This is the final part of a five-part feature on the 125 most significant and influential car designs as chosen by former technical editor, Jake Venter.
The preceding 40 years saw the most significant developments in the automobile’s history.
In many ways, choosing 25 cars out of the myriad models built in the last 40 years is easy. You can pick almost any vehicle produced in the major industrial countries and find that they are good enough to justify their inclusion. However, when looking at a new approach to old problems, or exciting new designs, many of these choices drop out of the picture. The most significant developments include the incorporation of electronic controls, the inclusion of significant passive safety features and the popularity of turbodiesels. Many readers think I do not like turbodiesels. I love them but would not keep any model past the warranty period. I would have liked to include several worthwhile American models such the Chevrolet Corvette and Dodge Viper but more significant small cars such as the VW Golf 1 and the first mass- produced Korean car, the Hyundai Pony, forced them out.
Click below for previous galleries in this series:
125 most significant car designs – part one (years 1886 – 1925)
125 most significant car designs – part two (years 1926 – 1935)
125 most significant car designs – part three (years 1936 – 1941)
125 most significant car designs – part four (years 1946 – 1970)