jeep Liberty Sport
2002 Jeep Liberty Sport by Boyd (CC BY-NC)

End of the Road

Remember the Volkswagen Beetle? Sure, everyone does, because it was produced for more years than all but a handful of other popular vehicles. But what about the Mazda2, recall that one? Probably not. That relatively short-lived model is just one of the many cars and trucks that have been discontinued during the past 10 years. Some, like the Mazda, are fairly forgettable. Others, like the Dodge Viper, were considered classics before the last one rolled off the assembly line. Learn more about these cars and some of the other vehicles that automakers have discontinued over the decade as we cruise back to 2010. Take another trip down memory lane with The Coolest VW Vans Through the Decades.

Related: Dead Car Brands That American Drivers Miss (and a Few They Don't)

HUMMER H3 by Derral Chen (CC BY-SA)

2010: Hummer H3

The smallest Hummer was also the brand's shortest-lived model. It arrived as a 2006 model, soon after General Motors acquired the marque from AM General. Lousy timing. The Great Recession struck two years later, and pricey, gas-guzzling SUVs like the Hummer were the last thing that GM's customers wanted. The automaker itself would file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2009 and kill the entire Hummer line in 2010 as part of its corporate reorganization plan. But Hummer fans have reason to celebrate: GM will start selling an electric Hummer pickup next year. 

Related: 12 Gas Guzzlers We're Ashamed to Admit We Still Want

 2007 Chevrolet HHR 2LT Special Edition.
2007 Chevrolet HHR 2LT Special Edition. by Rich Niewiroski Jr.https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:RichN (CC BY)

2011: Chevrolet HHR

The HHR, first sold as a 2005 model, was Chevy's answer to Chrysler's retro-styled — some say ugly — PT Cruiser, which debuted to much fanfare a few years earlier. Like that car, the HHR (which stands for Heritage High Roof) was pretty successful for an admittedly niche vehicle. Chevrolet sold more than a half-million of these kinda-sorta-crossover wagons over the vehicle's lifespan.

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Mitsubishi Eclipse
Mitsubishi Eclipse by Adriana Sugimoto (CC BY-NC-ND)

2012: Mitsubishi Eclipse

The Eclipse sports coupe was a Mitsubishi mainstay for more than 20 years (the first model went on sale in 1989). Initially produced in conjunction with Chrysler, the Eclipse — available as a hardtop or convertible — was also sold as the Plymouth Laser and Eagle Talon throughout the '90s. When the final Eclipse rolled off the assembly line in Normal, Ill., it was sold at action for $35,000, with the proceeds benefiting the Japanese Red Cross. 

Related: 25 Cars No One Wanted to Buy

2002 Jeep Liberty Sport
2002 Jeep Liberty Sport by Boyd (CC BY-NC)

2013: Jeep Liberty

Jeep owners are fiercely loyal to the brand. But when the Liberty first appeared in 2002 as a replacement for the beloved, boxy Cherokee, the smooth-cornered SUV failed to impress. One auto writer called it the "worst redesign ever." That didn't stop plenty of Jeep fans from buying the Liberty over its 11-year run. Unfortunately, a Jeep Liberty doesn't hold its resale value as well as some other models, like the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited.

Related: 17 Things You Didn't Know About Jeeps

Volvo C70
Wikimedia Commons

2013: Volvo C70

This two-door coupe and convertible enjoyed a fairly long run for the Swedish automaker, first arriving stateside as a 1998 model. For buyers accustomed to the boxy Volvos of old, the streamlined C70 was something radically different. As Volvo's designer Peter Horbury told reporters at the time, "This time we kept the toy and threw away the box." But like a lot of toys, buyers eventually grew bored with the C70, and Volvo put it out to pasture after the 2013 model year. 

Related: 15 Cars That Never Caught On

Toyota FJ Cruiser 2008
Toyota FJ Cruiser 2008 by RLGNZLZ (CC BY-SA)

2014: Toyota FJ Cruiser

The funky FJ Cruiser SUV's retro-futuristic body was a real head-turner when it first appeared as a 2007 model. Inspired by the classic Toyota Land Cruisers of the 1960s, the FJ Cruiser was a capable off-roader. With its fat side pillars, rear suicide doors, and bright color options, the FJ Cruiser was a head-turner, too. But the SUV market is a crowded one, and most Toyota buyers opted for the automaker's more conventional four-wheel-drive models. To commemorate the final production run, the company produced the FJ Cruiser Trail Teams Ultimate Edition, which featured a custom-tuned suspension and a signature "Heritage blue" paint scheme. 

