Throughout the history of automobiles, some brands have withstood the test of time while others have disappeared from the market. While you are likely familiar with many of the popular marques available today and even some that closed down in the past coupe of decades, there are dozens of car companies that folded over the years that you might not know. Some car companies had amazing vehicles but faced entrenched competition that drove them out of business. Others tried and failed to launch innovative new cars that were ahead of their time. Still more suffered from mismanagement or corporate disaster. Discover the top car brands that didn’t make it.
American Motor Company
American Motor Company, also known as AMC, was a perennial underdog. The company focused on innovative compact and fuel-efficient vehicles starting in the 1950s to compete with the Big Three. This company was the result of Hudson Motor Car Company and Nash-Kelvinator Corporation merging in 1954. AMC had a knack for developing funky vehicles that appealed to young buyers and competed head-to- head with Chrysler, GM, and Ford. Their best cars included off-road vehicles from Jeep; small cars, like the Hornet and Gremlin; muscle cars, like the Javelin and AMX; and the early four-wheel-drive versions of America’s first real crossover, the Eagle.
AMC was known for its ability to find a gap in the market and fill it with some help from Dick Teague, the chief stylist who did wonders with a tight budget. Unfortunately, AMC always suffered from a lack of funds. Renault acquired a majority interest in AMC in 1979 and, despite a healthy balance sheet and a stable of innovative vehicles, sold the company to Chrysler in 1987.