The 1990s gave car guys some of the most exciting cars possible. Back then, conditions within the auto industry were near perfect for producing machines that provided ultimate excitement and features that until then were unheard of.

Why is this the case? Well, the 1990s offered the perfect balance between emissions and safety rules that weren’t too strict and great knowledge and craftsmanship. Prior to the 1990s, manufacturers couldn’t produce cars that were as impressive simply because the know-how wasn’t available. This is apparent when you have a look at the vehicles the golden decade gave us. We had revolutions like rear-steer, engine ECUs that could be remapped and tuned, smaller engines with big turbos, and a lot of power and safety levels that were far more impressive than those of the previous decades.

The fact that these cars were slightly more technologically advanced is even more apparent today as many of these sports cars are still being used even on a daily basis. Sure, prices for most have gone through the roof, but their drivetrains and comfort levels are still adequate even by today’s standards.

So, the 1990s was such a glorious period in time and gave birth to models like the legendary Mk4 Supra, a 90s JDM icon. As the Supra nameplate has been immensely successful since it made a comeback a few years ago, we wonder which other if there were more 90s models that could follow a similar path and be resurrected. We revisit a list of 10 models that have the potential to be reinvigorated in a modern-day avatar.

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1 Nissan Skyline GT-R

1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R R34
A studio shot of a 1999 Nissan Skyline GT-R R34

From the racetrack to the street and even the movies, the Skyline is a vehicle that has turned kids into gearheads and grown-up gearheads into little kids again. The reasoning behind its cult following mostly revolves around its engines and incredible traction system. The RB engine lineup is known for its power and tunability with plenty of examples with upwards of 600 horsepower.

However, the most impressive feature of the Nissan is perhaps its AWD system which provided it with incredible of-the-line performance and cornering grip. This is the main reason why it dominated so many races and got nicknamed the Godzilla. Sure, today we still get a GT-R, but the current model is so old that it too needs reviving. It has been out for longer than we can remember and now falls behind its competition.

2 Subaru Impreza 22B

The Impreza 22B is perhaps the most cherished Subaru amongst fans of the brand. Most Imprezas came as four-door vehicles but the 22B was a two-door which instantly made it stand out from the rest. However, the two-door design isn’t the main reason it is so cherished.

This is a homologation special, and a car built to commemorate Subaru’s 40th anniversary as well as their three-in-a-row manufacturer’s title in the World Rally Championship. As you can see from the photos, the 22B had a wider stance and a much more purposeful appeal. With just 425 made this is an extremely rare vehicle that we would love to see revived.

3 Acura Integra Type R

White Acura Integra Type-R
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An outdoor shot of a Acura Integra Type-R

The Type R Integra is the essence of Honda. It embodies everything that was great about the company and is a car that has risen in value drastically because of this. Underneath the hood of the Integra, you will find a 1.8-liter V-TEC four-cylinder that produced 197 horsepower at 8,000 RPM. Remember, this was in the 1990s and this is a naturally aspirated engine.

Manufacturers still struggle to produce this much power out of similar displacement engines nowadays. This incredible engine gave the Integra its character as it screamed at insanely high RPMs. Oh, and let’s not forget the incredible handling characteristics old Hondas are known for. The Integra Type R needs to be revived and it needs to have a similarly insane redline.

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4 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI

A parked Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI Tommi Makinen Edition
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Side and rear view of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI Tommi Makinen Edition

The Mitsubishi Evolution has been discontinued for a few years now, but its legend lives on. The sixth generation specifically is perhaps the most famous amongst the eyes of rally fans as it was the vehicle Tommy Makinen piloted through some incredible rally stages.

The Evo features a 2.0-liter turbo engine which pumped out 276 horsepower that were put to the ground through all four wheels. This gave the Evo incredible traction abilities that made it a performance icon regardless of the terrain it was being driven on. The engine powering the Evo was kept the same through generations 1-9 and is known as one of the most tuneable units the world has ever seen.

5 Mazda RX-7

1992 Mazda RX-7
Front view of a Vintage Red 1992 Mazda RX-7 parked.

Is there a car in the world with a more distinctive sound than the RX-7? The Rotary engine, slick design, and incredible performance are the most common areas of discussion when talking about the RX-7. It is perhaps Mazda’s finest hour as since then, the company hasn’t managed to produce anything like it. Sure, the MX-5 is fun, but it is nowhere near the car the RX-7 is.