Related: The Surprising History of the Toyota Land Cruiser

Honda Insight EX - my new ride :)
Honda Insight EX - my new ride :) by Images by John 'K' (CC BY-NC-ND)

2014: Honda Insight

Honda resurrected the Insight name for the 2020 model year, but the current version bears little resemblance to the original, which appeared in 1999 as a two-seat hybrid promising up to 70 mpg on the highway. Although the Insight was the first hybrid vehicle to be sold in the U.S., beating the Toyota Prius to market by a few months, it never caught on the way the Prius did. Honda put the Insight on hiatus from 2007 to 2010, and when it returned as a four-door, the new model bore an uncanny resemblance to the Prius. Buyers stayed away in droves, and the Insight disappeared from sight in 2014.

Honda Crosstour
Honda Crosstour by Tomás Del Coro (CC BY-SA)

2015: Honda Crosstour

Was it a sedan, a wagon, or a crossover? No one seemed to know what to make of the Honda Crosstour, which looked like an Accord on steroids, when it arrived in showrooms as a 2010 model. Despite offering options like four-wheel drive and a V-6 engine, the Honda magic didn't rub off on the Crosstour, and the company pulled the plug after just a few years.

Related: 29 Classic Station Wagons We Miss From Childhood

Yvmz2_1b by Greg Goebel (CC BY-SA)

2015: Mazda2

When this car arrived in 2010, the economy was in the tank and drivers wanted to save money by driving cheap, efficient cars like this one. Or so Mazda believed. In truth, Americans haven't been keen on small hatchbacks for years, and other cheap cars like the Nissan Versa proved far more popular with buyers. The Mazda2 soon vanished from showrooms, and Mazda killed plans to sell a similar hatchback in the U.S.

Honda CR-Z Hybrid - Front
Honda CR-Z Hybrid - Front by pchow98 (CC BY-NC-ND)

2016: Honda CR-Z

Back in 1984, Honda introduced a two-seat hatchback called the CR-X that could achieve an eye-popping 52 mpg. Flash forward to 2010, when Honda unveiled the CR-X's spiritual successor, the CR-Z. Like the '80s version, the CR-Z was a wedge-shaped two-seater; unlike the CR-X, this vehicle relied on a hybrid engine. It wasn't quite as fuel-efficient as the CR-X, but it was definitely more fun to drive … if just as impractical for many car buyers. The CR-Z "filled a niche no one even knew existed," as the editors of Motor Trend put it, and the car sold poorly.

Scion xB
Scion xB by Tino Rossini (CC BY)

2016: Scion

Toyota launched its Scion brand to much fanfare in 2003, hoping its line of small, sporty cars would appeal to millennials. The company enjoyed initial success with quirky cars like the boxy Scion xB. But many of those young drivers didn't stick with the brand when they got older and were looking to trade up, and sales declined steadily. Although Toyota decided in 2016 that it was the end of the road for the Scion name, the brand's iA, iM and FR-S vehicles live on as rebadged Toyotas.

Dodge Viper SRT-10
Dodge Viper SRT-10 by Robin Corps (CC BY-SA)

2017: Dodge Viper

With a 400-horsepower V-10 engine, this low-slung two-seater was a direct descendant of legendary muscle cars of the 1960s like the AC Cobra. When it debuted as a 1992 model, the Viper was as close to a Lamborghini as Dodge fans could get — no surprise, as the Italian automaker, which was then owned by Chrysler, helped develop the engine. At $55,000, however, the '92 Viper was a heck of a lot cheaper.

Related: Muscle Memories: 15 Ford Cars That Defined a Generation

smart fortwo forfour Premiere Berlin
smart fortwo forfour Premiere Berlin by Teymur Madjderey (CC BY-NC-ND)

2017: Smart ForTwo

Believe it or not, the idea for the Smart car originated with Swatch, the Swiss watchmaker. But it took the know-how of German automaker Daimler to produce this pint-sized two-seater, which arrived in the U.S. in 2008. The Smart ForTwo was plenty cute, but it was also underpowered, cramped, and not particularly crashworthy. Once the novelty wore off, Daimler had a hard time selling more than a handful of ForTwos, even after adding a convertible option. The gas-powered model was discontinued in the U.S. in 2017, while the electric version followed it in 2019.  

