As the most lucrative and one of the biggest markets in the world, the USA is a dream destination for most car manufacturers. Everybody in the business knows that if they offer a good car to buyers in America, it will sell in big numbers. They can make a profit and provide the company with a significant market share. And, in most cases, that’s true, but the enormous American market can make or break a company.
However, not every car endeavor in the American market is successful. Sometimes, import cars are simply too tough to sell. Sometimes, foreign models are high-quality, attractive and powerful, but they still fail on the market. So today, you will learn about the 18 coolest and most interesting European cars that American buyers avoided, so they failed in the U.S. car market.
Rover SD1 V8
Remember what your father drove in the mid-70s? It was probably a boxy sedan with an underpowered engine or a station wagon with wood inserts on the sides? Or maybe a small, front-wheel drive import car? Whatever he had in those days is pale and outdated compared to the interesting Rover SD1.
Imagined as a family sedan of the future, Rover presented the SD1 in 1976. It was immensely modern with aerodynamic styling, hatchback rear end, and futuristic interior. Base versions were powered by a 2.6 liter 136 HP engine but a 3.5 liter V8 was also available. The V8 version is interesting to us since it turned the comfy family sedan into a proper four-door muscle car. The Buick-derived 3.5-liter V8 produced 190 HP which is not much by today`s standards but a pretty lofty number for the mid-`70s.
Unfortunately, due to strikes at the factory and bad quality of the components, the SD1 didn’t have dependability or reputation German cars had to offer, and it was sales flop in America.