Oh, and we also got the RX-8 and although good, it was nowhere near the legend the RX-7 was. A rotary engine in a new Mazda is something car guys have been longing for; however, it is highly unlikely it will happen. The good thing is that RX-7s are still relatively attainable – especially if they are higher mileage examples.

6 Lexus SC300 Z30

Lexus SC
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A side shot of a Lexus SC

The Lexus SC was introduced in 1991 as a 1992 model and it featured a coupe design that was elegant and subtle. Back then, Lexus was the definition of perfection, and the SC was proof. Everything was over-engineered – made to last for many decades, not many months. Even the door hinges were a site to behold as they allowed a smooth forward and up swinging of the coupe’s big doors. The most impressive fact, however, was the engines.

The SC300 featured the incredible 2JZ engine (also found in the Supra) and the 1UZ V8 (one of the most robust engines ever made). The 3.0 liter straight six 2JZ is the most interesting unit here as it meant that the SC300 could be modified to produce upwards of 600 horsepower. With such legendary specifications and cool looks, a current-generation Lexus SC300 would be a blessing.

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7 Honda S2000

2007 Honda S2000
Front three-quarters shot of a blue 2007 Honda S2000

The Honda S2000 was said to be revived many times, but the Japanese automaker hasn’t acted upon its promises yet. However, it is safe to say that if they do, the new vehicle will certainly draw the media’s attention as the old model is a gem to drive. The S2000 inherited all the great characteristics of the 1990s Honda sports car and took them to a whole new level.

It had a larger engine that would rev even higher, it had more power and best of all – it was rear-wheel drive. This lightweight race-car-engined roadster offered the essence of driving thanks to its raw driving experience that wasn’t deluded in any way. The S2000 is an MX-5 on steroids and a roadster the world serves to have again.

8 Nissan Silvia S15

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White Nissan Silvia S15
Chawapon Wongchuen via Shutterstock
A front 3/4 outdoor shot of a Nissan Silvia S15

You have probably seen more Silvia S15s going sideways than you have seen going straight. The S15 is one of the most famous drift cars to ever exist. The images of them screaming past redline while smoking their rear wheels in the mountains of Japan have been imbedded in car guys' minds and are perhaps one of the best descriptions of the 1990s Japanese sports car era.

From the factory, the S15 featured a 2.0-liter turbo engine that produced 250 horsepower. Its factory engine is a great unit, but many S15s did end up with Toyota 2JZ engines which could provide the power needed for drifting more easily. It is safe to say that today’s efficiency-filled market could definitely do with a brand-new drift lunatic like the original S15.

9 Nissan 300ZX

A front 3/4 shot of a 1989 Nissan 300ZX
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A 1989 Nissan 300ZX on display at a car show.

Upon release, the 300ZX was a sensation. It joined the fierce Japanese sports car scene of the 1990s as a rear-wheel-drive 3.0 liter turbocharged V-6 that allegedly produced 222 horsepower. We say allegedly because many believe it produced much more than that, but its actual numbers were disguised to avoid some strict regulations that hit the Japanese industry at the time.

The 300ZX can mostly be characterized as a tourer as it features a comfortable and luxurious interior that was pleasant to clock miles in. However, once you stumble across a mountain road or a racetrack along your trip, the 300ZX could easily turn into a fun sports car. Today, the Nissan line-up doesn’t offer a car like this one; therefore, a sporty grand tourer bearing the legendary nameplate would certainly be welcome.

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10 Mitsubishi 3000GT

A parked 1999 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4
Side and front view of a 1999 Mitsubishi 3000GT VR-4

The 3000GT is one of the most overlooked sports cars of the 1990s, as not many people tend to talk about it. However, it had features and performance that were unheard of, even at the time. Firstly, it was an all-wheel drive which meant that it gripped like crazy. Most interestingly, it featured a rear-wheel steering system which was incredibly rare at the time.

Of course, nowadays, rear-wheel steering is widely used on sports cars and supercars, but back then, the technology wasn’t readily available. So, in some sense, this was a car that was ahead of its time. There is no denying, that a new generation AWD grip monster grand tourer from Mitsubishi would be a gem to behold!