My Silly Fast Car Dreams: the 90s
The continuing saga of cars I'll probably never own
Start writing...As I mentioned in my last article, the 80s were a tough time for fast car dreamers like myself. Especially for those of us that loved the old American Muscle Cars. Some of the Supercars in the 80s were still impressive, but the days of high horsepower, high torque, go fast in a straight line American Muscle Cars was mostly gone.
Though we saw some glimmers of hope in the late 80s with cars like the 1987 Buick Regal Grand National, the 1989 Corvette ZR-1, and a few others, there wasn't much to get really excited about for Muscle Car fans in the 80s. But, the 80s did field some impressive Japanese sports cars that got even better in the 90s.
I want to point out that though the 90s produced several Supercars that would do well over 200 mph, several of these like the 1998-1999 Toyota GT One Road Car only had a few built. I do include a few of these, but I really wanted to focus on cool and fast cars that regular people actually owned in the 90s and now.
1995 Subaru WRX sti
Even though the sport officially began in 1970, the year I was born, I have only recently started to become interested in Rally Racing and specifically, the World Rally Championship. In the 90s Japanese sports cars really began to shine in the WRC. Until the early 90s Lancia had been king of the WRC, but from '93-'99 Toyota, Subaru, and Mitsubishi all won, with Subura winning the manufacturer's title three times in a row from in 1995, 1996, and 1997. I think it was in the late 90s that Subaru put out a series of commercials that featured, I believe it was the dark blue team 555 rally cars shown in this video.
Those made a big impression on me and to this day I'd still love to own one. I did own a Forester and a Legacy, both of which I loved, but those aren't as fast as the WRX. Also, it is one of the few four doors that I think still looks cool.
1991 GMC Syclone
If you are doing a double take because I included a pick up truck in an article that is supposed to be about fast cars in the 90s, well then you might be really surprised that the Syclone was the fastest 0-60 mph vehicle in 1991. Yes, faster than even the Supercars like the Ferrari 348 at 5.2 seconds. It beat the 348 in the 1/4 mile that year too. They didn't build very many of them, only about 3000, but I actually did see one in 1991 at the Laguna Seca Speedway. It was one of the featured pace cars at the F1 race I attended.
1991 Lamborghini Diablo
In the 80s the Lamborghini Countach was it. Every kid had a poster of one on his wall and thanks in part to the opening scene of Cannonball Run, it became the Supercar of the 80s that everyone wanted. But in 1990 Lamborghini, after many changes in ownership added the Diablo. I don't know if it is as iconic as the Countach, but I think it looks just as cool and it has a top speed of 217 mph.
1999 Honda S2000
The one in the Youtube video is actually a 2000 model, but I think it is probably very similar to the original ones that came out in 1999. There were some pretty impressive Japanese sports cars that came out in the 90s, but towards the end of the decade they all kind of went with that round almost Miata look I felt like to some extent. The Honda S2000 somehow looks a lot cooler to me though. Maybe because it is a convertible. But also, because its 4 banger sounds like a high end Porsche to me when it is revvivng to 9000 rpms. A seriously great looking and performing car from the 90s for sure.
1996 Dodge Viper
A cool car that performed and looked great in its day.
1999 Pontiac Trans Am WS6
With inflation making everything more expensive these days maybe aging Gen Xers like myself won't be able to afford the red Italian sports car for our mid-life crisis, but the guy in this video says he paid $3600 for his '99 Trans Am, which might be doable for most of us. Jokes aside, I do like the looks of these Trans Ams and they performed far better than most of the ones that came out in the mid-70s and 80s.
1991 BMW E 30 M3
Another WRC video, this time of some BMW M3s. I'm not sure of the exact year. I know BMW didn't win the MRC in the 90s since it was won by Lancia, Toyota, Subaru, and Mitsubishi, but the M3 is a cool looking car that I imagine was pretty fast in its day as well.
1998 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 5
Did I own a Dodge? Did I own a Mitsubishi? Maybe both, maybe neither. In 1990 I bought a Dodge pickup truck, built by Mitsubishi. Nothing exciting about it performance-wise, but it never gave me any troubles at all. My dad had a 1991 Mitsubishi pick up truck that he put at least 200k miles on with barely more than an oil change.
No point to that really other than to show that in the 90s Mistubishi was still making good cars. In 1998 they won the WRC with a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 5. Like the other rally cars in this article, it looks cool, performs well, and is clearly being driven by someone that knows what they are doing.
All right, those are my picks for 90s dream cars. I know I went a little heavy on the WRC cars, but I think it also showcases what a lot of the cool 90s Japanese sports cars could do back then. Hope you enjoyed this one and I'll try and get two more for the 2000s done soon.
About the Creator
Steve B Howard
Steve Howard's self-published collection of short stories Satori in the Slip Stream, Something Gaijin This Way Comes, and others were released in 2018. His poetry collection Diet of a Piss Poor Poet was released in 2019.
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