Five cars that were meant to happen — and we wish had…
These elusive machines leave a lot of ‘what if?’ questions, and sadly we’ll never know the answer. We’ve picked out our favourites…
Getting a car into production is no easy feat – a lot of changes and complications can occur along the way. Though many may make the cut, it’s not unusual for some cars to get close to reality before being prematurely axed, destined to never hit the road.
These elusive machines leave a lot of ‘what if?’ questions, and sadly we’ll never know the answer. We’ve picked out some of the best cars that could’ve been…
Honda NSX V10
That’s right, the reborn NSX almost reached production with a V10 – and a front-mounted one, in fact. Back in 2008, videos and pictures emerged of Honda testing a camouflaged sportscar, sparking a lot of excitement from fans of the ‘90s icon.
Unfortunately, Honda scrapped the idea to focus on more fuel-efficient models, meaning the front-engined V10 NSX never saw the light of day. Well, it partially did actually, in the form of the HSV-010 race car — though a road-going variant wasn’t to be. The NSX instead was reborn as a mid-engined, V6 hybrid machine that’s still interesting — but it could’ve been a whole different beast…
You may recognise this sleek supercar from the Bond movie Spectre where it was used to chase 007 and his Aston Martin DB10 through the streets of Rome. The development C-X75 features a hybrid powertrain consisting of batteries that were charged by two diesel-fed micro gas turbines, while the production model was set to replace the turbines with a small internal combustion engine.
In 2011, Jaguar had plans to put the C-X75 into limited production, with the British brand announcing that a maximum of 250 cars would be produced and each costing just under £1 million. Just a year later though, the project was canned.
BMW M3 Compact
In an attempt to attract younger buyers into the showroom, BMW thought of producing an M version of the ‘90s 3 Series Compact. The German firm even built a prototype featuring the E36 M3’s 317bhp straight-six engine – although the production model was likely to receive a less powerful six-cylinder – and a 150kg drop in weight. Sadly, it was never to be.
Range Rover SV Coupe
This niche two-door luxury SUV was very much set for production. Land Rover was going to make 999 examples, each costing around £240,000, until the manufacturer informed customers that it had decided not to go ahead with the model earlier this year.
Instead, as with most of the carmakers on this list, it decided to focus on other, future products, including electrification. Maybe 5.0-litre supercharged V8 SUVs with only two doors isn’t such a booming segment after all.
Now this is a complicated one – there’s no shortage of rumours and speculation surrounding the Estoque. In 2008, Lamborghini came out with this – a four-door concept car with a V10 powerplant under the bonnet.
The Italian supercar manufacturer never officially announced the car would go into production, to a lot of enthusiast’s disappointment, but that didn’t stop the reports of the car hitting the roads.
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