Supercars are meant to look awesome, be super-strong, fast, and represent the progress, the current achievements of the automobile industry. They’re ridiculously expensive, but folks dream about them day and night, because it takes one glimpse to fall in love with a supercar. However, there’s more to them then “just” astonishing looks and mighty engines. There’s this circle of kings, if you will, with Lambo, Ferrari, McLaren and a few others investing huge amounts of green just to keep people talking about them. Everybody knows that Lamborghini makes drop-dead killer sports cars, but Aston Martin or Jaguar? Sure thing, they’re pretty great at it too, but only the true fans and/or pros would know that, not the Regular Joes. All they care about is what they see on the big screen, on TV or at the auto shows, and that’s the end of it. Marketing moves mountains, you know?
The Lost Heroes And The Fallen Giants
And thus, despite the fact that a lot of amazing supercars do feature speed, might and great looks to rival the best on the market, they still get left behind and buried in history (at best). That’s a real shame, guys, but that’s the reality. And for every iconic Bugatti Veyron or Lamborghini Aventador there’s one or two undeservedly forgotten models that could just as easily make it to major league. So, this time around we’ll talk about 6 awesome supercars we forgot about, the ones that did reach a certain level of recognition in their times, but quickly fell back down, harsh. This most unfortunate fortune (see what I did there with the words?) may be due to bad timing, bad marketing plans, the lack of big-time money, et cetera, et cetera, and that’s why today I wanna shed some light on the fallen heroes and show y’all that not only Ferraris or Lamborghinis can be awesome and worth your attention.
#1 – The Aston Martin One-77 (2009-2012)
Aston Martin is largely known as the manufacturer of one of the best grand toures in history, that’s what they’re great at. And up until 2009 the company never made any attempts to rival on the market of supercars with the scary giants. I’m not really sure why they decided to give it a try 6 years ago, but the One-77 was one hell of a speedster, and you better believe that. It was a super-fancy, up-to-date exotic beauty with a mighty aluminum/carbon fiber construction. Under the hood the luxurious Aston Martin packed a 7.3-lit V12 engine that was good for 750 Horsepower and could fly the car from zero to 60 miles per hour in 3.7 seconds! On the inside the car featured a super-comfy cabin with all the latest tech, great attention to details and – obviously – top-quality materials and finishing. There were only 77 units made (hence the name, One-77), and you could get one for 1.4 million dollars. With all fairness, the Aston princess deserved to be at the top.
6 Awesome Supercars We Forgot About – #2, The Noble M600
As the name suggests, the M600 from Noble was aiming at world domination. This was a pretty audacious effort to beat all the kings and queens in the world of supercars. And so, in order to make the car super-fast, the engineers decided to let go of everything but the legally mandated safety and technological features, leaving the M600 without traction control, anti-lock brakes and other non-vital pieces of tech. The powertrain consisted of a mighty V8 that was previously installed in a Volvo S80, which the pros packed with two turbos and cranked it up to 650HP. All those tweaks allowed the Nobler to jump from 0 to 60MPH in quick 3 seconds, while the top speed reached 225 miles per hour. And as much as folks love to scold the brand (for good reasons), the M600 is quite a strong competitor, and of the 6 awesome supercars we forgot about this one is pretty underrated, to say the least.
#3 – The Jaguar XJ220 (1992-1994)
Back in ’88, at the BMS (the British Motor Show), Jaguar revealed a killer conceptual prototype that was claimed to be a super-techy AWD car with a 6.2-lit V12 under the hood and a top speed of 220 miles per hour. However, numerous setbacks kept delaying the release and the company even had to deal with lawsuits from folks who already paid for a vehicle that didn’t even exist. The XJ220 did finally hit production in 1992, but it wasn’t the same: the customers got a RWD model with a twin-turbo V6. That’s a shame, because the concept car was really gorgeous and could zing from zero to 60MPH in 3.5 seconds. The reputation of the model (and, obviously, of Jaguar), was irreparable, and nobody was willing to cash in for something that was promised to be a record-breaker. In my opinion the XJ220 had the worst scenario between the 6 awesome supercars we forgot about, because it could be so much more than just a could’ve-been, you know?
#4 – The Acura NSX
This is yet another guest from the ’80s: Acura introduced the NSX in 1989 at the Chicago Auto show, and the automobile community was taken by storm, quite literally. The NSX looks, operates and performs like a true Italian supercar should. The amazingly fine looks were combined with some serious powertrain: you had a mid-engined V6, good for 270HP and a fancy suspension, fine-tuned by none other than Ayrton Senna, a Formula One legend. In fact, the NSX was so far ahead of its time (and its competition) that it could still rival with the best models from Lambo and Ferrari for straight 15 years, without any significant upgrades. However, the Honda-built (Acura is a Honda brand) supercar never could beat the Italian monsters in terms of prestige, and, so, it never got the respect and attention it deserved. Still, in 2016 the NSX is an iconic model in its own right, and, with Acura announcing the next gen for 2017, things are looking up for it.
6 Awesome Supercars We Forgot About – #5, The Vector W8 (’89-92)
Once upon a time (in the ’70s, to be exact), a wealthy businessman, Mr. Gerald Wiegert had the brightest idea: to combine US-made horsepower with the up-to-date aerospace tech and to make the most advanced supercar on the planet. That’s the background behind the Vector W8, the car that was supposed to wipe out the entire European luxury market. It took a decade to create the car, mainly due to the complex design. The body featured an aluminum frame, with carbon fiber and kevlar as the main materials. The engine was a strong V8 from Chevy. The interior was a blast: you had tons of buttons and knobs, and an instrumental panel with real-time info on fuel pressure, top speed, etc, etc. So, overall, the W8 was super expensive and complicated in production, and that’s why the investors were blaming Mr. Wiegert for wasting the corporate funds on something that was doomed at conception. And production did stop, but not before 22 units were made. Still, the car earned itself a legendary status among car enthusiasts and of all the 6 awesome supercars we forgot about I believe that the Vector W8 got the most praise and love.
#6 – The Cisitalia 202 GT (1946-1952)
Cisitalia was established after WW2 was over by an Italian industrialist and pro racer, Piero Dusio, who thought it would be a good idea to use his expertise “in the field” and start his own company. The funny part is, around the same time, in Modena, a nearby city, a fella named Enzo Ferrari had just about the same ideas in his head and was also dreaming about forming a company. However, unlike Ferrari’s first trials, the initial road cars from Cisitalia became international hits. The 202 GT from ’46 was an exceptional grand tourer with an awesome design and superb handling. Get this: the 202 GT featured such an amazing design that the famous Museum Of Modern Arts bought one just for the heck of it (for display, I mean). The bad part is, the company had all kinds of money problems and had to fold in the early ’50s. Overall, only 170 units were made, and that’s when Ferrari started to shine through. Still, the Cisitalia 202 GT is the first successful supercar from an Italian brand.
Check out this video: 50 greatest supercars of all time.