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25 ’80s Car Features Making A Comeback Today

Cameron EittreimDecember 16, 2020

Countach
via: Lamborghini

10: Extreme Spoilers

Most notable on the Lamborghini Countach and a few other supercars from this decade were the extreme spoilers you’d find hanging off of the rear. Sports cars have always managed to invoke the emotions of their drivers, and the spoilers of the ’80s were a notable hallmark of the era. Extreme spoilers are starting to make a resurgence in new models such as the Honda Civic SI.

Lamborghini Countach - Lamborghini
via: Classic Car

Because of the rise in crossover vehicles, you only see spoilers on certain vehicles, from the Civic to the newest crop of supercars coming out of Germany. The oversized spoilers of the eighties are making a comeback like never before.

2019 Ford Raptor via Bing
via Bing

9: Baja Trucks

Remember the Nissan hardbody truck or the Toyota 4×4 of the eighties? The truck that Marty Mcfly drooled over? Well, these trucks have made comeback in the current era. Take the Ford Raptor, for instance, a truck that is more at home in the desert than on the way to the grocery store. Chevy has also jumped into the mix with the Silverado Trail Boss, and Nissan is offering the Frontier Desert Runner.

2016 Ford F-150 - Ford
via: Ford

Baja trucks were a notable part of the eighties that were fun to drive and cheap to maintain. The fact that these trucks are making a comeback is a sure sign of the times. If you longed for one of these trucks before, there has never been a better time to get a modern incarnation.

via: Barnfinds
via: Barnfinds

8: Offroad Crossovers

Although crossover vehicles are the bread and butter of the automotive industry today, there was a time when these vehicles were originally introduced. One of the first crossovers was the AMC Eagle, an offroad-inspired wagon. With its high ride height and aggressive look, the Eagle was an interesting concept and caught on with consumers. It wasn’t until decades later that these crossovers have become the norm.

AMC Eagle
via: AMC

Just another interesting part of the automotive industry that managed to catch on once again with a new generation of consumers, the Eagle was a defining part of a new generation of vehicles that were on the horizon.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon
via: Chrysler

7: Extreme Horsepower

The eighties birthed a resurgence in high horsepower cars that pushed the boundaries of performance. Take the Buick GNX for example, as well as the Lamborghini Countach and several other special-edition cars. During the nineties, cars with extreme horsepower ratings had died off once again, but they are now making another resurgence.

2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon
via: Chrysler

The Dodge Demon is one notable example, as well as the Ford Mustang GT500. These cars are the next generation of powerful performance vehicles. You can’t go wrong with a fun-to-drive car that has a boatload of performance.

300 SRT
via: Chrysler

6: Turbocharging

A lot of the cars that came out of the ’80s were turbocharged, especially cheaper low-end models. These turbocharged cars were notoriously fun to drive and cheap to own. Automakers are starting to move back to this formula to get the most performance out of four-cylinder engines. Chrysler was one of the first domestic automakers to embrace lightweight turbocharged cars.

Dodge Challenger
via: Chrysler

With the benefits of a turbocharger, you can get more power and performance out of a cheap, lightweight engine. The turbocharged engines of today are a welcome addition to the automotive landscape and the future of cars.

Pontiac Fiero - Sports car
via: GM

5: Targa Tops

Another interesting feature of sports cars in the ’80s was Targa tops. Whether it was the Corvette or the Fiero, these were an interesting part of the automotive industry. The Targa top gives you the joy of a convertible without affecting the overall ride quality or stability of the sports car.

National Corvette Museum - Car
via: GM

Targa tops have been making a comeback on some of the most notable exotic sports cars that are hitting the road right now. This is an influential part of the automotive industry that will continue to please enthusiasts. Another interesting thing about Targa tops is that it is one of the most notable parts of the original Corvette models that featured them.

RX-7
via: Mazda

4: Rotary Engines

The Rotary engine is one of the most ubiquitous parts of the automotive industry. The unique design is highly regarded in the performance community and was a pioneering feature of the Mazda brand early on. Rotary engines have managed to carve a niche in the automotive industry that still rings true to this day. The unparalleled performance and durability of the engine have survived in one form or another for decades.

Mazda RX-7 - Mazda Motor Corporation
via: Mazda

Rotary engines are just one aspect of the eighties that has managed to make a comeback. But when you think about engine technology and recent advances, you can’t go wrong with a rotary engine and the performance it brings.

via: Hemmings
via: Hemmings

3: Retro Redesigns

A lot of automakers have decided to dip into the well of the past, and part of this has been done with retro revisions. Whether it is the special edition Mustang 5.0 or the Bullitt model, there are plenty of retro-themed cars on the road. The retro-themed vehicles have been making waves for the last couple of decades. Buyers flock to these cars because they remind drivers of a better time in their lives.

Ford Flex Via Motor Trend
via Motor Trend

Retro redesigns are getting a bit redundant, but as long as the automakers keep these fresh they should maintain footing. Automotive design has evolved a lot, but an iconic design is something that will stay fresh for quite a long time.

Lincoln navigator
via: Ford

2: Open Air

Take a look at the Jeep Wrangler and the new Ford Bronco and you’ll see something in common. The same open-air design that was rampant during the eighties when it came to compact SUV models. The Jeep Wrangler has maintained an iconic style while the Ford Bronco has been completely revised. These compact SUV models are only going to spur even more offerings as the future goes on.

Nissan Murano
via: Nissan

In the 1980s we had the Suzuki Samurai, the Geo Tracker, and more. These SUVs were the pinnacle of style and offered a unique driving machine for a new generation. The open-air SUV is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to relive the eighties.

Honda Accord Crosstour
via: Honda

1: The Station Wagon

For a long period, the station wagon had lost its footing as the family car. But after the minivan had lost its dominance and crossovers made their mark, automakers are doubling back to the station wagon. Whether you want a performance model or an off-road model there are plenty of unique station wagons to choose from. The station wagon might not be the dominant force it once was, but there is still a resurgence for these vehicles.

2020 Buick Regal TourX - 2018 Buick Regal Sportback
via: GM

Time will tell how the station wagon will manage to fare this time around, but this is one eighties theme that has been making serious inroads. The station wagon was always an instrumental part of the automotive industry in one form or another.

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