Related: 50 of the Smallest Cars Ever Made

2012 Hyundai Azera (US-spec)
2012 Hyundai Azera (US-spec) by loubeat (CC BY)

2017: Hyundai Azera

This bland big sedan was touted as Hyundai's "luxury" model when it arrived in the U.S. in 2006, but in truth it wasn't much more than a bigger version of the Sonata. (Hyundai's true luxury car, the Genesis, arrived two years later.) Still, it capably filled a role in the South Korean automaker's U.S. lineup for more than a decade before the company finally decided to call it home for good.

Ford Focus
Ford Focus by Claudio Núñez (CC BY-NC-ND)

2018: Ford Focus

Ford celebrated the arrival of the new century by unveiling a new economy car, the Focus. This "world car" — so-named because it would be produced globally, not just for the U.S. market — actually got its start in Europe a couple years before arriving stateside in 2000. Over the years, the Focus lineup would include hatchbacks, sedans, wagons, as well as hybrid-powered and high-performance versions. But sales peaked in 2012, and in 2018 Ford announced that it was phasing out nearly all of its passenger car models, including the Focus as we currently know it. 

Related: 16 Surprising Things You Didn't Know About America's Best-Selling Vehicle

2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid
2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid by Ryan Finnie (CC BY-SA)

2018: Ford C-Max Hybrid

Launched in 2012, the C-Max was Ford's answer to Toyota's Prius. And while some reviewers said it was the better of the two hybrids, the C-Max never got the respect — or sold as well — as the Prius. (Part of that may be due to the fact that Ford inflated fuel economy estimates to make the C-Max look like it got better mileage than the Prius.) Although the C-Max lives on in Europe, the 2018 model was the last to be sold in the U.S. 

Related: Best-Selling Electric Cars in America

2013 Cadillac ATS compact luxury sedan
2013 Cadillac ATS compact luxury sedan by Automotive Rhythms (CC BY-NC-ND)

2018: Cadillac ATS Sedan

First appearing as a 2013 model, the ATS was Cadillac's attempt to woo young drivers from their BMWs with a compact luxury car. When it was rolled out, the ATS body was unique to the General Motors lineup, and the sedan's angular body and wedge-like headlights turned plenty of heads. A coupe followed for 2015. Unfortunately, the ATS' debut year proved to be its zenith, and sales declined every year thereafter.

Related: 12 of the Classiest Cadillacs Ever Made

Chevy Volt
General Motors

2019: Chevy Volt

This plug-in hybrid sedan was supposed to be the car that would save General Motors from financial ruin in the wake of the Great Recession and make it a leader in alternative-fuel vehicles. It didn't quite work out that way. Between 2011, when the car went on sale in the U.S., and the end of production in 2019, only about 150,000 Volts were sold. (Toyota sold nearly as many Prius vehicles in 2011 alone.) The last Volt, which rolled off the assembly line on Feb. 19, 2019, now lives at the GM Heritage Center in Sterling Heights, Michigan.

2012_Prius_c_Two_09 by Automotive Rhythms (CC BY-NC-ND)

2019: Toyota Prius C

Toyota's smallest Prius arrived in showrooms in 2012, but it never quite got the same love that Toyota's bigger Prius enjoys. Last year, the Japanese automaker dropped the hatchback hybrid (the wagon-like Prius V was discontinued in 2017), which got great mileage and was easy to park, according to reviewers, but with just 99 horsepower wasn't exactly a hot rod. The littlest Prius joins the wagon-like Prius V, discontinued in 2017, at the Toyota retirement home, and will be replaced by the 2020 Corolla hybrid. Learn more about the Prius and other game-changing Japanese cars.

2020 Chevrolet Impala

2020: Chevrolet Impala

One of 2020's most notable car cancellations has to be the  Chevrolet Impala, which traced its heritage back to the 1950s when Detroit's Big Three ruled the auto world. It 1965, it sold over 1 million vehicles, setting a record, and was available in a variety of styles, including a station wagon. But this year's discontinuation isn't the Impala's first. It was initially shelved in 1985, came back and was discontinued again multiple times. So, who knows, it may be back again before long. Another victim of the shift from sedans and toward SUVs and crossovers, the last Impala left the Detroit/Hamtramck plant's assembly line on Feb. 27. 

Related: 50 Classic Family Cars of the Past 50 Years