The Lanos was the smaller model of the brand and an entry-level offering for new customers. Daewoo was not selling the most advanced or luxurious cars on the road. Around this time, there were quite a few subcompacts on the market and the Lanos didn’t offer anything new (via Forbes).
The Lanos was also not the most reliable car on the road and word got out quickly. The few consumers who purchased a Daewoo were not impressed with its quality. The brand was in trouble and sales were not going to be improved anytime soon.
The Kia brand you see today is nothing close to what it was two decades ago. Kia started out in the U.S. market very lean. The Spectra was one of the first new models introduced to the brand after the Sportage and the Sephia. The Spectra offered great gas mileage and a unique design (via Forbes).
But as with all first model runs, the Spectra had many quality issues from the gate. The car was underpowered and the exterior was not the best looking. The Kia dealership network was also quite small at this time.
Although it’s not the most common car around, the Sportage was one of the first mainstream compact SUVs. But the Toyota RAV4 often overshadowed the Sportage and the Honda CR-V. That’s not to say the Kia Sportage was a bad vehicle, but Kia didn’t have the type of dealership network that big automakers had at the time (via Forbes).
When it came down to it, the first generation of the Sportage was a very basic vehicle. There was a removable top, and there were some unique attributes to the thing. It just wasn’t enough to propel the Sportage into the same popularity as the other compact SUV models.
By the time 2000 rolled around, the Sephia was tired. It was the first car launched by the Kia Motors Company in the U.S., and that was back in 1994. The car hadn’t changed all that much since then. On top of that, the Sephia was a lot smaller and underpowered than the other compact cars on the market (via Forbes).
The 2000 Sephia had some of the worst sales in the model’s history and Kia was moving on. The Spectra was the replacement, and the subcompact Rio was also going to hit the market. There was no room for the outdated compact car to be in the lineup and Kia moved on.
The Saturn brand was a unique offering in the automotive industry when it first hit the market. General Motors invested billions of dollars in the development of the brand and the unique cars sold. The Saturn models were unique to this brand and not shared with any other GM models (via Forbes).
By the time the L-Series rolled around, the Saturn models were dated. There were better compact offerings that had come to the market. Everything that made the Saturn brand unique at the start was not there anymore. You could say the L-Series spelled the end for Saturn.