The 1990s saw many car companies bringing their products to the market. Some automakers were long-lived, while others were relative newcomers. Unfortunately, the 1990s also saw some of those automakers unable to drive into the 21st century. Here are four of those now forgotten car brands from the 90s:
Chrysler created its Eagle brand when it purchased American Motors Corporation from Renault in 1987. However, Eagle was almost an afterthought for Chrysler, as all it wanted from AMC was the much more popular Jeep brand. By the late 90s, and with financial problems beginning to mount, Chrysler finally shut down Eagle and its mostly rebadged Mitsubishi products, with few potential buyers lamenting its passing or even remembering it today.
South Korea’s Daewoo is now mostly forgotten, especially in the US, but it lasted from 1937 until 1999. However, it wasn’t until 1998 that the Korean car company began exporting a few of its models to America. Financial troubles with Daewoo’s corporate parent finally forced its sale to former partner General Motors in 1999. Upon acquisition, GM renamed its new car company “GM Daewoo” and continued importing various models into the US for a few years after that before ending GM Daewoo’s life as an automaker.
THE once-iconic US car company Plymouth lasted from 1928 until 2001 when corporate parent Chrysler finally turned its engine off. By 1998, Plymouth generally was a repository for rebadged Dodge and Chrysler models. Its only original vehicle by that time was the Prowler, a retro-styled, two-door droptop. Once Chrysler merged with Germany’s Daimler in 1998, the writing was on the wall for Plymouth, with Canadian operations ending in 1999. A couple of years later, US Plymouth operations ceased for good.
General Motors created its Geo brand in 1989 to rebadge various Suzuki, Toyota, and Isuzu vehicles. Once those vehicles carried the Geo nameplate, GM hoped to sell them to US consumers who didn’t want to buy Chevrolets. Unfortunately for Geo, none of its models created strong brand identification with buyers, leaving sales lagging. Also, several of GM’s other longer-lived brands began selling competitively against Japanese imports. By 1997 — when it shut down for good — Geo had no profitable niche to market its offerings.